Critiquing the eShop Selects for February 2024

The eShop Selects for February 2024 marks the beginning of a new approach for Nintendo Life. This year, not only did the staff and contributors at Nintendo Life select their top three eShop games through an internal vote, but readers were also given the opportunity to vote for their favorite eShop-only game of the month. It’s definitely a refreshing change that brings more engagement from the readers, although it does raise some concerns about the credibility of the results.

Let’s take a look at the games that didn’t quite make the cut for the eShop selects. While second and third place are usually included in the article, it is interesting to note that the staff decided to give a special mention to Turnip Boy, a game that received a 6/10 rating. It’s commendable that they highlighted a game that may not have been the best in terms of reviews, but still provided some fun. However, this decision raises questions about the consistency of the criteria used to select the games.

One of the games that made it to the eShop Selects list is Bahnsen Knights, the third installment in the Pixel Pulp series. This game, created by novelist Nico Saraintaris and artist Fernando Martinez Ruppel, combines the Choose Your Own Adventure-books with mesmerizing pixel art. The article claims that it might just be the best game in the series, but it fails to provide enough evidence or explanation to support this claim. A more in-depth analysis of the game’s strengths and weaknesses would have been appreciated.

Hitman: Blood Money, often regarded as the pinnacle of the Hitman series, also made it to the eShop Selects list. The article mentions that the game feels its age in some areas, but there is no further elaboration on what these areas might be. It would have been valuable to delve deeper into the game’s mechanics and analyze how it holds up in comparison to newer titles in the series. Instead, the article simply states that it received an 8/10 rating in the review.

The first winner of the eShop Selects votes, according to Nintendo Life staff, is Lil’ Guardsman. Described as a cute version of Papers, Please with the style and humor of Monkey Island, Lil’ Guardsman seems like an intriguing game. However, the article again falls short of providing sufficient details about the game’s standout features or what makes it deserving of the top spot. It would have been beneficial to include quotes or excerpts from the review to validate the staff’s decision.

According to the reader’s choice poll, Arcade Archives Rainbow Islands emerged as the winner for January 2024. The article acknowledges that sometimes you just can’t beat the classics, and Hamster has done an amazing job of re-releasing classic games on the Switch. While this statement is commendable, it doesn’t delve into the reasons why Rainbow Islands is beloved today as much as it was over 35 years ago. How does the game hold up in terms of gameplay, graphics, and overall enjoyment? These are questions that could have been explored.

The article briefly mentions the process through which the eShop Selects top three are determined. The Nintendo Life staff votes on their favorite titles from a list compiled by the editorial team. The qualifying games must have been released as digital-only Nintendo Switch eShop titles in that specific month and must have been reviewed on Nintendo Life. While this process seems fair and reasonable, it would have been interesting to know more about how the review scores are determined and what factors are taken into consideration.

The eShop Selects for February 2024 give a glimpse into the top games chosen by the staff at Nintendo Life and the readers. While the new approach of involving readers in the selection process is commendable, the article falls short of providing detailed analysis and explanations for the choices made. A deeper exploration of the games’ strengths and weaknesses, as well as the criteria used for selection, would have made for a more informative and engaging article.

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