Wii U eShop Reviews - Page 3

Shiftlings (Wii U eShop)

Shiftlings (Wii U eShop)

Stuck in second gear

Puzzle-platformers are all the rage in the world of indie games. Perhaps it's because they're so accessible for so many different kinds of gamers - or because they're a genre well suited to exploring unconventional narratives. Whatever the case, intuitive design is central to the success of these generally more minimalist games...

Don't Crash (Wii U eShop)

Don't Crash (Wii U eShop)

Crash and burn

The Wii U eShop sometimes comes under fire for having a library of games that seem better suited to mobile platforms. Let's be fair, though: despite their reputation, mobile games aren't intrinsically bad - there are plenty of quality titles to play on smartphones and tablets if you're inclined to seek them out. That said, the eShop...

Kirby Squeak Squad (Wii U eShop / DS)

Kirby Squeak Squad (Wii U eShop / DS)

Squeaky Clean Fun

For a company so often associated as being at the forefront of innovative thinking in the video game industry, Nintendo can have a tendency to stick with a tried and tested formula. The Mario, Zelda and Pokémon franchises have all received their share of criticism for not drastically changing their instalments over the years, and...

Solitaire Dungeon Escape (Wii U eShop)

Solitaire Dungeon Escape (Wii U eShop)

Fortress of solitaire

Since the introduction of Windows, most PC owners have had the ability play Solitaire for free. A simple, addictive game of strategy and luck, there's a reason it continues to be available for free in various forms, so releasing a paid version of the game is an uphill battle from the beginning. Jose Varela Games' Solitaire...

Life of Pixel (Wii U eShop)

Life of Pixel (Wii U eShop)

A passionate pastiche of pixels past

Independent games are well-known for reaching into the early days of the industry for inspiration. Many indies borrow the retro style of chiptunes and pixel art, being an aesthetic that's easily created on a smaller budget, and titles like Shovel Knight have even elevated the look beyond its original form. Life...

Never Alone (Wii U eShop)

Never Alone (Wii U eShop)

A beautiful mess

One of the best things about indie games is the freedom available to the developers; with all the money involved in publishing triple-A titles, there's little incentive to take risks. There's no way you'd ever see a title like Never Alone coming from a major publisher, and that's what makes it so refreshing. Developed with the input...

Cube Blitz (Wii U eShop)

Cube Blitz (Wii U eShop)

More like a square than a cube

Every once in a while, you play one of those games where it just makes one wonder how exactly it got published in the first place. Usually, this is due to a woeful lack of polish or because some part of it could be argued as being fundamentally broken, be it due to core game mechanics or unforgivable performance...

Funk of Titans (Wii U eShop)

Funk of Titans (Wii U eShop)

Funk off, Titans

On the surface, it seems like Funk of Titans might be crazy enough to work. Take a jive-talkin', funk-lovin' interpretation of Perseus, toss him in a Mount Olympus setting occupied by an Aretha Franklin-inspired goddess, add a dash of hop-and-bop auto-running and stir vigorously. This project had the recipe for cheesy goodness, but...

Journey of a Special Average Balloon (Wii U eShop)

Journey of a Special Average Balloon (Wii U eShop)

Balloon Fight this ain't

TreeFall Studios has had a rocky experience on the Wii U. The Letter, which is one of our worst-rated titles, was followed up by Maze, which was poorly received but at least contained some semblance of functional gameplay. Its latest title, Journey of a Special Average Balloon, continues to show TreeFall's growth and...

Big Brain Academy (Wii U eShop / DS)

Big Brain Academy (Wii U eShop / DS)

So keep on playing those mind games

The advent of the Nintendo DS into the handheld arena back in 2004 ushered in a fresh experience for many gamers, made possible by the system's many new features and abilities. This brand of entertainment was often referred to as "Touch! Generations" by Nintendo, and ran throughout the Nintendo DS and Wii era...

Cube Life: Island Survival (Wii U eShop)

Cube Life: Island Survival (Wii U eShop)

A summer blockbuster?

For the past few months, multiple developers have been releasing their own clones of Minecraft in an effort to provide Nintendo gamers with the closest approximation to that source material as possible. Though the concept may seem simple initially, most developers have failed to recreate it in any meaningful way, with...

Don't Starve: Giant Edition (Wii U eShop)

Don't Starve: Giant Edition (Wii U eShop)

Tim Burton meets Minecraft

The general approach of playing Don't Starve: Giant Edition is set rather early. Once you reach your first rank up - no doubt through a few feeble run-throughs where you are easily offed by the environment, whimpering and confused - you're awarded with a pyromaniacal character with which you can prattle about and convert...

Vector Assault (Wii U eShop)

Vector Assault (Wii U eShop)

Identity theft

Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but in the case of WizByte Games' Vector Assault, it isn't flattering. Heavily inspired by Geometry Wars - a game that in many ways helped usher in the era of downloadable console games - Vector Assault is not nearly as polished, addictive, or fun. While it's playable and functional on...

FullBlast (Wii U eShop)

FullBlast (Wii U eShop)

A blast from the past

Fullblast is the latest indie title to make the transition from mobile platforms onto Wii U, having been available on iOS and Android since the end of last year. Harking back to the days when arcades were king, Fullblast is an old school vertically scrolling shoot-em-up presented with modern 3D graphics. The gameplay remains...

Adventures of Pip (Wii U eShop)

Adventures of Pip (Wii U eShop)

It's Pip to be square

Pixel art has certainly not disappeared into the mists of gaming history. If anything, in our nostalgia-heavy age of reboot-a-thoning, the pixelated style holds its place firmly as a manageable form that can evoke those classic retro feels, whether by intention or not. While it's a sound gimmick, it's not as often that we see...

Blocky Bot (Wii U eShop)

Blocky Bot (Wii U eShop)

Simplicity at its best

There's something to be said about the power of simplicity. Some of the best experiences to be had in gaming are compelling not because of their depth or complexity, but because of how they offer a distilled example of an excellent gameplay concept. Nintendo has seemingly adapted this approach in many of its current generation...

Stone Shire (Wii U eShop)

Stone Shire (Wii U eShop)

As plain as a stone

In the absence of Minecraft on Nintendo platforms, many developers have opted to try to recapture the legendary game's magical gameplay in their own knockoff attempts. These have, by and large, fallen short of the high standard that's been set and failed to present any meaningful contributions to the popular formula. Stone Shire...

Nihilumbra (Wii U eShop)

Nihilumbra (Wii U eShop)

Nothing and everything

Nihilumbra is an existentialist platforming-fan's dream, with plenty of puzzles and unsettling presentation to make players feel isolated and challenged by their environment. Though the title's arrival is a tad late on Wii U, it is nonetheless admirable how much life developer Beautifun Games has breathed into this adventure...