Reviews - News

July2014

  • 21

    3DS eShop

    Review Bike Rider DX2: Galaxy

    Giro della Galaxy

    Last year’s Bike Rider DX was a pleasant surprise, bringing auto-scrolling precision platforming to the eShop in a charming, polished, pedal-powered package. Now, fresh from the first game’s world tour, our tireless cyclist returns to take to the stars in this space-themed sequel, Bike Rider DX2: Galaxy. Keeping the same great...

  • 30

    Wii U eShop / NES

    Review Adventure Island

    Skate and die

    Adventure Island started life as the SEGA-produced arcade title Wonder Boy, which itself was ported to several different home consoles and spawned a popular series of sequels with show-stealing box art. NES-owners missed out on the title, and would have to wait until Hudson Soft teamed up with original developer Escape to release a...

  • 46

    Wii U

    Review One Piece Unlimited World Red

    Not unlimited, but not bad

    Eiichiro Oda’s anime juggernaut isn't short of games on multiple systems, and quality can be distinctly variable; the unimpressive One Piece: Romance Dawn on 3DS, with its repetitive gameplay and questionable production values, is one at the wrong end of the chain. In that sense it's tough to know what to expect from the...

  • 9

    3DS eShop / 3DS

    Review Hidden Expedition: Titanic

    An exposition on the commodification of human tragedy

    On April 15, 1912, a passenger liner carrying no less than 2,000 travelers struck an iceberg and sank to the bottom of the North Atlantic Ocean. Not properly equipped with the necessary amount of lifeboats and other safety equipment, when the ship sank the vast majority of passengers did not...

  • 54

    Wii U

    Review Wii Sports Club

    Wii Sports Club Assemble!

    Wii Sports Club began life as a rather interesting eShop initiative by Nintendo, as sports from the original Wii pack-in were gradually released with multiple purchase options — timed passes for a small amount or a permanent pass for fairly standard download price. With the set of five now complete it's hard to say how...

  • 8

    3DS eShop

    Review City Mysteries

    Globecluttering

    Famous world locations are not a bad backdrop for a hidden object game, although the irony of priorities here must be noted. Eiffel Tower? Whatever. We’ve got a bowling pin and a screw to find! City Mysteries takes item-finding to the proud metropolises of New York, Paris, Moscow, and London, stuffing each scene with enough...

  • 43

    Wii U eShop

    Review Bombing Bastards

    Da bomb or just a bomb?

    Sanuk Games' Bombing Bastards isn't so much a Bomberman clone as it is an evil twin; it's an evil twin that is fun to be around and easy on the eyes, but it's evil nonetheless. Everything from its subversive premise to its ironically cheery visuals add to Bombing Bastards' slightly off-kilter feel, but it's the gameplay that...

  • 41

    3DS

    Review Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal World Duel Carnival

    Is the first 3DS entry a Dark Hole or a Monster Reborn?

    Konami’s Yu-Gi-Oh series has a long and successful history in digital form, perhaps never more so than on Nintendo hardware – a relationship that stretches all the way back from the original monochrome Game Boy right up to Zexal World Duel Carnival, which is both the first 3DS Yu-Gi-Oh...

  • 18

    3DS eShop

    Review AiRace Xeno

    Kicking it into Xenogear

    The fourth entry in Warsaw studio QubicGames' downloadable AiRace series, AiRace Xeno is a natural progression of last year's AiRace Speed on the 3DS eShop – race three different futuristic aircraft at face-melting speeds through nine tough obstacle-filled tracks and try to beat your high score. It's a stripped-down racing...

  • 12

    3DS eShop

    Review European Conqueror 3D

    Go ahead, mention the war

    European Conqueror 3D is a title that might inspire a bit of déjà vu in observant eShop gamers, coming less than a year after the release of CIRCLE’s slightly more ambitious-sounding World Conqueror 3D. Like its predecessor, this is a turn-based strategy game that takes cues from tabletop classics like Risk and Axis...

  • 79

    Wii U eShop

    Review Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition

    A luchador's life

    There have been a few examples, so far, of titles making their way to the Wii U as a 'definitive' version. Few have done so with a name quite as tongue-on-cheek as Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition, with the game quite literally yelling the extravagant name at you when loading it up. This version — also on PS4 and Xbox...

  • 9

    DSiWare

    Review Mysterious Stars: The Singer

    Only connect...

    Connect the dots, dot to dot, join the dots...whatever you called it growing up, the odds are pretty good you didn't think the game would be improved by a storyline. That's unfortunate, because that's the one thing Mysterious Stars: The Singer has to differentiate itself from an inexpensive book of similar puzzles. Well, no, that's...

