Talking Point: What Are You Playing This Weekend? (July 20th)

Marvel Ultimate Alliance

What a week it’s been! Nintendo revealed a Switch revision with improved battery life, locked in the release date for Luigi’s Mansion 3 and announced two new sets of Joy-Con. On the third-party front, we found out when Resident Evil 5 and 6 would arrive and Sega finally confirmed Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz HD. Brushing aside the week that was, it’s now time to focus on the final Splatoon 2 Splatfest, Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 and the many other games we’ll be playing this weekend. We’re also joined by a special guest from a certain website you’ll likely be familiar with!

Austin Voigt, contributing writer

Well – my weekend plans will likely be the same as last weekend’s, but I’ll be replacing What Remains of Edith Finch (which I finished and wept over), with the final Splatfest (which I will also likely weep over). I also plan to acquire the full version of Dragon Quest Builders 2 and get lost in that – I checked out the demo last weekend and loved it, so you’ll find me splatting and building all weekend long.

Dom Reseigh-Lincoln, reviewer

This weekend, I’ll be a busy boy with three very different games occupying my free time. Firstly, I’ll be taking FIA European Truck Racing Championship for a spin to see if big rig racing can really work on Switch. Then I’ll be channeling my inner Ragnar Lothbrok as I brave the elements and attempt to survive (and thrive) in the survival RPG realm of Dead in Vinland: True Viking Edition.

Finally, I’ll be trying out a game that’s been on my to-do list for a while now: Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden. I’ve never been the biggest fan of tactics-style games, but the art style and the fact you can play as a grizzled-looking mallard has me seriously intrigued. Look out for reviews of all three in the coming weeks, right here on Nintendo Life.

Splatoon 2

Liam Doolan, news reporter

My main gaming priority this weekend is to help Team Order win the Splatpocalypse event. Who knows what will happen to the world of Splatoon if we let Pearl and Team Chaos win? It’s just a pity my expensive Splatfest-themed t-shirt won’t arrive until well after this event has finished.

When I’m not fighting to the bitter end in Splatoon 2, I’ll be saving the galaxy or at least attempting to save whatever else needs saving in Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order. I’m still trying to work out my ultimate team. I’m thinking Wolverine, Spider-Man, The Hulk and Captain Marvel might be a good combination to start with. I should probably revisit Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night as well.

Gonçalo Lopes, contributing writer

The Summer of Switch relentlessly continues to bombard us with quality titles. I had a ton of music-related work due to the release of two individual projects, so I ended up not playing as much as I wanted during the week. I will make up for it this weekend with sessions of The Messenger, Blazing Chrome, Rise: Race The Future, Arcade Archives The Ninja Warriors (Zuntata turned up to 11, of course) and by participating in the Splatpocalypse.

Game of the Week naturally falls onto Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order. I have always enjoyed the series and no way I was not going to snap up the ultimate, Switch exclusive edition of the franchise. A true shame I have no local buddies to play it with…

Splatfest

Gavin Lane, staff writer

I’m currently on my holidays and the 4G/3G reception in this particular corner of rural Portugal means internet distraction is (thankfully) being kept to a minimum. Therefore, I should have plenty of time to finish GRIS, Abzu and one or two others queued up in my backlog. I’d love to get involved in a match or two of the final Splatfest, but that’s dependent on the hotel WiFi, so we’ll see. I sided with Team Order purely because it’s Marina’s team and as tentacle-haired ladies go, Marina’s particularly lovely. Stop judging me!

Robert Ramsey, Push Square deputy editor

Yes, you read that right — I’ll be sitting down to play some Nintendo Switch this weekend. Naturally, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is on the docket — a family favourite and once things get heated, it’s incredibly difficult to put down. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is also on the agenda, I think. I’ve loved me some Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled over the last few weeks, but there’s only one king of the kart racers, and it’s Mario.

