Jet Kave Adventure Review – Nintendo Switch

Developed By: 7Levels

Published By: 7Levels

Reviewed By: Tyler Higgs

Thank you so much to 7Levels Studios for providing a review code

7levels studios have once again brought a new exclusive title to the Nintendo Switch. Castle of Hearts was 7Levels first release on Nintendo Switch and was a 2.5D platformer mixed with the aesthetic of Dark Souls. Unfortunately, the game wasn’t met with the best of reception, because of its unpolished combat and controls. Jet Kave Adventure is the studios second try at the 2.5D platforming genre and they really nailed it this time around.

Story

Your prehistoric story begins with Kave the chief of his tribe. Kave has been unable to successfully hunt any animals and because of that his tribe’s running out of food. Enraged due to starvation the tribe decided to exile Kave and send him away. After being exiled from the village an alien spaceship falls from the sky and crashes in front of Kave. Kave hides away from the crash and sees an alien emerge from the spaceship. The alien looks upon his broken spaceship and realizes he needs something new to power his spaceship again. In the distance, the alien spots the island’s volcano and rushes there to harness its power in an attempt to fix its spaceship. However, if the volcano’s power is harnessed the island will be destroyed. Now it’s up to Kave to save his island from complete annihilation.

The story is not complex and is told through a few cutscenes with spoken dialogue and simple animations. It’s a relatively bland story, but a platformer doesn’t necessarily rely on a strong story to compel its gameplay. Although a platformer does excel when its characters are charming and lovable, which is unfortunately not the case here. The characters themselves don’t speak and their actions and expressions don’t do enough to make you care about any of them.

Gameplay

Jet Kave Adventure is a 2.5D platformer set in prehistoric times. When you start the game you’ll be placed at the opening screen with a row of stone monuments. Every level is accessed through this row of stones and all you have to do is scroll to the right and left to find each level.

Like many other 2.5D platformer you will spend most of your time jumping across platforms and taking down enemies. You’re given a club which can be used to hit enemies and remove certain obstacles out of your way. Platforming involves a lot of climbing, crawling, and wall jumping to reach high up areas. The platforming is very fast-paced, but the controls are tight so it’s always a smooth experience.

There’s plenty of elements that are thrown in to help mix up the gameplay. Flowers that you have to hit to turn solid, giant fish that act like floating platforms and bamboo spikes that you can use to swing across the water are just a few of the new elements that Jet Kave Adventure introduces.

What Jet Kave Adventure has that really make it unique compared to other 2.5D platformers is a jet pack. Among the rubble of the broken spaceship, Kave finds a jet pack that really helps him during his journey. When jumping across platforms you can use the jet pack to hover across them. You have to be careful though, as the jet pack only has so much fuel. Thankfully, instead of making players have to tediously collect more fuel, it refills instantly after you stop using it.

Your jetpack also gives you the ability to perform a high-speed dash. You’re given one dash at a time and whether your on a platform or in the air you can angle yourself and dash in the corresponding direction. It’s an essential ability for blasting through obstacles like stone walls, but also necessary to complete more difficult platforming segments.

The jetpack is also used for vertical scrolling level segments that pop up a few times throughout Jet Kave Adventure’s 36 levels. These simply act as dodge the obstacle levels as you move left and right across the screen. There are a few other examples of some change-ups in the gameplay as well. Sometime Kave will get access to a hand glider which he will use to glide through a horizontal scrolling level, avoiding crumbling rocks and enemies.

Besides the gameplay change-ups that come with the jetpack, Jet Kave Adventures adds in a few extra events to mix things up. At certain points in a level, you can get locked in a room and be forced to defeat all enemies or survive for a certain period of time. Furthermore, at the end of every chapter, there’s usually a boss to fight against, each with their own unique moveset and design. The boss fights were the only addition that I didn’t really enjoy and that’s because Jet Kave Adventure was meant for short bursts of combat, not 2 or 3 minute long battles. None of these gameplay mechanics are groundbreaking, but the combination of them is very well done. They change the normal platforming up enough so the gameplay never becomes monotonous.

While combat will usually involve you swinging your club at enemies, you also have a long-range alternative. Rocks are found in every level and collecting them lets you use them as projectiles to hit enemies or obstacles. It’s always nice to have some sort of alternative to normal combat.

The other additional mechanic that Jet Kave Adventure has is the ability to store food. When an enemy is killed, or if you break open objects scraps of food will pop out. Collecting these will fill up your food bar and once it’s filled, you can use it at any time to instantly heal one bar of health.

During your journey, you will constantly be collecting seeds which are the game’s form of currency. Seeds can be used to purchase upgrades for Kave and his arsenal of tools. You can purchase a health upgrade, increase in jet fuel capacity, food storage capacity increase and more.

Jet Kave Adventure is an enjoyable platformer that does have some flaws. Checkpoints are frequent in each level and are where you respawn if your health is depleted. There are many checkpoints and the levels aren’t very long so you’re never significantly punished for dying. Compared to many other 2.5D platformers Jet Kave Adventure is really missing the challenging gameplay. The entire game is fairly simple and while some may enjoy that veterans to the genre will be let down by the game’s simplicity. It would have been nice if the developers had implemented a hard mode so that those who wanted to could turn the notch up on the difficulty.

Extras

Jet Kave Adventure happily offers some incentives for those who are a completionist. Every level has 3 criteria to meet if you want to receive a 100% completion on that level. The 3 criteria are completing the level in a certain amount of time, gathering every seed, and completing the level with no damage. These new goals add another layer of difficulty to each level, which was nice to see. There’s also a gold collectible trophy that can be found hidden in every level.

Presentation

Jet Kave Adventure uses a well designed prehistoric theme for its visual style. The lush environments look fantastic as backgrounds and as part of the foreground as well. Every aspect is bright and brimming with vibrant colors to really hit home with the prehistoric look. The enemies are well designed and the platforms along with the objects you interact with fit perfectly. If the visuals weren’t already good enough the soundtrack is also very nice and gives off some great adventurous vibes.

Technical Issues

I can happily report I did not experience any technical issues in handheld or docked mode during my time with Jet Kave Adventure

Summary

I’m sure this statement’s getting old by now, but here it goes anyways. Jet Kave Adventure doesn’t reinvent the wheel (ha!), but that’s fine because it doesn’t have to. The jetpack is implemented perfectly with the gameplay and with the diverse amount of mechanics used to break up the platforming sections the game never feels stale. The platforming feels similar to how many other 2.5D plaformers play because it has tight, responsive controls that are easy to pick up and learn. There’s an unfortunate lack of difficulty if you’re just trying to complete the game’s 36 levels and the characters don’t live up to the fantastic cast of others in the genre. With all that being said if you want a new platformer to take on the go, Jet Kave Adventure is a great choice.

7/10

Pros

  • Tight & Responsive Controls
  • Jetpack is a Fantastic Gameplay Addition
  • New Mechanics Implemented to Prevent The Gameplay From Getting Stale
  • Optional Upgrades & Extra Mission Objectives
  • Beautiful Visual Design
  • Nice Soundtrack

Cons

  • Gameplay Lacks Challenge
  • Boring Level Select Design
  • Characters Have Very Little Personality & Charm
  • Lackluster Boss Fights

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