Nintendo Life's Scores

  • Games
For 1,719 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 47% higher than the average critic
  • 23% same as the average critic
  • 30% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 11.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Super Mario Galaxy 2
Lowest review score: 10 Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room
Score distribution:
1,719 game reviews
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Not only is World of Goo easily the best WiiWare release to date, it's also proof that you don't need a large development team or millions of dollars to create an outstanding video game. In an era of video gaming where style is often emphasized over substance, it's refreshing to see a title like World of Goo that somehow manages to feature an abundance of both.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    If you’ve passed on the Prime series until now, your excuses for doing so have dwindled considerably.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    While it would be easy to rave on and on about the game, the best way to sum everything up would be to say this: Bowser's Inside Story is the kind of game that will remind you why you love playing video games in the first place and is easily one of the best DS releases to date. If you only buy one game the rest of this year, make sure it's this one.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    New Super Mario Bros. brings all of the classic fun from past Super Mario Bros. releases together in one amazing greatest hits-style gameplay experience and does so in a way that only Nintendo themselves can do. If you only buy one game for your Wii console for the rest of your life, make sure it's this one.
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Every once in a while a video game comes along that's just so spectacular that it ends up defining the very system it's released on and raises the bar by which all other games in the series and genre will be judged. It's safe to say that game has now arrived on the Wii console.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Bit.Trip RUNNER epitomises the best qualities of the Bit.Trip series in terms of being a fun game to play as well as honouring the pioneers of console gaming.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    While we've seen a lot of titles released on DSiWare since its inception, very seldom have we encountered a game that features this level of polish and refinement in virtually every facet. From the gorgeous multi-layered visuals to the spot-on play controls, there's really not a single area of the game that won't wow you.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Kirby's Epic Yarn is absolutely filled to the brim with whimsical charm and light-hearted humour, but it's the unique gameplay elements that make it truly shine.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Donkey Kong Country Returns is almost the perfect continuation of the series in many ways. It manages to offer the perfect balance of old and new elements to form what has to be one of the Wii console's finest platforming experiences and a game that should challenge even seasoned fans of the genre.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Beautiful visuals, improved controls, exceptional pacing and engrossing gameplay are all present and correct. The N64 version is an all-time gaming classic, but this is truly the finest edition of Ocarina of Time.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Despite the absence of competitive online multiplayer and the occasional minor visual issue, it's difficult to see where the developers could have improved upon this bumper racing package, such is its completeness.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A game of stunning creativity: the work of master craftsmen and women, it's a breathtaking technical achievement in many ways, with subtly beautiful visuals and audio blending with rampantly imaginative design. It's as good a Zelda game as we've ever played, and one that fully delivers on the revolution Nintendo promised back in 2005.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Rayman Origins perfectly embodies what made many of us fall in love with gaming in the first place. It's a nigh-on flawlessly executed romp through intricately designed levels that boast the most gorgeously detailed and vibrant visuals you'll see this generation. Tight controls, a perfectly judged difficulty curve, fantastically surreal boss fights and tons of replayability go that extra mile.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    It's been a long wait, but WiiWare fans can now finally get their hands on this lesser known indie classic. Beating it can be an incredibly daunting task for less experienced players, but despite all of the difficult puzzles and fights there are lots of features that make the experience much less frustrating than you'd think it would be. With this title's significant size, if you can't beat one area you can just go to another first, so there are always options to progress. The lack of DLC is a bit of a disappointment, but the basic game is still, in a word: perfect.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Nintendo fans have been waiting a long time for NightSky, and they won't be disappointed. The finished product is gorgeous, flawlessly designed and bracingly atmospheric, with perfect controls, clever puzzles, and an endlessly evolving play style that will never see you solving the same puzzle the same way twice. Hidden stars, a locked world and an advanced difficulty lend the experience significant replayability, but even if it offered only a single playthrough, it's not an experience that could soon be forgotten. At last, the 3DS eShop has its masterpiece.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward is nothing short of a masterpiece. Riveting from beginning to end, it sets a new standard for interactive storytelling, and demands an emotional investment from the player that ultimately pays off with one of the most satisfying endings in recent video gaming memory. Unless you have yet to experience its prequel 999, there is simply no excuse for you not to play this game.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Without a doubt, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is currently the greatest game you can experience on the 3DS.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Super Mario 3D World can be easily summarised — it’s a terrifically enjoyable, tight and impeccably structured experience. It recalls the mascot’s 3D heritage while providing the perfect starting point for those that prefer 2D platforming, catering to an audience of beginners and skilled veterans alike. Nintendo’s also mastered Mario multiplayer for, arguably, the first time; it’s still manic and can be either co-operative or competitive, but there’s also a sense of space that allows determined groups to progress coherently.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A very challenging RPG that'll appeal to all fans of the genre: the graphics are superb, the soundtrack is great, and the gameplay is top-notch. When everything is said and done, this is a must-have RPG.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The scope of the game is enormous and there's never a lack of things to do as you live out each day of the adventure.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    LostWinds might not be quite as revolutionary in terms of play control as some had hoped, but it does manage to bring some very new and innovative gameplay ideas to the platforming genre and that's definitely a step in the right direction.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Two Tribes have really outdone themselves.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With a fantastic script and localisation, greater variety in the tasks involved and dozens of moments that will bring a beaming smile to your face, Little King’s Story outdoes Miyamoto’s garden game on every level. The King is dead – long live the King!
