Reviews - News

May2017

  • 75

    Switch

    Review Disgaea 5 Complete

    Delightful madness

    In the early days of the Nintendo Switch we're gradually seeing the broadening of its library to incorporate a wide range of genres. Disgaea 5 Complete is an early and substantial release for strategy / tactical gamers, and is also the most 'Disgaea' game many will have played. To be absolutely clear from the outset your...

  • 12

    3DS

    Review Cooking Mama: Sweet Shop

    Crack crack crack the egg into the bowl

    Of all the heroes of the DS’ Touch Generations era, Office Create’s Cooking Mama has been one of the most enduring — and prolific. Starting out from her humble beginnings as a short-order chef, using quick WarioWare-style touchscreen minigames to simulate the in-kitchen experience, she’s expanded...

  • 33

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Samurai Shodown IV

    VICTOLY!

    After the first two Samurai Shodown games the third outing was seen as something of a disappointment by hardcore fighting game fans. It removed some of the more popular characters and various movement options available to the player, drastically altering the pace of the game; it also felt half-finished when compared to its polished...

  • 42

    Mobile

    Review Magikarp Jump

    Super weak or beloved Pokémon?

    In one of the more unusual turns for Pokémon, the new mobile game Pokémon: Magikarp Jump has been released on mobile devices in a gradual international rollout. This game is developed by Select Button and is a Pokémon-themed spin on its game Survive! Mola Mola. The task? Raise a Magikarp to be as strong as it can...

  • 9

    Wii U eShop

    Review Absolutely Unstoppable MineRun

    Absolutely forgettable

    There were quite a few odd releases on the Wii U eShop during its heyday, but even in these twilight years we still seem to be getting some real eyebrow raisers. Absolutely Unstoppable MineRun is the latest of these. Somewhat of a mix of an autorunner and a precision platformer, you'll quickly notice graphics were probably...

  • 62

    Switch eShop

    Review Thumper

    Heart pounding

    Thumper provides a stern test. Actually, to be clear, Thumper tries to crush your spirit and beat you, and it often succeeds. If gruelling - but fair - difficulty isn't on your wishlist for a prospective new game purchase, Thumper fundamentally isn't for you. If you do like to be pushed to the edge of your reflexes by games and have a...

  • 131

    3DS

    Review Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia

    Alms for the War

    Nintendo has a habit of switching things up in sequels, and especially in the NES days that tendency resulted in some gloriously divergent sophomore installments. Zelda II: The Adventure of Link famously swapped overhead adventuring for side-scrolling action, Super Mario Bros. 2 (in the West, at least) exchanged running-and-jumping...

  • 25

    Switch eShop

    Review Dark Witch Music Episode: Rudymical

    An abundance of Boing-Boings

    Originally developed for iOS and Android devices, Dark Witch Music Episode: Rudymical is a spin-off from The Legend of Dark Witch series that was playable on Nintendo 3DS. In a complete detour from the two previous titles – The Legend of Dark Witch and The Legend of Dark Witch - Episode 2: The Price of Desire

  • 112

    Switch eShop

    Review Minecraft: Nintendo Switch Edition

    Block Party

    Minecraft is a game that needs no introduction; the quirky block building game has been a pop culture sensation for many years now, and has a port available on just about every modern platform one can name. Given the existence of Minecraft: Wii U Edition and the hybrid nature of the Switch, it was only a matter of time before...

  • 44

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Garou: Mark of the Wolves

    Only winners And losers here

    Out of all the critically-acclaimed one-on-one fighting games produced by SNK over the decades, Garou: Mark of the Wolves has to rank as one of the most beloved and revered. Released at time when 3D visuals were taking the industry by a storm, it was seen by some as a companion piece to Capcom's equally gorgeous Street...

  • 24

    3DS eShop

    Review BYE-BYE BOXBOY!

    A fond farewell

    Nintendo has been on something of a roll with surprise announcements lately, and one of them was the localisation of the third and final game in the BoxBoy trilogy, BYE-BYE BOXBOY! If you’ve already played the first two games, then this should come as no surprise — BYE-BYE BOXBOY is excellent. If you haven’t played another...

  • 112

    Switch eShop

    Review NBA Playgrounds

    Not quite a slamma jamma

    ‘90s kids will definitely remember NBA Jam, the high-flying, crazy-dunking arcade basketball game that was all the rage among sports fans and nonbelievers alike. Today, NBA Playgrounds tries to recapture that magic. Let’s be clear. NBA Playgrounds is no NBA Jam. That, however, isn’t to say NBA Playgrounds is a...

