Perfect Dark On Switch Isn't Quite As Perfect As It Should Be 1
Image: Rare / Microsoft

The recent Nintendo Direct was packed with surprises, including a new Zelda and our first look at Metroid Prime 4.

Another neat addition was the arrival of the N64 FPS classic Perfect Dark on Nintendo Switch Online. Rare's seminal shooter is about to get another revival on Xbox Series X/S, so now is the ideal time to return to the game that started the whole series.

Sadly, the game arrives on Switch in rather bad shape, with several emulation issues making it a less-than-perfect experience for seasoned fans – one of which is Graslu00, who is one of the internet's leading experts on both Perfect Dark and GoldenEye 007, its spiritual forerunner.

Graslu00 has posted a thread on Twitter which lists the various problems he has encountered. The first is the audio. "It's way too low compared to N64 and this is not a settings issue, as explosions were equally deafening," he comments.

He also points out that the 'dizzy' effect is "broken on Switch" and makes it "unplayable". "This is instantly noticeable when playing the second level. On Switch, it's almost impossible to navigate just with the first levels of dizziness, and it can get to the point of freezing the screen entirely."

Elsewhere, smoke effects, which worked fine on N64, actually cause the Switch version to struggle. "On Perfect Dark, guns would emit smoke from the barrel after firing full auto or fast enough for a bit," says Graslu00. "This causes the Switch version to lag, while the N64 version was mostly unaffected by this. This affects gameplay a lot since... you know, this game is about shooting!"

There are also issues with lighting effects, input delay, music tracks randomly not triggering, texture issues and transparency effects. Graslu00 also criticises the online portion of the game, an issue which was present in GoldenEye 007. "Needless to say that the online part of this Switch emulator is unusable once again," he says. "If you're not in the same continent or even country, forget about it."

He concludes that "there's no point in playing this version, it's the worst. It's like playing on a 2007 emulator. Do yourself a favour and play the PC version instead." He is referring to the unofficial PC port in this case.

We'd hope that these issues can be remedied, but as Graslu00 himself points out, the issues highlighted with the NSO GoldenEye 007 a year ago remain unresolved, so we wouldn't hold out much hope.

What do you think of the NSO port of Perfect Dark? (205 votes)

  1. I love it11%
  2. I like it, but have noticed some issues15%
  3. It's a disaster24%
  4. I haven't even bothered playing it50%