Which games are you playing this weekend? (98 votes)

Splatoon 2

14%

Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order

22%

What Remains of Edith Finch

  0%

Dragon Quest Builders 2

6%

Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden

  0%

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night

1%

The Messenger

  0%

Blazing Chrome

1%

Rise: Race The Future

  0%

Arcade Archives The Ninja Warriors

  0%

GRIS

  0%

ABZU

  0%

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

6%

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

3%

Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled

3%

Super Mario Maker 2

14%

God Eater 3

1%

Dead in Vinland: True Viking Edition

  0%

Something else (comment below)

28%

Other

  0%

Please login to vote in this poll.

As always, thanks for reading! Make sure to leave a vote in the poll above and a comment below with your gaming choices over the next few days…

Hori Announces New Line Of Officially Licensed Accessories For Switch Lite

Hori Lite

The prolific peripheral maker Hori has announced it has been selected as an officially licensed launch partner for the Nintendo Switch Lite. As a result, it will be working closely with Nintendo from an “early stage” to produce “a robust line” of accessories, which will be available alongside the launch of the system on 20th September.

Hori intends to offer storage and screen protection accessories, and many “other items” that will be available at retailers around the globe. In the PR, Hori said it was incredibly proud to be a launch partner:

HORI has worked closely with Nintendo to develop these products and is proud to be a launch partner supporting the Nintendo Switch Lite.

Are you glad to hear you’ll be able to pick up some Hori accessories when the Switch Lite is released? Do you intend to purchase Nintendo’s dedicated portable hardware? Leave a comment below.

Reminder: Splatoon 2 Splatfest T-Shirts Now Available On The UK My Nintendo Store

Splatoon 2 Shirts

If you happen to be located in the UK or Europe in general, we’re reminding you the limited edition Splatoon 2 t-shirts – celebrating the final Splatfest – are now available to purchase from the local My Nintendo Store.

Although the high-quality Splatoon 2 poster set has already sold out, at the time of writing you can still get your hands on a Team Chaos or Team Order t-shirt for £24.99. This offer is available until 21st July.

Show your support for Team Order or Team Chaos (or both, if you like!) with this Splatoon 2 Final Fest T-shirt, available in limited quantities. This single-jersey T-shirt is made from 100% cotton with an OEKO-TEX® certificate, and is available in a range of sizes: Kids (152, corresponds to UK kids size 11-12), S, M, L and XL.

The Chaos team T-shirt comes in black with metallic gold prints on both front and back, while the Order team T-shirt comes in white with metallic silver prints. Both designs feature a sewn label on the bottom front of the T-shirt.

If you purchase a t-shirt, you’ll also get access to exclusive in-game content for Splatoon 2:

And that’s not all, we have a special bonus for all who buy the T-shirts! If you buy one of these Splatoon 2 Splatfest T-shirts, you’ll also receive some exclusive in-game gear. A download code for the gear will be sent to you by email after your purchase and is valid for one month from the date your receive it. Four pieces of gear, two T-shirts and two jackets, are included in this download code.

You can score a discount on your t-shirt order if you use a My Nintendo Store voucher, which is available as a Gold Point reward on My Nintendo:

Discounts of €1.00/£1.00, €3.00/£3.00 or €5.00/£5.00 are possible on any order of more than €20.00/£20.00 at My Nintendo Store.

Did you manage to get a poster? How about a limited edition t-shirt? Tell us below.

Netflix Releases Its First Official Teaser For Season One Of The Witcher

After what feels like an incredibly long wait, Netflix has finally released the first trailer for its live-action version of The Witcher, starring Superman’s Henry Cavill as the White Wolf.

In this first look, we find out a bit about the lore within the universe of the Witcher, see some of the well-known characters from the series and witness an eight-legged monster surface from the depths of a swamp.

As previously explained, this series is based on Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski’s popular line of fantasy novels, rather than the video games – this includes The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, which is coming to the Nintendo Switch later this year. The Netflix series is “coming soon” and will be comprised of eight one-hour long episodes.