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With all the small issues asides, Kirby Super Star Ultra is still a magnificent title.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It still stands as one of the finest titles to grace the Nintendo DS. It’s packed full of content and will keep even the most experienced gamers playing for a good length of time due to its deep replay value.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Sure the game isn't much to look at and it's still odd to hear the NES-like music blaring through a Dolby Surround Sound system, but when you get right down to it, there's just something incredibly satisfying and unique about playing a completely original 8-bit Mega Man title almost 15 years since the last NES release.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Chinatown Wars truly is one the best titles to ever grace the Nintendo DS. Despite the fact that it took on an old-style graphical approach and introduced alien concepts, the transition of the series to Nintendo’s handheld has been a smooth one – the end result being a fantastic adult game that is not worth missing.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Boom Blox: Bash Party is unquestionably the definite version of the game and tops its predecessor in every way possible.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Hudson has achieved the unthinkable and created an original and entertaining Japanese developed FPS which comes as a great surprise. This is a must-download for fans of the FPS genre.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Extraction manages to come through on its promise of a cinematic experience by embracing the genre’s limitations and bending the expectations of what an on-rails game can and should do, all the while playing to the Wii’s strengths and pushing its technical abilities to new highs.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With this update of A Boy and His Blob, WayForward have somehow been able to accurately capture the unique gameplay elements of the original title and wrap them up inside one of the most beautiful and polished Wii releases to date.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    If you consider yourself to be a fighting game connoisseur, and you have like-minded friends that enjoy a good digital scrap, you owe it to yourself to pick up a copy of this.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With an all-new play control scheme and several new bonus features, as well as an online mode that can keep you busy every single day, Tiger Woods 10 for the Wii is a must-have game for fans of golf, as well as for those Wii owners looking to learn how to play real golf.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    About the only downside to having a game as much fun to play as Bit.Trip.Beat is that with only 3 levels, you'll definitely be left wanting more.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Featuring elegant design, polished graphics, and pick-up-and-play addictiveness; the Art Style series is a perfect-fit for DSiWare. The game's rather traditional concept, mixed in with a unique twist, creates one of the most fresh and enjoyable puzzles on any handheld. Trust us, you won’t be disappointed with Art Style: AQUITE.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    While platforming titles have certainly become more intricate and flashy over the years, Namco's update of their original Klonoa title proves that even a decade-old platformer can still hold its own when a developer puts the time and effort into it. If you're a platformer fan, you absolutely must own this wonderfully charming title.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Play it for the atmosphere, play it for the suspense, play it for the story; we don’t care, just don’t miss out on one of the best Wii games this year.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    One of the most enjoyable Nintendo Wii titles to date and a game that's almost impossible to put down once you begin playing it. It may not feature the depth of Gran Turismo or Forza, but its a damn sight more entertaining.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Punch-Out!! on the Wii is an absolutely amazing new installment in the classic franchise with a ton of content for both new and old fans.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A sports package that's absolutely chock full of sports gaming goodness and enough replay value to keep gamers coming back for more. You might find sports packages that offer up a more in-depth gameplay experience for an individual sport , but you'd be hard pressed to find a package with more variety and fun than the one found in Wii Sports Resort.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    You’d be extremely hard-pressed to find a more complete tennis package on Wii – Virtua Tennis 2009’s offline and online career modes offer the most engaging representations of the sport on any console.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It may not have the control genius of Wii Sports Resort but it’s every bit as good in terms of content, presentation and pure, distilled fun.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    One of the more refreshing RPG releases to hit the DS system and a game that no RPG fan will want to miss out on.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The game excels in practically every department, and while it may only take a couple of hours to complete, it's filled with replay value.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A delightfully light-hearted take on the strategy genre.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It stands as a great game for a low price, and that’s something you really can’t complain about.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Puzzle Bobble Galaxy really pulls out the stops to deliver a must-have Puzzle Bobble experience. It still commands a decent price, but it's definitely worth picking up regardless of cost, whether you're a fan of the series or just like a good bit of puzzling on your DS.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The mixer-turntable controller is very responsive and as a peripheral, it is of a high quality.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Creating a great game idea is impressive in and of itself, but you have to appreciate it when a developer goes the extra mile and surrounds that great game play idea with high quality artwork and music to give the overall experience that little something extra.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    No More Heroes: Desperate Struggle is undeniably rough around the edges, but the same can be said about Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables. Grasshopper's vision for Travis's tale goes uncompromised at the expense of refinement, but one could argue that the cracks and fuzz are an intentional part of the overall punk aesthetic (given the developer's track record, it'd be tough to argue they're not intentional).
