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Editorials

November 14, 2020

Oh The Places You'll Go With a Mario Fanny Pack

by Neal Ronaghan - 8:46 pm EST
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Let's celebrate the Mario Game & Watch with the sad, cold reality of the world right now. Happy 35th!

While pre-orders seemed to have been confusing, the Super Mario Bros. Game & Watch has arrived. Best of luck trying to find out when your retailer of choice tosses them up for pre-order online. Please be safe in your travels to do in-store or curbside pick-up. Wear a mask. Do your thing.

Nintendo... Read more...

June 16, 2020

Ranking the LEGO Super Mario Expansion Sets Mobi

by Neal Ronaghan - 5:33 pm EDT
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It might cost upwards of $600 to collect'em all, so let's needlessly try to figure out what might be the coolest of the add-ons.

I won’t include the Adventures with Mario Starter Course ($59.99) in the ranking since that’s basically your entry point. It’s needed to do the fun LEGO Mario stuff. This kit has 231 pieces and includes the fancy Mario figure as well as a Goomba and Bowser Jr. You get a hero, a minion, and a boss all in one set. There’s also a coin block, a pipe, some obstacles, and a flag. It’s got the basics.

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May 17, 2020

Paper Mario: Color Splash Is Great, Actually WiiWiiUSwitch3DSGC

by Neal Ronaghan - 10:04 am EDT
Total comments: 3

Following up a disappointing game in the final days of the Wii U was a tough job but somebody had to do it.

Paper Mario: The Origami King is on its way to Nintendo Switch soon, and with all the news swirling around about Mario and his pop-up adventures, I’ve reflected on my own experiences with the 20-year-old franchise. I actually started collecting these thoughts before Origami King was announced, as... Read more...

May 15, 2020

The Metroid Gag in Paper Mario: The Origami King's Trailer Is Likely Just a Gag 3DSDSSwitchWiiUWii

by Neal Ronaghan - 3:54 pm EDT
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Nintendo did not tease the release of Metroid Prime 4 in 2020 or reveal plans about a new 2D Metroid.

At the end of the Paper Mario: The Origami King reveal trailer - after the release date was revealed and the excitement seemed over - there is a video stinger showing Paper Mario wearing a papier-mâché Samus Aran helmet, running around miming firing a gun. "Huh. There's something you don't see every day," says Olivia, Mario's new origami companion. "He certainly looks intimidating! Is he...battling something?"

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June 26, 2019

The Quirkiness of Mario Maker Is Muted on Switch Switch3DSWiiU

by Neal Ronaghan - 8:55 pm EDT
Total comments: 3

The absence of Skinny Mario and the Mystery Mushroom leave a gaping hole in Mario’s creative soul.

Super Mario Maker was a pure delight when it launched on Wii U in 2015. While it was ultimately too late to save the system, the game perfectly used the GamePad as players could make their own levels and check out a slew of creations online. The sublime experience of creating was dotted by so much... Read more...

June 6, 2019

Animal Crossing's Playable Absence at E3 2019 Is No Concern Switch

by Neal Ronaghan - 12:54 pm EDT
Total comments: 3

Though that doesn't mean Nintendo's E3 2019 will be devoid of delays.

This morning, Nintendo shined a light on their playable E3 2019 plans. If you're heading to Los Angeles for E3, you will be able to check out show floor demos of Pokémon Sword and Shield, Luigi's Mansion 3, The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3, and more. Missing from that list of playable titles is a hotly anticipated 2019 game: Animal Crossing.

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April 9, 2019

Three Reasons Why Ace Attorney Trilogy Rules Switch

by Neal Ronaghan - 12:01 am EDT
Total comments: 2

As Ace Attorney Trilogy comes to Switch, we fondly remember why Phoenix Wright rocks.

The Phoenix Wright games have always been an enjoyable and bizarre style of visual novel that have overwhelmingly appealed to me despite generally ignoring the genre otherwise. When replaying the first three games, now out on Nintendo Switch in shiny HD style, I was trying to nail why these games... Read more...

December 13, 2018

More Curio Than Modern Classic, Sega Ages Phantasy Star Is A Must for Sega and RPG Fans Switch

by Neal Ronaghan - 12:00 am EST
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The best way to play a classic yet dated '80s RPG.

If I had come across Phantasy Star when I was younger, I think my recent visit to the Algol solar system would have been a lot rosier. Originally released in America on the Master System in 1988, Phantasy Star was one of the better console RPGs of its era. The turn-based combat was solid, the first-person dungeon-exploring was engaging, and the story was good even though it suffered a little bit from the limitations of the Master System.

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November 27, 2018

The Poké Ball Plus: Cumbersome Yet Charming Switch

by Neal Ronaghan - 4:35 am EST
Total comments: 1

Maybe the Poké Ball Plus is a bad controller, but if it’s wrong, I don’t want to be right.

The control methods of Pokémon Let’s Go deserve to be called out for being limiting and restrictive. Little to no customization exists here and the only way to play the game without any motion controls is handheld-only. All of these controls seem to be in service of the gimmicky addition to Let’s... Read more...

November 2, 2018

Diablo III: Fresh Eyes For The Devil Switch

by Neal Ronaghan - 7:53 am EDT
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A Diablo neophyte gets taken in by the action-RPG wiles of the Switch port.