To help promote the show, Netflix has opened up dedicated social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Take a look at the teaser trailer above and tell us what you think down below.

Bloodstained: Ritual Of The Night Switch Fix Expected To Arrive Soon

Bloodstained

When Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night arrived on the Switch a week after initial release, Nintendo players quickly established something wasn’t right.

Digital Foundry had a closer inspection of this version of the game and found the performance and visuals had taken a tremendous hit and own review here on Nintendo Life said these same issues detracted from what was a fantastic game on other platforms.

So, how are the developers planning to resolve these issues plaguing the Switch release? Now that Koji Igarashi and his team have released the “Iga’s Back Pack” they are focused on releasing the July update. 505 Games Global Brand Manager Roberto Piraino has now posted the following development update on the game’s Kickstarter page:

Hello everyone, I’m happy to report that this week we submitted a patch for Switch, once it’s approved we’ll update the game asap. The following changes are already locked in, and we’re working to confirm even more changes/improvements etc. for this patch, hopefully by next week

Below is exactly what you can expect:


Performance Updates

The teams continue to work on input delay, stability and optimization. We’re not ready to release these improvements just yet, but we’ll be sharing more information in the coming weeks.

Bug Fixes

  • Map quest markers no longer showing when target has been killed
  • HD Rumble issues in certain areas fixed

Familiar Changes

  • Familiar upgrade via Grade was nerfed
  • Increased strength based on level
  • Dullahammer Head has been nerfed

Shard Adjustments (Decreased Power)

  • Riga Storaema
  • Craftwork
  • Bunnymorphosis
  • Flame Cannon
  • Straight Arrow
  • Chase Arrow
  • Heretical Grinder
  • Circle Ripper
  • Shooting Dagger
  • Riga Dohin
  • Welcome Company (nerfed significantly – starting from 3 portraits instead of 5)

Weapon Adjustments (Decreased Power)

  • Flying Edge
  • Rhava Bural
  • Rhava Velar

Enemy HP Increases

  • Dullahammer Head
  • Malediction

Drop Adjustments

  • Increased the drop rate of “Monster Fur” from Simians

Credits

  • Text corrections

Map

  • Map close button has been remapped to standard exit/close button
  • Marker button has been changed
  • Trail display button has been changed
  • Map scroll speed improved
  • Zoom in and out improved
  • Zoom level retained when reopening the map
  • Auto-center when opening the map

The same post also mentioned how the development team was still prioritizing “important fixes and improvements” and went on to thank owners of the game for their patience.

Thank you everyone for your patience while we continue to make improvements on Switch and the other platforms as well, we will be following up with more updates soon.

How are you finding Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night on the Switch? Tell us below.

Class Action Lawsuit Officially Filed Against Nintendo For Switch Joy-Con “Drifting” Issues

Switch Joy Con

Yesterday, we found out a law firm located in the United States was preparing to file a class action lawsuit against Nintendo, based on reports the Joy-Con controllers for the Switch can experience “drift” issues.

Now, in the latest development, the lawsuit against Nintendo of America has been officially filed by the law offices of Chimicles, Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith for “claims relating to alleged defects” in the Switch controllers. This follows on from the firm asking anyone experiencing drift issues to contact its attorneys.

Here’s the full update, from the firm’s website:

CSK&D has filed a class action lawsuit against Nintendo of America, Inc. (“Nintendo”) for claims relating to alleged defects in the Joy-Con controllers that are part of Nintendo Switch gaming consoles. The complaint, filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington, alleges that the joysticks on Joy-Con controllers are defective, leading users to experience drift issues. Specifically, the complaint alleges that the joystick on the Joy-Con controllers will automatically register movement when the joystick is not being controlled by the user and interfere with gameplay. The complaint, filed on behalf of purchasers of Switches and Joy-Con controllers, brings claims under various consumer protection statutes as well as various warranty and common law claims.

