Justin Nation Avatar Image

Justin Nation

Windsor, PA
MAMEiac
MAMEiac
MAMEiac
MAMEiac

Favorite Games:
  • Mario Series
  • Civilization Series
  • Diablo Series

540 games reviewed
72.4 average score
75 median score
61.7% of games recommended

Justin Nation's Reviews

Strangely enough this isn't my first rodeo, back in the day I wrote for the N64HQ as well as a few other outlets on freelance gigs but then when the HQ closed I decided to step it up and started The 64 Source. As the first word of a follow-up system to the N64 began to swirl I then decided to venture out into completely new territory and started OperatioN2000, where I had very little regular reputable news to share. With no other options I decided create my own content focused on profiling key developers and their current relationship with Nintendo or "dream games" where I saw opportunities for Nintendo to dust off classics or recently-made games and do something new with them on improved hardware. This was all going pretty well until my wife and I decided to have our first child and I then decided that it was time to hang it up and focus on my family. As I closed down both sites I did decide to partner with Billy Berghammer, another former N64HQ writer, who had created his own site, PlanetN2000. We agreed to move over the relevant content from the older sites to his and on top of that I had taken a grad school class in programming in ColdFusion and decided to offer to code the front-end and back-end for a new version of his site. Through these efforts the newer and more complete Planet GameCube was born! While I would occasionally contribute to that site, helping do things like working out Louie the Cat doing rumors and other odd things, I eventually decided to stop as my family obligations grew. While I had continued to follow Nintendo through both the Wii and Wii U eras my TV time was limited enough that I began playing more PC games again. It is in the PC space that I began to play a number of independent games and they started to be the games I enjoyed the most. Between their lower price, their often less traditional gameplay and approach, and their great variety I was hooked! With the launch of the Nintendo Switch I was already excited by the possibilities. The portability factor alone meant that I would have far more options and places I could play away from the TV, and games like Breath of the Wild looked impressive. With my oldest daughter poised to start her senior year in high school and my youngest finishing out junior high I started to see an opportunity to get back into amateur games journalism once again with what is now Nintendo World Report as well but I'd initially just thought about writing some editorials periodically. Then, right before the launch of the system, Nintendo had their Nindie-focused presentation and I saw my two most beloved gaming worlds colliding. The games I had been playing on my PC could now be played in a portable way and on Nintendo hardware! Being the type who tends to work against the normal current the concept behind Nindie Spotlight was born!
Sort by: Page 2 of 55
8 / 10.0 - Pang Adventures
Jan 4, 2019

Complementing already solid shooting gameplay with a terrific graphical overhaul, some smart new elements, and a provision for local co-op Pang Adventures is a joy for a vintage gamer like me to play. Familiar and yet modern, challenging and yet fair, it starts out a bit slowly but doesn’t take too long before it starts making you work to complete those levels. Remaking classics is undoubtedly a challenge, forcing you to balance a sense of nostalgia with a need to keep things fresh. For the most part the folks at DotEmu have knocked this one out of the park, and with it’s pocketbook-friendly price it’s easy to recommend to any retro gaming or shooting fan.

Read full review

In the end The Aquatic Adventure of the Last Human is a decent but bare bones Metroidvania experience whose greatest asset is just being a little different. People who like to be challenged may find the tough bosses to be a fun test of skill but the dead periods in between as you figure out where to go would probably detract from the enjoyment for them. It’s not a bad title, it’s just hard to get excited about it when there are just better and more fleshed out titles available in the eShop.

Read full review

5 / 10.0 - Xenon Valkyrie+
Jan 3, 2019

If you’re really interested in a more minimalist take on roguelikes you may find Xenon Valkyrie+ to your liking. Just understand that it’s very much a no-frills experience that has issues with balance and variety, never really feeling like it nails any particular aspect completely. In general, I’d say you’d be better served finding one of the many better alternatives in the genre on the system.

Read full review

6 / 10.0 - Uncanny Valley
Dec 31, 2018

Overall, Uncanny Valley is a bit of a gamble, banking on drawing you in with the initial weirdness and sense of unease, and that being enough to then sustain your interest as you continue to attack the game from different angles in search of a better outcome. I have no doubt some people will enjoy the mystery and the investigation of it all, exploring choices in the hopes of better seeing the big picture. For everyone else, though, either interest will wane before the first runthrough is completed or when it becomes clear that a fair amount of repetition will be in order to understand what exactly is going on.

Read full review

8 / 10.0 - Tiny Metal
Dec 31, 2018

It seems like with the release of the Multiplayer patch Tiny Metal is finally meeting its potential, though to be clear the support isn’t terribly robust by any means. The core gameplay is certainly there, and should please strategy fans, but the Campaign’s story isn’t terribly interesting and the computer AI won’t likely impress strategy veterans. Assuming you’re able to coordinate with someone online to set up a lobby and match up the multiplayer patch should make for a great additional feature, but if you’re just looking for a random match-up keep in mind your enjoyment will be subject to some luck both in terms of finding a match and it being satisfying.

Read full review

7.5 / 10.0 - Odium to the Core
Dec 29, 2018

This is absolutely a title for people who enjoy some pretty extreme challenges and can deal with the frustrations that come along for the ride. It’s not terribly expensive, has a fantastic look, and sports a pretty killer soundtrack. Just to go with its control simplicity is a fair amount of aggravation so it isn’t something I could recommend to just anyone without providing a fair amount of warning.

Read full review

6.5 / 10.0 - Omega Strike
Dec 29, 2018

If you’re looking for a decent run and gun experience with a hint of puzzling thrown in Omega Strike isn’t a bad option, just don’t expect many surprises along the way. It has no major flaws to speak of, is designed reasonably well, and puts up a bit of a challenge in spots, especially when save points get a bit spread out. There are definitely more ambitious titles already on the eShop but in a pinch this makes for some decent variety, especially if you are looking for something a bit old school.

Read full review

7.5 / 10.0 - Razed
Dec 24, 2018

If you don’t mind the aggravation and can get into the zone there’s plenty to do, especially given how many upgrade elements as there are hidden even in the earliest levels. You won’t be able to get at them initially, you’ll lack the unlocked power-ups to do so, but if you want to always be putting your best foot forward you’ll need to seek these out a little off the beaten and obvious path or even in some cases hiding in plain sight. It’s absolutely a challenge and is full of colorful visual flair, but it’s also not as polished as the best runners on the system, making it recommended for the right audience but with some caution.

Read full review

6 / 10.0 - Viviette
Dec 24, 2018

If you’re down for a challenge and some frustrations, and enjoy the thought of turning out the lights and enjoying some creepiness, it’s not a bad experience. You may find the puzzles to be intriguing but also don’t be surprised if you find yourself needing to hit a walkthrough to figure something out, though that’s not unusual for adventure titles in general I suppose. I just wish its use of horror and suspense lived up to its initial promise, rather than just being something you need to deal with in roughly the same way throughout.

Read full review

7.5 / 10.0 - Mana Spark
Dec 22, 2018

Despite my complaints I was surprised at how much the loop of Mana Spark got me hooked. There's some smart tactical combat here that's challenging in a different sort of way, the need to make use of the environment and your secondary item to lure enemies around as a method to kill them is fun and a bit different. While it is lacking in polish and won't appeal to people looking for more twitchy shooter-style fun Mana Spark does manage to carve out a place for itself as a solid alternative for people looking for a roguelike with a slower pace and some smart gameplay.

Read full review

Sort by: Page 2 of 55