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John Rairdin

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

158 games reviewed
73.2 average score
75 median score
60.3% of games recommended

John Rairdin's Reviews

John is the Site Director of NintendoWorldReport.com 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.
Feb 13, 2024

If you want to play using the original graphics, with optional modernized controls, at a high resolution, and with widescreen support, this is essentially perfect. But if you're looking for a remastered experience, Tomb Raider I-III is both an artistic mess, and a remarkable misunderstanding of some of the original visual game design. So come for the genre-defining original trilogy, but I wouldn't recommend staying for their remastered incarnations.

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7 / 10.0 - SteamWorld Build
Dec 1, 2023

And with each one of these you'll be picking up buildings and moving them from one part of the city to another to meet that unit's specific needs. Once you make it underground, SteamWorld Build is a delight, but any time spent on the surface is filled with mild frustrations that slowly add up and leave me yearning for the mines. It should come as no surprise, I suppose, that SteamWorld is at its best when you're digging.

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7.5 / 10.0 - Air Twister
Nov 6, 2023

It is almost as if Air Twister has a lot of secondary depth in its systems that isn't really supported by its short simple campaign. That being said, even while being highly aware of these flaws I still had a really good time playing through it. Everything about Air Twister is bizarre and often flawed, but I can't say it isn't fun.

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Nov 2, 2023

It is hard not to be absolutely blown away by Super Mario Bros. Wonder. It is easily the best 2D Mario in over thirty years. It does this by not trying so hard to match the past, and instead focus on new ideas and learn from how Mario has evolved in other dimensions since then. That being said, it does make the areas where Wonder gets tripped up feel all the more egregious. Not because there are issues to be solved, but because none of them are inherent to any of the new ideas. Gating difficulty options behind certain characters, the locked-in multiplayer camera, and the extreme lack of boss variety are all issues that have been with Mario for years. It is one thing when bold new design brings up new challenges, but these are just old complaints that don't really have an excuse for not being fixed by now. Of course that doesn't take away from the excellence of this title, but they do stand out. However, even with these blemishes, at the end of the day Super Mario Bros. Wonder is an incredible breath of fresh air overall. It has reaffirmed that 2D Mario has the potential to be more than just good, it can be incredible. It sweeps away any concerns I had that my love of the best games in the series isn't just nostalgia and that a truly original 2D Mario absolutely has the potential to stand alongside Super Mario Bros. 3, and Super Mario World. While Super Mario Bros. Wonder isn't quite perfect, it is a gleaming star we can hopefully follow into a new era for 2D Mario.

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5.5 / 10.0 - Dementium: The Ward
Oct 11, 2023

I like Dementium a lot. This and Renegade Kid's next DS release Moon were staples of this era for me. While I appreciate that I can access it on a new platform, seeing it dumped here so unceremoniously without even an adjustment to the internal resolution is very disappointing.

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8 / 10.0 - EA Sports FC 24
Sep 28, 2023

It still isn't on the same level as other versions, but this is the narrowest the gap has been in more than a decade. If you're looking for a way to play a great soccer game on a portable system with a few compromises, this will get the job done. Hopefully this is the start of EA Sports putting out more of their library on Nintendo platforms, because I'm heartened by how EA Sports FC turned out.

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6 / 10.0 - Wartales
Sep 26, 2023

undefined.Wartales is a game that I very much want to like, and suspect I would, were I playing it on PC or presumably a more powerful console. I have plenty of positive things to say about it but at the end of the day, it just doesn't run well on Switch. Wartales is a very interesting game, but between poor tutorialization and awful performance on Switch, it may be buried a bit too deep to be worth playing on this platform.

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Jul 28, 2023

I also encountered several puzzles where I was able to move into an essentially unwinnable position, forcing me to restart the puzzle from the menu. Nonetheless, it is hard not to fall in love with what feels like an interactive, biographical art gallery. The ways in which Monet's paintings are intertwined into levels only gets better as the game goes on, resulting in a simple but unique adventure.

