Nintendo Time Portal: Issue 28

Nintendo Time Portal: Issue 28

Welcome to the Nintendo Time Portal for August 12-18, where we take a look back through Nintendo’s history to see which game anniversaries we celebrate this week. August 14 – Rune Factory comes to North America. Developed as a spin-off to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Harvest Moon, Rune Factory: A Fantasy Harvest Moon came to North America on August 14, 2007, almost a full year after its Japanese release. It spawned its own series that unfortunately ended after the fourth entry… but with Marvelous acquiring the developer, maybe there’s still hope. August 14 – The Last Story comes to North America. On the same day, we celebrate the third and final of the Oper... »

Tetra’s Escape (Review)

Tetra’s Escape (Review)

We received a review code for Tetra’s Escape on the Switch. Tetra’s Escape is a puzzle game about little block-like creatures called Tetras. Your goal is to get a Tetra to the portal in each level. Tetras can climb up a single block in height, so you’ll need to create a path it can traverse to get it to the end. Fortunately, Tetras can transform into tetrominoes – shapes most famous for their use in Tetris. Different Tetras can transform into different shapes. As you progress through the levels, you’ll gain the ability to rotate and flip these shapes as well, giving you many options for how to put your Tetras together. But once you transform a Tetra into a tetro... »

August 12 – August 18: Nintendo News Bytes

August 12 – August 18: Nintendo News Bytes

Tune in to the Nintendo Chit Chat podcast to learn more about the latest news. Nintendo Switch News Famitsu is conducting a questionnaire for players of Octopath Traveler. Ghostlight has announced that it will be porting JRPGs to the Switch. New Games, Ports, & Localizations GRIS has been announced for Switch and PC for December. Protoform was announced for 2019. HackyZack was announced for August 23 with a new local co-op mode. Metallic Child has been announced for Switch, PS4, PC, and mobile for early 2019. Gone Home is coming to the Switch on August 23. As rumored, Diablo III: Eternal Collection is coming to the Switch for $59.99, with Zelda-themed bonus content. Road Redemption is co... »

Nintendo Time Portal: Issue 27

Nintendo Time Portal: Issue 27

Welcome back to the Nintendo Time Portal, where we take a look back for the current week at video game anniversaries. Which games released this week in history? Let’s take a look. August 5 – Yoshi’s Island is released. On August 5, 1995, a new platformer was released in Japan. Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island put players in control of Yoshi, carrying Baby Mario, in a world with a hand-drawn graphical style. Yoshi’s Island was a hit and was viewed even more fondly in retrospect, but subsequent Yoshi games haven’t quite lived up to its standard. August 7 – Mega Man Star Force comes to North America. The follow-up to the popular Battle Network series... »

August 5 – August 11: Nintendo News Bytes

August 5 – August 11: Nintendo News Bytes

Now that we’re into August, what will Nintendo bring? This is another week full of Nintendo announcements. Tune in to the Nintendo Chit Chat podcast to learn more about the latest news. Nintendo Direct News There was a Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Direct on August 8 at 7 AM PT / 10 AM ET that revealed new characters, new stages and features, and more, along with teasing an unrevealed mode. There will also be a special edition that includes a GameCube controller and adapter. Nintendo Switch News Nintendo Switch Online is set for the second half of September. New Games, Ports, & Localizations The updated Windjammers port is coming to the Switch later this year. An adaptation of the chi... »

Nintendo Time Portal: Issue 26

Nintendo Time Portal: Issue 26

Welcome to the latest issue of the Nintendo Time Portal, where we discus Nintendo games released throughout this week in history. Let’s take a look. July 29 – Pokémon Crystal comes to North America. Following a December release in Japan, Pokémon Crystal was released in North America on July 29, 2001. The first game in the series developed specifically for the Game Boy Color, it added new features and content not present in Gold and Silver, and it was the first in the series to let you pick a female protagonist. July 31 – The Game Boy comes to North America. Heading further back then that, however, the original Game Boy came to North America on July 31, 1989. As NintendoR... »

July 29 – August 4: Nintendo News Bytes

July 29 – August 4: Nintendo News Bytes

As we head into August, we have a new week’s worth of Nintendo news to consider. Tune in to the Nintendo Chit Chat podcast to learn more about the latest news. Nintendo Switch News New Games, Ports, & Localizations Digimon Survive is coming west in 2019, with an English teaser trailer available now. Bandai Namco has revealed Kamen Rider: Climax Scramble Zi-O for the Switch in Japan. European Conqueror X has been announced for the eShop, to be released this year. After its previously-announced PC release, Rage in Peace will also come to the Switch this fall. Razed is coming to the Switch on October 15. Slice, Dice, and Rice is coming to the Switch this summer in Japan. Moonfall Ulti... »

