A very “orbitrary” affair.
12 Orbits is developed by Roman Uhlig and if you’re looking for a party game for an evening with friends then this would be a nice start. With the tiny price tag of £1.75 and the inclusion of playing with up to 12 people and no additional controllers required; should you be picking this up for your Switch?
I’m gonna start by stating this game is multiplayer only, so if you’re looking for a single player experience then this review may disappoint you. Playing as a small spherical ball, your aim is to turn the white spheres to your own colour by simply hitting them. There are four different game modes; Arena, Trails, Blizzard and Multiball. These are then split into a Versus and Teams category so as you probably gathered it’s a good idea to have an even number for the team modes, unless you’re feeling brave.
You can do tutorials for each of the modes as well. This is a good place to start; even with the games simplistic graphical style there’s definitely a small learning curve in order to be able to orbit successfully around the darker circles in the 20 maps on offer. Each of the maps can be modified, shrinking the circles, turning off the colours and making them larger amongst other things. This adds some variety to the mix as they can start to get a little repetitive after a few rounds!
The standout mode for me was definitely Trails, the object of the game is to collect as many of the white spheres as possible, turning them your colour and adding them to your ‘tail’. Every white sphere that you turn will add to this eventually meaning you are creating a snake effect across the map, hit another player and it’s game over for you!
There’s no need for additional controllers as you can play 12 Orbits entirely with the touchscreen or with two joy-cons with all 12 people. This is down to the game having an incredibly simple control method; just one button! So essentially each player picks a button on the joy-cons or taps the edge of the touchscreen to join in the game and that’s all that is needed to play. Your sphere is limited to just being able to dodge or orbit around the darker circles, so the control style is perfect for casual players.
You will probably find that the game is aimed at quick bursts of fun, after you’ve played each of the modes on offer there isn’t much replay value or reason to go back. In a smaller party the action is less frantic and with no ability to play online, I found the enjoyment you’ll have was limited to how many people are playing. For example, if you’ve got between 2-4 players as opposed to 6-12 you’ll notice your games may be over rather quickly.
For its small price tag though, you can’t grumble too much as it provides some light entertainment with a group of friends and for anyone with a competitive nature it’s the perfect tournament style game. It’s simplistic graphical design also means it’s not too daunting for casual players.
Whilst not an essential purchase, 12 Orbits is great with a group of friends or family for shorter bursts of fun!