No longer a solitary experience, the latest strain of “Pac-Man Fever” is Pac-Man 99 on the Nintendo Switch. Similar to Tetris 99 and Super Mario Bros. 35 before it, the single-player experience of the classic eat ’em up is converted into a battle royale. Does the hungry puck have what it takes to excel in this multiplayer format?
Mario’s dinosaur friend makes appearances in a plethora of fantastic games. As a solo star, Yoshi’s output is…a mixed bag. A slew of mediocre puzzle games, one-off ideas, and a disappointing collection of platformers makes up the majority of the library.
Though Yoshi could be used better, there are a some real gems in the catalogue. Here are my picks for best Yoshi games!
Remember Wario’s Woods? No? I don’t blame you. Released as the final officially-licensed NES game in 1994 (and released on the SNES later that year), this puzzle game felt like it got lost in the shuffle even at the time. Despite being a fan of Nintendo games and puzzle games, this one slipped through my fingers for reasons that elude me.
Not to say that it’s bad. Its core gameplay concept is actually rather interesting. Instead of taking direct control of the pieces as they fall down the well, you controlled a character inside the well who had to pick up, move, and drop the pieces in order to create sets and clear blocks. Haven’t really seen any games try that concept since.
Decades later, Treasure Stacker by indie studio PIXELAKES builds on the concept. Does this modern take prove that gaming shouldn’t have abandoned the idea when it did?
The story of two hearts colliding is one that’s explored to great effect in virtually every medium. Except gaming. For numerous reasons, the medium has been slow to create experiences around the themes of love and romance beyond more juvenile dating simulators or bolting on elements of romantic relationships into established genres. As much as I love headshots, juggle combos, and stacking blocks, I’ve always felt like there was a whole world of possibilities that could arise when combining the interactive elements of gaming with the themes of love and romance.
Originally released on mobile in 2018, Florence takes a clever approach to bringing a love story to life within the boundaries of gaming. Though I meant to play it at the time, I didn’t get around to it until it was released on the Nintendo Switch in February 2020. The experience of playing through it has weighed heavily on my heart ever since.
Mr. Driller on the PS1 may look cute, but his quest to the bottom is treacherous. As he digs below the surface, he must be mindful of his depleting air supply and falling blocks that can flatten our hero like a pancake. How low can you go?
Before Tetris exploded in popularity on the Game Boy, Sega made their own arcade version of the legendary block stacker. From what I gather, a port of this title for the Sega Genesis was in the works before being canned. I’ve also heard that Sega’s arcade version was well-regarded during its time. Finally, it’s arrived as part of the Sega Genesis Mini. Was it worth the wait?
That did not go as planned. A myriad of technical issues marred this stream, and I’m sorry it didn’t meet the standards that I set for myself. However, it was my first mobile gaming live stream and I needed to take these bumps! Even so, we had a great time chatting about the differences between Dr. Mario World and its predecessor, shared embarrassing stories, and had a cool chat about music and how it’s impacted our lives in negative ways! Also, before the stream crapped out, I was able to sneak in a bit of music vinyl show-and-tell!
Gris was a game that was not on my radar. Due to my past negative experiences with games cut from a similar cloth such as Journey, I wasn’t planning on picking up Gris. However, the game received some strong buzz close to home. Kris and Rachel from Double Jumploved it, with Rachel going so far as naming it her game of the year. As a nod to my friends while also taking the opportunity to expand my horizons, I found myself falling into the world of Gris.