The complaint documents Switch owners who have previously experienced drift issues with Nintendo’s Joy-Con controllers and contains user comments from various video game and social media websites. Visit the firm’s website to view the PDF version of the complaint.

Nintendo of America has not released a statement about the lawsuit at this point in time.

Hardware Review: The EON Super 64 Gives Your N64 HDMI Output, But Is It Really Worth $150?

IMG 1459

We’re big fans of EON here at Nintendo Life. The company has already produced some amazing GameCube HDMI adapters in the form of the GCHD and GCHD Mk II, both of which harness the console’s digital output to give a crisp picture without the need for pesky internal modification.

However, for its next trick, EON has taken things up a notch. The Super 64 brings HDMI output to the GameCube’s forerunner, the Nintendo 64, a feat which is made a whole lot harder thanks to the fact that the console has no digital output of any kind.

Like the GCHD, the Super 64 is a plug-and-play solution which takes the console’s S-Video signal and upscales it to zero-lag 480p, and requires no internal hardware modification to run – you simply pop it into the AV port of the N64 and you’re away. The unit has a robust design and even comes with a little ‘foot’ on the back which ensures that it remains stable when it’s sticking out the back of your console.

IMG 1435

The Super 64 has two modes – normal and ‘slick’ – and toggling between them is a simple button press away; there’s a tiny button on the side of the unit for this purpose. Normal mode gives you crisp and chunky pixels, while slick mode smoothes off the edges to present an image that is arguably closer to what you might remember from back in the day.

Compared to what the N64 is capable of outputting to your HD TV over composite AV – arguably the most common way we connected our machines back in the day – the difference is like night and day. Everything looks sharper and clearer, and the Super 64 maintains the aspect ratio too, so you don’t have to worry about messing around with your TV remote to get the right picture. Compared to S-Video the gulf is less pronounced, but is still noticeable.

However, at $150 it’s a pricey bit of kit, and arguably falls well short of the kind of quality you get from an internal mod, like the UltraHDMI mod or an RGB mod running through an Open Source Scan Converter. Of course, both of those options require you to locate someone who can install the mod for you (if you’re not brave or knowledgeable enough yourself to perform the surgery), which will be a stumbling block for some.

Also, it’s worth noting that while this is a solid solution if you’ve only got access to a high def TV in your household, you may find that you prefer the way your N64 looks on an old-fashioned CRT set; we certainly felt that way when playing Banjo-Kazooie for this review, but that could just be nostalgia kicking in. It’s also worth noting that the Super 64 will only work on NTSC N64 consoles; if you own a PAL system, then you’re out of luck.

Not everyone is going to want to have their console opened up for an internal mod of course, so that does make the Super 64 a little more attractive, even if the price difference isn’t all that large between the two. It’s unquestionably a massive step up from the composite picture you get when you hook the machine up to a modern TV, and, in some cases, it may be your only option for playing your N64 on such a set – one of the TVs we used in this test stubbornly refused to recognise the composite signal from our console at all.

Ultimately, while the Super 64 may not be the best way to get HD visuals out of your N64, it’s effortlessly the most elegant and hassle-free.

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Taito’s The Ninja Saviors Will Release The (Ninja) Warrior Within On Switch This August

If you were a fan of Taito’s arcade classic The Ninja Warriors then you are in for a treat, as it’s getting a reboot under the name of The Ninja Saviors – Return of the Warriors, which we can now reveal is headed to the Switch on 30th August.

Let’s find out a bit more from publisher ININ Games:

In THE NINJA SAVIORS – Return of the Warriors, the player assumes the role of one of five android ninjas to take on the tyrant Banglar and his henchmen with a variety of individual moves in a dystopian future. Along with two completely new characters, the fully revised side-scrolling arcade brawler also finally offers fans the eagerly awaited two-player co-op mode and an online ranking system so that you can measure yourself against fighters from all over the world. In a total of 8 levels, players will brawl their way through waves of enemy hordes, either alone or in pairs.

