Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure is developed by Game Swing and published by Curve Digital. ‘Stikbold is a groovy 70s-themed single and local multiplayer fantasy dodgeball game with intense, quirky arenas and chaos-inducing random events which change the outcome of each round. Follow the story of world famous athletes Bjorn and Jerome, team up with a dodgeball buddy in co-op team battles or charge head first into a manic free-for-all with up to 3 others.’
Stikbold is a nice, simple, pick up and play game that is definitely one of the funnier games I’ve played. Players get two modes to choose from before getting into the world of Stikbold: Story Mode and Quick Match. Story Mode is what the name says, however you can play through the story on local co-op with a friend locally. Quick Match allows you and up to 3 other friends to play against each other in local versus modes. In these modes you can either play team-based or free for all Stikbold.
Stikbold is also the name of the dodgeball variant you play in the game. To get an idea of what the game is like since it isn’t like typical dodgeball here’s a brief description: Stikbold uses a circle arena which is approximately 30m in diameter. Within this arena any obstacles can pass through and be present so almost anything can be a threat. On top of all this you also go until the opponent has been completely knocked down but the players can be ‘revived’ to get them back in the game, unlike traditional dodgeball. Also unlike traditional dodgeball you can go anywhere on the court and there is constantly only one ball in play which is dropped in the centre each round. First team to win 3 rounds wins the match. So, it is pretty chaotic and a lot more ‘all over the place’ than average dodgeball.
Story Mode follows Bjorn and Jerome, two team-mates who play Stikbold together on a journey to rescue their rivals (and Bjorn’s love interest) from The Devil. Despite the serious sounding plot the game is very light hearted and comedy focused; from the funny ragdoll physics to the way the characters speak the game is laughs all the way through. As you play through Story Mode you will get side objectives for each mission to complete. I didn’t complete all these so I’m not sure if there is a reward but you can earn characters to use in Quick Match as you play through the missions.
Besides playing Stikbold against opponents you also have to take on a variety of bosses which change up the gameplay a bit but the core elements are still the same. Story Mode only has 12 missions so it is pretty short which is a bit disappointing since there definitely could’ve been more. There are also 3 different difficulty settings for players to choose from depending on their skill level.
Quick Match plays the same as Story Mode’s normal matches but uses the arenas that you visit through your journey so you get a variety of hazards and environments to throw balls at your friends in. You also get a variety of characters to use including some of the characters you meet as you progress in Story Mode. The only downside to Quick Match is it is local only so sadly you won’t be going online to play which is a shame since the game could make for some good online play.