  • 8

    DSiWare

    Review My Aquarium: Seven Oceans

    Fishing for something more

    Back in the heyday of the WiiWare service, an application titled My Aquarium was made available to all Wii owners through the digital distribution platform. It was so well received — as is evidenced by our review — that a second version was soon developed, appropriately and unsurprisingly titled My Aquarium 2. Now,...

  • 63

    Wii U eShop

    Review Armillo

    Super Sonic Puzzle Galaxy

    There's been a lot of great eShop content as of late, but not many examples have been in the works for as long as Armillo, which was first announced way back in 2011. Now that it's finally here, were those years in development well spent? In Armillo, you take the role of the titular character, a space armadillo, who is...

  • 18

    Wii U eShop

    Review BrickBlast U!

    Bricked

    The Wii U's compatibility with tool-sets such as Unity and the Nintendo Web Framework has made the platform accessible to small, independent developers whose games would otherwise not be available on consoles due to high costs and other barriers. While this has made for some wonderful eShop experiences — Ittle Dew and Stick it to the Man...

  • 59

    Wii U eShop

    Review Wii Sports Club: Baseball + Boxing

    Swing and a miss

    Wii Sports Club has had a rather odd history to date. Released in increments that have been surprisingly spread out, it's attempted to recapture the magic of the Wii bundle title while throwing in Miiverse, MotionPlus controls and GamePad features. Online play has also been a vital inclusion, yet the piecemeal distribution and...

  • 11

    Wii U eShop

    Review POKER DICE SOLITAIRE FUTURE

    No poker face required

    POKER DICE SOLITAIRE FUTURE (or PDSF for the remainder of this review) is essentially the digital equivalent to one of those electronic pocket poker games that your parents or grandparents were hooked on during the ‘90s. Designed to be played on the Wii U GamePad, this budget download offers a solitary take on poker to...

  • 7

    Wii U eShop

    Review ZaciSa's Last Stand

    Can hardly stand it

    Last year's reveal of the Nintendo Web Framework was a welcome announcement to independent game developers interested in releasing their work on Wii U. The new platform was quiet at first, but in recent months we've seen an increasing number of games releasing on the eShop that were born of this development environment. Opening a...

  • 15

    3DS eShop

    Review Squids Odyssey

    Cephaloportable

    It might be said that Squids has come full circle. Starting on mobile platforms, The Game Bakers’ brand extended its tentacles to a console experience with Squids Odyssey on the Wii U, which we’ve reviewed. The same game has now found a home on the 3DS, returning to its portable roots with a few small differences. Squids Odyssey...

  • 15

    3DS eShop

    Review Plain Video Poker

    Plain dealer

    Here’s a reviewing conundrum: how does one approach a game that is determinedly designed to be average? This is the case with Plain Video Poker, which does away with pretence by using an adjective in its title that’s been reserved more often for yogurt and M&M’s than anything within the hyperbolic games industry. What this...

  • 15

    Wii U eShop

    Review Monkey Pirates

    Banana boat

    Despite all the doom and gloom that currently — and unfairly — surrounds the Wii U at the moment, it hasn't stopped indie developers from flocking to the system to release their games. Moreover, a good proportion of developers have even designed their games to specifically take advantage of the system; one only has to look at...

June2014

  • 29

    3DS

    Review Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark

    A decent game in disguise

    After reviewing the absolutely horrid Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark on Wii U, it would be hard to get our hopes up for the 3DS iteration if it weren't for the name on the back of the box. Unlike every other version of the game, Rise of the Dark Spark on 3DS was produced by the handheld experts at WayForward...

  • 13

    3DS eShop

    Review SKYPEACE

    Doesn't soar, but not quite a bore

    SKYPEACE is a stage-based runner that finds you surfing it up in the in the sky, high above the clouds. As runners generally go, players will be aiming for a high score by collecting as many coins and significant pickups as they can, while avoiding incoming obstacles. Existing in a genre that overpopulates the...

  • 84

    Wii U

    Review Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark

    Less than meets the eye

    Whether it's Batman, Gears of War or Zelda, it's always a gamble when a beloved series leaves the developer that created it in favour of a new one. In many of these cases it's because the publisher wants to churn out annual or semi-annual instalments in a profitable franchise, and one studio is not enough to carry this...

  • 17

    3DS eShop

    Review Toy Stunt Bike

    Batteries included

    The store aisle packaging that greets you when selecting Toy Stunt Bike from the 3DS menu is a telling sign of the game’s intended mood. This is a physics-based platformer alright, but the challenge is infused with those elements of joy, imagination, and mild cruelty everyone remembers from playing with their toys as a kid...

