Princess Peach: Showtime! Review | Trusted Reviews


Princess Peach: Showtime! is a charming and simple adventure. It’s best suited to young children, with a variety of fun level designs to keep players entertained throughout. A low difficulty level and shallow story will prevent Peach from outshining ventures from Kirby and Yoshi, but it’s still great to see the Princess taking the spotlight once again.


  • Wonderfully detailed worlds
  • Great variety of abilities and stages
  • Simple controls for young children


  • Low difficulty ceiling will put off older gamers
  • Shallow story with little humour
  • Some abilities feels half-baked

  • Genre:Action-adventure game

  • Release date:Available from 22 March 2024

  • Platforms:Nintendo Switch


Can you believe that Princess Peach has only ever been the leading hero in one game? 2005’s Super Princess Peach aside, she’s been limited to a damsel in distress or sidekick role in numerous Super Mario ensembles. 

Nintendo is putting that right this year with the release of Princess Peach: Showtime! on Switch, which not only has the princess of the Mushroom Kingdom in a leading role, but also without the iconic moustached plumber in sight. 

In fact, Princess Peach: Showtime! feels like a completely different game to the side-scrolling Super Mario series, sharing more similarities to family-friendly collectathons such as Kirby and the Forgotten Land and Yoshi’s Crafted World

This is very much a game aimed at a younger audience, with greater emphasis on exploration and experimentation than perfecting your platforming skills. But can it stand out from the ever-growing collection of superb Switch games? Here’s my verdict. 


  • First solo Peach outing since 2005
  • Uses the Theatre theme to great effect
  • Shallow story and characters

Fed up of the constant kidnapping, Princess Peach: Showtime! sees our heroine take a much-needed break by visiting the grandiose Sparkle Theater. Unfortunately, within minutes of arrival, the theatre is overtaken by an evil sorceress called Madame Grape and her dastardly henchmen, the Sour Bunch. 

Princess Peach: Showtime! theatrePrincess Peach: Showtime! theatre

Separated by her loyal Toad, and shut out from the outside world, Princess Peach is forced to defeat Grape without her usual allies, although a new companion called Stella is here to help instead. 

Stella, a magical star-shaped pixie, grants Peach the ability to transform into various theatre-themed stereotypes, including a cowgirl, ice skater and mermaid. Transforming into these characters grants Peach with unique abilities, in a similar fashion to Kirby’s iconic talent – although Peach fortunately only needs to change outfit rather than inhaling foes. 

Princess Peach: Showtime! Stella and PeachPrincess Peach: Showtime! Stella and Peach

Despite the constant genre hopping and varied story worlds – from the depths of the ocean to alien galaxies – Showtime! does an excellent job of maintaining a consistent core theme, creatively playing around with the thematics of a theatre. 

Every level you encounter is designed to look like a stage production, complete with 2D backdrops and props. Many enemies will even be operated by puppet strings, while one of the major bosses is imaginatively designed around a spotlight. There’s a wonderful level of detail, and that’s no surprise since it’s been developed by the studio responsible for the adorable Yoshi’s Crafted World. 

Princess Peach: Showtime! stagePrincess Peach: Showtime! stage

In terms of actual story, there’s very little to speak of. Princess Peach will meet various characters throughout her adventure, but their one-note design makes them forgettable. Nintendo games aren’t exactly renowned for immersive storytelling, but I’d have appreciated a little more humour to give me a greater incentive to read the tidbits of dialogue. 


  • Very simple controls
  • Great variety of abilities and level designs
  • Low difficulty ceiling

Princess Peach: Showtime! is clearly designed for young children, with incredibly simple controls and a low difficulty level. You’ll only need to worry about two buttons for the most part: B for Jump, and A to trigger whatever magic ability is currently assigned by your costume. 

When dressed as Cowgirl Peach, hitting B will see her ensnare foes with her lasso, while becoming Kung Fu Peach will see her punch and kick her way through hordes like an amped-up Jackie Chan. There are also a few inventive non-violent abilities too, with Patissier Peach decorating tasty treats, and Detective Peach using her intuition to examine clues.  

Princess Peach: Showtime! bakingPrincess Peach: Showtime! baking

This excellent range of abilities helps to vary up the gameplay, preventing things – especially the cake mix – from ever becoming stale. Not every skill is created equal though, with the Swordfighter, Kung Fu and Mighty roles feeling a tad too similar, and Figure Skating lacking the same level of depth. 

