The classic Japanese arcade puzzle game, Magical Drop finally receives a new entry in the series. Magical Drop VI will make its way to the Nintendo Switch this winter.
Storm Trident and Highball Games are the developers, and Forever Entertainment assumes publishing duties. The latter is also one of the biggest Nintendo Switch games publishers globally, so the title is in good hands.
Furthermore, this colorful and vibrant title should keep gamers occupied for hours with all its neat features. These include a roster of over 15 playable characters, online and local multiplayer modes, six solo game modes, and plenty of challenges and several surprises.
The first title in the series appeared in the arcades in 1995 and ran on Data East’s proprietary hardware. And it introduced several anime-inspired characters based on the Tarot, such as the Chariot, Devil, Fool, High Priestess, Magician, Star, and World.
Magical Drop II — released in 1996 on SNK’s Neo Geo — introduced Black Pierrot, Empress, Justice, and Strength. And the third entry in the series released in 1997 introduced Death, Emperor, Hanged Man, Hermit, Hierophant, Judgement, Lovers, Moon, Sun, Temperance, Tower, Wheel of Fortune, and Young Strength.
Visually, the latest iteration in the series boasts a clean and bold look, which is appealing. But its presentation also resembles that of many mobile games in its category. And that’s not necessarily a good thing — unfortunately. We feel it could have benefitted from a more elaborate art style similar to that of GrimGrimoire OnceMore.
Can Magical Drop VI compete in today’s market?
The Nintendo Switch has reportedly sold over 112 million units worldwide to date. And that means it has a massive user base hungry for new gaming experiences. Unsurprisingly, savvy game publishers have responded enthusiastically with new and upcoming releases such as Bayonetta 3, Cosmic Fantasy Collection, and River City Girls Zero, to name a few.
And what we’ve noticed with the release schedule of Switch titles is their sheer diversity. There doesn’t seem to be a genre or niche that isn’t covered, and that includes puzzle games in that mix.
So yes, Magical Drop VI will likely find its place in today’s Nintendo Switch market. But will it move enough copies to justify future releases? We predict that this may happen if it meets or surpasses expectations.
However, we won’t jump to conclusions as the previous entry in the series, Magical Drop V, released in 2012 on PC — wasn’t well-received by users and critics. Sadly, that title suffered from AI issues, bugs, and laggy online play, even though the core game was fun.
Should anime fans play arcade puzzle games?
Anime fans often gravitate towards narrative-rich genres, such as JRPGs and visual novels. They enjoy games that resemble their favorite medium, which offers good characterization and story elements to drive engagement. Unfortunately, arcade and puzzle games mostly suck at this, as addictive gameplay is what they’re meant to deliver.
But Magical Drop VI attempts to appeal to the sensibilities of anime fans with its easily identifiable and slickly designed characters. And the fact that each character has a bit of backstory helps to increase its appeal. So yes, anime fans shouldn’t shy away from such a title, provided it delivers on its promises. Stay tuned!