  • 9

    3DS eShop

    Review Cocoro Line Defender

    Doing lines

    If there's one thing French studio Moving Player knows how to do beautifully, it's presentation. Its new title Cocoro: Line Defender is inspired by Japanese watercolour-style art, with bright environments and striking dark outlines reminiscent of the 2006 classic Ōkami. Sporting a traditional flute-based soundtrack and characters with...

  • 23

    3DS

    Review Farming Simulator 14

    More farm than good

    Last summer Farming Simulator 3D trucked its way onto the 3DS, allowing gamers to establish and manage a flourishing agricultural empire on-the-go, without having to get their hands dirty or don a straw hat and suspenders. It was a game that we found to be enjoyable at times, but the omission of any tutorials or guides lent to a...

  • 85

    3DS eShop

    Review Shovel Knight

    This is the kind of shovelware we can dig

    Shovel Knight is the adventure of Shovel Knight, a knight with a shovel. That simple — and gloriously absurd — premise has somehow resulted in some of the strongest hype the 3DS eShop has seen yet. The good news is that the final product absolutely lives up to the lofty expectations; the even better news...

  • 110

    Wii U eShop

    Review Shovel Knight

    Digging for gold

    Yacht Club Games' faux-retro platformer Shovel Knight has become one of the most anticipated titles to come out of the crowdfunding craze. It's frightening to think that Shovel Knight might not have come to fruition without Yacht Club Games' highly successful Kickstarter campaign — games like this don't come around often. Yacht...

  • 34

    3DS eShop

    Review 2048

    4x4 for fun

    It should not be surprising any more when a mobile game gets ported over to a Nintendo platform. It happened with high-profile smart device mainstays Angry Birds and Cut the Rope, and we've also seen it with several lesser-known

  • 25

    3DS eShop

    Review Another World - 20th Anniversary Edition

    Another World, Another System

    Another World: 20th Anniversary Edition belongs in the download era, as the retail success story of the original truly laid the groundwork for narrative-driven, minimalistic and artistic games that are now becoming increasingly common away from high street shelves. When first released its cinematic flair was a...

  • 4

    3DS eShop

    Review Color Zen Kids

    Childlike innocence

    If you read our review of Color Zen on 3DS earlier this month or Color Zen Kids on Wii U most recently, you're in for a familiar ride with the latter title on 3DS. The laid-back colour-matching puzzler with the sweeping electronic soundtrack is back, and this time your children can play it on the go. The objective of the...

  • 11

    DSiWare

    Review ATV Quad Kings

    ATZzz...

    Some forms of racing get a bad rap for looking too “simple” but, in reality, require a great deal of strategy and focus. It should never be as simple as holding down the accelerator until the finish line, which seems a lesson unfortunately lost on ATV Quad Kings. Quad Kings is a purely single-player run with three modes. The largest of...

  • 6

    Wii U eShop

    Review Color Zen Kids

    Hopping into the kiddie pool

    If you read our review of Color Zen last month, you'll know exactly what to expect from Color Zen Kids. The soothing, touch-based colour matching puzzler has gained a more kid-friendly coat of paint – the colours are all slightly brighter, the puzzles are a bit easier and shaped like cute animals, and the memorable...

  • 10

    DSiWare

    Review ATV Fever

    Muddy goings

    ATV Fever is at its best when machines hit the dirt and one gets into the zone of navigating a track’s turns and bumps. It’s a good way to distract oneself from the strange choices made in the organization of the game off the track. But first, the racing. ATV Fever has a pretty simple control setup. There are no tricks; no...

  • 9

    Wii U eShop

    Review GEOM

    GEOMdude used Rock Throw!

    GEOM is another low-budget title on the Wii U eShop from a fresh studio — Andraconus — and brings to mind another relatively recent offering: RCMADIAX's Blok Drop U from earlier this year. Both are simple puzzle titles that don't really live up to expectations, but their price point being lower than the cost of a cup of...

  • 47

    Wii U eShop

    Review How to Survive

    Island-hopping and head-popping

    Zombies used to be so underground, man. Years ago the very mention of these rotted ghouls would have people scratching their heads in blissful ignorance, but now they’re shuffling, walking and running around like they own the place. The genre has been utterly exhausted to the point where now their inclusion in media...

  • 36

    Wii U eShop / NES

    Review Pac-Land

    Pac your bags, man

    Never before released for the NES in the west, Namco has dropped its Pac-Man platformer Pac-Land onto the eShop to celebrate the announcement of Pac-Man in the new Super Smash Bros. games. A departure from the simple, addictive gameplay the Pac-Man series is known for, Pac-Land attempts to expand the scope and appeal of its iconic...

