We can only assume the alcohol flowed freely during the Nintendo Switch launch party – this week’s eShop schedule was sent out four days later than usual.
Nintendo’s exciting new plaything sees two new releases: Blaster Master Zero (£8.99 – also out on 3DS) and ACA NEO GEO NAM-1975 (£6.29). The original Blaster Master achieved cult classic status on the NES, mixing 2D side-scrolling and top-down shooting to good effect. Visually it was rather smart too, sporting some chunky, colourful, sprites. This reimaging retains the retro style, along with the pleasingly daft plot – an intergalactic quest to save a pet frog. We hope it doesn’t croak.
Nintendo Life found the hybrid shooter to suit Nintendo’s hybrid console superbly. “Blaster Master Zero is a lovely addition to the Switch’s library. We suspect that it will help to fill the gap between major retail releases for anxious Switch owners looking for a low-impact game to play on the go” they said before handing out an 8/10.
NAM-1975 is another top-down shooter. This NeoGeo classic was one of the early releases for the system, arriving in 1990. While far from original, it’s quite well balanced and provides a decent challenge. You’d be better off buying last week’s Metal Slug 3 over this, though, as it offers far more variety.
As mentioned during yesterday’s new release round-up, the 3DS’ Mario Sports Superstars (£34.99) hasn’t exactly wowed the critics, with most review scores clocking in at around 5/10. Some of the sporting events are allegedly okay, but the package as a whole feels rough around the edges. Chalk this one up as one of Nintendo’s rare misfires.
Amazingly, it isn’t the only sporting compendium out this week. There’s also Mini Sports Collection (£4.49) from Rainy Frog, which packs in 12 sporting events in total.
If you aren’t the sporting type, then you may want to dust off your 3DS to download the Yo-Kai Watch 2 Special Demo and BOXBOY! Series Demo Version. The Yo-Kai Watch 2 demo comes with a free theme if you’re wondering what’s so special about it. The BOXBOY demo meanwhile includes puzzles from all three games including the upcoming Bye-Bye BOXBOY.
Then over on New 3DS there’s PINK DOT BLUE DOT (£1.39), a simple action game that looks set to test your reflexes.
The humble Wii U gets a look-in too, boasting two new releases – Konami’s Bomberman 64 (£8.99) on Virtual Console, and Candy Hoarder (£1.39), a colour matching puzzle game designed around the touchscreen.
Bomberman 64 was one of the early N64 releases, and while it was a strong seller, reviews were mostly middling. By turning the franchise into a 3D platformer Konami faced unfavourable comparisons with Super Mario 64. The multi-player mode was lacking, too, messing around with the classic formula too heavily.
As for new eShop discounts, “highlights” on 3DS include Parking Star 3D (£1.49), Samurai Defender (£1.49) and Lionel City Builder 3D: Rise of the Rails (£3.59) while Wii U owners can consider Job the Leprechaun (£1.80), Bridge Constructor Playground (£7.64) and Island Flight Simulator (£4.79). Collateral Thinking meanwhile gets a permanent price drop, down to £1.69.
Right, back to Breath of the Wild we go…