Patreon button  Steam curated reviews  Discord button  Facebook button  Twitter button 
3DS | PC | PS4 | PS5 | SWITCH | VITA | XB1 | XSX | All

I wanna fly (Switch) artwork

I wanna fly (Switch) review

"I wanna fly is perhaps the perfect fit for people who have always wanted to fly like a bird that has no wings."

I wanna fly, a new action title from Woodland Games, is currently listed on the Nintendo eShop for $2.42. Not $2.99, or $2.50, or $2.49 or even $2.40. Its exact price is $2.42 and not a penny more. Or less. Sadly, that's probably the most interesting thing the game has going for it.

The experience doesn't offer much in the way of explanation, but it also doesn't need much. When you first load the software, a brief series of panels present the story--like a comic book--of a penguin who wants to fly and catches a ride aboard a rocket ship. Then he bails, and he must "fly" back to Earth by flapping his wings a lot as he avoids a sky full of hazards.

Minimalism is the order of the day in I wanna fly. The main menu lets you adjust settings (you can turn off the game's single looping song, disable sound effects or view the development credits), or you can spend in-game currency unlocking available characters or even play the game proper.

A round begins right as your fall commences, from a point near the top of the screen. Meteors, angry birds and rockets cross your path. You can hold the A button or tap it rapidly, depending on how quickly you want to gain elevation. Think Flappy Bird, except the tiniest bit more sluggish and with things scrolling vertically rather than horizontally. Keeping your finger off the button causes you to drop more quickly, though you can neither descend nor ascend quite as quickly as sometimes you might like.

Besides playing with the Pro Controller, you can also undock the game and use the Joy-Con controllers or even just tap or hold your finger against the screen. I found that I had the most success playing in handheld mode with the Joy-Cons, as my finger otherwise got in the way of the action. Playing on a larger screen works fine, but then you have to keep your eye on a lot of digital real estate if you have a huge screen.

As you plummet toward the ground far below, coins also float across your path. These are frequently positioned in such a way that grabbing them puts you at risk. The coins tend to come at the middle of meteor clusters, or they attract the worst of the swarms of smaller birds and the giant turkeys you'll encounter. So if you're trying for a lengthy fall, you have to condition yourself to ignore shiny things.

Characters require quite a few coins to unlock. Your early runs probably won't net you more than 3 or 4 coins on average, but longer ones might get you closer to 20 or more. It takes 100 coins and a distance traveled (in a single run) of 250 yards before you can access even the first character, a dull astronaut. The "bat" character, which is clearly modeled after Gotham City's finest but without a trademarked name, requires you to reach a certain rank first. There are a lot of other characters after that, running the gamut from superhero knockoff to celebrity to zany mascot, but the requirements are so steep to access some of them that it's difficult to imagine most people bothering.

Though it's not available on 3DS at the moment, I wanna fly feels like it would have been been a better fit for that older platform. There's nothing particularly ambitious or technically demanding about it, and the style of play is best suited for small spurts of activity to kill down time between more interesting activities. It could also work great on mobile devices. On Switch, it feels just a little bit too simplistic to stand out in the middle of an already diverse software library. I wanna play something else.

honestgamer's avatar
Staff review by Jason Venter (February 20, 2019)

Jason Venter has been playing games for 30 years, since discovering the Apple IIe version of Mario Bros. in his elementary school days. Now he writes about them, here at HonestGamers and also at other sites that agree to pay him for his words.

More Reviews by Jason Venter [+]
Dariusburst: Another Chronicle EX+ (Switch) artwork
Dariusburst: Another Chronicle EX+ (Switch)

Sorry to burst your bubble, but this isn't quite the Darius you remember. And maybe that's actually just fine?
Cotton Reboot! (Switch) artwork
Cotton Reboot! (Switch)

Cotton Reboot! is even cheaper than a Sharp X68000. What are you waiting for?
Space Invaders: Invincible Collection (Switch) artwork
Space Invaders: Invincible Collection (Switch)

Aliens and aliens and aliens, oh my!


If you enjoyed this I wanna fly review, you're encouraged to discuss it with the author and with other members of the site's community. If you don't already have an HonestGamers account, you can sign up for one in a snap. Thank you for reading!

board icon
Masters posted February 21, 2019:

Great opening, Venter. I know it's usually a faux pas to talk price in reviews, but it works well here. The flow of the review is quick and no-nonsense, with some dry wit sprinkled in, and it culminates in a perfect ending. Kudos.
board icon
honestgamer posted February 21, 2019:

Thanks, Marc! The ending came to me at the very last second, a special and unexpected gift from my tired brain. I'm glad it worked for you, and that you liked the review. And I agree with you that discussing price isn't usually a great way to start a review, or even something to include (the minute prices change, that review has one more way to be out of date), but in this case it just felt right. Thanks for reading!
board icon
Ogreatgames posted February 22, 2019:

It does look like Flappy Bird.

It's also nice that this game has unlockable characters.

I sure do hope that anyone who got this game won't throw their switch out the window.

By the way, awesome review!
board icon
honestgamer posted February 22, 2019:

Vertical orientation aside, the biggest difference between I wana fly and Flappy Bird is that my Flappy Bird runs tend to be a lot shorter. A run in I wanna fly takes a lot longer to go south, usually, so each attempt is more time-consuming. However, the game feels a bit less frustrating and demanding in the early moments. I'm not really a huge fan of either experience, though, as you might have gathered.
board icon
hastypixels posted February 24, 2019:

Thematically it's appropriate for a game featuring this mechanic to dovetail the whole tappy animals genre, which has had its heyday at this point. It's a shame that the game wasn't even charming enough visually to make a good impression - isn't that usually how these titles make their way?

I loved the opening - it was gleeful.
board icon
bwv_639 posted March 13, 2019:

Called to my mind a high-level visual novel, If my Heart Had Wings.

You must be signed into an HonestGamers user account to leave feedback on this review.

User Help | Contact | Ethics | Sponsor Guide | Links

eXTReMe Tracker
© 1998-2021 HonestGamers
None of the material contained within this site may be reproduced in any conceivable fashion without permission from the author(s) of said material. This site is not sponsored or endorsed by Nintendo, Sega, Sony, Microsoft, or any other such party. I wanna fly is a registered trademark of its copyright holder. This site makes no claim to I wanna fly, its characters, screenshots, artwork, music, or any intellectual property contained within. Opinions expressed on this site do not necessarily represent the opinion of site staff or sponsors. Staff and freelance reviews are typically written based on time spent with a retail review copy or review key for the game that is provided by its publisher.