metroid: samus returns

Metroid: Samus Returns Review

Posted by | Reviews | No Comments

Available On: Nintendo 3DS

The Metroid series is held in high esteem. It helped jump start an entirely new genre born out of platforming and exploration. Super Metroid (1994) is considered one of the best games ever made, yet Nintendo has been painfully quiet on any Metroid news or games over the last decade – until now.

Metroid: Samus Returns isn’t quite the new 2D Metroid game we were hoping for; it’s a remake of the second game in the series, 1991’s Metroid II: Return of Samus for the Game Boy. A lot of impressive went work into updating the old monochrome visuals into stunning 3D models and animated backgrounds, while the core gameplay of exploring a labyrinthine world full of secrets and power-ups remains just as compelling all these years later.

Read More

3ds

The Nintendo 3DS is Living Its Best Year in 2017

Posted by | Feature | No Comments

All eyes are on the Nintendo Switch this year, as well they should be. Nintendo has been in a weird place with home consoles over the last decade. The Wii exploded onto the scene as a gimmicky toy, then quickly collected dust in everyone’s closest. The Wii U failed to capture an audience at all, reaching only 10% of the sales of its predecessor. Launching earlier this year, the Switch is faring much better, including a killer app like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and featuring full portability.

It’s the portability that had me worried about my favorite Nintendo product of this century: the Nintendo 3DS. With the announcement and launch of the Switch, I had concerns over how Nintendo’s handheld-only console would fare when stacked up with a device that could do both.

Turns out my concerns were completely unfounded. The six-year old Nintendo 3DS is having its best year ever in 2017.

From the hardware side, this year saw the release of the New Nintendo 2DS XL. While the New Nintendo 3DS XL has failed to garner much of an audience thanks to a lack of Circle pad-requiring games, the New Nintendo 2DS XL should fare much better.

The New Nintendo 2DS XL is the exact same device as the 3DS XL (circle pad and everything) minus the 3D feature, for a much cheaper price. It’s an even better buy-in for parents and kids where the 3D effect isn’t nearly as desired (or even unwanted for younger kids) as just getting access to the amazing library of kid-friendly Nintendo 3DS games.

Over its prolific life cycle the 3DS has been home to all the biggest Nintendo series, including Zelda, Mario, Super Smash Bros, Pokémon, Fire Emblem, Monster Hunter, and Dragon Quest.

Need another reason why the 3DS is having an amazing year? I’ve got 19.

 

Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King

A remake of one of the best Japanese RPGs of the PlayStation 2 era, Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King is a must play for anyone who loves and appreciates old-school 90’s-style RPGs. The original game was noteworthy for featuring a fully 3D world to explore, which translates perfectly to the 3DS.

Release: January 20, 2017

 

Poochy & Yoshi’s Woolly World

With the abysmal sales of the Wii U I’ll forgive you if you missed Poochy’s Woolly World last year. That’s all the more reason to play the 3DS version of this whimsical platformer. With a fun variety of levels, unique yarn art style, and plenty of secrets and unlockables, it’s one of the best 2D platformers I’ve played in years.

Release: February 3, 2017

 

Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns

Farming sim Stardew Valley was all the rage last year. If you like that style the 3DS has plenty of sim-life and farming sim games to tackle. Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns features the same basic but fun routines of tending to farm life while exploring different towns and people.

Release: February 28, 2017

 

Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia

Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia gives Western audiences their first introduction to 1991’s Fire Emblem Gaiden. Thank the Nintendo 3DS for popularizing the Fire Emblem series, from Awakening to Conquest and Birthright. Echoes offers unique gameplay features for the series, including dungeon crawling and dual protagonists. Read our review.

Release: May 19, 2017

 

Ever Oasis

The 3DS tends to play it safe with big franchise installments, but Ever Oasis is a completely new title. It combines Zelda-style exploration and combat with Animal Crossing-esque town management, as you build up your burgeoning oasis and recruit allies to run stalls and delve into dungeons. Read our review.

