I watched Skater XL being played on the Switch, and did some frame counting!
I was recently given the opportunity to preview Skater XL running on the Nintendo Switch. Previously released in 2020, this physics-based skateboarding simulator has been updating features and adding new maps and content to keep things fresh. Now with a Nintendo Switch release on the horizon, all that content will be ported over to keep it in lockstep parity with the PC version and that of all other consoles.
For those new to Skater XL, it’s a skateboarding simulator with each stick on the controller acting as a separate leg or foot of the skater. From here you are given total freedom across 5 dev-created maps and 26 modded maps to skate to your heart's desire. Because using the sticks does not provide canned animations, all flip tricks are unique, and can vary wildly, depending on how you move the sticks. You turn with the triggers of your controller, so that will be a departure from other versions as the Joy-Con are digital single-input triggers and all other controllers use analog, which vary your actions by how far down you press them.
The visuals take the usual Nintendo Switch hit with 540p up to 720p when docked and 540p when handheld. What really matters, however, is the frame rate. You don’t want to see any kind of hitching or sluggishness when the focus of the game is movement, and that’s where this port absolutely works. We get a full 60 frames per second, gliding across smooth as butter. In this way, there’s nothing stopping you from landing your sick tricks. Of course, you’ll also be able to capture and create fun skate video edits here as well given the replay editor is included in the Switch port.
There is an immense amount of character customization as well, including the community mod browser, where people can submit their own custom art for people to use in game. That will also be brought over, so there will be an extra boost of content there right out of the gate, with new clothes and accessories added regularly.
Easy Day Studios has promised that with the Switch’s release, we will be getting all the same content and updates day-and-date with PC and console, which is a nice departure from competitor Session Skateboarding Sim. I’m curious what the cadence of new content will be post Switch launch as this developer has generally not rushed content out the door, but nonetheless it’s an exciting time to be a skateboarding enthusiast.