All posts by Mr. Panda

Mr. Panda is a lifelong fan of Nintendo. Having started playing video games at a very young age, he has since collected every major Nintendo console and handheld. He even had a video game themed wedding, which featured centerpieces based on Smash Bros. trophies before amiibo was even announced. He loves to share his opinions of games and wants to help you make informed decisions. You can follow him on Twitter @MrPanda2002. Enjoy, leave feedback, and game on!

Nintendo’s Switch Presentation: My Roller Coaster of Highlights

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with my thoughts on the Nintendo Switch Presentation. It really was a roller coaster of highlights for me, and there was a lot to digest. Please check out what I thought! Hint: I’ve already preordered one.

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Merry Switchmas

Nintendo finally held its long awaited press conference for its upcoming console/handheld hybrid, the Nintendo Switch. The company revealed the system’s $299.99 price tag and its March 3 release date. Nintendo also announced quite a few games. Here are my strongest positive and negative reactions to the Switch Presentation.


Super Mario Odyssey

Imagine a modern urban setting with your typical skyscraper, a theater, a store called “Crazy Cap,” and a street sign for Dixie St. The only indication of which game world you’re in are the words, “New Donk City.” Pan down to the streets where a taxi passes by. Suddenly, a manhole cover begins to shake and out pops… Mario? This is how the new Super Mario Odyssey trailer started, and I love it!

The game will feature an large open sandbox world akin to Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine. I adore

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Pokémon Sun and Moon (3DS) Review

Hey everyone, Mr. Panda here with my review of Pokemon Sun and Moon for the 3DS! It’s been an exciting year for the series, and the 7th Generation is here to cap off the 20th Anniversary in the best-possible way! Check out my review and see why Sun and Moon are worth the hype!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

The Pokémon Series Evolves

The original Game Boy Pokémon games inspired a generation to be the very best like no one ever was. Worldwide, trainers set forth on an adventure to capture and raise the titular Pocket Monsters. Twenty years later, the series remains as strong as ever, spawning dozens of sequels and hundreds of Pokémon. Pokémon Sun and Moon cap off the series’ yearlong anniversary celebration and show us how far the franchise has come. Not only does Pokémon’s seventh generation provide a robust execution of the game’s ever-growing mechanics, but it also challenges the traditional structure of every other mainline entry, resulting in a fresh evolution of the series.

pokemon-sun-moon-hold Cue The Lion King

If you’ve ever donned a Pokémon trainer’s cap, Sun and Moon’s base gameplay won’t surprise you. For those uninitiated, you play as a young trainer and raise unique creatures known as Pokémon. By capturing them…

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Why I’m Excited for Nintendo Switch

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with my thoughts on the Nintendo Switch! Here are 5 reasons why I’m excited about Nintendo’s upcoming system! Check it out, and let me know what you think about the Switch so far!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Switching it Up

It finally happened. Nintendo revealed their upcoming system, Nintendo Switch. The trailer was under four minutes long, but it was enough to get me hyped up for it. Here are five reasons why I’m excited for the Nintendo Switch.

1. Hybrid System

I love handhelds. The Nintendo 3DS is one of my favorite gaming systems as was the Nintendo DS before it. I appreciate the ability to play games wherever I want, especially while I’m commuting or traveling. Even at home, I actually prefer the 3DS or Wii U’s off-TV play because I can play in any room.

Thus, I was thrilled to hear that the Nintendo Switch would be a hybrid system, allowing for both home console and handheld capabilities. While playing on the TV, the “Joy-Grip” controller looks like a standard huge controller with two removable sides, lovingly called the “Joy-Con.” When the Joy-Con sides…

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Yo-kai Watch 2: Bony Spirits/Fleshy Souls (3DS) Review

Oh my swirls! Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of Yo-kai Watch 2: Bony Spirits/Fleshy Souls for the Nintendo 3DS! This Japanese monster-collecting RPG phenomenon carries its own unique, quirky brand of humor, setting it apart from the Pokemon series. Featuring hundreds of spirits to collect and a time-travel story spanning 60 years, this sequel improves upon the original game, but is it enough to make an impact? Check out my review to find out!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Build a Supernatural Entourage

The Western release of the original Yo-kai Watch for Nintendo 3DS finally brought Level-5’s Japanese monster-collecting RPG phenomenon overseas. The first game had flaws, notably its battle system, monster-befriending mechanics, and fragmented story progression. While the game gained a following, it didn’t live up to the lofty precedents from its home country. Despite this, Nintendo and Level-5 have given the franchise another chance in the West with Yo-kai Watch 2 for 3DS. À la Pokémon, the game has two versions: Bony Spirits and Fleshy Souls. Each come with its own set of exclusive monsters but are otherwise similar. While it is easy to compare this series to Pokémon, Yo-kai Watch is its own unique breed. With general gameplay improvements over the original and plenty of new quirky ghouls, Yo-kai Watch 2 may find a home in the hearts of monster-collecting fans.


