[Beyond PlayStation] Flipping Death Review
Flipping Death from Zoink Games is an excellent puzzle platforming adventure on Nintendo Switch that is a must-buy. Find out why in our Flipping Death review!
As a fan of Zoink Games, and in particular of Stick it to The Man!, I’ve been looking forward to playing Flipping Death for a while now. I’m happy to report that the wait has been worth it, and that you should go and buy the game right now on Nintendo Switch. Don’t worry, I’ll wait for you to go to the Nintendo website and buy it. Shouldn’t take more than a couple of minutes, right?
All done? Great! Now let me tell you why you’ve just made a great decision.
In Flipping Death you take control of Penny Doewood who works at a funeral home. At least she does until Penny is fired from her job at the start of the game for being a bit too passionate about it. After meeting her boyfriend and making her way to their car, she drives around for a bit in the gorgeous 2.5D world of Flipping Death before something sinister leaps out of nowhere, scaring her while driving, thus making her crash into a tree. The couple decides to leave the car and try to get home before the fog gets worse, and Penny has the great idea of using the graveyard as a shortcut.
She then doubles-down on this great idea by playing with a mausoleum in the graveyard, which is perfectly normal since the mausoleum is rock solid and totally safe. And then the mausoleum crumbles, as does the floor beneath her, sending Penny flying down into a cave where she falls on top of a rock, dying from the impact – falling though the ground and landing on a hard rock is bad for you! This, as is to be expected, sends her to the land of the death with her fellow ghosts.
You will soon meet Death, who seems to have placed a request for a temp who can take care of his job while he takes a vacation on the moon. Why the moon? Because, it turns out, this is the one place where no one has ever died, so there are no ghosts trying to file a complaint, and certainly no ghosts who are in denial since they’re soooo sure they’re not dead – see Penny. Your new job will include helping ghosts with their unfinished business so that they can finally rest in peace. This includes things such as finding who killed someone, or helping to get a boat painted just right, to name a couple of examples.
It is here where you’ll learn the basics for the game, such as walking with the left analog stick and jumping with the X button. As you’ll soon notice, Penny jumps very high in her new ghost form, launching into a somersault with the press of a button. You can chat with NPC with the Y button to learn more about what is going on. You can also throw your scythe (because you’re Death!) by aiming with the right analog stick and launching it with the ZR button. Once it lands, you can press the ZR button again to teleport to where the scythe has landed, or you might want to press the ZR button while it’s flying around to jump teleport into the air!
Once you have enough ghost critters, you will get to possess humans by pressing and holding down the X button to spend said ghost critters for the possession process. Once you’re inside of a human, you can press the L button to read their minds to learn more about what makes them click. Possessing someone will take you to the world of the living, and you can stop possessing someone by pressing the X button, thusly flipping back to the world of the dead. The A button will allow you to display your magic map, showing you points of interest, as well as characters that you can teleport to for some quick-travel fun.
As you possess people you will get a list of challenges to complete, and doing so will reward you with Ghost Cards for your collection. You might, for example, possess someone with a musical instrument, and using said instrument with the right analog stick and the ZR button will allow you to lure people closer to complete one challenge: get three other people to join you in a marching band. Ghost cards will include the image of one of the ghosts in the game, the year they were born and the year in which they died, as well as a description on the character’s life. That is if you don’t get a card for a character that is still very much alive and well, with a “TBD” for his/her year of death. Challenges are specific to each chapter, so be sure to complete them all before moving the story along!
Some characters will require that you collect a different type of ghost critters for you to possess them, as you will notice from the image of the ghost critter that shows in a word balloon as soon as you approach their outlines when you’re in the world of the dead. Your first chance to collect and use a different type of ghost critter do this will be with the cop in the first proper chapter in the game who you won’t be able to possess until you’re close to the end of that story chapter. Speaking of chapters, something to consider is that the characters you’ve possessed will reset when you enter a new chapter, and the same will happen to your ghost critter counts, so you’ll need to collect new ghost critters for your possession hijinks.
Flipping Death is not only one of the best indie games on the Nintendo Switch, it’s one of the best games on Nintendo’s hybrid console, period. If you’re a fan of Zoink Games then this is a no-brainer, but if you have yet to try some of their great releases, then you can’t go wrong with making Flipping Death your first purchase from Zoink Games.
This Flipping Death review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Zoink Games.