It’s a shame that each ability is locked to their bespoke stages, so you won’t be able to chop and change like you can with Kirby games. This makes the solution to every puzzle very simplistic – essentially, just press B – and therefore making it a breeze for older players. 

Princess Peach: Showtime! detectivePrincess Peach: Showtime! detective

It’s disappointing that each stage only comes as a trilogy of bitesize levels. There isn’t quite enough time to fully explore the potential of every power-up. I’d have particularly liked to see more time afforded to Detective Peach and Patissier Peach, as their unique approaches were delightful, yet never really blossomed beyond the seedling of an idea. 

Combat is incredibly straightforward, simply requiring a tap of B to smash and wallop nearby enemies. Foes are fairly sluggish in their approach too, and there’s very little variety to keep you on your toes. Platforming is rarely challenging either, besides from the fun horseback segments that up the tempo. And, if you do become overly complacent, a generous life system allows for multiple retries without consequence. 

Princess Peach: Showtime! kung fuPrincess Peach: Showtime! kung fu

Instead, Princess Peach: Showtime! attempts to sate more seasoned players with the target of collecting every single collectible each stage has to offer. This is a common Nintendo tactic, with the likes of Kirby and the Forgotten Land, Yoshi’s Crafted World and Super Mario Odyssey all making the most difficult obstacles optional, so the younger audience is still able to hit the credits without the aid of an older sibling. 

Unfortunately, Princess Peach: Showtime! isn’t quite as effective as its contemporaries. The difficulty ceiling is incredibly low, so hoovering up collectables is more about persistence than mastering any specific skills. As such, it’s very difficult to recommend this game to anyone but young children and those looking for a casual collectathon that rarely pushes the envelope. 

Graphics and Performance

  • Incredible level of detail
  • Storybook-esque presentation
  • Polished visuals and smooth performance

One of my favourite elements of Princess Peach: Showtime! is the level detail afforded to every single frame. Whether you’re galloping through the wild west on horseback or swimming through an underwater haven, you’ll notice that the background is adorned with hundreds of small details to bring the scenery alive. 

Princess Peach: Showtime! cowgirlPrincess Peach: Showtime! cowgirl

Colours are bold, bright and wonderful, to such an extent that Showtime! often feels like you’re flipping through the pages of a children’s pop-up book. The 3D animations look superb too, and I loved seeing Peach dress up in all of her extravagant costumes. 

Cutscenes are fairly rare, and aren’t as ambitious as they are in the likes of Kirby and the Forgotten Land or Metroid Dread, but it’s not much of an issue since the story is an afterthought rather than the main draw. 

Princess Peach: Showtime! Mermaid PeachPrincess Peach: Showtime! Mermaid Peach

Nintendo’s usual polish is present, with absorbing music, detailed imagery and no performance issues to speak of, despite the Switch’s ageing hardware. 

Latest deals

Should you buy it?

If you want a child-friendly collectathon

Princess Peach: Showtime! is positively charming. The variety of the level designs makes hoovering up collectibles a delight, even if there’s little challenge to speak of.

If you’re looking for a challenge

Princess Peach: Showtime! is one of the least challenging games I’ve played on Switch, with other adorable platformers such as Kirby and the Forgotten Land and Yoshi’s Crafted World doing a better job of appealing to a wider audience. 

Final Thoughts

Princess Peach: Showtime! is a great option for young children who want a casual collectathon to sink their baby teeth into without fear of any difficulty spikes halting their progress. The variety of stages and abilities also helps to keep the experience fresh, while simultaneously never becoming so complicated to prove intimidating or confusing. 

That said, a lot of the inventive mechanics do feel undeveloped, lacking the required time to be fully explored. The low difficulty ceiling, even with collecting every single collectible, will likely put off older gamers – especially with the likes of  Kirby and the Forgotten Land and Yoshi’s Crafted World doing a greater job of pleasing multiple audiences. 

If you’re looking for more games to whet your appetite, make sure to check out our Best Nintendo Switch games guide. 

How we test

We play every game we review through to the end, outside of certain exceptions where getting 100% completion, like Skyrim, is close to impossible to do. When we don’t fully finish a game before reviewing it we will always alert the reader.

Compelted the story campaign

Tested on the Nintendo Switch OLED


What is the Pegi rating for Princess Peach: Showtime?

Nintendo says that Princess Peach: Showtime is suitable for ages 7 and over.

Who is the bad guy in Princess Peach: Showtime?

Madame Grape is the main villain in Princess Peach: Showtime, who is an original character. There’s no sight of usual Mario foes such as Bowser.



Release Date

First Reviewed Date





This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.