  • 56

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Blazing Star

    Get it more!

    Whenever horizontally-scrolling Neo Geo shooters are discussed, two names inevitably dominate the conversation: Pulstar and Blazing Star. Both were developed by the same core team (Aicom, which then became Yumekobo) and both rely heavily on pre-rendered sprites rather than hand-drawn visuals. Neither title was ported around the time of...

  • 23

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Over Top

    Let's go next stage!!

    The Neo Geo was famous for its staggering selection of fighting games, but it was less blessed when it came to racing titles. Only a handful were ever released during the console's lengthy lifespan - hardly a massive shock when you consider that the 2D nature of the console made realistic driving games tricky - and of that...

  • 45

    Switch eShop

    Review TumbleSeed

    Roll up your sleeves

    Sometimes you play one of those games that you positively hate, but you just can't bring yourself to stop playing the silly thing. TumbleSeed is that game. Don't let the cute visuals and approachable vibes deceive you, this is a game that feels close to impossible to beat and will no doubt tempt you to pitch your Switch across...

  • 11

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review World Heroes Perfect

    Ra Ra Rasputin, lover of the Russian queen

    The one-on-one fighting gold rush started by Capcom's Street Fighter II inspired many famous series, including Fatal Fury, King of Fighters, Virtua Fighter and Samurai Shodown, but there were just as many - if not more - also-ran challengers which achieved moderate success at the time but have since faded...

April2017

  • 60

    Switch eShop

    Review Kamiko

    Shrine Get!

    eShop veterans CIRCLE Entertainment have kicked off the Switch era with a bang, starting with the excellent rhythm game VOEZ and continuing with the colourful overhead action of Kamiko. Developed by Japanese indie team Skipmore — responsible for Fairune and its sequel on the 3DS eShop — Kamiko sports a gorgeous pixel-art aesthetic,...

  • 168

    Switch

    Review Puyo Puyo Tetris

    Switching up the Tetris formula

    Tetris is a classic almost as old as gaming, having first released in 1984 before making its first appearance on Nintendo hardware in 1988. Puyo Puyo is comparatively new, but has a legacy all its own. Back in 2014, Sonic Team got the idea of fusing the two popular franchises into something new, and thus Puyo Puyo...

  • 49

    Switch eShop

    Review The Jackbox Party Pack 3

    A Party Everywhere You Go... With Wi-Fi

    The Nintendo Switch is chock full of potential multiplayer gaming memories already, however one game with many more possibilities is The Jackbox Party Pack 3. If you're unfamiliar with the series, The Jackbox Party Pack is an exciting collection of accessible games that up to 8 people can play. It's quite...

  • 118

    Switch eShop

    Review Mr. Shifty

    SHIFT+DELETE

    There's a brief message at the bottom of every game page on the Switch eShop. In short, it's a disclaimer that is designed to protect Nintendo and other developers from liability in the event that players suffer from a seizure caused by gameplay. You've probably seen the message, and you've probably ignored it. You probably also haven't...

  • 26

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Fatal Fury

    Hungry like the wolf

    While SNK's premier fighting game series is King of Fighters, the company tested the waters of the one-on-one combat genre with 1991's Fatal Fury, a title designed by none other than Takashi Nishiyama, the man behind Capcom's original 1987 Street Fighter. Street Fighter II was the game which kickstarted interest in this style of...

  • 23

    Wii U eShop

    Review Sky Force Anniversary

    Clear skies and minimal turbulence

    Shoot-em-ups are at the very core of what video games are all about. From Space Invaders to Galaga, Raiden and beyond, their simplistic design and addictive gameplay have an enduring appeal that keeps players coming back for more. Polish developer Infinite Dreams stepped into the fray way back in 2004 with its...

  • 352

    Switch

    Review Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

    Hitting top gear

    Opting for enhanced and expanded deluxe / director's cut / remastered / Game of the Year editions of last-gen games is a well-worn tactic in the early days of a new console. Some of the most enjoyable games on PS4 and Xbox One are high quality re-releases, taking a top-notch title and sprucing it up for a new generation with all of...

  • 23

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Metal Slug

    The original Super Vehicle

    Of all the titles released during the Neo Geo's surprisingly long lifespan, Metal Slug arguably stands out as one of the most famous and beloved. Released in 1996 - a time when the traditional run-and-gun arcade shooter was on the wane - this debut release dazzled with its superb visuals, excellent animation and tight...

