Super Mario Bros. Wonder isn’t the only major release arriving on the Nintendo Switch next month. In case you missed it, Detective Pikachu is also back in Detective Pikachu Returns – a follow-up to the 2018 3DS release.
Ahead of the game’s release, the first “hands-on” previews have now been released and so we’ve decided to round up as many as possible into a single post to give you an idea about this latest entry in the mystery-solving adventure series.
Starting off with IGN, the game appears to pack all the charm of the original but falls short when it comes to visuals:
“The place where Detective Pikachu Returns leaves a lot to be desired is in the visual department. While it doesn’t perform as poorly as Pokémon Scarlet & Violet, many of the textures and character models still look closer to a 3DS game than a new Nintendo Switch game coming out in 2023. It doesn’t necessarily look bad, it just all looks very… Simple…Still, Detective Pikachu Returns packs in the charm of the original, and you’ll probably want to keep playing just to see what the adorable hero says or does next. As a bonus, the kid-friendly nature of the puzzle-solving and story could make it a great entry point for younger players to get into the mystery genre.”
Comicbook.com mentioned how it will no doubt interest returning fans but anyone who didn’t enjoy the 3DS game might want to “steer clear”:
“In our brief time with the game, it feels like the game will maintain a lot of the charms of the original Detective Pikachu, while also adding some new features, as well as new mysteries to uncover. One of the highlights of the original game was getting to see and interact with Pokemon in a very different setting, and getting to learn their thoughts through Pikachu. Those elements were on full display in our preview, and it was interesting to see how the developers are using these games to further flesh out the Pokemon world. Players that didn’t enjoy the 3DS game will likely want to steer clear, but it already seems like returning fans will find plenty to enjoy when Detective Pikachu Returns arrives next month.”
Game Informer mentioned how they enjoyed the interactions with Pokémon the most:
“interactions, where you truly get a sense of the personalities of the various Pokémon of Ryme City, were the highlights…Though my time in Ryme City was brief, I enjoyed interacting with the various Pokémon that coexist with the humans in this unique subseries. The case-solving mechanics feel fairly basic at this point, but it’s also worth remembering that I was playing in the first chapter, so that’s to be expected.”
GameSpot thought the sequel was shaping up to be a much bigger Pokémon adventure than the first game:
“Nintendo Switch hardware has allowed the team to build a livelier Ryme City. The explorable areas are noticeably bigger and the number of Pokemon that fill the environment has increased. While these improvements may seem superficial, they could expand cases and add some complexity by giving players more ground to cover and more witnesses to question.”
“I think Pokemon fans could be in for a fun adventure that builds off the groundwork of the original 3DS game.”
And Inverse thinks this game could be something special, even if the graphics aren’t “exceptionally impressive”. You also get an added perspective with Pikachu now:
“The major new feature of the sequel fleshes out this idea even more, by letting you directly control Pikachu during investigations. While you control Tim, you’ll be able to talk to humans and have Pikachu interpret for Pokémon. Playing as Pikachu lets you actually talk to those same Pokémon, seeing more of their unfiltered personalities.”
“Graphically, Detective Pikachu Returns isn’t exceptionally impressive, but there’s a bright color palette the game uses that injects a bit of personality. Despite its simplicity the first Detective Pikachu still managed to shine by having quirky characters and an interesting story, and getting hands-on with the sequel gave me hope it’ll manage to hit that sweet spot again.”