Kirk Hiner


30 games reviewed
71.2 average score
70 median score
36.7% of games recommended
Scores 7.2 higher than average

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
Feb 20, 2019

There's certainly some roguelike fun to be had in Airheart – Tales of Broken Wings, especially for fans of twin-stick shooters and classic arcade action. Unfortunately, the elements outside of skyfishing and dogfighting are more of an interference than an enhancement, and they may put you off this game before you're able to get to the good stuff.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner

Fans of the series will (and should) relish the chance to finally play this entry in the series, and there's enough Tales goodness here to make it worth the wait. The story is involving, the acting is top-notch, and the remastered graphics are colorful and (mostly) crisp. However, these may not be at a level that will win over anyone who's never played a Tales game before. And to those who moved to the Switch from the PS3/4 and have recently enjoyed Tales of Xillia, Zestiria or Berseria, the overall presentation and combat system will feel like a regression. As long as you're okay with that, you'll enjoy this Tale.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
7.5 / 10.0 - Fitness Boxing
Jan 15, 2019

Fake boxing in front of my TV is not an alternative to the gym. I get that. But I'm not going to a gym—like, ever again. So, as an alternative to whatever show I'd be watching or game I'd be playing, Fitness Boxing succeeds at its $50 asking price (although I'd rank it a bit higher at $40). If you're likely to feel the same, I recommend getting the digital download so it's always present and ready when you fire up your Switch to play something else (and there is a demo you can try). A half hour of cardio before two hours of Octopath Traveller is a really good idea.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
7 / 10.0 - Solar Flux
Dec 31, 2018

All the elements in Solar Flux combine for an attractive, calming, challenging, physics-based puzzler.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
Dec 26, 2018

At only $9.99, Sky Force Anniversary is a fantastic bargain on the Nintendo Switch. It may be a “re-creation” of a nearly 15-year-old game, but it looks and plays like it was custom made for this generation's systems. It may be a bit too easy for hardcore STG fans, but that just means those of us who want some frenetic arcade action gaming without feeling totally powerless are going to keep coming back to Sky Force Anniversary for dozens of entertaining hours.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
6 / 10.0 - Puzzle Wall
Dec 18, 2018

As it stands, although it's fairly priced, Puzzle Wall simply needs more content. It's a fun way to kill some time at a children's party, but it won't be long before they're done with it and on to better games.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
9 / 10.0 - GRIS
Dec 13, 2018

I said earlier that not everyone will want to play Gris. That's fair. But if you do, and if you're able to connect with its themes, I think you'll find it's a game well worth experiencing. Even if you don't connect with it emotionally, the creative and gorgeous visuals combined with the haunting music should be more than enough to carry you through. I'd suggest playing it in docked mode to fully take in the artwork, but the music and audio effects are better experienced with headphones. Either way, give Gris a try. You'll be happy you were with her.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner

My son and I had some fun playing through, and you can bet the next time I get together with my college friends we'll be firing it up for some quick laughs. But if you haven't played Heavy Barrel before it's best to just avoid it and stick with a game that's woven a little more intricately into your past.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
7 / 10.0 - Warriors Orochi 4
Nov 12, 2018

Although I feel this is the best Mosou game currently available for the Switch, there's not enough here to bring over any converts, especially those who played Fire Emblem Warriors or Hyrule Warriors specifically for the franchise tie-ins. And although I don't prefer all of the changes from the previous Warriors Orochi game, they've made just enough to make things fresh for fans of the series and keep them entertained throughout the game's robust campaign.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
Nov 3, 2018

Still, this is an excellent collection of games that should appeal to just about everyone at the party. Whether you've got quiz-whizzes, skill-based arcade gamers, those who love to be creative or those who love to get into ethical debates, there's a game here. A good game here. It's a great place to start if you've never purchased another Jackbox Party Pack, and the new games are enough to make this an attractive purchase for longtime fans.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
6.5 / 10.0 - Debris Infinity
Oct 29, 2018

Although Debris Infinity is very well designed, it does lack depth and longevity. Learning the enemy waves and mastering your approach towards them extends the fun, but to no real purpose other than leaderboard bragging rights. As such, after just a session or two I was always ready to move on to something else. That amounts to less than 10 minutes of game time, which is pretty short even in this age of mobile gaming. But at only $5.00, Debris Infinity will continue to scratch that arcade itch for as long as you're willing to let it.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
Oct 19, 2018