Yo-kai Watch 2’s story…

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Monster Hunter Generations (3DS) Review

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of Monster Hunter Generations for the 3DS! The original Monster Hunter inspired a new genre of battling huge monsters in epic boss battles. After four mainline games and a bunch of expansions/spinoffs, the series is celebrating its history with a novel adventure featuring new playstyles, special attacks, and the ability to play as a cat! And of course, brand new monsters! Check out my review to find out how what I thought of the latest hunt!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

The Hunt is On

The Monster Hunter series began on the PlayStation 2 and defined its own unique genre of giant creature battling action role-playing game. Its signature gameplay loop of hunting monsters, carving their bodies, and forging new armor has since been replicated in games such as God Eater and Final Fantasy Explorers. Nevertheless, Monster Hunter continues to build off of its own strengths and expand it with each game. After four mainline games and a number of expansions and spinoffs, Monster Hunter Generations for the Nintendo 3DS brings them all together. MHG collects fan-favorite monsters, village hubs, and characters in one adventure while introducing new hunting variations and special moves that completely alter a hunter’s playstyle. With hundreds of quests and a robust online multiplayer mode, MHG is a monstrous force to be reckoned.


If you liked any of the recent Monster Hunter offerings such as

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice (3DS) Review

HOLD IT! Hey everyone, Mr. Panda here with a review of game from one of my favorite series, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice. This series means a lot to me, and I am always very excited when a new game finally comes out! Find out what a big Ace Attorney fan thinks of the sixth installment of this wacky turnabout courtroom franchise by reading my review! Please feel free to leave any comments about the game or series as well! Thanks and enjoy! TAKE THAT!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

All Rise!

The original Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney began life on the Game Boy Advance in 2001 as a Japan-only release. The courtroom-themed point-and-click visual novel had a tightly-knit narrative featuring hotheaded lawyers, finger-pointing antics, contradictory witness testimonies, murder mysteries, and a wacky supporting cast. Capcom eventually made two more games, completing the original trilogy. Thanks to the Nintendo DS’ touchscreen, point-and-click adventures became more popular leading to more western releases, including the Zero Escape, Professor Layton, and Ace Attorney series. Luckily, the courtroom dramedy found a following, leading to the releases of a new set of titles, Apollo Justice and Dual Destinies. The sixth game of the mainline series, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice, completes a new trilogy, tying up some loose ends and character arcs, while providing the same excellent “turnabout” mystery plots that the series is known for.


Spirit of Justice

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Zero Escape: Zero Time Dilemma (3DS) Review

Hey everyone, Mr. Panda here with a review of the thrilling conclusion of the Zero Escape series, Zero Time Dilemma! This mash-up of mystery visual novel and puzzling escape rooms finishes what 999 and Virtue’s Last Reward began. With all-new and returning characters locked in a facility by a mysterious masked man, Zero, you are tasked to seek a way out. How does this game stack up to the time-bending thrillers that came before it? Find out in my review of Zero Time Dilemma!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Seek a Way Out

The Zero Escape series began on the Nintendo DS with 999: Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors, a mystery thriller about nine characters trying to escape a ship. The game featured branching decisions, puzzling escape sequences, and huge twists that turned the story upside-down. Despite its commercial failure in Japan, the series was well-met with critics, leading to a sequel, Virtue’s Last Reward, on Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation Vita. The game built upon the intriguing plot of the original and brought new characters, more escape rooms, and a bigger emphasis on science fiction. Again, the game didn’t sell well, which led to series creator, Kotaro Uchikoshi, putting the series on hold indefinitely. Luckily, fan response and a desire to finish what he started led Uchikoshi to finally create the conclusive third game of the Zero Escape trilogy, Zero Time Dilemma.


