Unpacking doesn’t sound like typical video game fare – it entails opening cardboard boxes and placing the contents in various household rooms, lining up books neatly and placing small items in draws, etc. Everything tidy, and in its place.
Play it for just a few minutes however, and you’ll find a game that’s both relaxing and surprisingly clever. See, these aren’t just random belongings – they’re part of a person’s life, and as you rearrange their possessions in several different abodes, a wordless story starts to emerge. There are well-observed details too; the kind anyone who’s had the misfortune of moving out will instantly notice.
The game’s Metacritic currently stands at 84%, including an impressive 9/10 from GameSpot: “Unpacking may be a zen puzzle game that’s just relaxing for some, but for me it was a more profound experience that I’ll never forget. Sometimes we put our past into proverbial boxes; ripping off the tape and rediscovering what we hid away can be cathartic and illuminating.”
The attitude-filled 3D platformer Demon Turf has gained positive reviews too, including an 8.5 from Nintendo Enthusiast and an 8/10 from Nintendo Life. “The visuals are initially a bit jarring, but the character design really shines through and give it a timeless aesthetic. If you’re a fan of 3D platformers from the ‘golden’ N64 era and beyond, this one is well worth a look,” said NL.
We’re still waiting on reviews of World War Z – one of the bigger releases of the week. Sabre Interactive has managed to work wonders on the Switch, though, so we’re confident this will be another decent conversion. We really enjoyed the Xbox One version of this co-op zombie shooter, finding it to be surprisingly slick and refined.
Just Dance 2022 will likely be a strong seller on Switch too, with this year’s edition allegedly featuring improved stage graphics but the same old interface.
WayForward’s A Boy and His Blob makes the jump to Switch too, harking back to the Wii. Although almost 12 years old, we imagine it has held up well. We recall the 2D animation being smooth; something that’ll never grow old.
Flying under the radar somewhat, there’s Legend of Tianding – a 2D action platformer gaining comparisons with Guacamelee due to its combat system. Scores include 82% from COG Connected and a 7/10 from Nintendo Life.
Then there’s Bloodshore – the latest FMV game from Wales Interactive – cyberpunk point ‘n’ clicker Encodya, western adventure Lone McLonegan, 3D platformer Super Sami Roll, and the greatly improved The Binding of Isaac: Repentance. Niantic’s Pikmin Bloom is also out now on mobiles, if you’re up for a ramble.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons gets its anticipated Happy Home Paradise DLC too, either as part of the NSO Expansion Pack or for £22.49.
Because Christmas is just around the corner, two more licensed games aimed at younger gamers are upon us – The Smurfs – Mission Vileaf, which appears reasonably accomplished visually, and Fast & Furious: Spy Racers Rise of SH1FT3R from developer 3D Clouds, creators of All-Star Fruit Racing and Xenon Racer.
Sticking with licensed products, a Popeye game has stealth launched for £12.99, looking worryingly N64-like. We’d rather have Nintendo’s arcade original, thanks.
New Switch eShop releases
World War Z – £35.99
The Swarm Comes to the Nintendo Switch™
World War Z, the heart-pounding zombie shooter that has captivated over 15 million players now arrives on Nintendo Switch. Inspired by the Paramount Pictures film, World War Z focuses on fast-paced third-person shooter gameplay featuring swarms of hundreds of zombies.
Humanity is on the brink of extinction. From New York to Moscow, Jerusalem and more, the undead apocalypse continues to spread. As the end looms, a hardened few band together to defeat the horde and outlive the dead.
Happy Home Paradise DLC – Animal Crossing – £22.49
Expand your horizons with DLC and help create vacation homes for clients on resort islands. Clients with different dream vacation requests will visit a new resort area located in an archipelago, made up of several different islands, where the Paradise Planning team is located. You can talk to a client and find out the details of their requests for a vacation home, and then make their dreams happen.
The Binding of Isaac: Repentance – £TBA
Experience the modern classic, The Binding of Isaac, like you’ve never seen it before. It’s a game too big to be called a sequel: Repentance takes Isaac to new heights of roguelike dungeon adventure, as the brave boy descends into the basement for his greatest challenge yet! Isaac’s new quest takes him to unknown places he’s never been, filled with horrible new enemies and bosses, weapon combos you’ve never synergized before and items he’s never seen… unholy terrors from his wildest dreams and worst nightmares!
