[Nintendo Switch] Date Night Bowling Review

by EdEN, Owner

Date Night Bowling from Serenity Forge and Way Down Deep is an arcade bowling game with a date sim twist. Learn more in our Date Night Bowling review!

Date Night Bowling from Serenity Forge and Way Down Deep is an arcade bowling game with a date sim twist. You’ll go out on a night of bowling where you might end up finding someone to connect with as you play and take on mini-games to improve your connection – more on this in a bit. The game features a solid pixel art style and a soundtrack that does a great job of going along with the chill nature of this new Nintendo Switch release. Will you find someone to connect with? Or will you fail both on the lanes and in love?

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You can play this one either within the full Date Night Bowling experience, or you can go into the Casual Bowling mode to take on bowling and nothing more than bowling. For the bowling part of the game, you’ll need to consider that each of the characters will have different stats for power and spin, and you can also select the ball weight, the bowling hand for your character, as well as if you’re playing normal or hard. Pick between the two available venues – Velvet Strikes or Starlight Lanes – and if the lane will have a lil’oil, some oil, or a lotta oil, which will affect your ball’s movement down the lane.

There are ten characters to play as. At first, you’ll only have some extra information on two of them: Holland, an editor in search of fun in her life, and Jasper, an athletic dude looking for a challenge. To learn more about Nora, Edwin, Sadie, Furley, Miko, Kade, Camila, and Zack, you’ll have to play through the game’s story mode to be able to meet them! Oh, and in Date Night Bowling Mode, the two difficulty settings are aptly titled Normal Love and Tough Love since it’s the mode that features the dating sim segments.

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As for how to play the game, your time with it will be split between the story segment, the bowling segments, and challenges. During the bowling segments, you can press left or right on the left analog stick or the D-Pad to move your bowler and can be used during aim, spin, and power inputs. Pressing left and right on the right analog stick will allow you to move the aim indicator to prepare. You can use the A button to select the spin value. The A button can also be used to select the desired power value, but you must do this before crossing the line, or it will count as a foul.

There are also challenges, which are mini-games you can take on. For example, to order food, you must press the A button to stop the spinner on the food you want. For the popcorn toss mini-game, you must press the A button to throw the popcorn at the right time. To high-five your partner’s hand, press up or down, but you need to be careful since they can try to fake you out! Want to get a drink? Press the A button to stop the cup under the right drink! There’s also a claw machine where you’ll press the A button to try and pick out the correct plushie. There are many other challenges, such as singing, getting the right sized shoes for your date, talking with them, and listening so that you can press the A, B, X, or Y buttons to give an answer and prove that you’re listening, tidying up the table, and more!

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The game’s look can be customized at the settings menu so that you can decide how you want the graphics to be presented. You can either go with a retro filter to give it that old-school curved Cathode-Ray Tube – a.k.a. CRT – TV look, give everything a smooth filter revamp or go for the pixel perfect setting. Other than that, you can decide how loud the music, ambiance sounds, and sound effects should be, as well as the level for the master volume for everything.

Date Night Bowling Review - 4

Date Night Bowling is a relaxing and chill experience that mixes the bowling segments with some mini-game challenges that will determine if you end up connecting or not with your bowling partner in the dating sim side of the equation. It features a solid pixel art style, a chill soundtrack, and lots of replay value since you can play on your own, with the AI, or with another human gamer in the full Date Night Bowling experience or in the Casual Bowling Mode. Date Night Bowling is out on Nintendo Switch with a $9.99 asking price, and it’s one you should definitely check out!

This Date Night Bowling review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Serenity Forge.

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