  • 95

    Wii U eShop

    Review Another World - 20th Anniversary Edition

    An indie trailblazer

    If you want a cinematic, oblique, thought-provoking and relatively short-lived experience in the modern gaming age, digital stores such as the eShop and more notably Steam have plenty of content on offer. Independent developers — and bigger publishers that release smaller projects as downloads — now find it easier than ever...

  • 36

    Wii U eShop / DS

    Review Dr. Kawashima's Brain Training: How Old is Your Brain?

    Brain food

    It seems like only yesterday that we got Game Boy Advance games on the Wii U Virtual Console, but now DS games have also joined the party. Curiously enough, Nintendo has chosen not to start off with one of their classic franchises, like Mario or Zelda, but has instead opted to go with one of their best-selling titles, the original Brain...

  • 13

    3DS

    Review How to Train Your Dragon 2

    How to train your dragon 2 do what?!

    Handheld versions of 3D console games are always a tricky task; most of the successful ones avoid straight-up ports that are inevitably inferior to their home console brethren, and instead build the portable iterations from the ground up with 2D handheld gaming in mind. Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate did this...

  • 42

    Wii U

    Review How to Train Your Dragon 2

    Needs a bit more training

    How to Train Your Dragon 2, developed by Australian studio Torus Games and published by Little Orbit, is a throwback to movie tie-ins of yore. Most big action films these days opt for cheaper, often microtransaction-based game tie-ins on mobile devices, like Captain America: The Winter Soldier and

  • 34

    Wii U eShop / GBA

    Review Pac-Man Collection

    A Pac-aged deal

    Pac-Man is a creature of classic longevity. We kindly submit as evidence to this claim the fact we’re reviewing a 13-year-old game compilation for a character who was a spry 21 at the time. The question now is how well the four games of Pac-Man Collection have held up since its 2001 GBA release. Do Pac-dots even have expiration...

  • 16

    3DS eShop

    Review Van Helsing sniper Zx100

    No, Hugh Jackman's not in this one

    Barcelona-based developer EnjoyUp Games got our hopes up for this – after the surprising success of its atmospheric Abyss on the Wii U eShop last month, the trailer for EnjoyUp's new 3DS-exclusive Van Helsing Sniper Zx100 demonstrated a first-person gallery shooter set in a neon sci-fi dystopian future London;...

  • 33

    3DS

    Review Pokémon Art Academy

    Make Smeargle proud by sketching Fletchling

    Since we first put stylus to touchscreen on the original DS, Nintendo's handhelds have made full use of the unique interface by allowing us to interact with games in a whole new way. Some ideas have worked better than others, but the natural act of scribbling or doodling shapes, in particular, has never...

  • 11

    Wii U eShop / NES

    Review Soccer

    A well timed blast from the past

    Just in time for the World Cup this week, Intelligent Systems' Soccer arrives on Wii U Virtual Console – but all is not well. One of the early titles in Nintendo's "Sports Series" on NES, Soccer seems to garner boatloads of hate from players compared to companions like Golf and Ice Hockey. These detractors are not...

  • 5

    3DS eShop / NES

    Review Super Dodge Ball

    Super Lag Ball

    Many people are familiar with River City Ransom, the cult classic NES game, but what you might not know is that it's actually part of a series with many, many more titles. Of course, that can be hard to figure out when those that were localized all got completely unrelated names. Interestingly, while the series is mostly known in the...

  • 17

    Wii U eShop

    Review 1001 Spikes

    All your spike are belong to us

    Between the broken English text, 8-bit sprites and brutal, unforgiving difficulty, it's easy to think of the Nicalis-published 1001 Spikes as a long-forgotten NES gem. While certainly not for everyone, it's a rich, rewarding (and punishing) addition to the Wii U eShop library. This modern-retro platformer is certainly...

  • 30

    3DS eShop

    Review 1001 Spikes

    Exquisite torture

    We'll get this out of the way right now: 1001 Spikes is hard. So hard, in fact, that it's deliberately unfair. Those of you turned off by that knowledge can save yourself a great deal of frustration by walking on by. Anyone up to the challenge, however, is in for one of the most satisfying platforming experiences in recent years...

  • 21

    3DS eShop / GBC

    Review Mega Man Xtreme 2

    An Xtreme Improvement

    Mega Man Xtreme left us feeling a bit underwhelmed. While its intentions were certainly good, the execution was lacking and the experience felt like a far clunkier retread of levels we've already played before, rather than much of a game in its own right. However it's worth noting that the game was originally released for the...