  • 10

    Wii U eShop

    Review Blue-Collar Astronaut

    In space, no one seems to tip

    Are you tired of dead-end, earthbound employment? Do you long to break free of the crushing gravity of workaday life? Are you finally ready to float freely in the high-salary stratosphere? Well, dear reader, if you're dead set on those lofty goals, we don't have anything to offer; but if you're after a more modest...

  • 132

    Switch eShop

    Review Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap

    Return to Monster Land

    The Sega Master System may have lost out to the NES in terms of pure commercial success and depth of software, but it nevertheless had its fair share of amazing games - and 1989's Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap must surely rank at the top of the list. A massively influential and innovative title, it combined platform action...

  • 131

    Switch

    Review LEGO City: Undercover

    Chasing more sales

    LEGO City: Undercover, understandably, was considered a big deal by Nintendo when it came to the Wii U exclusively back in early 2013. While it was a welcome arrival, it struggled - like various other titles - to arrest the early slump in system sales, and though Nintendo published the title it was evidently not locked down...

  • 23

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Alpha Mission II

    Vertically challenging

    As one of the earliest titles for the Neo Geo, Alpha Mission II doesn't exactly dazzle in terms of presentation. Smooth scrolling and some catchy tunes aside, it looks like a relic of the 1980s rather than an example of how SNK's Neo Geo hardware revolutionised the arcade and home console arena in the '90s. However, beyond the...

  • 15

    3DS eShop

    Review Urban Trial Freestyle 2

    BMXcellent

    2D BMX games have been relatively popular since the turn of the century - take RedLynx's excellent Trials series, for instance. Urban Trial Freestyle, released on the 3DS eShop almost four years ago at this point, was clearly inspired by those games, but managed to bring some extra ideas of its own to the table to create a unique and fun...

  • 26

    3DS eShop

    Review Tank Troopers

    Destroy everything

    Where would video games be without Tanks? Strong and durable, able to blast incoming enemy threats into oblivion and completely flatten any landmark in sight. The sense of fearlessness a tank provides is arguably unrivalled; games about tanks have been prominent throughout the ages. Anyone who has ever played a video game will...

  • 78

    Switch eShop

    Review Graceful Explosion Machine

    Quite a GEM

    Nowadays, it seems to be rather common for developers to lose focus of what they set out to do when they start making a particular game. In an attempt to include "something for everyone" or to make the gameplay as diverse and interesting as possible, a game can often get bogged down by unnecessary distractions and additional content that...

  • 65

    Switch eShop

    Review Has-Been Heroes

    Past its prime

    After working on the Trine trilogy of physics-based adventure games, it's safe to say that Frozenbyte knows its way around the fantasy genre. Continuing in the grand tradition of sending three adventurers off on a harrowing quest, Nintendo Switch has now been graced with Has-Been Heroes, an RPG that blends elements of the roguelike...

  • 22

    Wii U eShop

    Review Vaccine

    Repetitive Evil

    The original Resident Evil was primarily responsible for creating the term "survival horror", and although for a while it seemed like Capcom had forgotten its roots there's no denying that the company created something incredible. It's no surprise, then, that other companies tried their hand at survival horror games too - Konami...

March2017

  • 90

    Switch eShop

    Review Snake Pass

    A real charmer

    In recent times it seems that the 3D platformer has seen something of a resurgence, with games such as Yooka-Laylee leading the charge. Sumo Digital has now put out its own unique attempt at this genre, with a refreshing spin that makes it stand out from all the rest. Orienting an entire game around controlling a snake was certainly a...

  • 21

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review The King of Fighters '94

    Retro royalty

    Hamster is doing a great job of populating the Nintendo Switch eShop with classic Neo Geo titles but the order of release is a little puzzling. Metal Slug 3 has arrived before the original, and King of Fighters '98 was available at launch, only for King of Fighters '94 to arrive slightly later. Given the refinements that occurred...

  • 29

    Switch eShop

    Review Little Inferno

    Feel the burn

    Little Inferno, like Tomorrow Corporation's other titles, has found new life on the Nintendo Switch. First released back in 2012 as an early title for the Wii U eShop, then ported to PC and mobile device platforms, it was met with good reviews for its innovative take on the puzzle genre. Fortunately the trip to Nintendo's latest...

  • 50

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Neo Turf Masters

    On the green

    Charm certainly goes a long way in the world of video games, especially when you're talking about Neo Geo titles. Some would argue that SNK's console represents the pinnacle of the 2D age, and its games were imbued with an instantly addictive appeal that helped paper over any minor shortcomings and limitations. That's certainly the case...