Not only is long-term motivation provided in single-player mode, THE NINJA SAVIORS – Return of the Warriors also makes comfortable couch co-op game evenings with friends possible, just like you remember and love from Super Nintendo classics of the 1990s.

The original developers from back in the day, TENGO PROJECT, have also made an already outstanding game even better audiovisually in every respect. The 16-bit pixel art of the classic has been retained, but significantly revised, and new animations have been added. The legendary sound of TAITO’s house band ZUNTATA is, of course, part of the fun once again, and along with the original soundtrack from the arcade machines, there will also be the music from the Super NES version and a completely newly arranged soundtrack on offer.

The reboot of THE NINJA WARRIORS marks the kick-off of more releases of old and new IPs with which the pioneer of the Japanese video game industry, TAITO Corporation, will return to the western console market after around a decade.

Each physical copy will contain a poster, a sticker set and a manual, just like back in the 1990s.

A must for real fans: Those who pre-order the physical edition of THE NINJA SAVIORS – Return of the Warriors in Europe or in North America will receive a limited NINJA SAVIORS keychain.

It all looks like it’s shaping up to be a fitting tribute to the classic ninja game. Check out the video at the top of the page and let us know if you plan to pick this one up in August.

Review: Tiny Metal: Full Metal Rumble – Finally, A True Successor To Advance Wars Emerges

It’s now been eleven whole years since we’ve had a new Advance Wars game, with Nintendo seemingly happy to let its successful SRPG series slide into oblivion since 2008’s Dark Conflict on the DS, disregarding the pleas of fans whilst instead turning its attention to the more story-oriented and emotional action of Fire Emblem. However, developer Area 35 stepped in and delivered us the rather good Tiny Metal back in 2017, an Advance Wars clone which came within clawing distance of that series’ greatness. Now, the studio is back with a sequel, Tiny Metal: Full Metal Rumble.

If you’ve played any Advance War game (or indeed the first Tiny Metal) you’ll immediately feel at home with Tiny Metal: Full Metal Rumble’s top-down, grid-based set-up, taking it in turns with your enemy to attempt to outmanoeuvre one other; flanking, using terrain to your advantage and deciding when to push your troops forward or pull back in the struggle to win out across a generous and challenging campaign mode. Just like the first game, you’ll need to quickly get to grips with which of your troops and vehicles do what if you’re to stand any chance, and there’s an impressive list to get your head around here.

Alongside your common riflemen and lancers – foot soldiers who are essential in seizing assets but very fragile in the face of enemy fire – you’ll march into battle armed with surface-to-air Vipers, ground-pounding Strikers, assault helicopters, rapidly-moving scout vehicles, radar trucks which increase your visual range, the titular hard-hitting “metals” (tanks to you and me) and more – all of which are very thoughtfully summarised in the game’s “Metalpedia” section.

Moving across the various warzones on offer, you’ll need to capture buildings with your ground forces to give yourself defensive and offensive boons as well as the capabilities to create and deploy a steady stream of units in order to control the map and crush each and every one your tiny enemies – or grab their HQ for a quick and sneaky victory. Comms towers still give you the option to unleash a hero unit onto the field, which will cost you some hard-earned credits but can be invaluable in turning the tide of a tough battle, whilst factories and city blocks allow you to heal wounded troops. Overall, the rounds here play out in very much the same way as they did in 2017’s effort, but now come with a few key additions which lift this game beyond what Area 35 achieved with its first swing at the genre.

Indeed, in comparison to its predecessor, Tiny Metal: Full Metal Rumble arrives feeling much more fully-formed; multiplayer mode is present and correct from the get-go here and the moment-to-moment gameplay benefits from the addition of a number of important tactical systems, including the ability to transport your ground troops inside vehicles, restock ammo, supply fuel to units and make use of special commander powers (all ripped wholesale from Advance Wars, but we’re not complaining).

