Nintendo Life's Scores

  • Games
For 3,114 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 10.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
Lowest review score: 10 Christmas Wonderland 2
Score distribution:
3117 game reviews
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    A fast-paced hack-and-slash with fun, combo-heavy combat and an anime-after-dark aesthetic, Nights of Azure 2 is a great time. Strong characters, endearing interactions, and an interesting plot kept us excited to play more throughout, even if the repetitive missions and environments make for an experience best enjoyed in smaller chunks. There are some noticeable performance issues in handheld mode, and a few interface woes reflect a lack of overall polish, but if you’re looking for an enjoyable action romp with plenty of blood-sucking style, this is an excellent choice.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    You’d be forgiven for not wanting to jump back into the same world again so soon but, in their own right, Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon are truly incredible entries to the series that deserve to be sitting amongst the elite Pokémon titles. If you’re ready for another trip around Alola’s beautiful islands, this is the way to do it.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    You’d be forgiven for not wanting to jump back into the same world again so soon but, in their own right, Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon are truly incredible entries to the series that deserve to be sitting amongst the elite Pokémon titles. If you’re ready for another trip around Alola’s beautiful islands, this is the way to do it.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    RiME on Switch is a disappointing experience, despite the obvious quality of the game itself. As a puzzle-led adventure RiME is enjoyable, atmospheric and at times deeply moving; all of these qualities are undone by spotty performance, low resolution visuals and a frame rate which sputters along like a battered car engine. When played docked things are just about passable, but in handheld mode the game's technical problems sap away the satisfaction of playing it. If you have any other means of accessing the game on other systems then you should pick those over this port; while enough of RiME's magic remains on show, the Switch version of the game is almost crippled by technical problems which unfortunately rob this captivating quest of its lustre.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Tallowmere is a solid budget roguelike that offers approachable yet deep combat and a fantastic amount of replayability, at the cost of becoming stale with time due to repetition. Although that core gameplay is rather fun, the visuals and soundtrack are offputting, and fail to adequately present the much better underlying game mechanics. We’d mostly recommend Tallowmere to fans of the roguelike genre, or for those looking for a pretty good game at a low price. There are definitely some blemishes and shortcomings that prevent the experience from being anything memorable, but you’ll probably find enough entertainment here to justify the purchase.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Revenant Saga sets out to offer a simple, throwback JRPG on Switch, and while it certainly ticks those boxes it doesn’t actually end up being very fun to play. An unremarkable story, uneven presentation and interface issues hold this already unambitious effort back, and while it brings some excellent ideas to the table — like battle Transformations and single-handed control — they’re not enough to recommend the experience. If you’re starved for an old-school RPG on the Switch, I Am Setsuna is still your best bet at the moment — otherwise, the 3DS’ treasure trove of turn-based adventures awaits.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Farming Simulator: Nintendo Switch Edition is definitely one for the farming fanatics – and not really anyone else. If you’re interested in farming from both practical and management points of view – and have an awful lot time on your hands to explore that interest – you won’t find a better way (apart from perhaps a real farm) to experience it than this. If you were hoping for a more casual and easy-going experience to play out a mild interest, however, this is not the game for you; the intense realism and complexity of the game’s core concept will be far too overwhelming for most players. Giants Software has done an amazing job at making this feel extremely real – whether this is for better or worse depends on you as an individual.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Unless you’re a big fan of horror adventure games, Perception is one you can easily skip. The plot isn’t particularly engaging, and the horror elements are predictable with jump scares, characters and story dialogue that is typical of this genre. Even if it does fulfil all of the necessary criteria, it serves as a reminder that the horror genre is far too reliant on clichés to get by, and will only appeal to the thrill seekers happy to overlook its generic design. Ultimately, the biggest downfall is the core concept that drives Perception. The echolocation mechanic gets old quickly and seems like a better idea in theory than in actual gameplay; walking around in the dark in any game isn’t normally enjoyable, and in this one it’s no better – even with the added sense of meaning from the narrative. It’s an aggravating concept that should not have really got past the early design stage, and detracts from the already average quality of this short-lived horror adventure game.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Once the novelty and the wackiness have worn off, you are left with a short and sometimes haphazard experience that treads an incredibly fine (and wobbly) line between hilarity and frustration. While kids will love the simple, bold, bright cartoon-like characters and physical humour, older players will likely feel that they are constantly at odds with the game's controls and become immune to its charms. If you haven't experienced Octodad before it's worth checking out, but be cautious - it will make you giggle as well as probably stretch your patience.