Nintendo Life's Scores

  • Games
For 3,422 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 9.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D
Score distribution:
3425 game reviews
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A fixed-camera 3D platformer that's charming enough in its own modest way, but limited ambition and a series of glitches keep Elli well short of the genre's greats. If you have any work left to do in Super Mario Odyssey or Yooka-Laylee, you probably don't need this.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    YIIK: A Postmodern RPG is a dazzling explosion of stylistic presentation and compelling strangeness. This might go down as “EarthBound for a new generation,” and much like EarthBound, the quality is difficult to score, since it is based less on the precision of design and more on an intangible, heartfelt payoff. While some gamers may not see anything special going on here, YIIK will likely really resonate with some players. If a Weird Stuff RPG appeals to you, strap in and prepare for a wild ride. Surreal themes aside, if you’re simply looking for an RPG experience on the Switch with far-out visuals, YIIK should satisfy your turn-based desires.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Billed as a side dish, Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes has been prepared with enough love and affection to become a filling meal on its own, packed with the spice and spirit you’d expect from Travis Touchdown. It’s a fun, indie-inflected blast of hack-and-slash which doesn’t change the world mechanically (and don’t go in expecting No More Heroes 3), but its sincerity and energy are charming. It’s an adult game – a gamer’s game – foul-mouthed and dripping with style. If you’re sitting on the fence, we’d recommend diving in, if only to support its infectious, celebratory spirit; Suda51 seems to have a real affection for Nintendo hardware and this makes you feel lucky to have him working on Switch.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Almost two decades on, Onimusha: Warlords lives again thanks to a handful of truly impactful changes. Those tank controls are lighter to the touch and the improvements to the visuals help take the edge off those clunky PS2-era looks. The updated soundtrack might be a little inferior, but even it brings an extra layer of authenticity to a game that draws from Japan’s rich history of warfare. Hopefully, the rest of the series will get the same treatment because this classic swashbuckling adventure (with the occasional moment of horror) has just re-sharpened its blade, and we're happy to have it back.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With the purity of its twitch platforming mechanics and the clever way developer Demimonde exploits user-generated platforms, Octahedron: Transfixed Edition certainly lives up to its new subtitle. The soundtrack alone is worth the price of admission – especially if you’re partial to some big EDM beats – and if you’ve ever enjoyed the likes of Downwell, Crypt of the NecroDancer or Celeste, this TRON-loving indie is likely to entrance you.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Everything really does deliver on its abstract concept, but only if you’re willing to boot it up with an open mind. There’s no action, or even a cohesive plot. There are no XP bars to fill or loot to collect – just a universe and you, and a desire to determine just who ‘you’ really are. The basic textures and colours (and the hilarious way creatures just roll about like possessed statues) might stifle some, but Everything’s worth is more than skin deep. It’s a risky game – some will love it and some just won’t get it at all – but it’s an experience well worth undertaking, regardless of where you end up.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Nippon Marathon isn’t not going to be everyone’s tastes – those eye-wateringly janky visuals (whether by design or not) and the nature of physics-driven racing are an acquired taste that most people are going to tire of, fast. However, look past the surface and there’s a multiplayer experience here that will appeal to fans of Gang Beasts and the like, who just want a silly party game that cares not for seriousness in any form.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    If you originally missed out on the 3DS port, this is about as essential a retro release as you can get. Out Run has always been an infinitely playable game, and the new unlockables and online rankings only increase its longevity further. Those with the 3DS version will have to decide whether it’s worth buying what’s more or less the same game again in order to play it on their TV, but for everyone else with an interest in retro gaming, it’s a must-have.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story + Bowser Jr.’s Journey stands as a well-made remake of a game that was excellent to begin with, polishing up the original in small ways and adding some extra content that meaningfully establishes its own identity. If you’ve ever been a fan of the Mario & Luigi series (or are looking for a reason to dust off the old 3DS), do yourself a favour and pick this game up. Although Bowser Jr.’s Journey is just an ‘okay’ addition, the inventive battles, great writing and creative gameplay of the main game make this one an easy recommendation.