Connect with us


World of Goo – Nintendo Switch review

World of Goo is remains a sticky treat and showcases the versatility of the Nintendo Switch.



World of Goo - Logo

World of Goo remains a sticky treat and showcases the versatility of the Nintendo Switch. 

It always felt better to pick up your goo balls than it did to slide them around. Although the touch screen of an iPad might seem like the best way to play World of Goo, the pointer-based controls used by the 2008 WiiWare release, or the mouse control of PC version, always felt more immediate, less ‘draggy’.

With Tomorrow Corporation’s Nintendo Switch reissue we have the best of both worlds. Touch screen controls in portable mode, and pointer controls in TV mode. Or do we?


In actual fact the game’s TV mode uses nothing more than the internal gyroscope and accelerometer of the Switch’s Joy-Con controllers. Nintendo’s little box of tricks has not been short of surprises since launch, but World of Goo’s smooth replication of the Wii’s motion controls – without the use of a sensor-bar – seems little short of magical.

Whether or not this means we can look forward to a whole range of Wii Virtual Console titles remains to be seen, but in the meantime Tomorrow Corporation should be congratulated on effectively demonstrating yet another of the Nintendo Switch’s many functions.

World of Goo - Gameplay

As for the game itself, World of Goo is pretty much a known quantity at this stage, but this doesn’t mean that it isn’t still an absolute delight to play. The game’s central conceit of connecting various types of gooey balls together to reach a goal hasn’t aged at all in the last nine years. There’s something intensely satisfying about joining these super-charming little balls together, and trying to keep things in balance as you reach for the goal. Like Tetris and Peggle it’s a mechanic that could be pared right back to its core and still be enjoyable.

The game’s complexity and challenge comes with the design of each level. Early stages help you get acquainted with connecting goo together, and then a slowly evolving roster obstacles are added to the mix, be it the whirring blades of a wind turbine, fire, or entire stages that rotate. The game’s leisurely difficulty curve matches the player’s gradual increase in confidence and ability, meaning unfair difficulty spikes are, for the most part, avoided. World of Goo manages to tread that fine line of providing a challenge, but always ensuring that success feels within reach.


The experience is given that extra polish by its ageless, cartoon-like visuals, and a subtle dystopian narrative that begins a thread picked up by Tomorrow Corporation’s other works, Little Inferno and Human Resource Machine. The game’s surprising late twist – which changes up the gameplay a little – provides World of Goo with a memorable conclusion and helps nudge it into classic status.

World of Goo - Gameplay

And let’s take a moment to mention the game’s wonderful sound design. Each little squeal and yelp adds character to the goo balls, and is helpful in communicating actions to the player. Kyle Gabler’s score deserves mention, too. It swings confidently from Western pastiche and carnival waltz, to Jazz and Blade Runner-esque synth. It’s a pure pleasure and is included in the game as an extra to be enjoyed in its entirety.

The Nintendo Switch release also includes a simultaneous two player co-op mode that can be played with two Joy-Con controllers. It works perfectly, and by adding a layer of communication – and miscommunication – it turns the game into a enjoyably chaotic social experience.

World of Goo remains a delight, then. And although it seems unlikely to ever happen, it’s a game that begs for a sequel. It would be fascinating to see where original developer 2D Boy and Tomorrow Corporation could take the concept next.

World of Goo


If you are a long-time fan, World of Goo is well worth a return trip. If you are new to its pleasures, then this is an essential and timeless game that deserves to be on your Nintendo Switch play-list.

We have a favour to ask

Thumbsticks has a couple of main aims. We want to write interesting articles and cover games that most outlets won't, and we want to give opportunities to new writers and new voices. And right now, with the current state of online publishing? It's tough! We hate to ask, but if you want us to continue writing what others won't, or to keep covering weird indie games, or to be able to give opportunities to new writers – and only if you can afford it – then please consider supporting us on Patreon.

Recommended for you

Thumbsticks editor and connoisseur of Belgian buns. Currently playing: Paper Mario: The Origami King, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and Pikmin 3 Deluxe.


Latest from Thumbsticks

News6 hours ago

You can now design custom Xbox Series X|S controllers

Let your imagination run wild – the Xbox Design Lab has re-opened, and you can now design custom Xbox Series...

Animal Crossing: New Horizons - Isabelle Animal Crossing: New Horizons - Isabelle
News16 hours ago

Nintendo’s Doug Bowser clarifies the future of Animal Crossing after E3 absence

Fans hoping for an update on Animal Crossing: New Horizons at E3 came away disappointed. Worry not, says Doug Bowser.

Bethesda Starfield Bethesda Starfield
News23 hours ago

Bethesda’s Pete Hines ‘sorry’ for frustration that Starfield won’t come to PlayStation 5

In an interview, Bethesda's senior vice president of marketing, Pete Hines, spoke to PlayStation fans, apologising for the frustration that...

Metro Exodus Metro Exodus
News1 day ago

Metro Exodus Xbox Series X|S and PS5 upgrade detailed

With Metro Exodus about to launch on Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5, developer 4A Games has outlined some of...

Coming exclusively to Xbox E3 2021 Coming exclusively to Xbox E3 2021
Features1 day ago

Something was conspicuously absent from the Xbox E3 2021 conference

Master Chief? Present. Forza? Here. Sea of Thieves? Yarr! Bethesda exclusives? You bet. So why did it feel like something...

Control - Xbox Control - Xbox
News2 days ago

Time is running out to get Control for free on PC

Control, Remedy’s dark, strange third-person shooter, is free on the Epic Games Store.

The Medium - Xbox Series X / PlayStation 5 The Medium - Xbox Series X / PlayStation 5
News2 days ago

Xbox Series X exclusive confirmed for PS5 release

The Xbox Series X|S is losing a high-profile exclusive to Sony’s PlayStation 5 console this September.

Rockstar shuttering GTA Online servers Rockstar shuttering GTA Online servers
News2 days ago

Rockstar shuttering legacy online servers for GTA Online, other titles

Rockstar is bringing an end to online services for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of GTA V, Max...