Latest Nintendo Chit Chat Activity

Tetra’s Escape (Review)

Tetra’s Escape (Review)

We received a review code for Tetra’s Escape on the Switch. Tetra’s Escape is a puzzle game about little block-like creatures called Tetras. Your goal is to get a Tetra to the portal in each level. Tetras can climb up a single block in height, so you’ll need to create a path it can traverse to get it to the end. Fortunately, Tetras can transform into tetrominoes – shapes most famous for their use in Tetris. Different Tetras can transform into different shapes. As you progress through the levels, you’ll gain the ability to rotate and flip these shapes as well, giving you many options for how to put your Tetras together. But once you transform a Tetra into a tetro... »

The Journey Down: Chapter Three (Review)

The Journey Down: Chapter Three (Review)

We received a review code for The Journey Down: Chapter Three on the Switch. The third and final entry of this point-and-click adventure game series brings Bwana’s story to a close. Chapter Three more or less assumes you’ve played the first two chapters already, as it tosses you right into the thick of the story. Bwana, Kito, and Lina finally learn what the Armando Power Company is planning and split up to put an end to their nefarious plans. It’s a noticeably more story-driven this time around, with a greater focus on lore, more cutscenes, and a story that feels epic despite being shorter than Chapter Two. Unfortunately, if you play these games for their gameplay, you migh... »

The Journey Down: Chapter Two (Review)

The Journey Down: Chapter Two (Review)

We received a review code for The Journey Down: Chapter Two on the Switch. The second entry in this point-and-click adventure game trilogy picks up where Chapter One left off, with Bwana, Kito, and Lina in a bit of a predicament after their ill-judged escape in Bwana’s plane. While there are a few different locations in this one, the bulk of the game takes place in Port Artue, where the trio is detained by the corrupt police because of the book they have. Despite a more serious tone to the story, The Journey Down: Chapter Two is still filled with humorous moments and a new selection of wacky characters to interact with. The characters and backgrounds mesh better this time around and ha... »

Inside (Review)

Inside (Review)

We received a review code for Inside on the Switch. Inside is an unusual game, a dark puzzle-platformer that raises questions almost immediately. It gives no context, but instead immediately puts you in the role of a boy traveling through a forest while avoiding guards. You must solve environmental puzzles in order to progress, while elements of stealth and even horror also come into play since you’re entirely vulnerable. Unlike its predecessor, Limbo, difficult puzzles aren’t the centerpiece here. It features puzzles that might take you some time to think through, and there are plenty of ways to die (mitigated by a forgiving checkpoint system), but both of these aspects take a b... »

The Journey Down: Chapter One (Review)

The Journey Down: Chapter One (Review)

We received a review code for The Journey Down: Chapter One on the Switch. This point-and-click adventure game game draws on Afro-Caribbean inspiration, most noticeably in its character designs, which are based on African masks. While the main character’s mask-like face occasionally makes him look stiff, I got used to it pretty quickly, although some areas do have a jarring difference between the 3D character models and 2D backgrounds. The soundtrack also deserves a mention, as the catchy music helps set the scene. The Journey Down: Chapter One begins with a hint of a conspiracy, as a sinister organization hunts for an important book, but then shifts to focus on a run-down gas station ... »

Pode (Review)

Pode (Review)

After our interview about Pode, Henchman & Goon sent us a review code. Pode is a puzzle game about a fallen star that teams up with a rock in order to find its way home. Together, the two set out to climb a mountain so the star can return to the sky. However, this isn’t just any mountain, but a mountain filled with puzzles. To overcome them and proceed through each chamber, you’ll need to make use of the characters’ abilities. Glo (the star) can bring plants to life and eventually teleport, while Bulder (the rock) can magnetize switches and pick up items. Figuring out where and how to use their abilities is key. Pode uses simple tutorials with no text, which leads to so... »

ICEY (Review)

ICEY (Review)

After we received a review code for ICEY on the Nintendo Switch, I played through this side-scrolling action game to see what it’s all about. On the surface, ICEY is a 2D action game with light RPG elements. You’ll mix light and heavy attacks together to pull off stylish combos, along with a few other moves. Winning battles rewards you with money you can use at the many upgrade stations to power-up your skills, giving you a decent array of abilities with which to crush your robotic enemies as you fight toward your ultimate goal: defeating an enemy known as Judas. Arrows guide you through each level and the Narrator urges you onward… but if you go in a different direction an... »