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    We’d be lying if we said that Double Cross wasn’t disappointing; after the raucously enjoyable platforming offered up by Runbow, this is an underwhelming follow up that never manages to hit the same highs. Though Double Cross has an interesting premise and some exceptionally well-designed levels, it’s weighed down by a series of ho-hum gameplay elements that aren’t adequately fleshed out and give the overall experience something of an identity crisis. We’d give Double Cross a light recommendation for those of you that have enjoyed the likes of Mega Man 11 or Shantae: Half-Genie Hero; this is still an enjoyable side-scrolling adventure with some genuinely thrilling moments, but don't expect it to live long in your memory after you've finished it.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While Tales of Vesperia: Definitive Edition doesn’t make an major changes to the original game that launched over a decade ago, it does combine practically every piece of exclusive content into one wholesome package. With the benefit of some improved visuals in both cutscenes and gameplay, it’s very difficult to recommend this JRPG classic on any other system than Nintendo Switch thanks to how well it performs in both docked and handheld modes. If you’ve ever slept on this classic, there’s never been a better way to rectify that error.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The bottom line is that Switch now has a very fine 2D Mario to its name; we just can’t help feeling disappointed that Nintendo didn’t push the boat out with a more thorough ‘Deluxe’ refurbishment. Having said that, this is still an excellent package that deserves a new lease of life on Switch, especially as there will be many owners of that console who didn't get to experience the Wii U original and its expansion.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Simultaneously hardcore and casual, HoPiKo is a pick-up-and-play speedrunning platformer delight that demands the utmost precision and perseverance from the player. It's not for the easily dissuaded, or for anyone looking for anything other than a manic arcade experience, but those who dig its frantic ways will find it very hard to stop snacking.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While it might seem odd for Omega Force to opt to port the five-year-old Dynasty Warriors 8 over the more recent Dynasty Warriors 9, it’s by and far the right decision for Nintendo Switch owners. Not only is Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends Definitive Edition the best version since Dynasty Warriors 5, it comes to the hybrid platform offering more stable performance than the versions that once graced PS3 and Xbox 360. Even when its framerate takes a knock when playing co-op, it’s a remarkably robust port boasting an obscene amount of content fresh out of the box.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Pang Adventures offers a tense and instantly enjoyable ode to a timeless arcade romp, and one that’s bound to engage and reward players who enjoyed it 30 years ago as well as those discovering it for the first time on the eShop. The support for online play is a real bonus, as many puzzle games of this ilk are want to simply plump for couch-play only, but for all its colourful chaos you are left hoping for something a little less predictable. Fans of the original will love it, but they may also lament the fact that more hasn't been done to update this classic series.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    With its pop-culture pastiche, serious love for ’80s synth and usual passion for jousting, Super Hero Fight Club: Reloaded is certainly one of Nintendo Switch’s most unusual multiplayer offerings. While it’s not the most original concept, it does get extra points for the clever use of power-ups and hazards, making it a couch-play experience that will frustrate you and make you punch the air in triumph all at once.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Omega Strike is a fun and enjoyable little 2D Metroidvania with some side-scrolling shooter sensibilities. It doesn’t do anything particularly new or interesting – and its ‘unique’ character-swapping concept was done a lot better by Broforce – but if you’re looking for a modern tribute to Metal Slug that’s fun and challenging in a very familiar way, then Omega Strike is likely to scratch that common itch. Just keep those expectations in check as this isn't the most original or exciting example the genre has to offer.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Within its common-sense (and, thanks to Wii Fit, well-known) limitations, Fitness Boxing is a breezy, energetic success that gets your blood pumping.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Donut County will no doubt prove to be a divisive experience, but those that are looking for a relaxing and often funny puzzle game will find an enjoyable experience that has just enough charm to justify its existence. With that being said, this is hardly a game that feels like it justifies the relatively high price tag; three hours max of content is a tough pill to swallow regardless of how enamored you are with the concept at its core.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Not to mix historical context here, but Carcassonne on the Switch feels Spartan; it is bare of furnishings that would make it truly shine.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    There’s no shortage of charming, artistic puzzle-platformers on Switch and Koloro is certainly a good one; there’s much to like in its simple mechanics and narrative, and there’s satisfaction to be found in its puzzle-solving. The problem is that you’ve almost certainly seen everything it has to offer somewhere before and, as much as it engages your grey matter while you play, it’s unlikely to stay with you in the same way the games it evokes do.