  • 54

    Wii U eShop / GBA

    Review The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap

    Capcom pulls a hit out of the hat

    If it weren't for the fact that the Capcom logo appears each time you boot up The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap, you probably wouldn’t be able to tell that it was in fact developed by a third-party company. That’s because this particular Legend of Zelda title – which originally released on the Game Boy...

  • 15

    3DS eShop

    Review Color Zen

    Nirvana on the go

    Last month we reviewed the Wii U version of Color Zen, a relaxing abstract puzzler in which you match geometric shapes with colours as a soothing electronica soundtrack plays in the background. This week the chilled-out title arrives on 3DS largely intact; it's essentially the same game, shrunk down to the small screen(s). It's the...

  • 7

    3DS

    Review Inazuma Eleven GO: Light & Shadow

    Shiny new kit

    In Japan, Level-5 is one of the masters at maximising franchises through games — typically on portable systems — and TV shows or films, continually keeping the storyline going and producing regular content. Yo-kai Watch is the current craze, while Professor Layton had some film content to accompany six main-series games and more...

  • 104

    3DS

    Review Tomodachi Life

    The meaning of life

    During the many hours you can potentially spend lost within Tomodachi Life, you'll find yourself wondering if this new 3DS outing can actually be called a game in the traditional sense. It's certainly addictive and almost universally appealing thanks to its savvy combination of humour, social sharing and Mii-related activities,...

  • 35

    3DS eShop / NES

    Review The Mysterious Murasame Castle

    The mystery is why this took so long to be released outside Japan

    If you've played a bunch of Wii and Wii U games over the past few years, chances are that you might have noticed some references to a title you were completely unfamiliar with. Takamaru's Ninja Castle in Nintendo Land? Murasame Castle mode in Samurai Warriors 3? Or perhaps some music...

  • 48

    Wii U eShop

    Review Pushmo World

    Mo Push Mo Problems

    Intelligent Systems' Pushmo World (known as Pullblox World in Europe) is exactly what you'd expect it to be: a Wii U sequel to the popular 3DS eShop puzzle titles Pushmo (Pullblox) and Crashmo (Fallblox) that predictably adds shinier graphics, more modes, and way more puzzles. It's a very safe sequel that doesn't take

  • 24

    Wii U eShop

    Review Chubbins

    Feelin' chubby

    Developed by two-man studio Dahku Creations, Chubbins is a minimalist platformer all about jumping. So much jumping, in fact, that you're never not jumping. As an adorable, rotund rabbit named Chubbins, you must reach the end of each level simply by steering your automatic jumps through obstacles and out of the way of enemies, with...

  • 16

    Wii U eShop

    Review I've Got to Run!

    Take a walk

    Made using the Nintendo Web Framework, 4 Corner Games' I've Got to Run! works more as a proof of concept than a full-fledged experience. This little game is functional and cute, but the bare bones presentation and gameplay won't sustain anyone's attention for more than a few minutes, and most will wonder why this game isn't on 3DS or...

  • 11

    Wii U eShop / GBA

    Review Mr. Driller 2

    You know the drill by now

    The re-release of classic Game Boy Advance titles on the Wii U eShop marks the first opportunity many new players will have to take on a variety of really substantial experiences, short of retroactively buying the system itself. Many have made the transition to the TV screen look easy, but some are detrimentally anchored by...

  • 39

    Wii U

    Review LEGO The Hobbit

    We hates it forever

    The LEGO series of games is a sales phenomenon, now established to a degree that it seems no matter how many releases are churned out on a yearly basis the sales flow, and steady praise flows its way. That's to the credit of TT Games and Warner Bros., but it's always a franchise at risk of spreading itself too thinly — as Bilbo...

  • 27

    Wii U eShop

    Review Luv Me Buddies Wonderland

    Luv Me Don't

    The Luv Me Buddies seem to do a number of things right when creating a new children’s brand. A menagerie of cute and cuddly characters? Check. A silly but charming origin story? Check. Hints of personality? Check. A lovable, entertaining game that introduces characters to new fans? No check. Uncheck. An idea vacuum in which the...

  • 63

    Wii U eShop

    Review Ittle Dew

    A Link to the (Swedish) Past

    Let's get this out of the way first: if you like The Legend of Zelda, you'll absolutely love Swedish studio Ludosity's new Wii U eShop adventure title Ittle Dew – it's a love letter to A Link to the Past with the cartoony art style of The Wind Waker. With a sweeping soundtrack and a charming, self-aware

May2014

  • 41

    3DS eShop

    Review Arc Style: Baseball 3D

    Take me out to a real ball game...