The Binding of Isaac: Repentance is so huge, so new and so feature-packed that it makes previous updates look like prequels. There are more features, improvements and new secrets, too many secrets, than most games would include in an official sequel! It’s an immense amount of new content to explore, even if you’re at 1,000,000%!
The Binding of Isaac: Repentance features hundreds of new features and quality-of-life improvements. It’s the ultimate edition of the genre-defining roguelike, now with OVER 500 HOURS of new gameplay!
Bloodshore – £12.99
Bloodshore is an interactive action movie about a televised battle royale between high-profile streamers, entertainers and death row inmates. You control the fate of Nick, a washed-up actor who fights for a life-changing cash prize.
All is not what it seems in this latest season of Kill/Stream, the hottest reality TV show on the planet. Can Nick uncover the truth about Bloodshore Island before his time runs out?
Handpan – £8.09
The ultimate Handpan simulator is now available on the Nintendo Switch™
Unlike most other instruments playing the handpan on the Nintendo Switch™ is really easy to learn, compose and play amazing music for your your friends and family.
Play Handpan, also known as a hang drum, with either the touch screen or the Joy-Con’s and easily change the tone or the scale of the handpan and produce your own musical creations.
You can also choose between the Solo or Duo mode (two handpans)
Tunche – £17.99
Tunche is a charming, hand-drawn beat’em up with roguelike elements, co-op, and a pinch of shaman witchcraft. Choose one of the five characters, master their skill sets and ultimate abilities, defeat epic bosses, and unravel the secrets of the mysterious Amazonian jungle! The game is centered around high-risk, high-reward combat, and a ‘stylish’ grade system. Choose a hero that suits your playstyle the most and begin your journey through 4 different worlds, each filled with unique enemies.
Astria Ascending – £35.99
Experience an epic story with rewarding, turn-based combat and expansive customization rendered in glorious hand-drawn visuals.
Explore the vast and beautiful world of Orcanon
Visit five different cities populated by unique creatures and solve more than 20 dangerous dungeons. With over 50 hours of game-play and a range of fun mini-games – including shoot ‘em ups, an original fantasy-themed card game and challenging environmental puzzles.
Unpacking – £17.99
Unpacking is a zen game about the familiar experience of pulling possessions out of boxes and fitting them into a new home. Part block-fitting puzzle, part home decoration, you are invited to create a satisfying living space while learning clues about the life you’re unpacking. Over the course of eight house moves, you are given a chance to experience a sense of intimacy with a character you never see and a story you’re never told.
Box that ball – £1.79
Box that ball is a ball physics puzzle game. You place the ball into the squared area and apply a force by dragging back in the right angle to throw it into the open box and hit the white star.
Galaxy Shooter- £4.49
A single starship can succeed where a squadron will fail?
Ready your sky force for ruthless space battle and fly through the chaotic barrage of asteroids & bullets to attack space invasion in our alien shooter game!
Upgrade your starship and put an end to the evil Kraathu Empire. Why?
Because only you and your space team can restore peace in the galaxy threatened by alien invaders! Shoot ’em up, repel their galaxy attack!
The Legend of Tianding – £17.99
The Legend of Tianding is a sidescrolling action game about Liao Tianding, the legendary Taiwanese Folk Hero.
THE TAIWANESE ROBIN HOOD
Play as Liao Tianding (AKA. Liāu Thiam-Ting), vigilante of Taipei city and wanted by the Colonial Japanese authorities. Rob the rich, feed the poor, and fight for justice in the streets of early 20th century Taipei as Taiwan’s legendary outlaw.
Based on real events, real people and real situations, The Legend of Tianding is an exploration of a place and time often overlooked and presented in the style of Traditional Chinese Manga.
Ekstase – £13.49
Ekstase is a love letter to Berlin and its techno scene. Amazing techno beats and beautiful visuals set the stage for a game that honors the long forgotten falling block puzzle genre. Fresh but familiar gameplay ensures that Ekstase is easy to pick up and sink many hours into. With both classic and new game modes, there is something here for both the casual and the hardcore puzzle game player.
QB Planets – £4.49
Do you love solving puzzles… in space? QB Planets is a family-friendly cubic puzzle space adventure that will challenge your puzzle-solving skills.
Play as one of the available Astronauts and explore strange and beautiful puzzle planets with mysterious powers and dangerous environments.
