13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim has found its perfect home on the Nintendo Switch with its mash-up of two genres that work best when on handheld — visual novel and RTS. I ended up carrying my Switch with me for days on end as 13 Sentinels was like a good book that I couldn’t put down. The gorgeous hand-drawn graphics and intricately layered storyline pair beautifully together to create a love letter to classic sci-fi.
If you love the Judgment series, The Kaito Files DLC offers more of the same with enough of a little refresh in gameplay to keep it interesting, and while still offering the usual balance of humour and compelling storyline that Ryu Ga Gotoku Studios has mastered. After all, not many games will have you wrestling in a hot tub with a guy in his underwear while on the hunt for a murderer. Though I would have liked to hit the streets of Yokohama with Kaito or pick up some side cases, it’s an enjoyable experience that left me wanting to spend more time with my favourite flashy-dressed bruiser.
Stranger of Paradise is violent, dark, and brilliantly captivating. It’s a must-play for Final Fantasy fans. Steeped in sentiment and lovingly crafted homages to our favourite games, it offers a new mystery to unravel and breaks the mould of what you’d expect from the series. You might miss having a wide world to explore, proper side quests, and all the usual trimmings, but there’s a lot to love about Stranger of Paradise that you won’t find in your back catalogue of FF games.
It’s safe to say that Chocobo GP doesn’t out-do Mario Kart, but then I don’t think anyone would ever really expect it to. Most players, myself included, will simply choose this title because they love Final Fantasy, not because they think it’s going to be GOTY material. It’s a fun kart racer that you can easily while away your time with, but ultimately brings nothing groundbreaking to the genre. If you’re looking for a Final Fantasy fix, it might not quite hit that sweet spot for you, at least, not until you hand over your hard-earned gil for the season pass.
Monster Rancher 1 & 2 DX is undeniably engrossing and though it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of a modern game, it manages to hold its own due to its sheer charm and enjoyable gameplay. Even if you’re not completely biased because of childhood nostalgia like me, if you love collecting, raising, and battling with monsters, you’ll be hooked from your very first shrine summon.
Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars features a striking and quirky tabletop style with delightful gameplay that doesn’t overcomplicate things. While the storyline won’t necessarily grip you, it’s told in a fun and interactive way and this is an easygoing pick up and play title that you can enjoy at your own pace. You won’t be challenged when going card-to-card against your enemies, but you can still find the thrill of a frustrating hand if you delve into the minigame.
Super Monkey Ball: Banana Mania is a roll down retro memory lane with its charming classic arcade format. However, the game soon loses its shine with the sudden difficulty spike that makes it incredibly hard to enjoy in the later levels, despite the inclusion of accessibility options. This is a great choice for a party game when you want a local co-op title, but the lack of online multiplayer means the game begins to feel a little stale when playing alone, despite the wealth of levels, modes, and unlockables.
Lost Judgment delivers another fantastic thriller that ups the ante when it comes to its intricately woven plot and interesting cast of characters, all while making you question where the line is drawn between the law and true justice. And when all is said and done, you can sit and celebrate with some sushi.