There’s one other feature that is fun and worth mentioning, which is that it’s also possible to play the black and white versions of these games thanks to the color filter options. If you’ve yet to read our history of NeoGeo Pocket Color feature, SNK originally launched a colorless version of NeoGeo Pocket—only to be aghast to learn that Game Boy Color would debut soon after. Not wanting to be instantly outstripped by Nintendo’s latest handheld, SNK swiftly updated to NGPC soon thereafter, and the rest was history. SNK has been doing wonders keeping its back catalogue of games alive through retro hardware and compilations like NGPC Selection Vol. 1, and we sincerely hope that fans take the time to pick this one up for themselves.
Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury isn’t perfect, but it gets close. The gameplay is superb, the visuals are improved on Switch, and there is so much to do and see that players will be busy for hours. Switch has been a godsend for software that didn’t get the shot it deserved on Wii U, and 3D World is definitely a game that more people should play. Online multiplayer is a tad lacking, but if you’re out for an expertly crafted, stunning platformer, this is the premier Mario game on the console.
Though the game has nice visuals and is the continuation of a creative series, Two Realms failed to maintain the magic Drawn to Life had on DS. Unfortunately, my disinterest in the story kept me unmotivated to wait through cut scenes to get to the next levels. Levels could be fun, but they could also be terribly too easy or frustratingly hard. The best moments in the game are dispersed too far apart and they don’t feel worth the hassle to get to.
Fans of strategy and deck building games are likely to enjoy DungeonTop. Its appealing visuals and huge customization potential gives it a lot of replay value. However, replay may happen sooner than you think due to the game’s base difficulty or bugs that force you to restart.
Short but sweet, Alwa’s Legacy is a must for both retro fans and fans of quality, exciting Metroidvanias. The visuals tout some of the best pixel art on Switch and are joined with a killer soundtrack and sound design. With clever dungeons to explore and an intricate overworld to travel, Alwa’s Legacy will have players ensnared from the beginning to end. Having played Alwa’s Awakening adds some extra nuance to the adventure, but starting fresh with Alwa’s Legacy won’t leave players in a lurch, as it does plenty to solidify this as its own distinct game. Don’t sleep on this one; Elden Pixels has created a 2D platformer for the ages.
If you’re looking for a puzzle game that is equal parts relaxing and challenging, Worm Jazz is a great choice. It doesn’t bend over backwards to reinvent the wheel, instead opting to be a straightforward, fun puzzler with no fluff. What it lacks in extra modes, Worm Jazz more than compensates for with well-designed, brain-teasing levels. Some solutions might be unintentionally too obscure in their solutions, but it’s a rare distraction. For the vast majority of the time it is a joy going from maze to maze and aiming for the top score. It’s an oddball name and concept, but Worm Jazz is the sort of idea that only works in the world of video games and makes the industry all the better for being here.
Dustoff Z is a straightforward arcade-style flight game. Tackle missions, eradicate packs of zombies, and complete objectives, all in order to continue upgrading the multitude of choppers and crew members. It’s a well made loop that will suck in players and have them coming back to hit a three-star rating, especially on the tricky, higher difficulty levels. Don’t let this one slip under your radar!
Pikmin 3 Deluxe manages to outshine its predecessor with further polish and more content. The inclusion of new Side Stories, co-op in the main campaign, and debatably the best control scheme this game has yet seen all make Pikmin 3 Deluxe the definitive version to play.
Overall, Lost Ember isn’t a terrible game; it does, however, strive to be profound and ultimately is not quite so. The narrative is ambitious but never strays from the beaten path. Navigation is problematic and leaves players lost when it shouldn’t. Performance is also far from optimized for Switch. While the body swapping and visual design are solid, the former is let down by linear traversal and the latter isn’t enough to make up for the other flaws. Hopefully a patch will come along to tackle some of these problems, but in the meantime consider Lost Ember if you’re willing to put up with a number of different issues.