Locate and collect stars to power your ship and blast off to new and exciting planets. Avoid obstacles and find a safe route to your ship with the least possible moves whilst collecting 3 stars!
Twist your way through diverse, challenging puzzles while helping your Astronaut navigate new worlds. Unlock fun and unique space suits and rocket ships by completing special missions. Challenge your friends to become each level’s Twist Champion!
Occult Interrogation: The ritual of little nightmares – £4.99
Are you Innocent or Guilty? A story of sinister magic, play and makes decisions in this evil adventure, a dark game with scary story where you will have to prove your innocence, or you will be condemned guilty in hell.
You will find an esoteric and dystopian world where you will have to demonstrate your innocence.
Air Racers – £4.49
Air Racers is an arcade air racing game with different game modes, power ups and splitscreen multiplayer. Five different tracks with different game modes and difficulties make your races different. Race Solo in Time Trail mode and hunt for the best track time, go into the championships solo or splitscreen or just have an arcade race against the AI solo or with a friend.
JUST DANCE 2022 – £49.99
Just Dance® 2022, the ultimate dance game, is back with new universes and 40 hot new tracks from chart-topping hits like “Believer” by Imagine Dragons, “Level Up” by Ciara, and more!
Looking for the perfect game to dance to the latest hits and share some fun with friends and family? Just Dance 2022 is for you!
Lone McLonegan : A Western Adventure – £9.99
Lone McLonegan used to be “The Most Wanted Outlaw In The Wild West” but now he’s a little rusty and out of shape. Bragg Badass, his arch nemesis, is now number one on the most wanted list and the new idol of the West.
When Lone learns of Badass’ latest exploit, he finishes his mojito, jumps off his couch and decides to reclaim his spot back by robbing the Bank of Oldewell, which holds the most secure safe in the county. That will no doubt put the highest price on his head again and he will once again outdo Badass at last!
Halfway through the journey the stagecoach in which Lone is traveling is attacked by Badass’ hitmen and Lone must walk to Oldewell to make history again.
Demon Turf – £19.99
The Demon World is inhabited by all kinds of nasties… Most of them lumped into gangs battling for dominion, each led by its own head honcho. Yet even these bad dudes are no match for the Demon King himself! Instead, the task falls to Beebz, a young demon barely a thousand years old, who decides it’s time for her to kick every turf leader’s butt and become the Demon Queen herself.
A Boy and His Blob – £13.49
When the planet of Blobolonia fell under the tyrannical rule of the evil Emperor, one brave blob managed to flee in search of help. After crash landing on Earth, the blob finds an unlikely hero in a young boy. Together they must return to Blobolonia and defeat the evil Emperor. Armed with nothing but the power of friendship and a bag full of jelly beans that can transform the blob into fun and versatile tools, this pair of heroes has all they need to take you on an unforgettable adventure.
WayForward’s reimagining of David Crane’s NES classic is a side-scrolling puzzle platformer beloved by children and adults alike. In the game, players control a young boy as he works with the friendly blob to traverse the environment, defeat enemies, and solve puzzles using bravery, wit, and a few jelly beans. Travel from Earth to Blobonia in a beautiful 2D, hand-drawn animated journey.
Super Sami Roll – £11.00
The wicked Albert VII has captured Sami’s friend Vera and only you can help him save her! But it won’t be easy – you’ll need to roll, grapple, and jump to make it through in the colorful 3D world of Super Sami Roll.
Embark on a journey rolling through beautiful green fields, deserts dotted with magnificent pyramids, dangerous oozing volcanoes, frigid ice lands and many other memorable places with rolling physics and tons of hidden secrets!
Pretty Girls Panic! PLUS – £5.49
Dodge enemies while gain control of as much area as possible to win! The familiar “capture territory” rules popularized in Japanese arcades are as simple as they are rewarding, and with so many beautiful characters waiting to be uncovered, puzzle action has rarely been more alluring!
Meet more than 20 Pretty Girls across 40 stages! You can choose to partner with Yu or Asahi, and completing stages alongside either will unlock new outfits for them to wear. With each challenge that you clear, commemorative photos of the girls you rescue will also be added to your Gallery for casual viewing. Can you complete them all?
Magic Potion Millionaire – £10.79
Magic Potion Millionaire is a side-scrolling action game focused on money-making.
Enter the dungeon to gather materials, make potions, and sell them to make profit!
