Nintendo Life's Scores

  • Games
For 3,349 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 48% higher than the average critic
  • 22% same as the average critic
  • 30% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 9.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Axiom Verge
Lowest review score: 10 Kidz Bop Dance Party! The Video Game
Score distribution:
3352 game reviews
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    If it were a launch title, we’d recommend tactics fans investigate Mercenaries Wings: The False Phoenix, at least until something better came along, but something better did come along – several things, in fact. If you’re an insatiable tactics fiend who’s munched through everything else, including the previous collection, this is stodgy, competent filler that should keep you going for a while; it’s a supermarket meal deal or a plate of cocktail sausages. It’s no-frills and fine, but with a veritable buffet of tasty, interesting alternatives, who wants a sausage on a stick? Perfunctory, cliched writing and a lack of niceties make it a tougher sell when there are literally hundreds of hours to be had elsewhere.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Valiant Hearts: The Great War is an elegant mix of 2D adventuring, simple logic-based conundrums, and effective storytelling. Its puzzles are a little uninspired, while the game's QTE segments can grow rather tiresome. But Ubisoft Montpellier has told a poignant story with real spirit and invention, and that makes this an easy one to recommend.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Crashlands' cartoon sci-fi world offers a fun-loving cross between Minecraft, Toejam & Earl and Don’t Starve with its ‘RPG-lite’ mix of crafting, questing and combat. It’s incredibly easy to pick up and play thanks to the streamlined design of its inventory and the automation of accessing tools and weapons, and while its grind for new armour can get a little repetitive after a while, there are some cute little mechanics to unearth, such as the power to incubate eggs and nurture your own pets. While it’s never going to hold a candle to the RPG chops of Diablo III: Eternal Collection, it still offers a colourful curio alternative on Switch.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Full Metal Furies proves that Cellar Door Games is an impressively talented studio capable of producing quality games that can set new standards in some ways. We wish more developers would invest such considerable effort into this sort of puzzle design in action games, and coupling that with the deep RPG systems, punchy gameplay and memorable writing makes for an experience that no Switch owner will want to be without. Cellar Door Games has outdone itself with Full Metal Furies and we can’t recommend this release enough; put in the time, and you’ll find this is much more than just another beat ‘em up.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The game does a superb job of striking a balance between being an easy route of entry for newcomers to the series and offering just enough post-game challenge and competitive play elements (and nostalgia, of course) to please series veterans; as a result, these new titles really do offer something for everyone, which can't always be said of the mainline Pokémon entries. They might not be an absolute masterpiece, but we’d urge any Poké-fans out there to give these ones a go – if a Let’s Go Johto sequel is on the cards, we’ll happily be there waiting in line.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! are beautiful reimaginings of a video game classic, updating a 20-year-old game in ways which make it infinitely more accessible and user-friendly for a modern audience, while keeping the magic first discovered all those years ago.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    If you’re looking for a game to get the whole family gathered around the TV - or your Nintendo Switch in tabletop mode - during the school holidays or at a party, Carnival Games offers plenty of silly mini-games to get everyone swinging their Joy-Con. It’s nothing remarkable, but the new games do offer a little more variety than the previous versions, so if you’re looking for a quick pick-up-and-play alternative to Super Mario Party, this colourful collection could be the virtual funfair trip for you.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    When it all comes together, Road Redemption can offer some of the most thoroughly entertaining and over-the-top racing action you’ll find on the Switch. It’s a little rough around the edges and the performance could have done with a little optimisation prior to launch, but when a game’s as downright fun to play as this is, that’ll always be the overriding factor. The wait’s over, Road Rash fans: this is the modern spiritual successor you've been waiting for all these years.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Forgotton Anne is an evocative, artistic triumph that nails that feeling of a ‘living anime’. Sure, the puzzles are hardly mind-blowing, and some later sections may test your patience, but the beauty of the art and the gentle humour of the writing should carry you through these irritations. Animation buffs should dive in without reservation, and we’d recommend anyone with even the slightest interest check this out.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It’s taken a good six months for Battlezone Gold Edition to make its way to Nintendo Switch, but those months have been well worth it. The result is a port that uses the console’s gyro controls to recreate the movement of a VR headset, and one that does so without making too many concessions in terms of overall performance. While it’s still frustrating Switch owners have to wait so long for ports such as this, Battlezone Gold Edition could be the precedent that proves VR-orientated titles could lead a happy second life in semi-handheld form.