The Last Friend puts you in control of Alpha, a strong and silent protagonist who travels through a wasteland in a decorated RV with a pack of his best friends. His best friends are, of course, dogs. Their leader is a fiery little Chihuahua named T. Juan who does all the talking on behalf of the gang, and together Alpha and the pack battle a horde of crazy max-like frat bros who locked up dozens of dogs because… whatever, it doesn’t matter. The storyline of The Last Friend is nonsensical, but in the best way, and it’s really just there as set dressing to give the gameplay some goofy context.
In each stage, you play in a Plants vs. Zombies-like tower defense map where your vulnerable RV is parked on the left and it’s up to Alpha and the best Bois to stop the frat brothers attacking from the right. to destroy it. You’re always in direct control of Alpha, who can jump freely between the three to five lanes in each level, bash baddies and command the dogs where to set up their defenses. Each downed enemy drops some scrap metal, which you can then spend on building more dog units or upgrading existing ones. It’s a simple yet effective system, buoyed by both the variety of dog types on offer and the fast-paced action of Alpha controls. If you don’t want to wait for the dogs to do all the work, Alpha has a set of basic beat ’em up style combo attacks to take down enemies faster.
Defeating enemies and completing stages earns dog treats, which you can then spend at a shop in each region to level up your dogs and increase the number of times you can level them up at a given stage. Meanwhile, each tier has up to three stars that you can earn by meeting certain requirements – such as: classes of dogs. Together, these two progression systems help provide The Last Friend with a satisfying set of player choices, giving you a lot of control over how you grow your team.
All of this is presented in a beautiful art style full of neon cartoon visuals that beautifully emphasize the carefree nature of the gameplay and story. Everything runs at a smooth 60 FPS and little features like each level getting its own unique title card show great attention to detail.
Much like the many doggos it stars in, it’s hard to find much not to like about The Last Friend. Fast-paced tower defense action, a gorgeous graphic style, satisfying progression, and a silly story make this game an easy recommendation. Besides, you can domestic animal all dogs! What more do you want?
https://www.nintendolife.com/reviews/switch-eshop/the-last-friend The Last Friend Review (Switch eShop)