The weekend has arrived, and with it comes (we hope) a little free time to do we all love best... play video games. If you're in the UK like us, you'll likely be knee-high in snow, so get you feeling warm and toasty why don't you gather round the fire and warm your hands on our fiery hot picks for the next couple of days. There's even a Wii U game in there. Will wonders ever cease...
Tony Stephenson, social media manager
It's going to be a mix of things for me this weekend, will be nice to play after being too busy the past few weekends. First up is the Nintendo Life Mario Kart 8 Deluxe event which runs every first Friday of the month so will be keeping an eye on that, probably get a few races in. I've also been dragged into the Splatoon 2 match for Nintendo Nottingham even though I'm awful at the game! Apart from that, it will be a mix of ARMS, with the Party Crash this weekend, and some Bayonetta which still plays great despite some niggles.
Gonçalo Lopes, contributing writer
I was waiting for this latest Xenoblade Chronicles 2 update to jump back to Alrest. How odd to be able to link up with the ‘bad guys’, but finding them will be the true adventure. ARMS is back on the cards thanks to the ongoing Party Crush in Europe (gotta get me those shiny Byte & Bark badges!). Elsewhere I will be checking out the new Splatoon 2 content and I will buy one more ticket to board the doomsday train in The Final Station. I will not get a proper night's sleep until I manage to save every single survivor.
Liam Doolan, Australia correspondent
With the upcoming release of Kirby Star Allies on Switch, this weekend I’m jumping into the free demo. I’ll admit I don’t have good relations with Kirby. I’ve used him in Smash Bros. from time to time and completed his first two outings on the Game Boy, but apart from that I’ve honestly struggled to show him the same level of love as other Nintendo mascots. I’m hoping Star Allies can perhaps mend our broken relations. I’ll also be working my way through HAL’s very first mobile game, Part Time UFO.
Darren Calvert, operations director
This weekend if the opportunity presents itself I will check out Atooi’s Totes The Goat which is a something of a love letter to the classic arcade game Q*bert... well except it has a little goat rather than an orange hose-nosed weirdo. I have fond memories of playing Q*bert back in the days; I could hop around on the cubes in that isometric pyramid all day without getting bored.
I always had a fond spot for Coily the purple snake enemy who would chase my orange avatar around making the game so much more frantic and enjoyable. Then there was Ugg and Wrongway too; they were fun. Anyway in Totes The Goat it looks like I’ll have to deal with the likes of wolves, crows and bully bears instead. If I get time this weekend I might check it out, or perhaps I’ll just dig out my Game Boy and play Jaleco’s excellent 1992 port of Q*bert instead.
Glen Fox, guides editor
I just beat Celeste, which was like hell to me because I shy from every challenge. So this weekend I’m (finally!) going to start digging through my massive Switch backlog. I’m one of those that buys everything and then never ends up playing it. Top of my list are RiME, Yooka-Laylee, and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 because I’m on the move and those strike me as good handheld games. If I were in front of the TV, I’d absolutely smash through DOOM and Bayonetta though. Preferably with the curtains drawn to hide the icy tundra outside.
Dave Frear, retro reviewer
After a week out (busy being ill) I’m playing catch-up this weekend with various games, but for pleasure I’ll finally be trying out Luigi's Balloon World in Super Mario Odyssey. Well unless I struggle to find any balloons in which case I’ll grumble something about it being a daft idea and try out the new(ish) motion controls in DOOM instead. I’ve always favoured keyboard and mouse over dual sticks, but the motion controls in the Splatoon titles really clicked with me, so it’ll be interesting to see if it makes turning monsters to mush easier and more enjoyable or if I just end up staring at the ceiling a lot.
Dom Reseigh-Lincoln, editor
All this talk of Wii U has left me hankering to break out my GamePad and fire up the old gal. It's also given me another reason to play COD again - Call Of Duty: Black Ops 2, that is - since the Wii U version isn't full of game-breaking hackers you find on the PS3 and Xbox 360 servers. Well, I haven't played in a while so I hope there isn't any...
BLOPS 2 remains one of my favourite entries, mainly because of well-rounded the multiplayer was in comparison to what came before. Whether it's a cheeky round or ten of TDM on Hijacked or some Domination on Express, the small yet dedicated community of players will no doubt welcome a bearded old fogey like me back into the mix for some online hi-jinks.
Which games are you playing this weekend? (201 votes)
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
The Final Station
Kirby Star Allies
Totes The Goat
Call Of Duty: Black Ops II
Something else! (Comment below)
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So those are our picks for the weekend. Add to the poll if you fancy casting a vote or three, and drop us a comment below to share your chosen gaming odyssey this weekend. Don't be shy...