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Whether it’s your first foray into Yggdrasil or your fifth, playing Etrian Odyssey V is a true pleasure. Its addictive central gameplay loop combines engaging exploration, strategic combat and DIY cartography, all wrapped up in a charming presentation and a lush, organic aesthetic. It’s gorgeous to look at it, beautifully balanced, and polished to a sheen, but perhaps best of all Etrian Odyssey V feels like the culmination of a concept that’s uniquely tied to the 3DS. With its touchscreen mapping and masterful use of stereoscopic 3D, it feels utterly at home here, and while the little handheld may have plenty of life in it yet, we still can’t imagine a more fitting swan song for this extraordinary era of dual-screened RPG wonder. A must for any aspiring adventurer.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    DOOM is an incredible game, flaws and all. Audio issues and frame rate drops were annoying at times, but weren't dramatic enough to deter us from a beautiful, pulse-raising good time - and we imagine that future updates will at least partly solve these problems. DOOM is one of the best first-person shooters we've ever played, and is certainly the best in its class on Switch. There's a certain magical quality about having a game this good on the go. Its brilliant campaign is reason enough to pick it up, but DOOM's multiplayer will keep you coming back for more for months to come. While it's perhaps not as polished as it is on other formats, having DOOM in portable form is a revelation, and developer Panic Button deserves high praise for porting over id Software's classic title so brilliantly.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Sometimes Nintendo puts out distinctly 'B-list' games, and Kirby Battle Royale falls into that category. While the main games in the series on 3DS offer creativity, smart design and generous amounts of content, this ultimately falls short on all counts. It's not a bad game, but it is mediocre, and the mileage and value it holds as a retail release will vary drastically depending on the players. For families and minigame enthusiasts able to dabble in local multiplayer it offers some fun, but sparsely populated online servers and a repetitive Story Mode leave little to write home about. Kirby may have many of his iconic abilities here, but the copy-and-paste approach and limited minigames mean this doesn't get close to the mascot's other 3DS games.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A relatively short five-hour or so campaign, a lack of difficulty that ramps up unexpectedly on the final boss, and the non-coherent blend of 3D sequences, 2D sections and cutscenes make Sonic Forces a mixed experience, with positive moments undone by weaker areas. It isn’t poor as many feared, and for children it could well be a thoroughly enjoyable experience.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Syberia on the Nintendo Switch is a reasonable yet inconsistent port of an enchanting genre classic. This is an absorbing, intricate story filled with melancholy, eccentric characters and mystery demands and deserves attention, even if the game shows its age technically in some places and demonstrates a lack of care in the porting process in others. For fans of the genre, or those willing to dive in and forgive some inconsistencies, there's an endearing and worthwhile adventure here.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Heroes of Monkey Tavern will certainly scratch your dungeon-crawling itch, especially if you're a fan of the seminal Dungeon Master, the game's biggest inspiration. The levels are unspectacular looking, though with the setting there's not much else that could be done and in some ways it helps with the atmosphere. The sound effects certainly help immerse you in the adventure and there's some decent music, too. Battles against a good variety of different creatures are entertaining affairs and thanks to the different classes, adjustable attributes and a variety of weapons there's plenty of options for those conflicts. The big downside to the game is its brevity, but it's fun to try again with a different assembled team. Heroes of the Monkey Tavern offers only a short adventure, but it's still a good one.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    While it has its brief moments of fun, Cartoon Network: Battle Crashers is a mediocre side-scrolling beat ‘em up that doesn’t do the genre or its license justice. While its visuals pop, the lack of plot or voice acting - along with a tepid control scheme - make the game feel more like a cheap cash-in and less like a competent gaming experience to all but the most ardent fans of the cheeky stable of Cartoon Network properties.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    All told Splasher is a smartly designed, tight platformer that offers up hours of replay value on top of the creative ideas it delivers. It takes the Super Meat Boy template and builds upon it in a notable way, creating an experience that feels just the right amount of familiar and fresh. Though there isn’t a whole lot to write home about when it comes to the presentation, the core gameplay is more than enough to keep you engaged. We give this one a strong recommendation, especially to those who are looking to dip their toes into the twitch platforming genre. Splasher is easy enough to pick up, yet difficult to master, and stands as a worthy addition to the Switch eShop.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Whether you’re a monster truck nut or not, you should avoid Monster Jam: Crush It! at all costs. It lacks a lot of polish, has a lackluster presentation, poor controls and no semblance of progression that can in any way be construed as satisfying. It feels like a slapdash attempt at riding the wave of Switch goodwill, but doesn't join the growing list of games on the system that are worth playing.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    If Monopoly is your thing, you can’t really go wrong with Monopoly for Nintendo Switch. It performs exactly how you’d expect it to – offering an almost exact, neatly-executed copy of the experience that you can get from the board game. This is its main problem, though – it does so little to offer anything new that it almost seems pointless having it in the first place. Call us old-fashioned if you like, but we’d play the board game version over this one any day.