FIFA 18 Switch hands-on preview

Note: Because of restrictions placed by EA, I wasn’t allowed to capture any gameplay footage or screenshots of FIFA 18 on Switch while I was playing it.

I also wasn’t provided with any screenshots, and I don’t agree with showing Xbox One and PS4 screens in their place, because they aren’t an accurate representation of how the Switch version looks.

To make up for this, instead of screenshots of FIFA 18 on Switch, I’ve included my favourite Celtic goals against Rangers.

Quick disclaimer: I’m an enormous FIFA fan. I saved my pocket money for months to buy the first FIFA International Soccer on the Mega Drive on the day it launched in December 1993, and although PES took over my attention in the early 2000s (because of course it did) it still didn’t stop me buying every FIFA game over the years.

I’m not ashamed then to say that, after Super Mario Odyssey, FIFA 18 is the game I was most looking forward to try out when I visited Nintendo’s UK HQ earlier this week.

EA is infamous for fucking over Nintendo fans in recent times when it’s come to its sports games. FIFA 13 on Wii U was just an enhanced FIFA 12 with all the good modes taken out: this led to understandably poor sales which EA then pointed to as a reason never to make another Wii U FIFA.

As such, FIFA 18 marks the first time in FIVE YEARS that Nintendo fans will be able to play FIFA on a home console, and the first time they’ll be able to play ‘proper’ FIFA on a handheld (because, let’s face it, the 3DS versions couldn’t quite handle it even though they did their best).

I held my breath as I selected the FIFA 18 icon on the Switch I was using. “Please don’t bottle this one,” I thought. After just a minute into my first match, I exhaled. It’s legit. Continue reading “FIFA 18 Switch hands-on preview”

Fire Emblem Warriors hands-on preview

Earlier this week I was lucky enough to be invited to Nintendo’s UK headquarters,where I was sat in front of a Switch for three hours and given free reign to play through its E3 demos without any annoying queues.

Over the next couple of weeks, expect a bunch of hands-on preview articles in which I give my views on these demos: starting with this one.

I have a strange relationship with the Warriors games.

Over the years I’ve played loads of Koei Tecmo’s Musou titles (as they’re known in Japan). Whether it’s the main Dynasty Warriors series, the spin-off Samurai Warriors and Warriors Orochi games, or one of the licensed tie-ins based on the likes of Gundam, One Piece and Fist Of The North Star, the process has always been the same for me.

I almost always start by running aimlessly around, because in the space of time since I last played a game in the series I’ve forgotten how I’m expected to make progress. Continue reading “Fire Emblem Warriors hands-on preview”

Ultra Street Fighter II and Super Bomberman R hands-on previews

Header image by Jorge Vargas

Two of the games I played at last month’s Switch UK premiere event share a lot in common.

Both are based on classic games that were bigger in the ‘90s, both are heavily focused on multiplayer gameplay, and both have received some criticism for their rumoured £40-£50 price points.

Having had the chance to briefly play both, it’s clear this is an argument that will continue until they’re released, and likely beyond that. Continue reading “Ultra Street Fighter II and Super Bomberman R hands-on previews”

Snipperclips hands-on preview

snipperclips_art3For every big Nintendo franchise out there – your Marios, your Zeldas, your Metroids – there’s usually another smaller one that’s widely ignored by the gaming public in general.

Sometimes these are proper retail games: the likes of Band Bros, Custom Robo Arena, Excitebots, the Bit Generations series and New Style Boutique were all strong titles that were so underappreciated they may as well have had photos of Ben Affleck on the cover (he’s a cinema legend, deal with it).

More often than not, though, these ignored gems have been digital-only releases tucked away in each Nintendo system’s rarely browsed eShop. Indulge me for a second, there’s a big list coming because this really annoys me.

Pushmo and its sequels. Art Style PiCOPiCT. Dr Mario & Germ Buster. Three separate Mario vs Donkey Kong games. Art Style Kubos (Precipice in the US). Hydroventure. Excitebike World Rally. Dillon’s Rolling Western. Harmoknight. BoxBoy and BoxBoxBoy. All seven Picross e games.

These were all digital titles published by Nintendo that were thoroughly enjoyed by me and most of those who bought them, but were tragically ignored by the masses and ultimately didn’t sell as well as they could and should have.

If you’re thinking of buying a Switch, please don’t let Snipperclips become the latest member of that club. Continue reading “Snipperclips hands-on preview”

Arms hands-on preview

arms-uk-boxThere was a moment when I was playing Arms (not ARMS: come on, people) where I was suddenly hit with a flashback of something I’d experienced nearly a decade before.

It was when I performed a grab move in the game, flinging both my extendable arms at my opponent and pulling them towards me for a beat down.

“Shake the controllers”, the rep at the Switch event told me. “Shake them fast and you’ll do more damage.”

So I did. And as I did, I suddenly found myself at the Wii post-E3 event in 2007 again, trying out Mario & Sonic At The Olympic Games for the first time.

“Shake the Remote,” the rep told me back then. “Shake it fast and you’ll run faster.”

So I did. And I convinced myself then that it was a fad and ‘waggling’ wasn’t going to be a popular control method for too long.

We meet again, Old Scratch. Continue reading “Arms hands-on preview”

Zelda: Breath Of The Wild Switch hands-on preview

zeldabotw-boxI wasn’t fortunate enough to get to play the Breath Of The Wild Wii U demo back when it was doing the rounds after E3 last year.

By all accounts, the demo I played last week was the same as that one, with the only obvious difference being that this time it was running on Switch hardware.

Since the contents of the demo itself are more than half a year old now, I figured I’d spare you the same rundown of what it entails, what I got to see and the like. Every site worth its salt already has a hands-on preview of the Wii U version in its archives somewhere, so me adding my own would be like pissing into Lake Hylia.

What I can do, though, is tell you how it feels playing the game on the Switch, as well as going into other details like playing with the Joy-Con Grip and how easy it is to do the whole ‘switching from TV to handheld’ process. Continue reading “Zelda: Breath Of The Wild Switch hands-on preview”