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Jun 28, 2023

Your mileage with the Switch port will depend on your individual tolerance for asset streaming stutter. For those looking for a smoother experience, the Xbox version (and presumably the Playstation port) can offer that. But the Switch provides a flawed though still highly enjoyable time overall.

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This is a game that shows the value of a game being given time to cook and of a studio that has supported a consistent group of developers working on the same series for decades. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is not a game anyone else could make. This is why you bought your Switch, even if you didn't know it at the time.

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Future Redeemed feels like a final piece to a story more than a decade in the making. It re-unites old friends, reminds you that N is still one of the best villains the series has ever come up with, and reignites that feeling you had when the original Xenoblade suddenly cut to a space station and your perception of the game permanently shifted. If Takahashi decides to revisit this universe in the future, I'll happily join in, but if this truely does mark the end for the Klaus trilogy, I leave happy.

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8.5 / 10.0 - Tin Hearts
Apr 27, 2023

They're not unfairly obtuse while also still offering a solid challenge. The opening stages don't show the game in its best light right away, but once things get moving Tin Hearts is difficult to put down. A few minor technical and user interface issues caused some brief stumbling but rarely put a damper on my enjoyment.

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7 / 10.0 - FUR Squadron
Mar 16, 2023

It may be enough to keep genre enthusiasts engaged for an hour or two, but it lacks the diverse number of permutations, so loved by high score seekers, that can be found in its inspiration. FUR Squadron is a reasonably well executed love letter to Star Fox and rail shooters in general, and it is clear that the potential is there for this developer to pull off something of a much larger scale. It is short and simple, but a fun diversion for genre fans if only for an afternoon.

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Mar 15, 2023

I was not just having fun; I was invested in the cheesy over the top story. After every level I eagerly loaded up the next one excited to see more of this wonderfully realized world. Yes, the seams are sometimes more visible than one would hope, and loading times to restart a level are legitimately frustrating, but the net result is easily one of my personal favorite shumps of all time.

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Feb 12, 2023

It is loyal to the original in its re-working of its art, yet unafraid to push the absolute boundaries of those original designs. The underlying brilliance of Retro's original masterpiece shines forth from this new shell, pristine as ever. This is the definitive release of one of the greatest video games ever made, and an incredible glimpse into the future of the Prime series.

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While it may not often affect actual playability, it's hard to ignore when the image simply freezes for five seconds. Perhaps appropriately, this feels like a lost licensed platformer of the early 2000s. That comes with the good and the bad, but there is certainly a lot to like here, even if it's a bit rough around the edges.

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8 / 10.0 - Onion Assault
Jan 26, 2023

Arbitrary levels from the first couple worlds were often more difficult than levels near the end of the game. Difficulty spikes abound, and the less than generous checkpoint system may cause frustration for those not looking for a tough 2D platformer. But for those who are, Onion Assault will make for an excellent few hours of platforming challenge.

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8.5 / 10.0 - Wavetale
Dec 11, 2022

While many of the lesser combat encounters can feel repetitive and somewhat meaningless they're punctuated by some much more compelling boss battles. The characters are charming and learning more about Sigrid and the world around her is legitimately engaging. While a few technical hiccups trip up select areas, the net experience as a whole is one of the more legitimately fun and unique games I've played through this year.

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8.5 / 10.0 - Lunistice
Dec 8, 2022

Stages are well designed and replayable, platforming feels tight and responsive, and performance is perfect. Its only significant failing is how quickly it comes to an end, with many of its best ideas feeling underexplored. Lunistice feels like a tease of a hopefully much grander sequel that I can't wait to play.

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7.5 / 10.0 - Prodeus
Dec 7, 2022

Support for fan-made levels can potentially expand your experience somewhat but the option to create your own is missing from this version. Performance on Switch isn't flawless but it is still very playable and looks great the whole time. While it struggles to find its own identity along the way, and comes off more as an elaborate mod or a fan game than a title of its own, Prodeus does still stand as an solid though unoriginal shooter.

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