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The Game of Life 2 review for Nintendo Switch, PC


Platform: Nintendo Switch
Platform: PC
Publisher: Marmalade Game Studio
Developer: Marmalade Game Studio
Medium: Digital
Players: 1-4
Online: Yes
ESRB: E

Believe it or not, when I played The Game of Life 2 on the Switch, it marked the first time in my life I’d ever played the game. I wouldn’t call myself an avid board game player or anything, but I’ve played enough of the classics that you’d have thought that, if only by accident, I would’ve played it at some point.

So, as a first time Game of Life-r — which is what I assume hardcore fans of the game call themselves — what did I think of it? And how did it feel playing it on the Switch?

It was fine.

I mean, it strongly reminded me of the Monopoly Switch port, in that it tries really hard to make spinning dice (or, in this case, a number spinner) and going around a board seem flashy and exciting. And, also like that Monopoly port, it kind of succeeds, whether your little token is dancing in front of the new house he/she/they bought or getting married to the love of his/her/their life (and yes, this game is inclusive enough that it gives you multiple options).

Unfortunately, there are a couple of flaws — one minor, one major. The minor one is that, as was the case with Monopoly, and Clue, and Battleship, and pretty much every board game, video game of not, it’s not like The Game of Life 2 has a tonne of replay value. It’s wonderful if you’re looking for something to play with the family, but you’re not going to sink hours into the game looking for hidden depths. What you see is what you get.

The bigger issue is that this game is wildly overpriced. Like the aforementioned Clue, The Game of Life 2 costs $30, and only includes a couple of different boards, requiring you to pay extra if you want to unlock the rest. And, while the boards included — your standard one, plus spooky and fairy tale themes — are fun, and do mix things up a little, it still seems like a cash grab, especially when you consider that the PC version of the game is only $10. That’s a pretty hefty Nintendo tax you end up paying.

Still, if you can get The Game of Life 2 on sale, it may just be worth it. Again, your enjoyment of it will likely be proportional to how many people you have to play the game with, but as board game ports go, this one isn’t too bad.

Marmalade Game Studio provided us with a Game of Life 2 Switch code for review purposes.

Grade: B