Squareboy is a decent beat-em-up, if a little on the short side. The Switch version is definitely the better version of the game but perhaps doesn’t quite do enough to justify the cost when a free option is available elsewhere. This isn’t a bad game by any means – in fact, we had a rather enjoyable time playing through the story levels – but its flaws and inability to stand out from the crowd stop it from being a sure-fire hit.
While the morals that the game tries to tell are good ones – since when is kicking almighty lumps out of bullies not a good thing – it would have been nice to see a bit more complexity added to the arsenal of attacks. It feels like a game that a mobile device would be able to handle with no trouble – and the Switch needs to be above that level in order to sway families away from mobile gaming and back to a trusty console.
Squareboy vs Bullies: Arena Edition represents a genre that barely exists in the Nintendo Switch, which by itself is positive. That being said, the game doesn't fully deliver what it could on many levels and beyond perhaps a few minutes of fun, there's no reason to prefer this over the game that inspires it, or many others of the same style.
At the end of the day, Squareboy vs. Bullies: Arena Edition is a serviceable beat-em-up that doesn’t go out of its way to stand out. While it does have a distinct Gameboy-inspired feel, its repetitive level design, disappointing enemy variety, and lack of content make for a middling five dollar experience.
When it comes to beat 'em ups, few games are as simple as Squareboy vs. Bullies: Arena Edition. The easily exploitable and basic gameplay combines with the overall lack of variety in a way that'll make you wish that the bullies win.