One Last Memory – £9.99
One Last Memory is an emotional story driven exploration game about an old man who re-discovers his own past and lost memories on his journey through the beauty of nature. It is an adventure filled with joy, sadness and breathtaking locations and environments that are waiting to be discovered.
Where Cards Fall – £15.49
Where Cards Fall is a slice of life story where you build houses of cards to bring formative memories to life. Create pathways through dreamlike spatial puzzles to navigate the insecurities and emotions of high school and beyond.
Bloody Rally Show – £17.99
Welcome to Bloody Rally Show – a head-on smash between frenetic top-down arcade racing and hyperviolent reality TV. You must drift, boost, and blast to keep the viewers entertained and your paymasters happy. Go full throttle and drive to survive! Includes local multiplayer mayhem for up to 4-players!
Skeletal Avenger – £15.29
Skeletal Avenger is a hack’n’slash roguelite with a massive perk arsenal and skull-chucking special moves! Re-animate skeletons and fight your way to vengeance. Build a new playstyle each run with perks. Loot, explore, avenge, and try to go crazy with perk combos.
Popeye – £12.99
The official Popeye game in which you play the spinach eating sailor in this modernized adaptation of the classic arcade game.
The objective of the game is to get the highest score by completing as many levels as you can by collecting hearts and letters thrown down by Olive all while trying to avoid the dangers of the witch, vulture and Popeye’s rival Brutus.
Find and eat the spinach and get the special powers needed to punch your enemies into the sea and become faster at collecting the items before they return.
Popeye is a simple, pick up and play, fast action, fun game which anyone can play, but be warned winning a high score won’t come easy.
The Smurfs – Mission Vileaf – £34.99
In a dusty grimoire, the wizard Gargamel just put his hands on the formula of an evil plant: the VILEAF.
This plant produces “VILETRAP” seeds, which can attract and imprison Smurfs… but these VILETRAP plants are also a great danger for the forest, as they are TOXIC, especially for the sarsaparilla fields!
PAPA SMURF decides to ask some of his fellow Smurfs to help him find the ingredients for a super powerful antidote for all the plants sick from the VILEAF.
Thanks to the SMURFIZER, an invention from HANDY SMURF, go on an adventure to find the ingredients and free your fellow Smurfs… and save the whole village!
Fast & Furious: Spy Racers Rise of SH1FT3R – £34.99
SH1FT3R is Back!
The criminal organization, SH1FT3R, is on the rise, now it’s time for you to stop their plans! Get ready to trigger traps, hit speed boosts, and out-race the competition to claim victory. To be the champion, you’ll need to beat the growing threat of SH1FT3R in a high-stakes, adrenaline-fueled racing tournament from the South Pacific to the Sahara Desert and more! Or grab your friends and warm up those tires with up to 4 players online or 2 player local multiplayer; there’s no shortage of action to keep the whole crew entertained.
Cupid Parasite – £44.99
What’s love got to do with it? In this divine romantic comedy, play as [Lynette Mirror], [Cupid Corporation]’s top bridal advisor and none other than [Celestia]’s Goddess of Love, [Cupid]! Determined to prove that love is more than bows and arrows, she meets her biggest challenge yet – the infamous [Parasite 5].
But in finding love for the [Parasite 5], will [Cupid] find love herself?
The Gardener and the Wild Vines – £7.39
Leap and slash at flowers growing on the vines to propel yourself upward. Chain them together to go fast, but watch your step! Every level is a handcrafted tower with new mechanics being introduced regularly. Attacking flowers grows new procedural vines with leaves to jump on. Carefully balance leaping upward while watching how the vines will grow to plan your ascent. You’ll need quick reflexes and even faster wit to reach the top!
Om Nom: Run – £4.49
OM NOM: RUN is an arcade action game with clear basic goals: run, bypass obstacles along the way and reach the finish line.
The Prince of Landis – £7.99
In the year 198X, young Evan must survive a bleak life in the snowy backwater of Landis, Oregon.
One fateful day, his existence is forever changed by the dark influences of a strange visitor from another world. With the guidance of his new ally, can Evan stand up against schoolyard bullies?
Will he have the courage to stand up for himself?
The Prince of Landis combines the character-driven story and dialog of a visual novel with the exploration and puzzle-solving of an adventure game.
