Despite deriving a lot of its influences from games like Animal Crossing, especially with its island life and anthropomorphic animal inhabitants, Hokko Life severely lacks in personality and unique identity. For a game that promises a relaxing experience, you spend more time walking around trying to find something to do rather than sitting back and enjoying the game's gentle progression. There are a few redeemable factors through customisation and its sound design, but outside of that, Hokko Life doesn't offer anything we haven't seen before.
As a whole, Tinykin is more than just a wholesome, stress-free 3D platformer or 'Pikmin Lite'; it's a lesson in appreciating the simple things in life, including the help from those around you. Even with a mass of collectables and a free-flowing storyline to follow, Tinykin never feels cluttered or overwhelming. Despite feeling a lot like a certain Nintendo series when you first pick it up, the game has enough of a unique identity to separate itself from the pack, offering a pleasant, pure platforming spin on Pikmin.
Although Circus Electrique has its intriguing quirks, with the reliance on devotion and the occasional circus-management opportunity, too many flaws accompany them. With most of its story revolving around combat, it soon becomes an annoyance rather than an enjoyable element. The game does offer refreshing and unique twists on the genre; still, there's a lack of drive to keep you wanting to fight through London's steampunk streets. The story grips you initially, but it takes a while to develop and a lot of the initial dialogue is wasted on family feuds which offer no real substance. To fans of turn-based strategy and those who loved Darkest Dungeon, Circus Electrique may be more enjoyable, but it's a little too disjointed and repetitive to recommend wholeheartedly.
Despite the evident control flaws, Ooblets is an undeniably charming and fun life simulator perfect for anyone looking for a relaxing approach to adventure. There's enough content within this adorable game to keep any player occupied for hours, with the central campaign taking around thirty hours to complete - though avid explorers will get closer to the sixty-hour mark if they can get past the expensive, exhausting stamina system. Still, even post storyline, Ooblets kept us coming back for more farming and more dance-offs.
Islets promises a surprisingly wholesome story while featuring a lot of classic Metroidvania mechanics, and it certainly delivers. The beautiful landscapes and island inhabitants create an unforgettable journey. Filled with monstrous rivals, tense, timing-based platforming, and some well-hidden puzzles, this title is much more than a run-of-the-mill Metroidvania. Outside the eight-ish-hour campaign, there are enough collectibles scattered across each island to keep players coming back, and to be honest; it's hard to leave the charming cast of creatures behind.
RPG Time: The Legend Of Wright is a beautifully imaginative, charming RPG. Protagonist Kenta's childlike glee paired with some inventive storytelling techniques and fantastic presentation make it feel like more than just a one-and-done title. The six-ish-hour campaign has enough to explore to bring you back for another go, even if the storyline sometimes feels slightly sporadic and unconnected. It's not perfect, with a soundtrack which quickly grates and narration that threatens to do the same, but it remains a charming childhood homage, and a gentle reminder for every player to keep their imagination alive.
Frogun sets out to do exactly what it intends. There is more than enough to enjoy in the game, with around a five hours campaign to play through and the added replayability of finding collectibles that you may have missed the first time. And, although the story is simple, at no point did we find ourselves getting bored. Even the frustration of repeating levels is genuinely reflective of early gaming. It's safe to say that Frogun succeeds in evoking that retro-style puzzle-platforming of the '90s.
Sucker for Love: First Date is a perfect experience for anyone unfamiliar with dating simulators who want something with a bit more substance. This title is amusing for anyone who plays it and doesn't focus on the dating element to the point where it's uncomfortable. It's got a good few hours of gameplay and despite it's lack of story it's still got several mechanics which will no doubt keep you coming back until you've seen every possible ending.
Pokémon Legends: Arceus is a well-needed breath of fresh air into the Pokémon franchise. It's exciting and entirely brand new, and has introduced several elements players will want to see in future releases. There's enough content to see you through until the next big title, and a large enough world to find yourself not getting bored easily. It's a stunning game and stays true to everything gamers love about Pokémon.
OMNO is a relaxing experience for anyone looking to escape for a little while. There's enough to keep players involved without feeling overwhelmed, and there's enough charm to its design to keep it from being repetitive. As a whole, it's a good game to pass the time, but not something you'd come back to time and time again.
Arcadia Fallen is one of those games you fully invest your time into, and then feel sad when it's over. With the amount of outcomes and potential endings this game has I definitely see myself picking it up time and time again. If you are searching for a new take on a classic style of game, then this might be the very thing you are looking for.
Take yourself on a thrilling journey to discover the truth behind what Nicole thought was her mother's suicide. With no one to talk to besides a mysterious voice on the other end of the phone, rely entirely on your senses to discover and investigate the very location you grew up in. But be warned, you may not be as alone as you think...
We are all pining after those warm summer days when we would wake up without a care in the world. But they aren't gone just yet. Bonito Days on Nintendo Switch lets us live our best lives in a relaxing, city pop infused experience. These dark days won't last forever. For now, it's time to jump around and have some fun in the sun.
Put every friendship you've ever had on the line with this beat 'em up classic from Boneloaf. Take on the persona of a boneless creature, put on your best animal onesie and get down to it. Fight on skyscrapers, cranes, lighthouses, you name it - you can brawl there. Bring all your friends together for the survival of the fittest, and just pray you will be the last one standing.
How can you host a tea party with no tea? And how can you replenish your supplies if you're too anxious to leave? Join beloved Teacup on her adventure around Little Pond to make sure her supplies are plentiful, and see what the world has to offer once you step out of your comfort zone.
As we grow up, many of us lose touch with the things we adored as a kid. When was the last time you sat down to colour in? Or create a scrapbook with all your friends? Luckily, Momolu the panda is ready to show you how to slow down for a minute and understand that mistakes are okay, and you're never too old to learn. Let's take a closer look at what Momolu and Friends is all about on Nintendo Switch.
When your whole world comes crashing down and you're the only survivor, how are you expected to rebuild from that? Whilst many would sit back and give up, Stranded Deep lets you face every fear. From unknown creatures dwelling below the surface to harsh weather conditions that keep knocking you down, are you going to get up and fight? Or will you sit back and let life take its course?
It's safe to say that I think Hoa is an absolutely outstanding game. My childhood self would be shrieking with glee at this game as it is everything you could possibly wish for out of a nature based puzzle platformer. With adorable creatures to befriend and a story to learn, Hoa definitely has it all. Therefore I cannot recommend this game enough.
When your home falls into chaos, how would you go about saving it? Take on the role the last child survivor, and save your world from chaos. But the only way you can go about this is opening portals beyond reality, each presenting new gateways to worlds of opportunity.