  • 48

    Switch

    Review The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth+

    Bound for greatness

    Describing The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth+ is no simple task. It's Edmund McMillen's follow-up to his first hit (which he co-developed), Super Meat Boy, which we loved. The two games, however, couldn't be more different. Where Super Meat Boy is more of a nod to the platformers of yesteryear, The Binding of Isaac is something...

  • 52

    Switch eShop

    Review World of Goo

    As goo'd as ever

    It's hard to believe it's been nearly a decade since World of Goo first glopped its way onto the then-new WiiWare service. A smart, squishy puzzle adventure from indie developers 2D Boy — with some of that team now known as Tomorrow Corporation — it raised the bar on downloadable Wii games and ran off with the hearts of puzzle...

  • 73

    Switch eShop

    Review Human Resource Machine

    Quit your day job

    Starting its life as a PC and Wii U game before eventually making its way to mobile devices and finally Switch, Human Resource Machine is the rare type of game that feels at home on almost any platform. This is due in large part to its unconventional gameplay, coupled with an adorable art style that lulls its players into believing...

  • 44

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Waku Waku 7

    Seventh heaven

    The Neo Geo was a system blessed with more than its fair share of one-on-one fighters, which is perhaps why Sunsoft felt it was necessary to take a slightly different approach with Waku Waku 7, the sequel to the rather more serious Galaxy Fight, which launched a year beforehand in 1995. This release not only allowed Sunsoft to create...

  • 35

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review NAM-1975

    Back to the nightmare

    As one of the earliest Neo Geo releases, NAM-1975 occupies a rather unusual place in the console's library. It's relatively well-known because it was the first glimpse many of us saw of the raw power contained within SNK's arcade (and home) hardware, but like so many launch titles it hasn't aged all that gracefully in the...

  • 38

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review The King of Fighters '98

    The return of the king

    While many associate the one-on-one fighting genre with Capcom's legendary Street Fighter franchise, there was a point in the '90s when SNK was arguably at the vanguard of this particular game style. Its King of Fighters series became a firm favourite in arcades all over the world, with yearly updates satisfying the desire and...

  • 53

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Metal Slug 3

    Arcade anarchy

    As we write this we still await the Nintendo Switch Virtual Console, but courtesy of HAMSTER we have the 'ACA' Neo Geo range on Nintendo's latest console. These are essentially faithful ports, designed to emulate the original Neo Geo experience on modern hardware while throwing in a broad range of features and customisation options...

  • 45

    Switch eShop / Neo Geo

    Review Shock Troopers

    Run and gun for fun

    Capcom's top-down shooter Commando was something of a trendsetter when it arrived in the '80s, and was quickly imitated by a host of clones. The appeal of the concept isn't hard to grasp; you're one guy against many, shooting your way through a series of levels and generally causing as much destruction as possible along the way...

  • 30

    Wii U eShop

    Review Ghost Blade HD

    Bullet heaven?

    Bullet hell shooters - also known by fans as "shmups" - are a niche genre due to their often extreme difficulty. Hucast Games and 2Dreams' Ghost Blade HD aims to be a shmup for everyone, and is largely successful at easing new players into the experience. Ghost Blade HD is a vertical, top-down game in which the player controls a ship...

  • 194

    Wii U

    Review The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

    Link's latest adventure in its natural home

    We've been playing a lot of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, mostly on Nintendo Switch. Yet not everyone is buying into Nintendo's latest hardware yet, and there have been plenty of fair questions around how this game shapes up on its original home - the Wii U. After all, this title was announced...

  • 68

    Switch eShop

    Review Othello

    It's all black & white

    In most traditional board-games, the player holding the black game pieces is the one who performs the first action. This leads many players to gravitate towards playing as black, as it instils a confidence for an offensive pursuit that can intimidate the other player. However, even if you're playing first, your decision is...

  • 75

    Switch eShop

    Review New Frontier Days: Founding Pioneers

    SimSettlers

    Along with the epic adventure of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, explosive action of Super Bomberman R, and one-on-one battles of 1-2-Switch, the Switch's launch lineup hosts some smaller surprises and gentler pursuits. New Frontier Days: Founding Pioneers — a cheery town-building simulation from ArcSystemWorks — fits nicely...

  • 37

    Switch eShop

    Review Vroom in the Night Sky

    Or don't...