    Arc System Works' latest casual sports title, Arc Style: Baseball 3D, contains the same extensive customisation options of Arc Style: Soccer!! 3D, but it also retains the sluggish, repetitive gameplay and adds some new issues to boot. There is fun to be had in the local multiplayer and even the single player...

  • 37

    3DS eShop

    Review Grinsia

    The trouble with nostalgia

    In 2008, Matrix Software and Red Entertainment teamed up to develop a turn-based Role-playing game for the Nintendo DS appropriately titled Nostalgia. Incorporating classic JRPG gameplay and mechanics with modern visuals, this game was designed to tug at the heart strings of ageing gamers while still managing to provide an...

  • 18

    Wii U eShop

    Review Gravity Badgers

    Out of this world

    Badgers and space are certainly two things we would have never expected to see together, but then here's Gravity Badgers, a game all about badgers in space. Originally released for PC, this relatively unknown game has now received a Wii U port, but is it worth your time? The plot in Gravity Badgers is almost non-existent, but...

  • 41

    3DS eShop / NES

    Review Double Dragon II: The Revenge

    Now actually living up to its name

    As one of the first scrolling beat 'em ups ever made, the original Double Dragon became a smash hit when it was released way back in 1987, and like most arcade games at the time quickly received a port to the NES. A single year later, Double Dragon II was released in arcades and, as was to be expected, it was also...

  • 31

    3DS eShop / GB

    Review Mega Man V

    There's a Stardroid waiting in the sky

    The handheld Mega Man games, up until now, have been remixed mashups of two NES titles each. Some of them hewed more or less closely to the source material, while others were emboldened to evolve the original ideas is exciting new directions. Mega Man V, however, throws the very concept of "source material"...

  • 26

    3DS eShop

    Review The Denpa Men 3: The Rise of Digitoll

    Good vibrations

    Before Denpa Ningen no RPG washed up on Western shores as The Denpa Men: They Came By Wave in 2012, it felt like a localisation long-shot: a candy-coloured JRPG with off-the-wall style, an AR-based hook, very little story, and deceptively traditional, grind-heavy gameplay. Even the Denpa Men themselves — colourful and oddly...

  • 26

    3DS eShop

    Review Alien On The Run

    Out of this world

    After a few weeks full of ports and disappointing original titles on the eShop, Japanese studio G-Style's 3DS-exclusive Alien on the Run is a breath of fresh air, a surprisingly addictive "comical escape game" that has arrived on the store at relatively short notice. You play as an alien named Delude who has been abudcted by a UFO,...

  • 44

    Wii U eShop

    Review Fit Music for Wii U

    Fit dance the blues

    Losing weight and getting active isn't always an easy task. The motivation, patience and willpower it takes to make a healthy lifestyle change is one that many find daunting, and so there is an entire industry built around making the idea more palatable. Using games consoles to try and get you up off the couch may seem like an...

  • 55

    Wii U eShop / SNES

    Review Street Fighter Alpha 2

    Akuma Matata

    Street Fighter II casts an indelibly long shadow over the rest of Capcom's fighting games from the 1990s. First launched in 1991, SFII in all its Super and Turbo varieties has become synonymous with the Street Fighter franchise, a cultural touchstone the series wasn't truly able to move past until the launch of the successful Street...

  • 21

    3DS

    Review Candy Match 3

    How many licks does it take to get to the centre of this game? One.

    Start Candy Match 3 up and its cheery-looking title screen greets you with… complete silence. Your ears may pick up nothing, but your soul should be hearing the dire warning screeched out by the very void: abandon all hopes of creative or original effort, ye who enter here!...

  • 44

    Wii U eShop / GBA

    Review Klonoa: Empire of Dreams

    Wahoo!

    Starting life on the PlayStation in 1997, at a time when Super Mario 64 had just brought the gaming world triple-jumping headlong into the era of 3D platforming, Namco's Klonoa series has always done things differently. Klonoa's first outing, Klonoa: Door to Phantomile, was a pioneering foray into 2.5D, mixing polygonal backgrounds with...

  • 42

    3DS eShop

    Review Turtle Tale

    Turtle Recall

    Do you love retro platformers but wish they featured more squirt guns? Not to be confused with the children's animated film A Turtle's Tale from a few years ago, Saturnine Games' Turtle Tale brings Super Soakin' platforming action to the eShop at a budget price, but don't let its colourful graphics fool you: Turtle Tale is a strict...

  • 36

    Wii U eShop

    Review Swords & Soldiers

    The battle returns

    Originally released exclusively on WiiWare in 2009, Swords & Soldiers has had its fair share of ports in the five years since its initial release; it's made an appearance on almost every platform under the sun. The last of these to grace a Nintendo platform, the 3DS version, was not exactly a shining example of what one would...