Zero Time Dilemma

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Pokémon GO (Mobile) Review

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of the mobile app that’s taken the world by storm, Pokémon GO! You can now travel across the land, searching far and wide for Pokémon using your smartphone. Flocks of trainers have been coming together through this app, making new friends and forming new rivalries. As a Pokémon fan who’s grown up with the series since it came out and have never let go, I’ve always dreamed of a game like this. Find out what the craze is all about in my review! Please share any thoughts and stories of your experiences in the comments section too!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

The World is Your Safari Zone

Pokémon GO takes the evergreen Pokémon series and converts it into an accessible and addictive mobile game. The free-to-play app has already affected the world in such a unique way, bringing millions of people outside to capture creatures using their smartphones. Interesting news headlines have emerged detailing unusual events regarding Pokémon GO’s widespread popularity. Pictures and stories of trainers’ journeys have gone viral through social media. The app has even brought people together, with players meeting up to look for Pokémon and making new friends along the way. Pokémon GO is a special breed, and the big question is what about this game makes it work.


The premise of Pokémon GO is simple: travel across the land, searching far and wide for creatures known as Pokémon. Pokémon GO uses a smartphone’s GPS tracking functionality to locate where you are in the real…

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The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD (Wii U) Review

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD for the Wii U! This game was originally released on the Wii and GameCube in 2006. In preparation for the newest entry to the Zelda franchise, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Nintendo has remastered Twilight Princess in HD! Find out if the hero of time stands the test of time in my review! Please leave any comments you have on this game and share if there’s anything you’d like to see carry on to the newest Zelda game! Thanks and enjoy!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Shining through the Twilight

The long-awaited TheLegend of Zelda: Twilight Princess first launched with the Nintendo Wii. It was a great game to sell Nintendo’s new console, bringing a darker story and refined visuals to the Zelda series. In preparation of the franchise’s 30th anniversary and the release of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Twilight Princess was remastered for the Nintendo Wii U. There are only a few new gameplay features, but the HD remaster looks crisper than ever and is just as fun to play as it was back in 2006.


The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD’s story is unchanged from the original. Its story should be familiar to anyone who has played other mainline games in the series. Link is a farm boy living in Ordon Village. Following an attack by shadowy beasts, he is suddenly transformed into…

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Rhythm Heaven Megamix (3DS) Review

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here! During E3 2016’s Treehouse Live stream, Nintendo surprised its audience by stealth launching the long-awaited Rhythm Heaven Megamix! Featuring a huge collection of rhythm minigames, catchy music, and a wacky ensemble of characters, Rhythm Heaven Megamix is sure to delight. Find out all about it in my review of this quirky 3DS game, and please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

A Musical Slice of Heaven

Rhythm Heaven Megamix is the 4th game in the Rhythm Heaven series. Like its predecessors, RHM features plenty of quirky, musical minigames that test your ability to follow a beat. Although the game is filled with a breadth of enjoyable content, a sizable portion of it is borrowed from the first 3 games in the series. While it’s unfortunate that this game is mostly a best-of compilation, new challenges and repurposed minigames give both newcomers and veterans a reason to get back into the rhythm.

RHM_Glee.png Brand new rhythm games join classic favorites in one portable compilation!


The gameplay of RHM centers on rhythm games, in which you press buttons to the beat of the song. The games vary, both in terms of playstyle and music. Some games have you follow simple cues that go along with the song while others ask you to…

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Mr. Panda Meets Mario – My Meeting with Charles Martinet

It is my absolute pleasure to share the story of how I met Charles Martinet, the voice of Mario! This was a magical experience that fulfilled one of my childhood dreams. A full panel interview is also included, revealing facts that you may not have known about the legendary voice behind Nintendo’s most popular mascot! There’s also some special video messages by Mario himself to all of you, so please check it out and enjoy!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

A Weekend with Charles Martinet

I had the honor of meeting Charles Martinet, the voice of Mario, Luigi, Wario, Waluigi, and so many other video game characters, at Indy PopCon 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana. The following is a brief testimony of my experience followed by a transcript of several panel interviews with Charles Martinet.

Charles Martinet Headshot

My Magical Experiencewith Charles Martinet

I felt nothing but excitement knowing that I was finally going to meet the man behind the voice of Super Mario, Charles Martinet. Ever since I had first heard him in Super Mario 64, I have been a huge fan of his work. That iconic voice saying “Here we go!” and “Wahoo!” has echoed in my ears throughout my many years of gaming. He was one of my childhood heroes, and the opportunity to meet him fulfilled one of my biggest dreams in life.