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While this incarnation of Machinarium doesn’t offer anything different from the other versions already out there, it’s still a fine port of an award-winning point-and-click adventure. Even after nine years, Amanita Design’s brilliant little odyssey still looks, plays and feels fresh thanks to a quirky soundtrack, those instantly recognisable hand-drawn visuals and an approach to environmental puzzles that strikes the right balance between obtuse and tantalisingly obvious. True, the lack of any additional content makes this a hard sell for anyone who's already played it elsewhere, but if you’ve never had the pleasure of joining Josef on his mechanical adventure, there’s arguably never been a better platform on which to try it.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Rogue Legacy is a simple take on the tried-and-true roguelike formula, but it executes what it sets out to do exceptionally well, making for an endlessly replayable and enjoyable action adventure that no fan of the genre will want to miss out on. A high difficulty level, funny writing, tight controls and rewarding RPG mechanics make this one an effortless recommendation; the design of the game makes it easy to play in short bursts or long sessions, which means it's a great fit for the Switch. If you enjoyed Dead Cells, Castlevania, or any 2D sidescroller in that style, you’re almost certain to have a blast with this one.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    While it’s great to see Ubisoft finally giving Nintendo Switch a platform exclusive, it’s frustrating that it has to come in the form of a competent yet throwaway party game. Having said that, superior hardware and far more accurate motion controls make this the best Sports Party instalment yet, so if you’re looking for a new addition to your local multiplayer setup this Joy-Con-happy collection of simplified sports should tickle your fancy, in-between rounds of Super Mario Party, of course. However, there’s an almost crippling lack of depth to each discipline that anyone hoping for more than a casual party experience will be sadly disappointed.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Unfortunately, Nickelodeon Kart Racers is simply not good; derivative mechanics, a pathetic character roster and awful performance make this a bargain bin experience that you’ll be glad you missed. If you absolutely have to play a racing game with Nickelodeon characters, then by all means, go ahead, but we’d highly recommend you take a pass on this sorry effort.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This is how retro compilations should be done. Although the emulation has a few little hiccups along the way and single Joy-Con multiplayer is sadly missing, the overall package here is wonderfully presented. Rather than just slapping a rudimentary menu over a bunch of old ROMs, it’s clear there’s been a lot of effort made here to catalogue an often forgotten period in one of Japan’s most important game developers. As with all compilations there are a few misses, but the quality is generally high, and the supporting museum mode is an absolute treasure trove for retro enthusiasts.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If you’ve never been much of a fan of gacha-style mobile games, Dragalia Lost is hardly going to change your mind. With that being said, this is a remarkably well-executed ARPG for mobile devices; surprisingly in-depth lore, easy to pick up gameplay and oodles of customization options make this a game that’s easy to sink hours into, and the generous distribution of free virtual currency helps to keep the microtransactions to a minimum. It may not be anything groundbreaking, but Dragalia Lost is a release worthy of the quality associated with Nintendo’s name. You really should give it a try.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It's a crying shame - not to mention an almost unbelievable situation - that Mutant Football League: Dynasty Edition is currently the only American football game on Switch; Nintendo fans certainly deserve much, much better. Due to the annoying 'dirty tricks' system and unpredictable field changes, the experience leads to many cheap situations which, while mixing things up, don't make the game fun to play. It has the over-the-top aggression of its spiritual forerunner - 1993's Mutant League Football - and a sizable amount of content, but it's simply not an enjoyable experience after a few games, even when a second person is involved.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum ‘n’ Fun! gives Europeans a long-awaited taste of Japanese drum-fun. You’ll want to consider forking out for the taiko peripheral to see the game at its best, but Switch’s touchscreen makes this an easier recommendation than it would otherwise be. The motion controls should be avoided with extreme prejudice – they’re simply unworkable – and a few odd design decisions, not to mention an excess of loading screens, take the shine off what is a beautifully bold and bouncy game. Fortunately, the Party Game section helps shore things up, offering short bursts of multiplayer fun as a credible stopgap until Rhythm Paradise arrives.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    While its controls can often be a little too unforgiving - especially when travelling at such high speeds - once you’ve got the hang of each vehicle's unique yet temperamental handling, GRIP: Combat Racing really opens up. Serving as a faithful nod to the original Rollcage, the wide range of modes and unlockable parts could make it the next Rocket League - if it manages to gather a similar cult following. If you’re in the market for a larger than life racer that isn’t Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, this could well be your next racing obsession.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If you want to play a top-down Legend of Zelda game as a rogue-lite while also taking shifts as a shopkeeper then, hey, Moonlighter is about to scratch a distinctive itch for you. It hits a sweet spot somewhere between satisfying swordplay and nitty-gritty economic sim, although some players may feel it gets ‘grindy’ after a while in its mechanics. Nonetheless, Digital Sun Games has produced a lush work it can be proud of; one that even touches on our humanity in an optimistic way.