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John Rairdin

Cedar Rapids, IA

Favorite Games:
  • Star Fox
  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
  • Xenoblade Chronicles X

109 games reviewed
72.2 average score
75 median score
57.4% of games recommended

John Rairdin's Reviews

John is the Site Director of as well as a major contributor to the site's YouTube channel NWRTV. He is an avid Star Fox fan and physically jumped up and down when he found out Star Fox 2 was being released. He also spends a lot of time playing Xenoblade and will happily tell you everything that is wrong with Sonic the Hedgehog.
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If you can put up with what feels like the same fight over and over again, there's something cool here, but that repetition can be a bit of a hurdle, and then another, and another.

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6.5 / 10.0 - King's Bounty II
Aug 23, 2021

Too often exploring the world becomes a game of walking in a direction until you realize you're not supposed to have gone that way due to high level enemies. Too often combat results in re-loading a manual save as you trial and error your way through various unexplained mechanics. There is a good game deep beneath the surface, but it lacks a lot of polish that it would need to be truly great.

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Aug 20, 2021

Heart Chain Kitty on Switch is a very rough port of a pretty rough game. What results is just uncomfortable to play. It would be one thing if the underlying experience of Heart Chain Kitty outside this Switch version was some sort of hidden gem, but it isn't. Heart Chain Kitty is technically a fully functional 3D platformer, but not one you'll actually enjoy.

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8.5 / 10.0 - The Falconeer
Aug 2, 2021

Even as someone who plays a lot of games that are theoretically in the same genre as The Falconeer, I have to say that I've never played anything quite like it. On top of all of that the Switch version itself is among the best Switch ports we've ever seen. This is a rare instance of a game that feels perfect on the go but also looks great on a big screen TV. Yes, the core gameplay loop is fairly simple, but The Falconeer never really pretends to be anything other than what it is and it excels wildly at it. If you're a fan of aerial combat games and want to try something outside the usual realm of fighter jets and spaceships, I can strongly recommend trying out The Falconeer. While it may get repetitive for some, the core combat loop and lore filled world drew me in and I'll likely be returning for more very soon.

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5.5 / 10.0 - The Long Gate
Jul 30, 2021

While I firmly believe that there is value in The Long Gate, it is hard to recommend the Switch be the place you play it. It's unfortunate as there doesn't appear to be any reason the Switch version should run this badly. The Switch is an excellent platform for this type of game; unfortunately, the same engineering effort that went into the puzzle design doesn't appear to have made it to the port itself.

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Jun 22, 2021

However, the name LEGO also runs the risk of obscuring this quietly beautiful adventure, simply due to the type of game we'd generally associate with the brand. This is a wonderful game that is likely to hit a little deeper than you expect. If this represents a future direction for how LEGO treats their games, LEGO Builder's Journey is a sign of very good things to come.

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May 28, 2021

Regrettably, the Switch port just isn't up to par. Between long loading and controls that border on unusable, playing it is ultimately frustrating. While I appreciate the effort to adapt from PC to console, in this instance the change just doesn't work with the existing structure.

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May 13, 2021

All the pieces are here for an excellent entry level space sim but the horrible economy just drags the entire experience to a halt and makes it feel like much more of a grind than it ought to be. With some very small changes Space Commander could be excellent. As is, it will have some appeal to enthusiasts like myself, but for most there will be other space sims on Switch that will scratch the same itch much better.

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8 / 10.0 - Subnautica
May 11, 2021

Subnautica is a survival and narrative experience that stands as a benchmark for the genre. The Switch version itself certainly has its drawbacks, but not enough to weigh down the experience too much. Some of them do admittedly affect gameplay mildly, but the strength of Subnautica still pushes through.

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7.5 / 10.0 - New Pokémon Snap
Apr 28, 2021

It is significantly bigger than the original, and photo editing options in combination with Twitter and Facebook integration make it a somewhat more social experience. While it is easy to say this is the definitive Pokemon Snap experience, I can't help but find myself wanting something that truly feels new rather than simply more. New Pokemon Snap is a loyal-to-a-fault sequel, that hopefully harkens to something a bit more adventurous down the line.

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