    The Nintendo Switch game library is off to a very highly-praised start – The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has been making almost every man/woman/cat alive positively burst with glee and we've been loving games such as Snipperclips and Fast RMX here at Nintendo Life HQ. But unfortunately amongst the gems there have to be some...

  • 24

    Switch

    Review Skylanders Imaginators

    The Portal is put out to pasture

    Skylanders Imaginators may be a launch title on the Switch, but it's not a new game as such - we've already played this on Wii U, after all. While many expected Activision to simply roll out the Wii U game with boosted visuals, there have been some changes to make it fit perfectly on Nintendo's new system - in fact,...

  • 66

    Switch eShop

    Review Blaster Master Zero

    This zero is a hero

    Blaster Master Zero is among the first post-launch games releasing for Nintendo's new hybrid console, the Nintendo Switch; it follows a fairly strong launch lineup with several fantastic titles, such as FAST RMX and Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment, and of course the historic The Legend o

  • 118

    Switch eShop

    Review Fast RMX

    FAST just got BETTER

    FAST RMX was a lovely surprise for the launch of the Switch, and one that this reviewer was very excited for. With a number in our team having played FAST Racing NEO to death on the Wii U, we were intrigued by Shin'en's promises of 1080p and 60fps performance. But could it live up to these expectations? There's only one way to...

  • 102

    3DS

    Review Mario Sports Superstars

    ​Jack of all trades, master of none

    Ahh sport, the great equalizer of the Mushroom Kingdom. Whether you're a red Toad, a blue Toad, or made entirely out of metal, athletes of all kind are welcome to set aside their differences and gather together in the name of friendly competition. From kart racing to hurdle hopping, Mario and company have had...

  • 61

    Switch eShop

    Review Snipperclips - Cut it out, together!

    A snip to pick up

    As Nintendo is still in the business of 'concept' hardware, early adopters will have been scoping out what launch games best represent the Switch and its capabilities. 1-2-Switch showcases the Joy-Con controllers rather well, but in our review we shared reservations on whether it's worth the asking price due to questionable...

  • 65

    Switch eShop

    Review VOEZ

    The first handheld-only Switch game

    Tucked away in the Nintendo Switch eShop, underneath the games that everyone is talking about such as Snipperclips, 1-2-Switch and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (obviously), is VOEZ, a rhythm game originally released on iOS and Android device

  • 46

    Switch eShop

    Review Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove

    Triple threat

    There isn't much one can say about Shovel Knight that hasn't already been said. We at Nintendo Life universally love the game and its two expansions, Plague of Shadows and Specter of Torment, so when a collection of the three in one download on the Switch was announced, we were quite excited. Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove is the...

  • 83

    Switch eShop

    Review I Am Setsuna

    Wondering how to pronounce 'Setsuna'

    Much has been made of the launch line-up for the Nintendo Switch, with some describing it as underwhelming and lacking in exciting software besides The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild. That's certainly debatable, and one game that may have slipped under some people's radars is I Am Setsuna, a JRPG that...

  • 33

    Switch

    Review Just Dance 2017

    Unfortunately Will Smith’s “Switch” does not make an appearance

    People all over the world have finally got their hands on the Nintendo Switch, and with a relatively generous supply of games supplied at launch when including Nintendo eShop offerings, choices on which software to buy must be made. One of these launch day titles is a port of last...

  • 57

    Switch eShop

    Review Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment

    Hauntingly good

    When Shovel Knight launched in 2014 it was already an indie darling. In our review we called it "utterly satisfying and wonderful." Shovel Knight became a massive critical and commercial success for Yacht Club Games, which is now a household name among gamers all over the world. Not content to rest on their laurels following Shovel...

  • 7

    3DS eShop

    Review Go! Go! Kokopolo 3D

    Go go go

    Tanukii Studios' overlooked DSiWare gem, Go! Go! Kokopolo, came at the tail end of the DSi's time on the market, and as a result very few people played the unique action game. While a simple re-release on 3DS would have been acceptable, Tanukii Studios instead crafted a full sequel in Go! Go! Kokopolo 3D. The result is a jam-packed game...

  • 171

    Switch

    Review Super Bomberman R

    An explosive return

    When most people pick up their Switch, they'll likely be grabbing a copy of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild along with it. If you're picking up another game with your console however, we strongly suggest you consider Super Bomberman R. If you've never before played a Bomberman title before - and let's be honest, the...

