Fly TOGETHER! (Switch)

A couple of years ago I downloaded a game temporarily on sale for the Switch for mere pennies called Conduct TOGETHER!  It was basically a virtual train set where you had to dispatch trains to stations and made sure they didn’t run into each other.  But you were limited to the tracks on the ground.  But now in the sequel, the sky’s the limit with Fly TOGETHER!, where you basically do the same thing, but with airplanes!

In the game, the level maps are set up in hexagonal grids, like a strategy board game.  Your job is to land airplanes at airports as much as you can.  Each airport is a different color and when you land a plane, there will be a little stripe on it that’ll be a certain color, and that tells you which same colored airport to go to next.  When you do, you earn points, and you must reach a certain score to pass a level.  You can also earn up to three stars if you reach certain scores as well.  In the original train game, you just had to follow tracks.  But in this one, you trace lines on the screen to tell the planes where to go, and they’ll follow that path.

There are obstacles you have to watch out for on the map, though.  Such as mountains, turbulence, and storm clouds.  These obstacles can slow you down or even make you crash, so you have to be careful.  You also must make sure your paths don’t cross any other planes in the air, or you’ll crash as well.  And you must make sure that planes don’t land on airports that already have planes on the runway, because if you do, they’ll crash, too!  If you crash, you’ll lose valuable points and time, as you must re-dispatch planes when they become available again.  You really don’t want to crash in a level at all, because if you do, it’s nigh impossible to beat the level in most cases.  When you do finish levels, you’ll earn money that you can use to upgrade your airport and buy more planes to use in the levels.  Different planes have varied attributes, like speed and durability, and you can pick which ones to use in the levels.

Some of the production values in this game are pretty high.  The intro screens crack me up because they sing a reggae song with vocals on how to play with using the JoyCons and motion controls.  There’s also tutorials signs that look like airplane safety cards!  But it’s the lack of control options that is one of the main problems of the game.  Even though they say you can use all sorts of controllers, when I tried to play single player on the TV, it wouldn’t let me pick just one JoyCon to use.  It forced me to play two players.  In order to do one player, I had to switch to handheld mode and trace paths on the touch screen.  Which is actually the best way to play for single player.  But after the initial tutorial levels, the main areas are near impossible to do in one player.  So I can only recommend this game if you have other people to play with.  Up to four can play, and I imagine it’s still pretty stressful with trying to manage four peoples’ fight paths.  I wonder if that’s how air traffic controllers feel?

Kid Factor:

Fly TOGETHER! is rated E for Everyone with an ESRB descriptor of Mild Fantasy Violence.  You can crash planes and they’ll explode, but that’s about as violent as it gets.  Although I hope these are cargo planes and not passenger planes, as it would feel a bit more brutal if it was!  Reading skill is needed for the next, and younger players may find the game too difficult.

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