Garage: Bad Trip for Nintendo Switch


Have you ever just had one of those days where you wake up nauseated in the back of a trunk and break out to find yourself vomiting in the middle of a quasi zombie apocalypse?  Well get ready for it when you pick up GaragetinyBuilds new Nintendo Switch exclusive title by Zombie Dynamics.  Grand Theft Auto meets Doom in this grungy and gory top down twin stick shooter. This game is not for the feint of heart.

Whats It Like?

With a bit of amnesia, you end up finding  out your Butch, an ex drug dealer stuck in an underground parking garage below a shopping mall.  The mall however is just a front that the head of an evil corporation uses to cover up his sinister plans.  You must face an array of undead adversaries, which have been reanimated by a mad scientist. On top of that you also have to shoot it out with a private army as you go deeper into the garage looking for the antidote you need. So that you can save humanity and win the heart of Anaconda, the woman who recruits you, and help her escape using some questionable orders.  The story is great and the suspense is high in Garage.  Several parts of the game made me jump, not to mention the constant carnage that can turn your stomach even though the game uses a sixteen bit art style.  During one chapter of the game I got on a mounted heavy machine gun to defend a subway train as an onslaught of cadavers came barreling toward me.  Some heavy metal kicked in as I started mowing down the horde and I couldn’t hold back the smile.   The game does end in a cliff hangar, which I enjoyed, but I do know that there are some people who can’t handle the suspense of waiting for DLC. So, consider yourself warned.

How Does It Look?

Like I stated before, the art style for Garage is done in a sixteen bit style. It almost reminds me of the original Grand Theft Auto so the graphics aren’t stupendous, but of course that was completely intentional as they also have a filter on the entire game that gives it a CRT TV or VHS look.  Details weren’t skimped on either, for instance, when you walk close to a wall holding your axe, it grinds on the wall, sparking as it drags.   The key art for the game is gorgeous as well.  Maybe horrific would be a better adjective, but I think you catch my drift.  The animated two headed dog on the main menu screen is chilling and now haunts my dreams. I can still see the image from when you first encounter a cadaver with its gnarled teeth and rotting face.

How Does It Sound?

Speaking of that first encounter, the sound effects and music are thrilling then, and throughout the entire game.  When I came across a body that went missing only to find bloody footprints, a spooky shrill singed my spine and faded to a lingering staccato as I traced the trail.  Playing by myself in the dark with my Switch in handheld mode using headphones definitely added to the effect. Not to mention the static and pops that came with that VHS effect.  It also seems that Zombie Dynamics has perfected the sounds of blood and guts splattering and plopping on the floor.

How Does It Play?

The controls are very smooth and fun while using one stick to move and the other to aim like any good twin stick shooter. Along with a dodge roll, kick, main attack on your shoulder buttons, and a weapon select wheel.  You also have a med kit button to use the kits you collect which you can use with your action button. This allows you to eat food and interact with items in the world.  I have run into no problems as I run from zombies and turning to shoot behind me. I can dodge roll to a chemical bomb to throw at a two headed dog, reload and keep moving.  No problems control wise, but sometimes you do run in to more zombies and rats.  Rats may be the bane of my existence in this game.  they are hard to kick and hard to shoot. Specially in hard mode, where they can take you down quick, and even more so if you get in a big group of them.  Far as I can tell, in the hard difficulty enemies do more damage and health items heal less.  In hard the game still feels like the enemy aggression and numbers are the same.  The game can be punishing at times, but it is fun to figure out how to utilize the tools at hand to progress in the most proficient manner.  There is also a great mechanic in the game where you cant see around corners from your character giving the game even more suspense as you kick open doors or are making a turn in a hallway.  I only had one issue where the game crashed while I was in the robot factory where there was a lot of moving particle effects on screen.

Score? 9/10

I hate putting a number on things but what the hell.  If you are looking for a gritty indie horror game with fun and intense game play, witha story that keeps you wanting more? Well, then you should definitely pick up Garage on the Nintendo Switch.  I enjoyed it both in handheld mode and on the TV using my pro controller. Its definitely not for kids, but I couldn’t put Garage down until I was good and dead… tired.  From crazy human centipede bosses to cheeky banter between Cricket and Anaconda, Garage definitely holds a top spot among my favorite indie games this year and is one of the most memorable for sure.

To hear more about Garage be sure to check out the Nindies and Indies podcast where we talk about Nintendo and indie games as well as interview indie game developers for games such as Light Fall and Mulaka.

August (a.k.a. Draco Augustus) is a dad gamer who loves sharing all of his geeky passions with his family, from Marty McFly to Mario and Master Chief. He is also the co host of the Nindies and Indies podcast and founder of the Houston Switch Club. #GoStros

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