  • News The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild Is Officially One Of The Best Games Of All Time

    Unanimous praise from critics

    In case it escaped your notice, the long-awaited The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild launched today on both Nintendo Switch and Wii U. We absolutely loved it here at Nintendo Life and awarded it a mighty 10/10 in our review, and it seems virtually every other critic agrees. The game is just that good. At the time...

  • 125

    Switch

    Review 1-2-Switch

    The Switch's Wii Sports?

    Would the Wii have sold over 100 million units had it not come bundled with Wii Sports? It might be a pointless question to ponder more than a decade after launch, but there's no denying that the famous collection of motion-controlled sports titles convinced many a punter to part with their hard-earned cash. It was the ideal...

  • 235

    Switch

    Review The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

    A breathless experience

    The Legend of Zelda has always been a franchise that best typifies Nintendo's desire to create memorable, substantial adventures. If Mario is all about precise mechanics and pure enjoyment, Zelda is a series that focuses on storytelling, world-building and classical tropes of good against evil, Hero against returning villain...

February2017

  • 25

    3DS

    Review Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns

    A tale of three cities

    In recent times the legal environment of the Harvest Moon series has become a bit muddled. Starting in 2014, XSeed Games began localizing the latest games in the series under the name Story of Seasons, due to the fact that Natsume owns the IP rights to the Harvest Moon franchise. So, although the Harvest Moon series continues...

  • 21

    3DS eShop

    Review Legna Tactica

    Tactica Generica

    Kemco has been steadily supplying gamers with a glut of RPGs through the 3DS eShop over the past few years, all ported from mobile and mostly middling in the truest sense of the word — decent but forgettable games that riff off of classics. As the company's latest release, Legna Tactica is a dependable continuation of that policy,...

  • 17

    3DS eShop

    Review Picross e7

    The numbers are adding up

    We have once again been blessed by a new Picross e game, and you know what that means: new puzzles and, erm... some more new puzzles? By now you should honestly know what to expect with these titles, but here's a quick rundown again! Picross is a classic type of puzzle game that has featured on Nintendo systems since the...

  • 26

    Wii U eShop / TG-16

    Review Gradius

    Arcade-style pew-pew

    Gradius will forever be considered a definitive game in the shoot 'em up genre, held up as a key example of what makes these kind of games truly special. It's a game familiar for its iconic NES version, of course, but the release of the TurboGrafx-16 iteration on the Wii U Virtual Console is a welcome one - after all, it was a...

  • 22

    3DS eShop

    Review Mercenaries Saga 3

    Fun for hire

    The 3DS eShop is no stranger to strategy RPGs; aside from retail heavy hitters like Fire Emblem: Awakening and Fates and Stella Glow, it's also been blessed with smaller but still eminently enjoyable experiences like Ambition of the Slimes, and the surprisingly solid Mercenaries Saga 2. CIRCLE Entertainment was responsible for

  • 15

    Wii U eShop

    Review Plantera

    A nice day in the garden

    Sometimes it can be nice to simply relax with a peaceful, calming game, that doesn't demand great skill or dedication. That is exactly what Plantera delivers. It is centred around growing a garden and selling produce in return for money, with which more plants and animals can be bought, and so on. The gameplay isn't...

  • 13

    3DS eShop

    Review Punch Club

    ​Get up, you son-of-a... 'cos Shiggy loves ya

    Ever wonder what it's like to be a fighter? If you'd like to experience the life, Punch Club thinks it's the game for you. Let's find out if this fighting strategy/simulation is worth lacing up the gloves for. Your life in Punch Club starts out with a brief cutscene showing your father, who was...

  • 11

    Wii U eShop

    Review Toby: The Secret Mine

    Shady stuff

    The Wii U eShop has played host to some wonderful indie titles over the years, and despite the console's impending retirement there's still room for another sleeper hit to offer a charming send off. With its distinctive art-style, intriguing level design and enigmatic story, Toby: The Secret Mine seemed set to impress when first...

  • 112

    Mobile

    Review Fire Emblem Heroes

    Gacha collect 'em all

    Nintendo's relationship with mobile games and apps has been slightly awkward to date, as a prolonged period of resistance to the sector eventually turned into a necessary embrace. In its previous efforts on mobile - Miitomo and Super Mario Run - Nintendo has either retained noble intentions (as per the former) or tried to stick...

  • 99

    New Nintendo 3DS

    Review Lifespeed

    F-Zero meets Star Fox

    First announced in 2015, this promising futuristic racing game's been on the horizon for quite a while. Having seen its fair share of delays, it's now finally here. But has it proven worth the wait? Lifespeed wastes no time getting down to brass tacks, as after booting it up and reaching the main menu you'll be presented with...

