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Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle Review

In this unlikely alliance, Mario and his new Rabbid heroes team up to take out the troublesome Rabbid villains, in a world that has seen Mushroom Kingdom twisted by these insane critters. Guided by Beep-O, Mario must travel through this new distorted Mushroom Kingdom to find his missing friends and save the day.

I’ll admit that at first, I didn’t care much for this game when it was first announced. I never really liked the Rabbids, and while I like strategic turn-based combat, I wouldn’t exactly call myself a massive fan of it. It was a hard sell for me. And wow was I silly to not get more excited about it!

It turned out to be surprisingly good, teaching me not to judge a book (or this case, a game) by its cover.

Kingdom Battle review
You control Beep-O through the twisted version of Mushroom Kingdom.

As I mentioned before the combat in Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle is strategic and turn-based, and is surprisingly deep and challenging! The rules are simple- defeat all the enemies on the map before they defeat you.

To do this, you’ll need to think about various things before you even start the battle. Do you have the right team? Where are the best places to position your team members? Based on the enemy types, what would be the best approach to taking them down?

There’s plenty to think about but it’s always enjoyable. There are other objectives apart from conquest such as simply making it to the end of the map, escorting a weaker character, or taking down a boss. This kind of variety keeps things fresh, but most of the time it is all about conquest.

Kingdom Battle review
Keeping out of enemy sight is crucial.

Over the course of Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, you’ll unlock more characters to experiment with. Characters like Mario and Yoshi are more focused on offense, while Peach and Rabbid Peach are more focused on defense/healing.

Characters have their own unique abilities while at the same time can share abilities with other characters. It’s finding the balance in your strategy and what characters to choose that can determine success or failure. I found myself having a go with every character as I unlocked them, and I felt that all characters were worthy of being chosen.

But I always found it helpful to have two offensive characters and a healer, but that’s just me. Everyone has their own way of doing things and that’s what makes this game fun, as there’s no one right way of winning.

You can also upgrade your team’s equipment with coins found inside and outside of battle, so you may want to stick with a small selection of characters so you can afford to buy all the equipment they need. It’s advisable to buy the best gear for your chosen team as higher attack power will be needed as you progress.

There’s an upgrade tree for every character too which improves characters abilities such as movement range, increasing health, and each character’s attacking abilities.

Kingdom Battle review
The varied locations can bring about different challenges.

Almost every chapter throughout the game, new enemy types are introduced, forcing you to adjust any strategies you might be comfortable with. Some will hide behind cover, some will move closer to you when attacked, and some can throw you back to the beginning of the stage.

Having to consider all the different types of attacks that can get thrown at you just adds even more depth to the action. This means considering the positioning of your team is absolutely crucial. If you make one wrong decision, you could very well lose a team member, and they cannot be revived.

This all just builds up to such a satisfying victory, if you can think your way through each stage. The great thing is if you do fail, you’ll feel like you can learn from it, and try again with maybe a different approach. This happened to me quite a few times in the second half of the game.

Kingdom Battle review
Use all tools at your disposal to take down the enemy Rabbids.

In between battles, you can explore more of the world to collect coins, solve puzzles, and find hidden treasures. It’s a nice, and fun, distraction from all the battles because there are a lot of them! The puzzles aren’t too difficult but it is nice just to have a bit of variety.

All the coins you collect during these stages you can use to upgrade your team’s gear, so it’s worth taking the time to explore. Other rewards such as the game’s soundtracks, 3D models, and artwork didn’t really interest me that much, as I may have let out a slight disappointed groan whenever I found them in treasure chests.

It’s still worth seeking treasure chests out to unlock more weapons to buy, and orbs for upgrade abilities.

While there are better Switch games out there to enjoy, don’t let Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle slip away through the cracks! It may look like a cutesy game, but it’s not afraid to kick your butt. It’s challenging and deep, but also an extremely fun and satisfying game!

Score: 9.1/10


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