Just Die Already | Nintendo Switch First Impressions

So there's this game on the Nintendo Switch (and also Steam, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, 2020) called Just Die Already where you hilariously puppeteer old people to their gorey deaths!? The nerve! The audacity! The edgy sense of humor! I’m shocked! Shocked I tell you!

And just like that - just like the high school popular clique and great infomercial products - this game has already achieved its maximum potential just by grabbing your attention at face value. Just Die Already... more like, just… hornswoggle someone else already, right?!

From the minds behind Goat Simulator and a publisher very familiar with awful appendage-flailing controls (Curve Digital, also responsible for Human Fall Flat), this self-aware, intentionally-infuriating mayhem-sandbox, Just Die Already basically achieves its seemingly intended purpose; about 20 minutes-worth of gimmicky, mild amusement (to players and observers alike).

I spent my 20 minutes hurling my protagonist old-person into oncoming vehicles, off of buildings, and into fiery stoves and shark-infested waters. I powered through the painful marionette-arm gameplay just long enough to attempt controlling a variety of vehicles and violence appliances, before finally realizing that there actually kind of is a narrative point to this game. You're supposed to earn tickets to… pay for retirement or something. (Just because the narrative exists doesn't make much sense.)

So I forced myself into 20 tedious minutes more of menial tasks and ticket hoarding. It became painfully clear that blindly bulldozing through the objectives is not fun, but conversely doing so organically via exploration takes way longer than the novelty of the game can carry your interest. In summary, it’s not really fun either way.

It first made me happy to behold, then it made me mad to play, and finally made me feel nothing at all… which in turn made me mad again because I put down Switch Sports Bowling for this! Just Die Already? More like, just… play a different game already… amiright?

But it’s not literally bad. It does what it does on purpose, and pretty effectively pairs its audiovisuals, narrative, and gameplay. It just has mild appeal at face value, and subsequently in how long it will hold the attention of anyone who actually plays (or observes) it. I give it both buy- and play-scores of 2-out-of-5, definitely closer to 3s than 1s, but definitely in the lower half of my Nintendo Switch priorities. Low price and catchy premise notwithstanding, you're not missing much by skipping this one (playing or buying).


Initially I scripted this as a video, but didn't quite get around to making it before the idea felt a little cold, so I adapted the existing script into this article. I hope you enjoyed, and I'd love to know if it's worth continuing in the future in similar circumstances.