Pixel Heroes: Mega Byte & Magic – £11.99
„Hack Hammerson! Thank goodness you’re here! Listen, there’s troubling news. The elemental spirits are growing restless, and chaos is breaking out yet again. I thought these bloodshot eyes of mine had seen it all!“
Enter the world of PIXEL HEROES and prepare yourself for a thrilling RPG/Roguelike experience like you have never seen before!
Explore a randomized world full of hilarious events, deadly dungeons and the weirdest NPCs you will ever meet in a game!
Choose three heroes for your party and take them on a journey that will be completely different each time you start a new game. Bath in a pool of procedurally generated loot and defeat the evil forces that threaten the township of Pixton!
Circa Infinity – £8.99
Reach the core of each level by slipping through a series of circular layers. Time your jumps carefully to avoid the creatures that reside within the circles and reach the next layer. As you go deeper, the action gets faster and more challenging! Can you keep up?
50 stages of mind-bending action are waiting for you, with 5 bosses that will test your nerves. You can also test yourself in speedrun mode.
Hypnotic visuals and pumping soundtrack will turn up the already intense gameplay experience.
Think of Circa infinity as a live music video, with challenging action and psychedelic graphics!
Encodya – £26.99
Neo Berlin 2062. Tina – a nine-year-old orphan – lives with SAM-53 – her big clumsy robot guardian –in a rooftop makeshift shelter in Neo-Berlin, a dark megalopolis controlled by corporations. Tina is an urban jungle kid, who has learned to live alone, scavenging from city dumpsters and eking out a living from scraps. Her funny robot is always with her, programmed to protect her no matter what.
One day, the little girl discovers that her father left her an important mission: to finish his plan to save the world from grayness! Tina and SAM embark on an incredible adventure across different realities full of bizarre robotic creatures and grotesque human beings. Through puzzles and exciting dialogues, they’ll find out the true meaning of being alive.
Destructivator SE – £4.99
The year is 2145. Earth still burns. Zallagor and his army have been vanquished, but at great cost: the once great cities of Earth lie in ruin, its population hungry for revenge.
Zallagor’s home planet of Zerkl, has been located. Zallagor has gone, but somebody will rise to replace him. Maybe they already have. The Destructivator is ready – it is time to strike!
Take on the role of a tiny super-solider decked out in lime green spandex! Blast and melee your way through hordes of alien soldiers, robots, spaceships, traps, bosses – and more! Fight on foot or commandeer an enemy ship to take out Zerkl’s defences and ensure that the alien menace won’t threaten Earth ever again.
Stilstand – £2.69
Experience a young woman’s insecurities during a long summer of parties, dates, dreams and time-wasting.
Amid the feeling of being stuck and the desire for isolation, there’s still hope that one day, things will change. Maybe the shadow monster in her apartment can help her stay afloat?
Emergency Driver Simulator – £12.59
Complete each of the tasks as diligently as you can, showing your skills and earning stars for your progress. Show everyone you’re the top driver, able to complete each job without fault, quickly climb the ranks and become the City Hero you were always meant to be!
Emergency Driver Simulator is a unique driving game that allows you to take up multiple careers and show your skills in every one of them. Your work will be done in the early morning hours, when most of the people people are sound asleep. Their safety though will be in your hands! Enter the road and engage in a variety of jobs and trials. From simple, everyday tasks to real emergencies, it will be up to you to keep the city functioning!
.Dog – £8.99
This is the dog game in which you must jump onto all your foes in order to move to the next level. The game is super fun and rated for all ages.
New for mobile devices
Pikmin Bloom – App Store, Google Play
Grow your Pikmin, make flowers bloom, and keep track of your precious memories, all through the simple act of walking. Whether you’re going for a short walk around the corner or commuting to work, today’s the very first day of the rest of your Pikmin adventures! Gather your squad and embark on a journey of rediscovery where every step counts.
Next week: Shin Megami Tensei V, STAR WARS: Knights of the Old Republic, Island Farmer, American Hero, Panmorphia: Enchanted, The Adventure of Ravi ‘n’ Navi, FishWitch Halloween, Gravity Light, My Singing Monsters Playground, BLUE REFLECTION: Second Light, Airborne Kingdom, Real Farm – Premium Edition, GUNKID 99, Pups & Purrs Animal Hospital, X-Force Genesis, Hoplegs, Gynoug, Amazing Princess Sarah, A Pretty Odd Bunny, 890B, and TIMINGooo!