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's incredibly fun and easy to pick up, as well as looking and sounding simply gorgeous.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A remarkable piece of software and without a shadow of a doubt the finest fighting title currently available on the Wii. Unashamedly old-school in its approach, it nevertheless manages to feel as fresh and exciting as X-Men vs. Street Fighter did all those years ago.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    If you can appreciate a unique and silly platforming experience that doesn't take itself too seriously, you'd be hard-pressed to find a more endearing title than The Legendary Starfy.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A beautiful looking game which is also lots of fun to play. It’s true that it is not a massive game, you should be able to beat it 100% in just 3 hours, but those 3 hours will be completely filled with pure platforming bliss. This is exactly the sort of thing we want to see more of on WiiWare and comes highly recommended to all.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Playing with a team of fellow hunters is some of the most fun you’ll have online with any console, although solo play is enjoyable too. If you have the dedication to get through the hard-going introduction, you’ll uncover an addictive, innovative and beautiful game of ever-increasing depth.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With a strong campaign and a rock-solid multiplayer that will keep you playing well into the new year, Reflex shames its competition and delivers a great FPS package. Developers, take note: this is how you do a Wii port.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    While the program is simple enough for people of all ages to create a project, it still manages to offer up an almost endless amount of creative power limited only by the amount of time and effort users are willing to put into their projects.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Not only are there tons of new puzzles for fans to sink their brains into, but the brand new storyline is as enthralling as ever and will keep you glued to your DS until the very end.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Adorable visuals, quirky background tunes and an urgently addictive gameplay mechanic all add up to a truly unique and rewarding action-puzzler.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It goes without saying that Pop Plus: Solo is a highly recommended purchase, there are very few other games on the DSiWare service that come close to matching the extremely high quality of this title.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The real beauty of Clash of Heroes is it manages to feel like a good RPG and a great puzzler simultaneously.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's difficult to find any serious fault with Thorium Wars. Its concept is both strong and well-handled, and the various missions actually feel...well...varied. The only thing difficult to swallow is the price tag, and, indeed, for a few hundred points less we'd be recommending it all the more strongly.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Intersect is a masterpiece of addictive puzzling – a potent culmination of the series’ trademark soothing aesthetics and completely frantic and infuriating gameplay. Though not the simplest puzzle game around, once you’ve mastered some of its tricks Art Style Intersect will have you hooked.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The biggest complaints about the original LostWinds were that it was too easy and therefore didn’t take long to complete. Thankfully, both of these issues have been addressed - the difficulty has been upped slightly and the game is quite a bit longer, taking about four hours to complete in its entirety.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With more tracks, more bonus features and more strategic racing challenges, Excitebike: World Rally is a racing game that will keep you challenged with its ever-increasing difficulty and entertained with its track editor and online play.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's original, it's inexpensive and it's fun. Void is a perfect addition to the Bit.Trip series and is, arguably, the best of the batch so far, retaining the addictive charms of the previous two titles while carving out a strong and unique identity of its own.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Fingers are now firmly crossed that this sublime title finds the audience it so clearly deserves.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It’s a quality game as was Phantom Hourglass before it, and even though at times it feels too much like a retread of past games, it remains a thoroughly enjoyable jaunt through Hyrule and puts most other DS titles to shame with its overall quality.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The game's delightfully retro-esque presentation only helps improve the overall package, and makes this not just one of the best 500 Point games available, but one of the best DSiWare games period.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Sure the game is a bit predictable at times and there aren't as many modern Castlevania conveniences as some might hope for, but at its core, this is yet another extremely playable and enjoyable 2D Castlevania experience and when it comes right down to it, there could never be too much of that for diehard fans of the series, new or old.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Sure the game might be a bit on the short side, but given the game's addictive gameplay and fairly high degree of difficulty, it's difficult to complain, especially considering the game will only set you back 500 Nintendo Points.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The unique blend of platforming and shooting, not to mention two different perspectives, give Blaster Master: Overdrive everything fans of original game could possibly want. Toss in some amazing gameplay tweaks and give the game a smoother difficulty curve and what you have is easily one of the best WiiWare games on the service and a fitting update to one of the all-time NES classics.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Although they fail to push the series forward with any true innovations, they excel at retooling now almost obsolete titles into must-haves for fans.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Although they fail to push the series forward with any true innovations, they excel at retooling now almost obsolete titles into must-haves for fans.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Not only are the physics in the game absolutely spot-on, but the intuitive control scheme made possible by the Wii Remote makes playing the game easy and fun.