Valkyria Chronicles 4 is a game squarely aimed at the Fire Emblem crowd, but any fan of tactical, turn-based combat, military strategy and…honestly…YA romance should at least download the free demo and give it a try.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
Sep 23, 2018

Super Dungeon Tactics has been out for computers and other consoles for a while now, and that works to your advantage; the Switch version is available to download for only $19.99, making it an excellent option for fans of turn-based RPGs. With its clever and accessible combat management mechanics and a charming array of characters, Super Dungeon Tactics is definitely a title worth checking out, especially for those enjoying God Wars or who fondly recall the Luminous Arc series.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
Sep 19, 2018

If you're looking for a quality turn-based JRPG that plays well on your TV and on the go, Labyrinth of Refrain: Coven of Dusk is it. Just make sure you keep it away from the kids.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
7 / 10.0 - Freedom Planet
Sep 3, 2018

When you're not hitting its walls, Freedom Planet is an exciting game that feels natural in both docked and portable mode. The different characters give it some flair, and the nostalgia certainly helps, too. And honestly, although SEGA has kind of found their way again with its iconic franchise, Freedom Planet often feels more like a Sonic game than many actual Sonic games did. One minute you'll wish Sonic games played more like this, and the next you'll be wishing Freedom Planet played more like Sonic. If you can handle that dichotomy, Freedom Planet is worth the run.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
8.5 / 10.0 - Okami HD
Aug 19, 2018

Okami HD is a wonderful, exciting adventure that's beautifully presented. Although the paintbrush mechanic can still be frustrating, the Nintendo Switch offers its best implementation of any platform. The game's linear progression, on the other hand, very much shows its age; those who have enjoyed Breath of the Wild and Skyrim on the Switch may not welcome the return to hand-held adventuring. But if you allow yourself to get drawn into this colorful world and its story of a goddess wolf and her tiny, smart-aleck friend (seriously, don't call him a bug), you'll find that Okami HD is well worth the 40-hour investment even if you've invested it before.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
8 / 10.0 - Not a Hero
Aug 9, 2018

Not a Hero: Super Snazzy Edition is a vulgar, violent game, but the pixelated and colorful presentation—coupled with its sharp sense of humor—help to keep the tone light. I was pleasantly surprised by the snappy, addictive gameplay when I first dug into it, and although its repetitive nature and a couple annoying design choices and glitchy controls did temper that, it remained a fun game to play throughout. Just make sure you don't do so with your parents/kids in the room. Should they walk in, however, you can always just return to the character selection screen and play some happy music.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner

Another World was a great game to play when it was released. I know, because I was there with my Macintosh LC II. But what made it stand out then actually gets in the way now. It has some fun puzzle events and interesting twists and turns along the way, but is better played for historical and nostalgic purposes than for pure entertainment. Of course, history may be enough for some gamers; you can find a decidedly different point-of-view in Trevor Gould's review of Another World for Wii U and 3DS. I suggest you wait for Flashback—a similar game from Delphine Software that is getting a physical release for Nintendo Switch at the end of the month.

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
4 / 10.0 - Awkward
Jul 19, 2018

To be fair, you may get $12 of entertainment out of Awkward if you load it up at your next party. But because the questions aren't categorized by appropriateness for different age groups, adults will likely get bored and kids will likely get confused…and possibly traumatized. Each game session can be completed in 5 to 10 minutes, and with no variation to keep players engaged, that's about enough time to push players towards another Switch game or into another room altogether. Which one has the sausage cheese ball appetizer?

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Pure Nintendo
Kirk Hiner
7.5 / 10.0 - Lanota
Jul 6, 2018

There are rhythm games available for the Switch that have better stories, there are some with more familiar music, and there are some that can be played in both portable and docked mode. Still, fans of the genre would be remiss to overlook Lanota. The gameplay is fantastic and can be as easy or challenging as you want thanks to the multiple skill level settings. The music is greatly enjoyable, too, You're not likely to play through each song again just to jack up your ranking, but there will surely be some that will stick with you even when you're not playing. Which reminds me…I need to do some more research on Kitkit Lu. Anyone have an album to recommend?

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