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Take this game for what it is, not what it is inevitably become compared to and you'll have an engaging story and pleasant exploration-based experience - for the most part. During your travels it's really up to you how much you want to discover, catalogue and upgrade. Morphite isn't a bad little first-person adventure but thrill seekers looking for a stop gap before Metroid Prime 4 could end up feeling short changed; rather than cause your pulse to race this jaunt through the uncharted regions of the universe is quite laid back and curiously lacking in excitement. It ranks as an enjoyable - if sometimes pedestrian - adventure that you will ultimately get as much out of as you are willing to put in, but we fear a great many players will simply lose interest.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Characters would continue to turn up in the King of Fighters games, but this was the final instalment of the Art of Fighting series - and it goes out on a high. Despite the limited three attack button setup there's a lot of enjoyable and fluid fighting provided thanks to the rush attacks combining well with special moves. Juggling and dodging attacks adds to the fun and the animated look of the game works well. The low number of fighters included is disappointing, but trying to set a new fast time is addictive, particularly with the standard ACA online leaderboards.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Chess Ultra is a welcome arrival on the Nintendo Switch; it's a visual treat, while also soothing you with pleasant music as you engage in a tough match. There are plenty of options and variety for online and offline matches, with the former being particularly enjoyable if you're able to get into a real-time contest. With Tournament play and some well constructed Challenges on board, along with Tutorials for newcomers, it ticks most boxes. It's another checkmate for the Switch eShop.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A larger character choice would be good, but there's a solid range of enemy attackers to deal with during your playthrough. A number of moves (including the sometimes tactical use of specials) keeps the fighting entertaining whether playing alone or with a friend. There are some decent character designs for the mutants and robots, with some nice touches in their animations such as a transformation or the way a seemingly human foe's face is punched off to reveal the robot inside. Once cleared there's not a lot of immediate replay value, but you can always try and improve in the Hi Score and Caravan modes; whenever you do boot it up, Mutation Nation provides a great scrolling beat 'em up fix.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    King Oddball joins the increasing number of mobile titles making their way onto Switch; it is a competent, quirky yet basic puzzle game. It highlights the type of titles that the Switch can attract, for better or worse, and as cheap, whimsical fun, it will probably consume more time than you'd care to admit. It's not a bad game, but the hard to ignore mobile origins - and seeing what else is available and what the Switch can do - makes King Oddball a fun little distraction and nothing more. It's worth picking up if you have a yearning for a quick, simple palate cleanser, and whether you've previously become addicted to the projectile flinging / destruction puzzle genre, avian or not, there is nothing here that will change your mind either way.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    In a strange twist for a series that you would expect to be built around drawing in new consumers, Just Dance 2018 feels like a perfect match for those who already love the games and are really serious about their dancing, yet does nothing to draw in newcomers. In some ways, this year’s edition feels like it is almost a ‘greatest hits’ for its hardcore fans – the one entry that you’ll always fall back to just to play through the best stuff. Yet with such a hefty cost needed to access all of the game’s content, only the most serious will get true enjoyment here.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    As a visual novel, Wheels of Aurelia is a lacklustre experience. As a driving game, it’s even worse. However you wish to identify it, this title lacks genuine substance; it's a solid idea executed poorly.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Time Recoil feels like the most refined of 10tons' three top-down shooter titles on Switch, and while initial frustration and slightly unspectacular visuals are drawbacks, it is the crux of the game that makes it both more enjoyable and immediately more satisfying. Having a more fleshed out story - as well as quick missions, the time manipulation mechanic and twin stick arcade thrills - sets this game up to be a more layered take on the now familiar genre. While there are some technical drawbacks still present, progressing through Time Recoil and achieving high combos of slow motion kills makes for an enjoyable experience.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    At its heart Violett is a classically designed point-and-click adventure, warts and all. It tells an interesting tale in a world filled with oddity and excitement, but it's told in an unintuitive manner that only the most stalwart fan of the genre will likely stick with. It tries to cast its net wide by offering a clever hint system to help players survive its obtuse nature, but nevertheless only the most patient will try to come back out of the rabbit hole.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Visually unspectacular, Zombie Gold Rush is saddled with very repetitive action. The game is not devoid of entertainment as there's some fun in figuring out how best to take out as many zombies as possible for a bigger score, and trying to move up the online leaderboards adds some genuine replayability to the package. Ultimately though, while Zombie Gold Rush could be seen as a quick gaming fix, you'd probably be better off doing a Picross puzzle instead.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    This Is The Police asks players to step into a career that's already on the rocks, in a city beyond saving, and then demands that you try and make things right regardless. It's a mature, compelling experience that combines elements of strategy, resource management and text adventure games, while telling a gripping story of corruption and withered hope - albeit with some muddled attempts to deal with real world issues. The meat of the game is solid, if extremely repetitious after some hours, so we can't help but feel if it was a shorter, more tightly focused game with a bit more variety, it would have felt more satisfying overall. As it stands there's hours of gameplay here for any budding cop, it just outstays its welcome a little.

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