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One of the most exciting announcements going into PAX East was the promise that the hit multiplayer action game Duck Game would be coming to Nintendo Switch. Though the game wasn’t playable on the show floor, Neal Ronaghan and I were invited to sit down and be among the first to play the Switch version with creator Landon Podbielski. Neal had never played the game before and you can hear his first impressions on Nintendo News Report, but I’ve put a lot of time into the PC version blasting my friends away with the many available weapons in Duck Game’s shooting arenas.
Each round starts with up to four player-controlled ducks being dropped into an arena unarmed. Weapons are placed around the arena for players to quickly grab and try to use to become the last duck standing. The pool of levels is a combination of hand-made levels, player-crafted arenas, and procedurally generated levels that are created on the fly. There’s a surprising amount of depth in combat, and learning the ins and outs of every gun, arena, and item can make for some of the most intense multiplayer action I’ve had with friends in a long while.
The thing that most sets the Switch version of Duck Game apart from its PC counterpart is the way it handles the player-crafted levels. On PC, players can connect to the Steam Workshop to download new levels while playing that will show up as part of the regular arena pool. Since the Switch obviously will not have access to the Steam Workshop, player-crafted levels in the arena pool will be pulled from the saved levels of all players in a match, even those who were grouped up randomly online. Once you’ve played on a level it will be added to your pool of saved levels and further spread to friends or other players you meet online, allowing the best custom levels to move among the player base even without a dedicated hub to download them from.
Duck Game has been a source of endless entertainment for me and my friends over the years, and I’m incredibly excited to see it finally coming to Switch. The first thing I did when I got home after PAX was load up the PC version and play another round with my friends online, and I expect to be playing even more when Duck Game launches on Switch next month.