Release: June 23, 2017

 

Hey! Pikmin

Hey! Pikmin is a 2D spin-off that represents a significant departure from the main Pikmin series. This time around Captain Olimar using found Pikmin to solve puzzles. It seems particularly suited to younger children, and is noteworthy for supporting all amiibo figures with various in-game bonuses.

Release: July 28, 2017

 

Miitopia

Do you love those Streetpass mini-games where a bunch of Miis race cars or fish or battle zombies? Miitopia is a full-scale RPG featuring everyone’s Mii avatars. It’s as goofy and fun as you imagine, utilizing a lot of fun design elements from The Sims with a a classic party-based RPG.

Release: July 28, 2017

 

Monster Hunter Stories

This new spin-off combines all the best elements of Monster Hunter with Pokémon to create a surprisingly special experience. The Monster Hunter series can be especially daunting, but Monster Hunter Stories represents a successful kid-friendly version that retains much of the depth of the classic action series. Read our review.

Release: September 8, 2017

 

Minecraft: New Nintendo 3DS Edition

Minecraft is the only title here that requires the New Nintendo 3DS (or recently released 2DS). Minecraft was available on just about every platform in modern existence, and the 3DS wasn’t about to be left out. The 3DS version comes with five addtional skin packs and two texture packs.

Release: September 13, 2017

 

Metroid: Samus Returns

The first new 2D Metroid title in over a decade is cause for much rejoicing. It’s actually a remake of the 1991 Game Boy title Metroid II: Return of Samus. The entire game has been rebuilt with new modern visuals, dual-screen interface, and much-welcomed gameplay enhancements to combat and movement. More Metroid games please!

Release: September 15, 2017

 

Pokémon Gold and Silver

Pokémon Gold and Silver isn’t a remake or even an enhancement, it’s just the original games, coming to 3DS. Why is that noteworthy? For one, Gold and Silver (Gen 2) are still considered the best generation of Pokémon games, and favorites of many a long-time fan. Second it makes transferring Pokémon from these games into other 3DS games, such as Sun and Moon, much easier.

Release: September 22, 2017

 

Yo-Kai Watch 2: Psychic Specters

Yo-Kai Watch may be a shameless modern Pokémon clone, but they’re also legitimately fun games in their own right. Psychic Specters is the definitive third version of last year’s Fleshy Souls and Bony Spirits. Aside from the better name it features new locations, new quests, expanded co-op, and more Yo-Kai to befriend.

Release: September 29, 2017

 

Culdcept Revolt

Culdcept has been around for years but mostly flown under the radar for Western audiences. Culdcept Revolt is the first title to reach the West since 2008’s Culdcept Saga. The series is a unique combination of strategy card and board games featuring over 400 different cards.

Release: October 3, 2017

 

Layton’s Mystery Journey

The Professor Layton series has been captivating puzzle game fans for years on Nintendo DS and 3DS. Layon’s Mystery Journey stars the Professor’s young daughter, Katrielle, now her own private detective, as she investigates the disappearance of her famous father. It’s the first Professor Layon title since 2013.

Release: October 6, 2017

 

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions

Yet another remake of a classic game, Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga updates the visuals of the 2003 Game Boy Advance RPG and combines it with an all-new storyline called Minion Quest. The original Superstar Saga is one of the best GBA games, and the series is beloved by Nintendo handheld fans.

Release: October 6, 2017

 

Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth

With an old-school RPG flair that tasks you with mapping out dungeons, the Etrian Odyssey series is not for the faint of heart. Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth is the second deep RPG in the series to grace the Nintendo 3DS. You can download a demo on the Nintendo eShop.

Release: October 17, 2017

 

Fire Emblem Warriors

We last saw a Dynasty Warriors – Nintendo crossover with Hyrule Warriors in 2014, and it reached the 3DS last year. This year both the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo Switch will see the launch of Fire Emblem Warriors, featuring the large-scale action battles of Dynasty Warriors with the familiar anime characters of Fire Emblem.

