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 and check out his videos at http://www.youtube.com/mrpanda2002. Enjoy, leave feedback, and game on!

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Top 10 Tracks


Hi everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a list of my top ten tracks in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe for the Nintendo Switch! What are your favorites? Let me know and enjoy the list!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has taken the world by storm on the Nintendo Switch. Though there are no new racetracks exclusive to the upgraded version, the game includes all 16 of the original’s DLC tracks. And I have to say, a good number of those tracks are amazing, so it’s great to see them reach a wider audience.

Here is thevideo versionfor your viewing pleasure!

Crystal Dragon and I have been enjoying the game together and have been discussing which of the game’s novel tracks are our favorites. We put together a list of the Top 10 Tracks in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe! Note that we didn’t include retro tracks, even though some refurbished courses are fantastic. (Besides, Baby Park would win anyway.) We also didn’t include battle arenas, though we do love that Urchin Underpass based on Splatoon. Now that you know our parameters, enjoy our…

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I Am Setsuna (Switch) Review


Hi everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of Square Enix’s I Am Setsuna for the Nintendo Switch! It’s a throwback to classic SNES RPGs like Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy, but what’s it like? Find out what I thought in my review!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Winter is Coming

If you’re a fan of old-school Super Nintendo RPGs, then I Am Setsuna may have caught your eye at least once. RPG juggernaut Square Enix formed the studio Tokyo RPG Factory, specifically to develop throwbacks to that era, and I Am Setsuna is its debut project. While there are clear comparisons to the time-travel classic Chrono Trigger, this game manages to stand out from its inspirations, but not necessarily in the best way.

Here is my video review for your viewing pleasure!

The story follows the mercenary Endir, who is tasked to kill Setsuna, a young woman destined to save the monster-infested world by acting as its sacrifice. As events unfold, you find yourself in the band of heroes who will assist Setsuna on her journey to the Last Lands. The story might sound familiar if you’ve played Final Fantasy X, but this tale is a more…

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SNES Classic Games Wish List


Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a special feature! Here’s the 30 games I’d like to see most on the rumored SNES Classic!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

The NES Classic Edition has come and gone. Though many of us have missed out on obtaining this prized miniature console with 30 NES games, a rumor from Eurogamer suggests that Nintendo could already be looking at an SNES Classic Edition by the end of the year. I would absolutely love to see 30 Super Nintendo games all in one tiny system. But what games to include? I created a wish list of the games I’d like to see make it to this hypothetical system. Though there are some unrealistic choices, I put some thought into what games would be more likely than others, so there aren’t any licensed games on here. Nevertheless, there’s a lot of great titles to choose from! Here’s my top 30!

I also put together a video version of this list for your enjoyment!

  1. Super Mario World

Let’s face it. This list wouldn’t be complete…

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Video: Snake Pass – 2 Players with Separate Joy-Cons


Hi everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a special video of me playing Snake Pass for the Nintendo Switch! It’s no ordinary playthrough, as you’ll see. It’s a 2-player co-op playthrough, with each of us holding separate Joy-Cons for a unique co-op experience! an we coordinate our controls and guide Noodle the snake to collectibles? How long until we slither to their doom? Find out in our video! Enjoy!

Spoilercast – Zelda: Breath of the Wild


Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a special spoilercast about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild! We discuss the game’s story, characters, dungeons, and ending. Needless to say, this is a SPOILER WARNING, so listen to this after you’ve beaten the game. Without further ado, enjoy the spoilercast!

Video Review: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild


Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a special treat! Here is my premiere review video of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild for the Nintendo Switch! Don’t worry. It’s spoiler-free. Enjoy!

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Switch Review


Hi everyone! Mr. Panda here with a review of one of the biggest launch games in Nintendo history, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild! A dawn of a new day in Zelda history is upon us, and I’ve explored the open world to see what I can uncover. The experience really is something else, and I’m excited to share what has been quite a review to write. Here’s my spoiler-free review of Breath of the Wild for the Nintendo Switch!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Open Your Eyes

The Legend of Zelda series producer Eiji Aonuma introduced in 2013 a new project that would “rethink the conventions of Zelda.” Skyward Sword was a step in that direction, blurring the lines between dungeon and overworld. A Link Between Worlds further paved the way, allowing players to explore dungeons in any order by offering every item upfront. But that wasn’t enough. Aonuma desired to see a world that was open to you from the start – one with no single correct track. With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the team at Nintendo has achieved creating a fully open world that is truly breathtaking.

The theme of Breath of the Wild (BotW) is discovery. As such, I will avoid delving into any specifics, keeping this spoiler-free. Rather, I will offer the gist of what brings this game and all of its moving parts to life.

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Nintendo Switch First Impressions


Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with my first impressions on the Nintendo Switch! Yes, I finally got Nintendo’s coveted new console, so I’m here to weigh in my thoughts on the system, controllers, design, and some games. Happy Switch Week!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Out to Launch

The Nintendo Switch has arrived! I’ve been excited about the console and its upcominggames since we first heard about it months ago. After a frustrating launch experience, I finally got the new console, and I’ve been playing it a lot. The big question is: does it live up to the hype? After a full weekend of the Switch, here are my thoughts on the console, controller, and launch games.

