Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Switch) review

Nintendo / Nintendo EAD

For most games, selling 8 million copies would be considered a huge success. Much whooping and hollering would take place, and both publisher and developer would metaphorically and physically kiss each other on the lips at a job well done.

Mario Kart isn’t most games though. For it, 8 million is quite an underachievement. Considering the DS, Wii and 3DS entries sold 23, 36 and 14 million copies respectively, a ‘mere’ 8 million has to go down, bizarrely, as a disappointment.

This was the fate that befell the appropriately named Mario Kart 8, which failed to hit octuple figures through no fault of its own. Indeed, most people who played it considered it the greatest Mario Kart game ever made.

The reason for its relative sales funk, of course, was that it was released on the Wii U, a console that – as genuinely great as it was – ended up being about as popular as an Al Jolson cosplayer at the MOBO awards.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, then, finds itself in an interesting position. It’s essentially an enhanced version of a game that, despite already selling 8 million copies, is set to be experienced by a whole host of new players for the first time. Continue reading “Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Switch) review”

Voodoo Vince Remastered (Xbox One) review

Microsoft / Beep Games
Xbox One, PC (Xbox One version reviewed)

A fortnight ago I posted a review of Yooka-Laylee, saying that long-time gamers who fondly remembered Rare’s glory days would enjoy it.

If you fall under that category and you’re looking for more old-school runny-jumpy goodness, Voodoo Vince Remastered is another recent release that should appeal to fans of turn-of-the-millennium platformers.

Mainly because it literally is one. Continue reading “Voodoo Vince Remastered (Xbox One) review”

Gemhunter #7 – Curse: The Eye Of Isis

It’s back! After a six-month break (while I upgraded my grabbing equipment), Gemhunter returns to crack open the vaults of forgotten turn-of-the-millennium gaming.

In episode 7 it’s the turn of Curse: The Eye Of Isis. It’s a survival horror game by Asylum Entertainment, a UK studio best known for such blockbusters as Play With The Teletubbies on PS1 and the cult PC gem Bob The Builder: Bob Builds A Park.

How does a studio known for children’s games handle horror though? Find out as I play the game for the first time ever. Continue reading “Gemhunter #7 – Curse: The Eye Of Isis”

How to buy Switch eShop games from different regions

Yesterday I reviewed Kamiko, a Switch game that (at the time of writing) was only available on the Japanese eShop.

Whereas before Nintendo gamers haven’t been able to access another region’s eShop without either buying another system from that region or pulling off some extreme tomfoolery, the Switch’s region-free policy makes it much easier than you’d expect.

Despite this, a lot of Switch owners have still yet to add other eShops to their system. If that includes you, yer man Scullion is about to show you how to do it, and how to buy games from them once you do. Continue reading “How to buy Switch eShop games from different regions”

Kamiko (Switch) review

Skipmore / Flyhigh Works

Well, here’s a nice wee surprise. After last night’s Nintendo Direct ended I decided to check out the Japanese eShop out of curiosity, and there I found Kamiko.

It’s a little Japanese indie game made by a chap called ‘Y. Kimura’, but who prefers to go by Skipmore. He enjoyed a bit of cult success with the Fairune RPGs on the 3DS eShop, and now he’s back on the Switch.

Whereas Fairune was a fairly slow-paced take on the original Legend Of Zelda though, Kamiko is… um, a fairly fast-paced take on it. Continue reading “Kamiko (Switch) review”

Aaero (Xbox One) review

Mad Fellows / Reverb Triple XP
Xbox One, PS4, Steam (Xbox One version reviewed)

FreeStyleGames was always a bit of an underrated studio in my eyes.  Specialising in rhythm action games, this British outfit was responsible for both fantastic DJ Hero titles, as well as the brilliant Guitar Hero Live.

Unfortunately, DJ Hero and DJ Hero 2 were released at a time when the plastic instrument craze was beginning to die, and Guitar Hero Live – an attempt to resurrect it – didn’t quite manage this.

It’s a real shame, because all three games are among my favourites in the rhythm action genre. I doff my cap to you, FreeStyleGames, you fallen geniuses (Activision made 50 staff redundant in 2016 and the studio was eventually bought by Ubisoft and renamed Ubisoft Leamington).

“The point, Chris,” you rasp in an impatient sputter. “Get to the bastard point.”

The point is that Aaero is the work of Paul Norris and Dan Horbury, who were the Music Team Lead and Senior Engine Programmers respectively at FreeStyleGames. And that’s why you should be paying attention to it. Continue reading “Aaero (Xbox One) review”