As soon as I walked…

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The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Comprehensive Preview and Analysis

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here! Nintendo just streamed nearly 7 hours of gameplay for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I watched every single minute of it and put together a comprehensive preview and analysis of all of the information that was shared. I even snuck in some theories and speculation on what’s happening in this world, what we can expect from the game, and when exactly BotW could take place in the official Zelda timeline! Please check out my preview and share any thoughts on how you feel about the game thus far, favorite parts, whether you’ll buy it day one, or any theories you may have regarding the game! I put my heart and soul into this post, so please read and enjoy!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Preview

Nintendo delivered on their promise to bring a full day of their newest Zelda game at E3 2016. Each stream featured a great amount of footage focusing on different aspects of the gameplay, from exploration to combat. Nintendo kicked off with a gorgeous trailer of the game. Read on to find out more about the new gameplay, enhanced equipment system, exciting combat, expansive map, puzzle-filled Shrines, special Rune powers, unique aesthetics, and amiibo support. I’ll also be examining other things such as the voice in the trailer, where this is in the world, the Sheikah technology, and where this could possibly fit on the timeline. Get ready for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild!

BotW_Art.jpg Promotional art for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Initial Gameplay Demo

The game demo begins with a female voice, speaking with full…

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Banjo-Kazooie (N64) Review

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of the classic 3D collectathon platformer, Banjo-Kazooie! This Rare-developed game first came out on the Nintendo 64 in 1998, and has received several remakes and sequels since! How does this hold up today? Should the 3D collectathon platformer genre return? Please read on and share your thoughts in the comments!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

A Dream Project Come True

When the Nintendo 64 came out, Super Mario 64 jumpstarted a genre of games known by fans as “3D collectathon platfomers.”  They were similar to sidescrolling platformers, except featuring bigger 3D open worlds that players could explore.  As the word “collectathon” implies, these games tasked players to amass large amounts of collectibles to progress.  UK-based developers at Rare wanted a piece of the action and repurposed one of their unreleased RPG adventure titles, Project Dream, into their own 3D platformer.  Following in the footsteps of SM64, they created explorable 3D environments, lovable mascots with an arsenal of moves, and loads of in-game collectibles.  Little did Rare’s developers know that they would create one of the most beloved video games of all time and one of the pinnacles of the 3D collectathon platformer: Banjo-Kazooie.


Banjo-Kazooie has a simple story that invokes a fairytale-like…

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Mini Mario & Friends: amiibo Challenge (Wii U/3DS) Review

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of the free-to-download Mini Mario & Friends: amiibo Challenge for both the Nintendo Wii U and the Nintendo 3DS! This entry in the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series requires Nintendo’s popular toys-to-life figurines, amiibo, to unlock characters and stages. Is this the amiibo game we’ve been waiting for? Find out if it’s worth your time and money in my review! Please feel free to leave any thoughts about the game and amiibo in the comments section!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Buy More amiibo!

Nintendo created amiibo, figurines of Nintendo characters that can be scanned into games to unlock features, to compete with other “toys-to-life” games such as Skylanders and Disney Infinity.  While amiibo are nice collectibles, they are rarely used in an engrossing way.  Nintendo’s first game requiring amiibo, amiibo tap: Nintendo’s Greatest Bits, was nothing more than glorified game demos.  Its second foray was Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival, which merely used the figures as board game pawns.  Neither of these titles even came close to matching the thrill of competitors’ games in which scanning a toy allowed you to play as that character throughout the game.  Finally, Mini Mario & Friends amiibo Challenge arrived onto the Wii U and 3DS as a third attempt at being an amiibo-required game as well as a sequel to the long-running Mario vs. Donkey Kong series.

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Fire Emblem Fates (3DS) Review

Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a fresh review of all 3 versions of Fire Emblem Fates, just in time for the European and Australian releases this week! That’s right. I go over Birthright, Conquest, and Revelation in a special 3-in-1 review! Read on to find out which version is right for you! And don’t forget to comment on which side you will ultimately choose: Hoshido or Nohr? The fate is in your hands.

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

A Strategy Epic Worth Playing Thrice

Following the success of Fire Emblem Awakening, Nintendo and Intelligent Systems were poised to make another new installment in the turn-based strategy RPG series.  The question was what direction to take the next game.  They could either continue the more casual-friendly Awakening style of gameplay, or they could bring the series back to its more difficult roots found in its classic titles.  In a stroke of genius, Intelligent Systems came up with creating two full-length games, presenting different gameplay styles and telling two sides of the same story.  They did not stop there, eventually offering a third campaign as DLC intended to finish the story.  The end result is a game spanning three 40-hour journeys, gameplay that appeals to a variety of players, and an experience worth playing thrice.


Fire Emblem is a series that is typically story- and character-driven, and Fates provides…

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