I remember when I was about 5 years old, my mom was working as a DJ late into the night and my Dad was “watching” my brother and I. He was a couple of beers in, so any kind of logic was out the door. He was watching Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives and if memory serves correctly, it was around 3/4 into the movie when Jason kills Paula and Sissy.
I. WAS. TERRIFIED.
Yet, when you fast-forward about 10 years later, I was 100% all about any horror flicks I could get my hands on, especially those flicks from the 1980s! Jason Voorhees was always special to me though because of that initial introduction. So, when Friday the 13th: The Game was released in 2017, I was ecstatic to pick the game up on the PS4 (which you can read my thoughts of HERE)! The time has come, once again, to go back to Camp Crystal Lake because Jason is here to terrorise gamers over on the Nintendo Switch!
If you never got around to playing Friday the 13th when it initially came out, then my first piece of advice would be to disregard anything you have heard about the game upon release. The game has changed a fair amount since it originally came out back in 2017. Tons of content have been added to make this game all the more special. Fans of the series will recognise many popular landmarks and places from the movies, as well as some very familiar faces. I love the fact that the developers, Gun Media, are clearly fans of the franchise and saw the potential of the format in which you can play as either the hunter or the prey.
I will admit that after spending so many hours on the PS4 version of the game, I was worried about playing this game on the Nintendo Switch. Now granted, it was not a technical masterpiece on the PlayStation 4 or the Xbox One, but obviously, the Nintendo Switch doesn’t have the ability to kick out the same visuals with decent performance. That is clear fairly quickly into the game with regards to the quality. However, what it lacks in its visuals, it makes up in the fact that it plays pretty smooth. I never witnessed any issues with dropped framerates – from what I could gather. In a game where timing is key and any kind of lag spells certain death, a decent and stable framerate is more important than the native resolution or visual fidelity.
Now, if you played the game on its initial release and never came back then you’ve missed out on all of the great additions to the game. One of the biggest additions was an introduction of an offline mode, which allows you to play as Mr. Jollypants himself, Jason Voorhees!
You can play the standard game mode, where your only goal is to kill all the camp counsellors before they can escape. The biggest issue I’ve had within this mode is that even on the hardest difficulty, the counsellors are dumber than a box of rocks. I had a match where I faced against the maximum amount and after about two minutes, I found a cabin where four of them were ‘stuck’ in their animations. Two of them were jumping in and out of the windows and the other two were going in and out of the door. Despite being a rather funny yet buggy situation, they all made for easy pickings! Speaking of bugs, don’t they know that opening those doors can cause ants to come in the cabins?! UNFORGIVABLE!
Besides the standard game mode, there are special scenarios that you can play in the offline mode that can be a lot of fun. Again, you take the role of Jason and you’re tasked with killing the counsellors in special ways. It’s an interesting way to play the game as it adds a stealth-like element to it. For example, one of the scenarios played out like this:
A few counsellors were driving to a party and their car breaks down on the side of the road. While one guy decides to look at the engine to figure out the problem, the other guy goes out to the woods to relieve himself. The poor bastard never saw me coming up behind him as I shoved him into a branch and gave him a rather nasty splinter. Not knowing his buddy now has a tree for a spinal cord, the original counsellor was completely oblivious as I crept up behind him and threw him into the engine whilst I smashed the hood on him repeatedly. Oh, did I forget to mention how violent this game is?? Yeah, don’t play this around your kids unless you are an irresponsible parent like my Dad was…
Now, the REAL meat and potatoes of Friday the 13th: The Game is the online multiplayer. Remember my concerns with playing this game on the Nintendo Switch? Well, I was able to get into a full group of online multiplayer and we experienced no issues with framerates or any other kinds of performance. Initially, it wasn’t easy to find a group to play with, but I was playing it over a week before it’s retail release date…
What makes the online multiplayer so interesting is that you never know who will be playing as Jason as it is random each time. I know other people prefer to only play as Jason, but there is a lot of fun to be had as a bumbling counsellor trying to escape. Each Counselor is unique and has their own strengths and weaknesses, so finding what you value the most is important.
As a counsellor, you have different avenues you can take to survive the night. Perhaps you want to call the police? You have to find a working phone first. Maybe you are planning on driving away? First, you need to find gasoline, the keys, and the battery. Of course, you can always try to fight Jason. Well, only if you are brave I suppose. PSA: Don’t fight Jason, I’ve never been in a game where the counsellor’s team up to kill Jason and come out alive…
As Jason, again, it is all too simple. Kill the counsellors before they can escape. You have the ability to pick from multiple iterations of Jason, all with their own strengths and weaknesses. It all comes down to what you value. Killing the counsellors gets pretty interesting as you can purchase different ways of killing them from the points you gain from each round. For example, you may not be able to do it from the beginning, but you can buy an ability where you can throw them into a fire and shove their faces into the burning logs.
Nintendo Switch version info
[Rob] The Switch version pulls together and contains all of the previously released content into a single bundle of joy for you to play. From the start, you have access to all ten single-player challenges, new maps, characters, counsellor outfits, Jason skins, additional kills for Jason to unlock, and the ‘Virtual Cabin experience’. The only two omissions in terms of the additional content are the Kickstarter and backer clothing and skin packs (which had their own controversy when the game was originally released).
Whereas the game comes will a nice selection of kills and costumes, including Jason designs from films two through nine, each with their own specific strengths, weaknesses and brutal kills, picking up the game at retail (physically in a shop) seems to give you more for your money. The physical edition provides you with a Pick Axe, Pig Splitter and Machete kill pack, as well as a Spring ’84 and Halloween Costume clothing pack for you to utilise.
Also, just in case you’re doubting the authenticity to the movies and franchise (if you’ve somehow not heard or seen anything about this game in the last two years), the developers sought help from Sean S. Cunningham (the director and creator of Friday the 13th), Tom Savini (the FX and effects director from Friday the 13th), Harry Manfredini (the composer from various movies in the franchise), and Kane Hodder (the actor who played Jason in films 7, 8 and 9). As far as a game based on the concept of the movies, Friday the 13th: The Game is about as authentic as you can get.
Official Trailer (Same content, no Switch footage):
I can’t stress enough how much fun Friday the 13th: The Game Ultimate Slasher Edition is. Each round you play online is unique from the last one, offering hours of replayability and exciting experiences. I don’t know how many times I would sit down to play the game and find myself saying “Ok, just one more round” multiple times as my wife would yell at me to go to bed – “Oh, I’m sorry dear, I’m just decapitating counsellors because they suck!!”. The Nintendo Switch version of the game is great as it has all the DLC and you can play it on the go.
Is it graphically inferior to the other console versions? Yes. But if that’s its only flaw, I feel like that is a major win in my books.
Friday the 13th: The Game Ultimate Slasher Edition£35.99
- - All DLC included (except the Kickstarter and backer skins/costumes
- - Multiplayer provides endless enjoyment
- - Offline Mode is a welcome addition
- - Really wish there was an offline mode to play as a counsellor
- - Graphics are inferior to the PS4, PC and Xbox One versions