  • 11

    Wii U eShop

    Review SQUIDS Odyssey

    Calamari meets kamikaze

    Squids Odyssey plays like a mix between Angry Birds, billiards, and a strategy RPG. If that sounds like fun to you, that’s because it is. A cast of cephalopodic heroes embarks on a quest to save their underwater world from a corrupting black ooze the best way they know how: by launching their soft, squishy little bodies...

  • 12

    DSiWare

    Review Deep Sea Creatures

    Shallow waters

    Collavier's Deep Sea Creatures, a slow-paced sim about deep sea fish and tank management, is not for everyone. While there is nothing particularly wrong with the game, its leisurely pace, lack of immediate challenge and poor instruction will likely turn off players looking for a more satisfying experience. For players genuinely...

  • 32

    Wii U eShop / NES

    Review Adventures of Lolo

    YOLO, Lolo

    HAL Laboratory's 1989 puzzler Adventures of Lolo falls into the same category as titles like Mach Rider and Clu Clu Land: C-list NES classics that are often overlooked today but provide an arcade-like fun experience for those searching out Nintendo's "deep cuts" from the '80s. Adventures of Lolo is probably best remembered these days as...

  • 31

    3DS

    Review Cut the Rope: Triple Treat

    Triple the fun and no strings attached

    The Cut the Rope franchise may have risen to fame through its release on the Apple App Store, but it has also had a pretty prominent history on Nintendo’s most recent handheld systems, too. The first game in the series was originally ported to DSiWare back in 2011, before returning again on the 3DS eShop last...

  • 36

    3DS

    Review LEGO The Hobbit

    Barrel full of mediocrity

    It doesn’t take an analyst to know that the entertainment industry loves a good trend, and one current example is to find a hugely popular work of fiction, turn it into a big-budget film, then let Warner Bros. make a LEGO video game out of it. The works of beloved fantasy author J. R. R. Tolkien, of Lord of the Rings and...

  • 20

    3DS eShop / GB

    Review Mega Man IV

    Great things in small packages

    With one exception, which is also making its way to the 3DS Virtual Console, all of the Game Boy Mega Man games take two of the NES titles and rework them a bit. Some old faces in new places, so to speak. A sprinkling of unique bosses and weapons help to carve out identities for these portable experiences but, by and...

  • 25

    Wii U eShop

    Review Color Zen

    Passes with flying colours

    If you enjoyed Abyss earlier this month and you're thirsting for another relaxing, atmospheric Wii U eShop title with a smooth electronic soundtrack, Color Zen is exactly what you're looking for. It's a puzzle game with no time limit or scoring system: you simply match colours and unwind. The iOS/Android success-story has...

  • 16

    DSiWare

    Review Sokomania 2: Cool Job

    Overheated

    Cinemax's 2010 DSiWare puzzler Sokomania received a disappointing 3/10 in our review, due to its cheap presentation, lack of content and absence of variety. Unfortunately, Sokomania 2: Cool Job, while sporting a little more personality and improved visuals than its predecessor, doesn't improve upon the one-note gameplay and feels just as...

  • 6

    DSiWare

    Review Jewel Match

    A traditional match-three lacking in splendour

    Anyone familiar with the world of match-three games will know almost exactly what to expect from a title such as Jewel Match. Released, oddly enough, after Jewel Match 3 on the 3DS, this DSiWare version strips out the story, hidden object finding, and other extra mini-games of the past sequel and...

  • 293

    Wii U

    Review Mario Kart 8

    8th Wonder of the World

    Since the Super NES every Nintendo system — apart from the Game Boy Color and the doomed Virtual Boy — has been boosted by an entry in the iconic Mario Kart series. Despite its drastic evolution throughout the generations of hardware it nevertheless feels familiar each time around, while other entries in the kart racing...

  • 20

    3DS eShop

    Review Parking Star 3D

    Back it up and dump it!

    There are so many driving games on the market today, we've been oversaturated with choice; whether you want a hardcore racing sim, a lighthearted arcade game, a futuristic hovercraft racer, or all your favourite corporate characters go-karting together, there's something out there for you. But you know what the driving game...

  • 88

    Wii U eShop

    Review Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails

    Off the rails

    Announced over a year ago, Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails was one of the earliest Wii U download games to be confirmed. Now that it's finally here, has the wait been worth it, or should this game scram? Although you're pretty much immediately thrown into the action, there is a little bit of a story to Scram Kitty. The titular cat,...