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Uncanny Valley’s desire to hark back to the simpler days of survival horror is commendable, especially in those early moments where you’re flitting between abstract nightmares and a security job that feels increasingly isolated. However, the sheer openness of its non-linear plot means it’s all too easy to jump large sections of the story as you stumble on one of the game’s secrets too early on. Still, with a strict consequence-based system that rewards and punishes you in equal measure, Uncanny Valley has a lot of potential. It’s just a shame it doesn’t fully live up to it.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Would it be fair to call this game Titan Souls Lite? How much does the phrase “twin-stick shooter dungeon roguelike” intrigue you? Honestly, the price is probably a fair bet for providing several hours of solid, challenging combat mechanics. Just beware that the drip-feed progression can feel grindy, even for a shorter game – and that choice of camera takes something away from the whole experience, in this reviewer's opinion. Mana Spark is a game that shines brightly in certain areas, enough to perhaps hide the shortcomings it has as well.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Too much hand-holding in games can be a problem, but Battle Princess Madelyn goes in the opposite direction with its main Story mode and is just as annoying (if not more so) as a result. Thankfully, its alternative Arcade mode really does save the day, stripping away all the convoluted and confused exploration and leaving nothing but pure, unfiltered arcade action goodness. It’s just a shame its main mode – and perhaps the key reason the developer wants your £15.79 / $19.99 – is so frustratingly unhelpful and awkward to play. Still, fans of Capcom's Ghouls ‘n Ghosts will most definitely want to check this out.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    V-Rally 4 is an old-school rally game at heart, for better and worse (but mainly the latter). If you stick with it you’ll eventually start to master and enjoy it, but the slippery handling and unforgiving ‘no mistakes allowed’ rally races make getting to that point a real slog. On top of this, its numerous performance issues are so severe that they aren’t just ugly, they’re downright distracting: the result being that although this is now the best rally game on Switch by default, pretty much every aspect of it leaves acres of room for improvement.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    On an eShop that seems to become more rife with Metroidvanias by the day, Sundered seems to fall somewhere in the middle to front of the pack. Though the repetitiveness means it doesn’t hit the same kind of highs that Dead Cells or Hollow Knight reach, Sundered still manages to offer a delightfully creepy, challenging, and content-rich experience that genre fans are sure to enjoy. If you’re not a fan of procedural generation, stay well away from this one; otherwise, we’d encourage you to give it a shot.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    If you like Fallout Shelter and you want something with a few less smiles and a few more painful deaths, Sheltered will tickle that morbid itch. Managing its multitude of interconnected systems requires a deft touch, and while its difficulty isn’t for the faint of heart, there’s a real sense of accomplishment in keeping your growing troupe of survivors alive for days on end. While not as effective as other forays into the well-trodden post-apocalypse, as well as being a victim of its own procedural generation at times, there’s still a morbid curiosity to its pixel art survivalism.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Quantity over quality has never been exhibited so perfectly as it is here. Having 150 games is undoubtedly impressive, but when the vast majority of them are barely decipherable, let alone playable, you’re probably only really left with around 15 titles that will hold your attention for more than a minute. While the contribution these games made to the evolution of gaming in its early days can’t be denied, many of them are stepping stones that we don’t need to walk over again.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It takes a little while for Aaero’s mechanics and its combo system to click, but once they do there are fewer better rhythm games out there. Its fantastic soundtrack exudes cool from every pore, and the way it integrates with gameplay (while running beautifully smoothly while docked) makes it one of the most immersive experiences you’ll find on the Switch.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It really doesn’t matter that Firewatch came out over two and a half years ago, because it’s just as engrossing and enchanting as it was the first time around. From the warm glow of its forests in the morning summer light to the subtle tension of exploring a rocky gorge in the isolating silence of night, Shoshone National Forest is a character in its own right. With a story that’s both funny and heartbreaking – and enhanced by some brilliant performances by its two central actors – this is an essential purchase, irrespective of whether you're playing it for the first time on Switch or simply using it as an excuse to revisit an old favourite.

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