  • 69

    3DS

    Review Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World

    Spinning a good yarn

    There have evidently been occasions in recent times when Nintendo started looking at sales figures and picking out projects that deserve a second chance on the 3DS. Yoshi's Woolly World, for its part, is one of a few elite-level 2D platformers on Wii U that stand out as top-notch exponents of the genre. Gorgeous visuals,...

January2017

  • 39

    Mobile

    Review Pokémon Duel

    Has the Pokemon Co. mastered it?

    Following on from the amazing success of Pokémon GO comes the next mobile Pokémon game release, with Pokémon Duel - technically, though, this game came out before Pokémon GO due to its release in Japan in April of last year as Pokémon Co-master. We've actually been playing it ever since that original release and...

  • 26

    Wii U eShop

    Review Zombie Brigade: No Brain No Gain

    Brainless

    A Miiverse post for Zombie Brigade: No Brain No Gain wrote, "Better than Meme Run." That's about the nicest thing that can be said about this horrendous title from Cypronia. An endless runner that you will want to end after about five minutes, Zombie Brigade is in the upper echelon of terrible eShop games. And to be clear, that's not a...

  • 46

    3DS

    Review Dragon Ball Fusions

    Better together

    There have been many Dragon Ball games over the years, and one universal truth exists: they seem to get better as time goes by. Early efforts on the SNES, Mega Drive, PlayStation and Saturn left a bad taste in the mouths of series fans, but lately Bandai Namco's Dragon Ball Xenoverse sub-series has redressed the balance neatly...

  • 7

    Wii U eShop

    Review Mega Maze

    Not so amazing

    Do you remember that mesmerising screen saver from the '90s? The one that was an endless loop of twists and turns through a red brick maze? Well, Mega Maze is sort of like that, except everything is blue or white and it's just not all that entertaining. Mega Maze is exactly what its name implies; a game about solving mazes. There's...

  • 8

    3DS eShop

    Review Shift DX

    As simple as black and white

    The Shift series has been around since 2008, when the first Shift title debuted as a Flash game. Four mainline games have released since then, with the first two receiving iOS ports as well. Shift DX collects all the levels from the first two games and introduces 100 more to the 3DS; we consider whether this is a treat...

  • 9

    Wii U eShop

    Review Spheroids

    It's time to break some balls

    Spheroids has a simple plot that is well-suited to a platform adventure game. Giant alien blobs known as "the Spheroids" are attempting to take over the world, and it's up to a brave Canadian boy named Lucas - with the assistance of a crazy scientist known as Otto - to save the day. Based in a comical science-fiction...

  • 118

    3DS

    Review Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King

    Return of the King

    In addition to a steady stream of top-quality games, the 3DS' RPG library is filled with the sort of lifetime achievements most consoles can only dream of: a hat trick of Monster Hunters, two to four Fire Emblems (depending on your perspective), scores of Shin Megami Tensei titles, and enough Etrian Odysseys to field a curling...

  • 26

    Wii U eShop

    Review Teslapunk

    More like meh-slapunk

    The Shmup genre is one that was quite popular in the halcyon days of pre-3D gaming, but it seems that the addition of the extra dimension largely rendered this style of gaming obsolete. Nowadays you may see new entries every now and then, but it seems that many are simple games designed for smart devices, or are otherwise too...

  • 18

    Wii U

    Review Skylanders Imaginators

    Use your imagination

    With the demise of Disney Infinity you may think that toys to life games are on the way out. However, with the Skylanders Academy show on Netflix and another new game for fans, Activision are pressing ahead - for the time being, at least. Skylanders Imaginators is this year's game and it offers a substantial twist on what has...

  • 3

    3DS eShop

    Review Geki Yaba Runner Deluxe

    Run, run, Gnomey

    As smartphone gaming has become so popular, the runner genre has seemingly reached the popularity levels of the 2D platformer and first-person shooter before it. The latest title of the genre to grace the 3DS eShop is Geki Yaba Runner Deluxe. It's apparently titled Deluxe due to its presence as a mobile game on Android and iOS; on...

December2016

  • 27

    Wii U eShop

    Review Back to Bed

    Would you prefer to walk off a ledge?

    Sleepwalking can be dangerous. It can result in people exiting their homes in the middle of the night and falling off a ledge. Back to Bed by Bedtime Digital Games plays on such fears by introducing us to Bob the sleepwalker and his subconscious guardian named Subob - a four legged creature that must guide him...