  • 21

    3DS eShop / GB

    Review Mega Man III

    Third time's the charm

    After the fun but flawed Dr. Wily's Revenge and the almost thoroughly disappointing Mega Man II on Game Boy, Capcom made a serious and substantial course correction. The result is Mega Man III, and we couldn't be happier about that. Retaining the template from Dr. Wily's Revenge (two sets of Robot Masters, a new Mega Man...

  • 30

    Wii U eShop / GBA

    Review Wario Land 4

    Someone should write a 600-page book about this game!

    Wario Land 4 has seen a revival of sorts lately. Although Wario's core platforming series has been overshadowed for years by the surrealist microgames of WarioWare, last December journalist Daniel Johnson published Game Design Companion: A Critical Analysis of Wario Land 4, a staggering 600-page...

  • 70

    3DS eShop / GB

    Review Mega Man II

    Get equipped with tarnished legacy

    Ask any fan of the Blue Bomber to name their favourite game in the series and the odds are good that they will say either Mega Man 2 or Mega Man 3. That's to be expected, though; both of those games are among the best on the NES, a system that had no shortage of great platformers and action games. What's less...

  • 62

    Wii U

    Review The Amazing Spider-Man 2

    This reboot of a reboot could use another reboot

    The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is exactly the video game that the film deserves. Sony and Activision couldn’t have planned it better if they tried. Nowadays, Spider-Man’s existence outside of comic books isn’t for creative purposes, and the accepted level of quality is appalling on all fronts...

  • 74

    3DS eShop

    Review Moon Chronicles: Episode 1

    Down the hatch...

    Renegade Kid originally released first-person shooter Moon on the DS with publisher Mastiff in 2009, though sales were relatively modest — this episodic digital re-release, retitled Moon Chronicles, will be the first time many players experience the game. The 3DS isn't always considered ideal for first-person shooters, but Moon...

  • 15

    Wii U eShop / NES

    Review Mach Rider

    Groovy little motorbike

    If you were lucky enough to pick up a shiny new NES way back in 1985, you would have had your pick of several future classics from a legendary launch-day lineup. If your idea of a digital good time happened to involve motorcycles, you were particularly spoilt for choice, with Excitebike and Mach Rider representing two-wheeled...

  • 27

    3DS

    Review Putty Squad

    Putty in your hands

    Putty Squad is a platform game that was originally developed by British developer System 3 for the Amiga in the '90s, but the official release had to wait until 2013, when the Amiga version of the game was rolled out on System 3's website as a Christmas gift. However, the original was actually published in 1994 for the Super...

  • 43

    Wii U eShop

    Review Stick It To The Man

    Get out of my thoughts and into my Wii U

    You're on the run from the law, hunted for a crime you didn't commit and unable to return to your own home for fear of being caught. A road block looms ahead, halting everyone except for an acclaimed opera singer who is performing later that evening. As the sirens echo through darkened streets, you slowly...

  • 34

    Wii U eShop

    Review Abyss

    We all live in a cyclops submarine

    Abyss is perhaps exactly the sort of game the Wii U eShop needs in greater numbers: adventurous little indie titles with strong artistic vision and a focus on core game mechanics. With a budget price tag, you can't afford not to try out Barcelona studio EnjoyUp Games' HD re-release of its attractive 2012 DSiWare...

  • 46

    3DS eShop / GBC

    Review Mega Man Xtreme

    Xtreme Mediocrity

    Mega Man X is often touted as one of the best games the SNES had to offer, which is certainly saying something. Its first sequel is further from consensus, but it's still safe to say that it's a great followup to its predecessor. If you've played either of these games — and, if you haven't, stop reading right now and do that —...

  • 26

    Wii U eShop

    Review Ava and Avior Save the Earth

    Toxic waste

    A good educational video game needs to be both enriching and fun for the player. While 2020 Venture's Ava and Avior Save the Earth may sound like a good idea — it attempts to teach children about recycling, composting and getting rid of waste in a "green" way — it fails in almost every regard. With amateurish presentation and...

  • 56

    Wii U eShop / GBA

    Review Super Mario Advance 3: Yoshi's Island

    Egg-ceptional platforming

    When you take into account just how much of a landmark title Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island was when it released back in 1995, it’s absurd to think that it’s only just being re-released on one of Nintendo’s Virtual Console services – well, that is if you exclude the exclusive 3DS release under the guise of the...

  • 9

    3DS eShop

    Review Mystery Case Files: Return to Ravenhearst

    Never go back

    Publisher Big Fish Games has certainly got the hang of porting its old PC games to the Nintendo 3DS. After releasing many of them as retail games in PAL regions, it has started to hawk them on the 3DS eShop as well. The original Mystery Case Files: Return to Ravenhearst was released in 2008 for the PC and is an evolution of the Mystery...

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