Commander powers are activated once you’ve accrued a certain amount of power in a round and, once activated, will do a number of things – such as increase troop defences or attacks for a turn or perhaps knock 50 percent off the time it takes to grab control of a building. Troop transport makes it much easier to get your riflemen and lancers into important areas or structures as quickly as you can in order to grab the upper hand against your crafty opponents, and it really adds to the options you’ve got on the field. There’s also now a fully rotatable camera to let you get a better angle on the action; a not insignificant quality of life improvement.

Enemy AI has also received an upgrade and its fighters now avail of every rule in the playbook, they’ll often surprise you with flanking manoeuvres as well as continuously making clever use of the likes of the returning focus fire and assault options – such as pushing forward and dropping back, making use of buildings and terrain to shelter attacking units and generally being a massive (but very welcome) pain in the backside.

This is all great news but there are, as usual, a few nagging complaints to get through. The campaign gets off to a janky start with the first ten missions essentially a very long tutorial, which is fine in and of itself, but unfortunately vital information about troop types, vehicles and tactical options is fed to the player in a haphazard and confusingly slow way, so newcomers especially may find they’re getting their ass kicked for the first four or five missions before the game decides to let them know crucial information that could have saved some serious bother. We also encountered a strange bug which sees you unable to skip the creation of new units at your factories; instead, you’ll need to hit pause and end your turn from the menu there, a small issue and something we assume will be very quickly patched out post-launch.

The story also suffers because of this slow start and erratically jumps around to different characters for the first few hours in such a way that you’ll probably to struggle to know who anyone is (or why you’re fighting) until it settles down and starts to get into a much more satisfying groove. Indeed, it actually goes on to become quite an interesting tale, with a handful of great characters and just enough mystery about it – which we won’t spoil here – to keep you interested until the very end.

All of these early teething problems are well worth bearing with however, because once you’re out of the tutorials you’ll find a game that’s absolutely stuffed to the gills with content, offering robust multiplayer and skirmish modes alongside a generous campaign which took us upwards of twenty hours to plough through. Battles here are constantly engaging and tense affairs that require your full attention and provide non-stop shocks and surprises along the way, with the AI time and time again bringing its A-game to the table in its attempts to thwart your advances. It’s genuinely thrilling and addictive stuff and any doubts we had due to that slow start were soon forgotten in the maelstrom.

In terms of performance, things are pretty much buttery smooth in both handheld and docked modes on Switch; we did notice a few tiny stutters when enemy units are exploded to pieces during combat as well as the odd input delay when there’s a lot of turns happening very quickly, but they don’t affect the flow of gameplay in any way. Besides these little niggles the game plays and looks fantastic, with a nice variety of battle locales and big colourful chunky units making things very easy to follow if you’re enjoying the action in portable mode – which is exactly where this type of game is at its best; an almost endlessly entertaining, tactical travelling companion. Voice acting can be a bit of a mixed bag but it’s nothing too offensive and you can always switch to Japanese if you’re finding it particularly annoying. Indeed, the overall presentation is very slick across the board here, with smart-looking menus and a delightful little mission map that you can drive a variety of tiny vehicles around to find secrets between missions.

Conclusion

Tiny Metal: Full Metal Rumble surpasses both its predecessor and the recent Wargroove to become the number one Advance Wars clone available on Switch right now. Indeed, it may be fair to say that this time around Area 35 has beaten Advance Wars at its own game with a super-tight and generous SRPG that takes the best from the greats it emulates and wraps them up in a much more modern and satisfying package. Battles here are challenging, tense and highly replayable affairs, new tactical options add even more depth to proceedings and the story, once it gets going, will keep you locked in until the fight is done. Long-suffering Advance Wars fans take note, this one really is pretty much essential.