Released this week on Switch is a port of mobile and PC game, Car Mechanic Manager.
Things start off relatively promisingly with a reasonably amusing, brief cartoon intro; the protagonist, an excellent but unappreciated mechanic, decides to leave her job and set up her own business – fixing cars, fulfilling customer orders and managing your premises is the name of the game here.
Unfortunately, things go south pretty quickly. The tutorial is incredibly long and concepts are poorly explained; what’s more, the controls don’t ever seem to be properly outlined – and they are incredibly convoluted. You use a combination of the left stick and dpad buttons, along with a couple of the buttons on the right joy-con, to move through and select options on menus for whatever object, building or feature you’re looking to manipulate.
The lack of touchscreen control seems like a glaring oversight – especially for a game that’s previously appeared on mobile devices.
Through the early stages of the game, I seem to be grinding very slowly, getting funds from repairing cars at my garage; despite the busy looking screenshot above, at my current level I’m only able to repair one car at a time – and it feels like I’m wrestling with the convoluted controls more than actually being involved in the game.
I’m sure that there’s a decent enough game here, but it really seems that there are so many issues to get through – not least the control scheme – that it’s a tough one to recommend without further evaluation.
That said, I am stilll in the very early stages and it has plenty of time to win me over. Though early impressions have not been particularly favourable, I’ll spend some more time getting to know the ins and outs of the game before giving it a final verdict.
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