  • 9

    Wii U eShop

    Review Swap Fire

    Halt and swap fire

    It's an exciting time in the games industry. There are AAA games from big publishers, mid-tier downloadable games and even tiny indie experiences, all of which have the potential to be memorable, interesting experiences. Midnight Status has the makings of one such experience in Swap Fire, a first person shooter with an interesting...

  • 14

    Wii U eShop

    Review Soul Axiom

    It's got soul, man

    Soul Axiom is a spiritual successor to Master Reboot, a rather decent and interesting Wii U eShop title from Wales Interactive. They're not directly tied together, but thematic and stylistic crossovers deliberately nudge and wink at those with experience of the previous release, while Soul Axiom also goes its own way. Ultimately,...

  • 11

    Wii U eShop

    Review Radiantflux: Hyperfractal

    Become a master hacker and uncover the truth

    In any crime-ridden story, hackers are often depicted as a quick solution to a series of complicated problems. Sometimes in these plots they willingly cooperate with law enforcement, but often they are portrayed as social outcasts who are leading the fight against huge corporations and government...

  • 90

    Wii U

    Review Shantae: Half-Genie Hero

    Genieus

    Immediately upon seeing the title screen and hearing the game's main theme, you know that Shantae: Half-Genie Hero is another step forward for this series. Back in 2002, Shantae made her debut on the Game Boy Color to rave reviews but disappointing sales — hardly a shock when you take into account the GBC was on its last legs — but the...

  • 31

    Wii U eShop

    Review Scribble

    Fun for the whole family

    Have you ever experienced a moment when you've attempted to draw an object or animal and your family or friends identify it as something else? The odds are very good as, in a nutshell, that's what Pictionary is all about. Scribble, by indie developer Bear Box Media, is essentially an enhanced digital version of the classic...

  • 268

    Mobile

    Review Super Mario Run

    Gives you a run for your money

    The news that Nintendo's globally-renowned mascot Mario would be starring in his own smartphone title was, for some, as earth-shattering as learning that the Easter Bunny isn't real. Nintendo entering the mobile arena was hard enough to stomach, but offering up its most famous son as a blood sacrifice for the baying,...

  • 11

    New Nintendo 3DS

    Review Hyperlight EX

    Faster than...

    This review was originally going to begin with the saying "Imitation is the best form of flattery," but we found that it wouldn't be accurate for Hyperlight EX. While, at first glance, the game looks like a simple Geometry Wars clone, Hyperlight EX soon reveals itself to be something quite different. CatfishBlues Games has taken the...

  • 19

    Wii U eShop

    Review Exile's End

    ​Good enough to avoid being exiled

    Metroidvania fans have had some great luck over the past few years; with solid indie titles like Guacamelee! and Axiom Verge, a once-quiet genre has inched back into the spotlight. Though the game's description claims that Exile's End isn't a Metroidvania game, it should indeed be counted in that category. Let's...

  • 17

    3DS eShop

    Review Unlucky Mage

    Ill-fated Illusionist

    From Dragon Quests and Shin Megami Tenseis to Pokémon and Fire Emblems, the 3DS is an RPG powerhouse. It's a testament to the eShop's offerings, however, that those famous names are flanked by a flurry of mid-tier RPGs of every persuasion, some of which are certainly worthy of your time. Kemco has been a prolific publisher in...

  • 37

    Wii U eShop / N64

    Review Excitebike 64

    Hold onto your handlebars

    Of the sports games in the N64 era, Excitebike 64 feels left out of conversation more often than siblings such as Wave Race 64 and 1080° Snowboarding. Perhaps its release later in the console's life cycle didn't give it as much time to gain traction in people's memories, or maybe it's drowned in the limelight of its...

  • 16

    Wii U eShop

    Review Octocopter: Super Sub Squid Escape

    What has tentacles, spins and shoots missiles?

    In an unlikely but plausible(?) scenario an octopus and a submarine have lost their way and sunk to the bottom of the deep blue sea during an epic battle. With the octopus still latched onto to the spinning watercraft, the two enemies must now unite in order to escape from the deadly depths. This...

November2016

  • 151

    3DS

    Review Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS

    Super Mini Maker

    Though it never had much of a chance of matching its predecessor in sales, the 3DS has nevertheless proven to be a valuable hardware hit for Nintendo. Its solid sales have not only defied many gloomy early expectations, but has ensured that it's been a strong platform for vital franchises, from sure-fire hits like the Pokémon main...

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