Release: October 20, 2017

 

Mario Party: The Top 100

Mario Party: The Top 100 was just announced last week during the Nintendo Direct. It’s a compilation of the best 100 mini-games from all 10 Mario Party games. Let’s skip the laughably unbalanced and random board game portion and jump right into what we loved – goofy, quick, and fun mini-games starring our favorite Mario characters.

Release: November 10, 2017

 

Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon

You can’t declare a great Nintendo handheld year without a main Pokémon title to back it up. Unlike 2013’s Pokémon X and Y, last year’s Sun and Moon is getting a definitive third edition this year, featuring new Pokémon, new areas in the Alola region, and a new storyline.

Release: November 17, 2017

Nintendo 3DS

All the Nintendo 3DS Titles Still Coming in 2017

Posted by | News | No Comments

Nintendo’s E3 conference was solely dedicated to upcoming Nintendo Switch titles. But that doesn’t mean that Nintendo 3DS owners will be bereft of new games to play this year. The E3 Nintendo Treehouse live streams introduced Metroid: Samus Returns, and Ultra Pokémon versions were announced during the Pokémon Direct.

Here’s the full list of big 3DS games still to come this year.

 

Ever Oasis

Ever Oasis

Release: June 23

I’m squeezing in Ever Oasis, which just launched last Friday (look for our review soon). It’s an action-RPG mixed with a town builder as you build up your oasis and explore the surrounding desert. A demo is available on the Nintendo eShop.

 

RPG Maker Fes

3ds

Release: June 27

The RPG Maker series arrives on Nintendo 3DS as RPG Maker Fes. Create classic 16-bit JRPGs with the help of a built-in engine and toolset. Then upload and share your creations as well as download and play others’ stories.

 

Miitopia

3ds

Release: July 28

Miitopia is a full RPG starring you and your friends’ Mii characters. You’ll be able to dress up your friends as different classes and watch the Miis interact with each other. A demo is available on the Nintendo eShop.

 

Hey! Pikmin

3ds

Release: July 28

Captain Olimar and the Pikmin are coming to Nintendo 3DS in Hey! Pikmin. The spin-off will be a 2D platformer and feature touchscreen controls for tossing Pikmin.

 

Culdcept Revolt

3ds

Release: October 3

You may not recognize the series, but Culdcept is celebrating its 20th anniversary. Culdcept Revolt is the latest entry in the underrated strategy board game series that combines Monopoly and Magic: The Gathering.

 

Monster Hunter Stories

3ds

Release: Fall 2017 (Europe – September 8)

Monster Hunter Stories is a spin-off of the main series. It features turn-based RPG combat and exploration. Instead of hunting monsters you’ll be able to hatch eggs, recruit monsters, and become a monster rider.

 

Metroid: Samus Returns

3ds

Release: September 15

Metroid: Samus Returns is a remake of the 1991 Game Boy game, Metroid II: Return of Samus. Metroid fans have been clamoring for a new 2D Metroid title (or any Metroid title for that matter) for years. A remake is surprising news, and features full 3D art with classic 2D gameplay.

 

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions

3ds

Release: October 6

Another remake is coming to Nintendo 3DS in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions. This 3DS remake includes both 2003’s Superstar Saga and a new mode called Minion Quest: The Search for Bowser, starring familiar Mario baddies.

 

Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth

3ds

Release: Fall 2017

Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth is the second series title on the Nintendo 3DS. It features the same hardcore multi-party, turn-based combat and first-person dungeon crawling that the series is known for.

 

Yo-Kai Watch 2: Psychic Specters

yo-kai watch 2

Release: Fall 2017

The monster collect-a-thon Yo-Kai Watch series apes a lot from Pokémon – including releasing newer versions a year later. Yo-Kai Watch 2: Psychic Specters is the same basic game as last year’s Bony Spirits and Fleshy Souls release with some new Yo-Kai and a revamped co-op mode.

 

Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon

3ds

Fall: November 17

Unlike Pokémon X and Y, Sun and Moon are getting a new upgraded version in the form of Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon. This new version adds more Pokémon and new areas, story additions, and features in the Alola Region.