[Nintendo Switch] Rustler Review
A very interesting take on the GTA formula7.5
Grand Theft Horse? Medieval Grand Theft Auto? Sure, why not? Check out our Nintendo Switch Rustler review!
Grand Theft Horse – Win the Kingdom or Tear it Down
Classic GTA-gameplay gets a medieval makeover. The Great Tournament is offering the hand of the princess as a prize. Go from local brigand to champion. Or don’t. Guy (that’s you) and his friend (conveniently named Buddy) are out to win the prize with holy hand grenades, pimped out horses, and their own personal minstrels in tow. It’s madness and mayhem with true comedic flair.
? Grand Theft Horse: Wreak havoc in a medieval world inspired by classic GTA gameplay. Use swords, spears, turds – whatever will get the job done!
? Wear the Crown: As a poor peasant, you’ll need to get creative in order to win the Great Tournament. Form weird alliances, double cross your foes, and dig up dinosaur skeletons (because, why not?).
? A Medieval Sandbox: How you progress is up to you. Spend your time completing quests, wreaking havoc and having a laugh at the expense of others!
? A Lot of Horsin’ Around: Shoot cows into the sky, drag your neighbors through the mud, toss some holy hand grenades, or draw fancy pictures in the field with a plow.
? Minstrelsy of Power: Hire a musical companion to play the tunes you like and add a powerful soundtrack to your adventures.
Ruster from Modus Games and Jutsu Games is a new take on the original Grand Theft Auto games. Instead of taking place in the modern-day, it’s a comedic version set during medieval times. It’s a really interesting combination I couldn’t wait to dive into. The original Grand Theft Auto games were not 3D, instead taking place from a top-down perspective, which is what Rustler is doing on Nintendo Switch. It was definitely interesting to see if Rustler could pull it off because the original GTA games have not aged that well.
You star as Guy, and you are questing to win the hand of the Princess through a tournament with your friend Buddy. It’s an interesting premise to get the ball rolling and start the mayhem of what is about to come. Now, let’s talk about the world. I mentioned it’s a medieval setting, but that’s not entirely true. This is a very skewed take featuring very modern sensibilities to the world. I mean, the soundtrack is Hip Hop heavy, which is great. Even better, bards are designed as rappers. A police horse will have lights on the top of its head. There are small touches like these all over the world. It also isn’t afraid to embrace humor. Like many other games, it has a Monty Python feel to its writing for quests and characters, which fits the world. Even a special knight will make a cameo! The other end is more fart humor, which I can also appreciate, and they mix pretty well.
Now let’s talk about combat and the controls. It feels like the old GTA games, but without guns. You’ll rely on melee weapons and some rudimentary ranged weapons. This fits with the time period pretty well, but I’m mixed on how the combat feels. You move with your left analog stick and aim with the right one. However, on Nintendo Switch, I always have trouble aiming with the right analog stick. The sticks are so small that it’s a bit harder to do. When playing on the big screen with my Nintendo Switch Pro controller, it felt a bit better. You also have blocks and parries at your disposal. Once you get the hang of them, it will make combat easier. T
Just like in most games, you’ll have your main story path to complete the story, with a ton of side-mission objectives to complete. I tried to do them all as they came up since I hate having quest logs filled that need completing. I did find partway through the story that I needed a huge amount of gold to continue, and I think I was only able to because of my emphasis on completing the many optional missions. So while they were optional, a good portion of them needed to be done. They all felt unique, and while I found the controls did hold me back to a point, the checkpoint system greatly helped to compensate for this.
Graphically the game looks good on the Nintendo Switch. Since the game is presented from an overhead view, the world is fairly fleshed out with a good amount of different areas and lots of things that help to make it feel full and lived in. There are 2D character portraits which I thought looked pretty good for the most part, and they poop up during direct interactions with characters. I loved the music in the game. The Hip Hop feels felt very on-brand since this is an homage to the GTA series.
Overall I had a good time with Rustler. I really liked the world, and the humor connected with me. The missions were unique and wacky. The visual art style worked as well, featuring the overhead 3D models, and making the world feel full of life. I guess my biggest gripe was aiming since the analog sticks on the Joy-Con are not great for that, and I even struggled with my Nintendo Switch Pro Controller.
This Rustler review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Modus Games.