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Mega Man 10 is everything you could want out of sequel and more.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's a coming of age story that seems aimed at a younger crowd, but that didn't stop us being captivated by the characters and ultimately moved by the sentimental dramas played out.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Rage of the Gladiator is the kind of WiiWare game we'd like to see more often, with excellent control, great design and bags of fun. All three control schemes are perfectly usable and whilst we're sure there are many traditionalists who will stick to the digital controls, we highly rate the MotionPlus implementation which features one-time calibration (no pointer clicking required between matches) and a pretty good workout besides.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Fans looking to purchase WarioWare D.I.Y. simply to play the microgames might be a bit disappointed with the lack of variety in the included titles, but those who are willing to put in the time and effort to become familiar with the creation tools will likely find a very powerful and rewarding gaming experience limited only by their imaginations and free time.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's almost impossible to convey the sheer amount of charm and personality found throughout Cave Story. The game's eccentric world draws you in from the moment you begin playing and the ever-increasing intensity and action only further maintain the game's enjoyable gameplay scheme.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    On the surface, AlphaBounce appears to be the umpteenth generic Arkanoid clone, but looks can deceive! It offers far more content than any other iteration of the game, and will keep you entertained far longer, especially with the customizable envelopes and balls. We're quite confident in saying that this is perhaps the best Arkanoid-esque game ever made.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Despite the occasional visual and control quirks, X-Scape is, quite simply, a fantastic follow-up to a game that the West barely knew. Loaded with content, ambitious and borderline experimental in aesthetic, it's got enough meat on its bones to rival a lot of retail releases and certainly stands tall on DSiWare.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Art Style: Penta Tentacles is a real treat for the senses: it's visually beautiful and controls well with an outstanding soundtrack that engages and immerses the player into the simple, but compelling gameplay.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    You can't help but marvel at how the developers were somehow able to squeeze a console-sized RPG epic onto the diminutive DS, especially given how mammoth the quest itself is.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Taking many of the enjoyable visual, musical, and gameplay aspects of the DS Castlevania releases, the game molds together an absolutely terrific platforming experience that's not only extremely playable, but also wildly enjoyable as well.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Not only do you get a host of new tracks and vehicles, but the same frantic capture the flag style gameplay returns in all of its glory.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Ivy the Kiwi is the perfect example of the type of enjoyable and refreshing gaming experience that can be created when a developer isn't afraid to try something a little different.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There's no denying that Ivy the Kiwi? is absolutely overflowing with charm and personality.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Broken Rules certainly lives up to its name with And Yet It Moves, and the result is an addictive and memorable puzzle-platformer sure to please anyone with an affinity for either genre.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's an excellent shake-up to the series, one that will satisfy long-time fans with an open mind while also able to ease newcomers into the series with a bang of bangs. It may not be the Citizen Kane of gaming, but it's still essential playing.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's safe to say that if you're a fan of the franchise, this is a game you absolutely do not want to miss. And if by chance you've yet to experience the series, this enthralling title should offer up all the incentive you need to finally give it a try.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    EA's NBA Jam revival is not only a ridiculously good time, but it's among the best arcade sports games on any platform this generation.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light is certainly an interesting experience when it comes to many of its unique gameplay mechanics, but the game's overflowing sense of charm and hardcore level of challenge make it an irresistible experience for seasoned RPG fans.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There's absolutely no denying that BIT.TRIP FATE is a radical departure from the platforming romp of the previous release, BIT.TRIP RUNNER, but gamers who put in the time to come to grips with the slightly more in-depth controls will likely find it every bit as engaging.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Thanks to an excessively robust feature suite and developers not treating the console with kid gloves, you're not going to find a finer online multiplayer shooter on Wii than Call of Duty: Black Ops.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    To call Sonic Colours the best 3D Sonic game ever is damning with faint praise, although its title is deserved. The action is fast enough to satisfy your speed lust, whilst the Wisp powers introduce plenty of new skills and ways to explore the stages that otherwise could just be straight zips to the finish.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Fluidity is easily one of the more original games on WiiWare and comes with hours of replay value, a slick physics engine and spot on controls.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Lots of gameplay, great graphics, a wonderful soundtrack and flawless touchscreen controls make Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! a worthy addition to an often-overlooked franchise.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Surfacer+ is a rare breed: a DSiWare game that completely catches us off-guard, surprises us with its unique charm and gameplay and gets more entertaining the longer we play it.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An impressive sequel that's well worth owning, but if you're new to the franchise and not sure which one to get first, DJ Hero 2's extra scratches, freestyle elements and online offerings make it the obvious choice.