An Interview With the Developers of Pode

An Interview With the Developers of Pode

One of the new games shown off during the recent Nindies presentation was an exploration game called Pode. Afterwards, we got in touch with the developers, Henchman & Goon, to learn more about it. Take a look at the announcement trailer and then read on to see what we learned. Q: Pode looks like a beautiful game. According to the announcement, it was inspired by Norwegian culture. Could you go into more detail about how Norwegian culture influenced it? The Norwegian influence is mainly on the visual side where we have taken inspiration from the national romantic era. This was a very brief, but significant part of Norwegian cultural history, and a period that in many ways still define us ... »

An Interview With the Developers of YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG

An Interview With the Developers of YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG

YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG is a stylish RPG coming to the Switch this year, and we got in touch with Ackk Studios to learn more about it. Check out one of the trailers for a taste of what this strange game is like, and then read on for our interview. From its style, YIIK brings to mind games like Persona and EarthBound, but the demo description also called out Paper Mario, Wild Arms, and Lufia 2. What inspirations from these games went into YIIK? I really like this question! Wild Arms is essentially a spaghetti western remake of Lufia 2. Story beats, interface, and gameplay. We really liked how both games had a unique take on the RPG dungeon. So, in Final Fantasy you essentially have hallways a... »

An Interview With the Developers of Darkest Dungeon

An Interview With the Developers of Darkest Dungeon

Darkest Dungeon came out on the Switch on January 18, with a physical release planned for March. Intrigued by this dark turn-based dungeon-crawling RPG, we got in touch with Red Hook Studios to learn more about it. One of the biggest things that sets Darkest Dungeon apart from other dungeon crawling RPGs is its use of stress and the need to keep an eye on your characters’ mental states. What inspired you for this aspect of gameplay? We looked at a lot of movies and books that modeled what happens to a small group of people under extreme duress – Band of Brothers, Alien(s), The Thing.  We wanted to explore heroism by contrast, not by power fantasy.  The darkest, most dire circumstances ... »

An Interview With the Developers of Layers of Fear: Legacy

An Interview With the Developers of Layers of Fear: Legacy

Layers of Fear: Legacy is a psychedelic horror game coming to the Switch on February 21. If you haven’t already seen the latest trailer, check it out now, and then read on to learn more about the game. We got in touch with the developers of Layers of Fear: Legacy to learn more about this horror game and what the Switch version will be like. Rather than survival horror or psychological horror, Layers of Fear is described as “psychedelic horror.” Could you shed a little light on what you mean by this? The game is often described as both psychological and psychedelic. Psychological because of issues presented in the game, psychedelic because of the gameplay nature of the game – an ever-ch... »

An Interview With the Developers of The Darkside Detective

An Interview With the Developers of The Darkside Detective

The Darkside Detective comes out for the Nintendo Switch today, and we got in touch with the developers to learn more about it. Check out the Switch trailer below. Sound interesting? Check out our interview to see what we learned about it from Spooky Doorway, the team that developed it. The Darkside Detective has been described as a classic point-and-click adventure game, but there are several variations even within the genre. What games would you use as comparisons for The Darkside Detective’s gameplay style? What were your biggest inspirations? It’s quite humorous like a lot of the classic LucasArts games, such as Monkey Island or Day of the Tentacle, but the interface is a lot more stream... »

An Interview With the Developers of Detention

An Interview With the Developers of Detention

Detention is a horror game set in Taiwan. It came out last year to a positive reception and is now planned for a Switch release sometime this year. Take a look at the original launch trailer. Intrigued by Detention, we got in touch with Red Candle Games to learn more about it. What inspired you to pick 1960s Taiwan as the setting for Detention? Detention started out as a solo project by Coffee Yao. The original idea was simple, to tell a story of Taiwan. At first, the time was set in the 1980s, as it was when Coffee grew up and could reflect to. But to create the background for this atmospheric horror game, we dived deep into our own history and came across the martial law period White Terro... »

An Interview With the Composer of Celeste

An Interview With the Composer of Celeste

Celeste, the upcoming platformer themed around climbing a mountain, will be out on the Nintendo Switch eShop tomorrow, January 25. Ahead of its launch, we got in touch with Lena Raine, who composed the original soundtrack for Celeste, to learn more about the game and her work in the industry. How did you get into the video game industry? What was the first game you composed music for? My intro to making games was a bit of a sputtering start right out of college. I went to school for music, and was very optimistic about just finding a job straight out of school. I went to two GDCs, met a lot of people–mostly other composers–and got a couple gigs writing additional music for fairly... »

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