IMG_0234 It’s here!

Setup

The first unboxing revealed the key components of the system: the Joy-Con (L, left) and Joy-Con (R, right) controllers and the tablet-like Switch itself. Underneath lay the dock, the magical machine that delivers the system output to the television. The Joy-Grip, a makeshift controller that you can plug the Joy-Cons into, and some crucial HDMI and AC adapter cables comprised the rest of the included components.

IMG_0235.JPG I love that new console smell.

Before…

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Panda’s Picks: 10 Anticipated Switch Games


Hey everyone, Mr. Panda here with a list of my Top 10 Most Anticipated Nintendo Switch games, just in time for Switch Week! I’m sure many of you are as excited as I am about the Switch finally launching this Friday! Check out some games that I’m excited for, and let me know what you’re hyped for as well! Happy Switch Week!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Joy-Cons to the World!

The time has come! The Nintendo Switch will finally launch this Friday, and gamers worldwide will soon play with their shiny new console/handheld hybrid. I’ve already detailed why I’m excited for the Switch as well as my impressions from Nintendo’s January presentation. Now I’m turning my attention to the most important part of any console: the games. Here are my top 10 most anticipated Switch games!

10. Arms

Arms.jpg I hope One Piece’s Luffy joins in.

I wasn’t initially keen on Nintendo’s upcoming motion controlled fighting game, Arms. But the more I learned about it, the more I wanted the game in my… arms. This game may look like Wii Boxing, but the characters’ arms extend to hit their opponents, similarly to Mr. Fantastic. Consequently, it’s more reliant on solid punches rather than frantic arm-waving. Although I’m not the biggest fan of motion control, I’m interested…

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Fire Emblem Heroes (Mobile) Review


Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of the free-to-play Fire Emblem Heroes, available on iOS and Android! It’s a divisive game, combining the tactical RPG gameplay of the Fire Emblem series with what is essentially gambling for heroes you want. Find out what I thought of this long-running series’ transition to mobile in my review!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Small-Scale Strategy

Hot on the heels of Super Mario Runand Miitomo, Fire Emblem Heroes is Nintendo’s third big mobile offering. The Fire Emblem franchise has come a long way to earn this spot. Though the first entry shipped on the Famicom back in 1990, the first Western release was 2003’s Fire Emblem (a.k.a. The Blazing Blade), the seventh game. Thanks to the success of Fire Emblem Awakening and Fire Emblem Fates, the series has gained acclaim both inside and outside Japan. Fire Emblem Heroes is an attempt to capitalize on FE’s growing popularity, and it does so with simplified turn-based strategy and a costly hero-summoning system.

FireEmblemHeroes_Story.PNG No Fire Emblem crossover game would be complete without Marth.

Unlike other Fire Emblem games, FEH is light on story. Prince Alfonse and Princess Sharena of the Askr Kingdom must fight against the opposing Emblian Empire. Along the way, they…

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Fire Emblem Fates (3DS) Review Revisit


Hey everyone, Mr. Panda here with a review revisit of Fire Emblem Fates for Fire Emblem Week! It’s been almost a year since the three Fates games – Birthright, Conquest, and Revelation – came out on Nintendo 3DS. With Fire Emblem Heroes just on the horizon, it’s a great time to see how this title has held up. After a year, I unsurprisingly still love Fates for what it brought to the series. Check out my triple-packed review of all three games!

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.

Story

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

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Super Mario Run (Mobile) Review


Hey everyone, Mr. Panda here with a review of Super Mario Run, an auto-run platformer you can play on your smartphone! When Nintendo first announced its plan to make mobile games, people weren’t sure whether Nintendo would actually make a Mario game. Yet here we are with their second phone game starring their biggest mascot. Read on to find out what a huge Mario fan like me thinks of this mobile version!

Mr. Panda's Video Game Reviews

Mario’s Mobile Marvel

When Apple held its iPhone 7 event in September 2016, nobody could have guessed that Nintendo’s own Shigeru Miyamoto would come on stage to debut a new Mario game for smartphones. While Miitomo,Fire Emblem Heroes, and Niantic’s Pokémon GO signify visible steps for Nintendo’s mobile movement, witnessing the company’s most popular mascot grace the iPhone screen is still astonishing. Yet here we are with Super Mario Run, Mario’s take on the automatic runner genre.

super-mario-run-overworld Run Mario Run

If you’ve played an auto-run platformer before, you’ll understand the gameplay immediately. Mario automatically runs through the level, and you tap the screen to make him jump. You can tap multiple times to jump off walls or perform spin-jumps to give Mario extra air time. Otherwise, Mario independently chugs along on his own. Speed-altering blocks spice the game up, and unstompable deathtraps like Fire Bars prevent it…

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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.

HIGHS

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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