Games reviews roundup: Splatoon 2; Mighty Gunvolt Burst; Kirbys Blowout Blast


Shooting and platform classics are reworked for the Nintendo Switch with excellent results, while the 3DS gets a high-speed nostalgia trip

Splatoon 2

Nintendo Switch, Nintendo, cert: 7

Following its debut for the Wii U in 2015, Nintendo is looking to Splatoon to make its mark on its latest console, Switch. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it has opted not to radically alter a successful concept. The gameplay remains straightforward: players shoot ink at every surface with paint-themed weaponry in order to dominate the map with their colour. It is simple, but conceals a surprising amount of tactical depth that rewards long-term play. For this sequel, Nintendo has added extra modes; the co-op Salmon Run, as well as a single player. Both do a great job of introducing the games mechanics to players, while alongside the addition of new weapons some from the original have been tweaked and improved. But some frustrations remain, with the inability to switch weapons mid-match or in the lobby somewhat tiresome. These are quibbles, however, and Splatoon 2 is a great addition to the Switch roster. Admittedly it feels more like a reboot than a sequel but nonetheless offers hours of colourful fun for hardcore and casual players alike. AC

Mighty Gunvolt Burst: an essential purchase for Mega Man fans.

Mighty Gunvolt Burst

3DS, Inti Creates, cert: 3

When Capcom retired the Mega Man series, two successors emerged Comcepts deeply troubled Mighty No 9 and Inti Createss excellent Azure Striker Gunvolt. In 2014, Mighty Gunvolt fused the two successors together in an enjoyably simple byte-sized 8-bit adventure. This sequel, however, is significantly more developed. Players select Beck or Gunvolt and take on eight (plus a further five unlockable) levels filed with power-granting bosses, each with signature weaknesses. Unique to Burst (other than the risky burst combo that grants a score for sequential point-blank kills) is the bewilderingly vast customisation system that enables the editing of almost every aspect of a characters abilities and allows for somecreative combinations. So despite being born out of two spinoffs, Mighty Gunvolt Burst actually feels more authentically Mega Man than either of those titles and is an essential purchase for fans of Capcoms celebrated series. RH

Kirbys Blowout Blast: short, but fun.

Kirbys Blowout Blast

3DS, Nintendo, cert: 3

An enhanced port of a mini-game featured in last years Kirby: Planet Robobot,

Blowout Blast is part of Nintendos 25th anniversary celebrations for its pink, inflatable mascot. Unlike most of the Kirby canon, this isnt a conventional platformer though, instead favouring speed challenges through 2.5D worlds. Each stage scores players on time taken, coins collected, enemies defeated, and damage taken. In classic Kirby fashion, the levels feel almost insultingly simple to begin with, but in trying to achieve a gold ranking in each one, the hidden challenge emerges. Each chapter is really a puzzle and figuring out which enemies to inhale using Kirbys vacuum-like powers, and when to expel them in a chain of rainbow-infused destruction against other foes, proves surprisingly intricate. Although its short more difficult EX versions are unlockable, doubling the content, while striving for perfect scores will keep more hardcore players well entertained. MK

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