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The life of a successful startup is a common tale, but not when said startup is built above other failed startups and your goal as an intern is to delve below in order to fight off the aggressive monsters below and obtain their relics for… reasons. Going Under‘s third person roguelike action with a bright and bubbly theme offers its own brand of gameplay setting and its humour correlates fantastically. Going Under has a lot going for it, so the question remains as to whether that content holds up as a quality roguelike dungeon crawler.

Gameplay

This roguelike dungeon crawler is much more ambitious than many others on the eShop. Many take a retro topdown approach but Going Under has a much more ambitious third person action gameplay that replicates the likes of Furi and Bayonetta. Couple this with the game’s emphasis on continuously needing to find weapons as their durability will cause them to break and you have a dash of Breath of the Wild garnish on the side.

For the sake of progression, you are assigned tasks given by the employees at Fizzle. These can vary from breaking up a meeting by taking out all Joblins in a specific procedurally-generated room to putting out five fires with water. These tasks level up your Mentors which you can choose one of five prior to a run, granting you various bonuses and upgrades. This is similar to the way Skills work as you find them throughout dungeons but you can choose one to start with before you enter and yet, you can only choose a Skill that you’ve spent credits on and used enough in the dungeon to unlock – it’s less complicated than it sounds and provides a fantastic sense of progression.

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World / Level Design

Being a roguelike, you automatically know that Going Under‘s randomly generated dungeons are made to be different each time you enter. There is a surprising amount of variety with plenty of hazards that keep in theme with the business startups you are taking down, keeping you on your toes each time.

The concept of an overworld is curious as whilst a simple menu system would suffice, it can lack originality and a personal touch. The overworld in Going Under matches the office theme as you can freely explore the startup’s floor. It’s fun to roam around and it certainly adds to the personality, however I found that the office lacked substance to interact with.

Story / Personality

Going Under‘s premise, characters, dialogue, setting and plot are all immensely charming and wacky in every conceivable way. Each character is memorable with their own unique quirks, whether that be the accountant trying to stop the CEO from overspending or the creator of Fizzle flavours who is very passionate about his work.

The plot’s progression is also genuinely surprising and for a roguelike (which as a genre depends greatly on the skill of the player in order to progress), quite smooth in its pace. Story beats never felt disjointed or unnatural and with Going Under‘s unique setting and characters, it ticks many boxes.

Graphics / Art Direction

Whilst it may be a little rough around the edges at times, the artistic motif is bright and colourful with an endearing polygonal approach. Its use of bold colours and soft edges adopts the cliche entrepreneur startup vibes that you’d expect on their quirky websites.

Music / Sound Design

The tracks aren’t anything spectacular by any means, but they’re wonderfully catchy with a lighthearted bop. They match the quirkiness of the subject matter whilst providing a tone that is unique to its own.

Final Score: 82%

Going Under is charming, witty and above all else, a whole lot of fun. Its quirky characters and clever setting gives cliche modern startups a cheeky wink, taking a lot of creative liberty to bring in a strange blend of supernatural fantasy. Couple all of that with slick gameplay and an attractive presentation, Going Under is certainly a game to consider adding to your Switch library.

Thank you for checking out our Going Under switch review, thank you to Team17 for providing the review code and thank you to our $5 and up Patreon Backers for their ongoing support:

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Posted by Alex Harding

Lover of chocolate and admirer of video games, Alex is the chief writer/editor of Switchaboo.