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    We thoroughly enjoyed our illustrious career in data manipulation – if you’ve got the head for it (or if you’ve ever enjoyed an episode of Silicon Valley), 7 Billion Humans is as perfect an introduction to programming as you could hope for. It gives the layman an appreciation of clean, efficient code, and the writing will keep more savvy players entertained for the duration. It offers more puzzling variety than its predecessor, but if your brain simply isn’t wired that way, you won’t like it any better. If that’s the case, we’d recommend sitting this one out and crossing your fingers that Tomorrow Corporation have something less esoteric in the pipeline.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    While My Hero One’s Justice certainly looks the part - with all the crash, bang and wallop you’d expect from a game based on such an outlandish anime - it proves to be more style over substance. If the likes of Blade Strangers and SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy have got you in the mood for easy-to-pick-up fighters, this title will easily fit that mould, but for everyone else, it’s a disappointing use of a franchise brimming with quirky (no pun intended) potential.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Supergiant Games outdid itself with Transistor, providing an engaging ARPG experience that managed to improve upon its predecessor in many ways while adding in distinct new elements that help to define its identity. It's another welcome addition to the Switch library, and is the epitome of a modern RPG classic, with its fusion of cyberpunk elements, unconventional storytelling, and dynamic gameplay make for a game that you won’t want to miss out on. We’d give Transistor a high recommendation to anybody looking for another great RPG for their Switch, or for someone who just wants to hear a good story.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A lovely port of a classic RPG loot-a-thon that keeps its feet firmly in the past. The execution is wonderful, but its gameplay is not something that will appeal to everyone due to the high level of repetition. Its visuals are clear and functional if not especially interesting, but performance is top notch to make up for it. If you’re looking for a loot-driven grind-a-thon with more explosions of viscera than you can comfortably discuss with your mother, this is the game for you.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Save Me Mr. Tako is a lovingly crafted throwback to the days of the Game Boy. While we found some rough spots with the lack of side quest tracking and ropey collision detection, they weren't enough to take away from our overall enjoyment of the game. Tako is a lovable character in a quality platformer that would have been right at home on the system it pays homage to. If you love the Game Boy - flaws and all - then you'll absolutely adore this game.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    If you’re happy to pay the subscription and want to rather literally just dance, treating yourself to the series’ newest instalment provides you with the largest selection of tracks the series has ever offered and would be a good investment. Of course, if these things don’t apply to you, it’s considerably harder to recommend the upgrade from last year’s entry.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Black Bird is a unique little shooter that only gets better as you play it more and uncover its secrets. Its vintage-style art direction is charmingly melancholy, and its strange soundtrack only adds an extra layer of quirkiness to proceedings. It’s very much a score challenge game, though, meaning players expecting a wealth of things to see and do may be left feeling underwhelmed by its meagre four stages - especially when you consider the rather high price tag. This is very much a case of quality over quantity, and as long as you’re up for repeat playthroughs, you’re in for a wonderfully bizarre treat.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    While LEGO Harry Potter Collection is one of the oldest instalments in the overall series still in current-gen circulation, it’s aged remarkably well. Despite lacking some of the subtle changes the franchise has benefited from in the years since, the use of Hogwarts as a vast and secret-filled hub, a huge collection of characters to collect from across all eight films and a clever use of the Harry Potter licence makes for a remaster that only enhances Nintendo Switch’s growing LEGO library. If you've played nothing but the recent LEGO games then it may, at times, feel a little old and basic, but this fantastic beast hasn’t entirely lost its magic yet.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Both Night Alone and Midnight Shadows offer a survival horror experience built more on the management of building dread and approaching threats, although both do occasionally indulge in cheap (yet effective) jump scares and uses of gore. However, for all its potency, Yomawari: The Long Night Collection’s design too often boils down to a repetitive cycle of evasion and exploration, and with a difficulty that’s too high for a game built on obtuse layouts and one-shot kills, it can quickly become an exercise in both fear and frustration.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While Friday the 13th: Killer Puzzle doesn’t stray too far from the template of Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut, it does offer some much-needed adjustments to its gory puzzle formula. With 12 chapters to work your way through and 150 different scenes to drench in gore, plenty of costumes to unlock, and all manner of implements to wield (complete with grisly death animations), this cartoonish puzzler offers a fitting way to ring in Halloween on Nintendo Switch.

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