It’s not that I wrote Diablo off over the years, it’s that it wasn’t really convenient for me to play. I dabbled with Diablo II at some point in the early 2000s, but after a few enjoyable hours, my non-PC-playing preferences dictated attention elsewhere. I’d hear exuberance over the forthcoming Diablo III but it wasn’t something I paid any mind to. I was fine in my game-playing existence without Diablo in it.

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February 28, 2018

Sumo Lounge: A Perfect Switch Companion

by Neal Ronaghan - 8:44 pm EST
Total comments: 1

Looking for a chair to accompany your Switch playing? This comfy bean bag chair might be it.

Losing my first Sumo Lounge was heartbreaking. I’ll spare you the long and sordid story, but suffice to say it involved a big move and a pest problem. It’s been in the back of my mind as I bought my first home recently. I would see a corner or an empty spot and say “Sumo would fit perfectly... Read more...

January 23, 2018

Neal's Top 30 Games of 2017 Switch3DSClassic

by Neal Ronaghan - 6:19 am EST
Total comments: 5

The top game might not be surprising, but maybe the other 29 are?

For the past few years, I have kept a running tally of what my top 20 or so “Games of the Year” are. It first started as a way to keep tabs on what I played but has since evolved into something I pull out and labor over multiple times a year. This year, the list got very hard to handle as the... Read more...

October 10, 2017

Ten Takeaways From the 2017 Nintendo World Championships

by Neal Ronaghan - 5:33 pm EDT
Total comments: 3

From a ringside seat, we report back on the experience of the latest Nintendo sporting event.

Last weekend, Nintendo held their second modern stab at the Nintendo World Championships in New York City. Some of the staff were on hand to watch it live and after a fun evening of excitement, laughs, and taking pictures for the site Twitter while leaning over a balcony, I’m here to lay out some of the neat things I took away from my first-ever live viewing of an eSports event (however weird and offbeat Nintendo does it).

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September 29, 2017

Neal's Personal SNES Classic Game Ranking ClassicWiiWiiU

by Neal Ronaghan - 7:41 am EDT
Total comments: 5

The list is subject to change depending on solar flares and stuff, but here's one version of it.

I've spent the last week with the Super NES Classic. You can read about it here. The little SNES is adorable and filled with merriment and fun. Additionally, it's filled with 21 different games spanning the life of Nintendo's second home console. As of the days before the Super NES Classic is available to all, here's my personal ranking of all 21 games, as they are presented on the Super NES Classic.

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September 12, 2017

Where Does Samus Returns Fit In Metroid's Legacy? GBA3DS

by Neal Ronaghan - 5:02 am EDT
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After finishing Samus' latest journey, Neal ponders where it might fit in the 2D Metroid hierarchy.

As I’m writing this, I finished Metroid: Samus Returns several days ago and have messed around with harder difficulties while trying my best to 100% my initial save file. As you can read in my review, I adored Samus Returns and I think it’s a brilliant game and remake that is a worthy entry in... Read more...

July 24, 2017

The Woes of Salmon Run's Time-Restricted Design Switch

by Neal Ronaghan - 9:55 am EDT
Total comments: 3

Blink and you'll miss the chance to play Splatoon 2's new mode, as it's available less than half of the time.

Well that was a fun weekend of Splatoon 2. I got some Turf Wars in, dabbled in Ranked, and fell deeper in love with Salmon Run, the brand new horde-style mode. Now that the weekend is done and I head back to the weekday grind, I'm looking forward to coming home from work and sitting down with some... Read more...

June 26, 2017

Super NES Classic: Instant Game Analysis Classic

by Neal Ronaghan - 1:20 pm EDT
Total comments: 3

We break down the 21-game lineup of the Super NES Classic.

In three months, we’ll all be walking into an open minefield trying to get a Super NES Classic as, even with the foresight of the supply issues of the NES Classic, the stock of this new mini console will likely be challenging to find on its September 29 launch. So, as we await the reckoning of this system’s launch, let’s break down the lineup.

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May 5, 2017

Brothers In Arms: The 3DS and Switch in 2017 3DSSwitch

by Neal Ronaghan - 7:00 am EDT
Total comments: 9

The 3DS and the Switch are standing side-by-side in Nintendo’s plans, but for how long?

A lot of the discourse around the reveal and release of the Nintendo Switch has been focused on what exactly is the young system’s future legacy. Is the Switch a home console or a portable? Is it the successor to the Wii U? The 3DS? Both? Both sides have staked their claims in what they think Nintendo’s plans are, whether it’s using past precedent, reciting Nintendo’s own recent words, or because they believe in a one-console future.

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March 16, 2017

The Spirit of Fighting Games Is on Switch in Arms and Street Fighter II Switch

by Neal Ronaghan - 4:41 am EDT
Total comments: 2

Arms and Street Fighter II are the odd couple in some respects, but the pair have more in common than I thought.

I played two games at PAX East 2017 one right after the other that were more similar than I would have guessed. One was Ultra Street Fighter II, the retro-stylish Switch port of the classic fighting game. The other was Arms, Nintendo’s weird motion-controlled fighter. Now it’s not crazy to come... Read more...

November 29, 2016

Gigantic Piranha Plants Set The Tone For What Nintendo's Universal Parks Could Be

by Neal Ronaghan - 7:59 am EST
Total comments: 1

Specifics are still scarce, but the vision is becoming clearer.

While we’ve known about Nintendo’s plans to work with Universal Parks & Resorts to make Nintendo-themed attractions for the Universal Studios parks for a while now, today we got the first concrete information of the intention to bring that Nintendo magic to the parks in Florida, California, and Japan. And that’s about all the concrete information we know.

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