Warriors Orochi 4: Beginners Guide

Dynasty and Samurai Warriors join forces once more in Warriors Orochi 4. Here’s how to get started in this battle of the gods.

The Switch has no shortage of good hack-and-slash games, but with Fire Emblem Warriors and Hyrule Warriors solidly behind us, it’s about due for another. Enter Warriors Orochi 4, the next entry in the Warriors Orochi series that represents another Koei Tecmo-fest of characters we’ve seen in a million other Warriors games joining together to mow down massive fields of enemies in the most satisfying ways possible. If you’ve ever played a Dynasty or Samurai Warriors game and enjoyed playing as a certain character in it, trust me – they’re probably here in Warriors Orochi 4 somewhere, and they’re somehow completely unique from every other one of the 170 characters in this game. It’s quite a feat!

Worry not about jumping into Warriors Orochi no matter how much experience with any of these game series you have. Here’s a quick primer on how to get started playing …

Dynasty and Samurai Warriors join forces once more in Warriors Orochi 4. Here's how to get started in this battle of the gods.

The Switch has no shortage of good hack-and-slash games, but with Fire Emblem Warriors and Hyrule Warriors solidly behind us, it's about due for another. Enter Warriors Orochi 4, the next entry in the Warriors Orochi series that represents another Koei Tecmo-fest of characters we've seen in a million other Warriors games joining together to mow down massive fields of enemies in the most satisfying ways possible. If you've ever played a Dynasty or Samurai Warriors game and enjoyed playing as a certain character in it, trust me - they're probably here in Warriors Orochi 4 somewhere, and they're somehow completely unique from every other one of the 170 characters in this game. It's quite a feat!

Worry not about jumping into Warriors Orochi no matter how much experience with any of these game series you have. Here's a quick primer on how to get started playing the game.

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What is the Warriors Orochi series?

Warriors Orochi is a series of hack-and-slash games that mash-up characters from the Dynasty Warriors games and the Samurai Warriors games. The stages and story reflect the strange confluence of the two worlds, and many of the systems from previous entries have carried over into Warriors Orochi 4. For instance, series veterans will instantly feel at home commanding not just a single character, but a three-character team that works together to fight through massive waves of enemies. You can swap the front character at any time, allowing you to form powerful teams and change your strategy on the fly as the battle situation changes.

In addition, the series' relatively simple mechanics have been retained. You'll have light and heavy attacks and unique musou finisher moves that can devastate a battlefield. Though each character is unique, they are generally classified into one of three groups: Power, Technique, and Speed, that allows you to get an at-a-glance idea of what sort of character you'll be playing as.

There are a few changes from previous iterations, though...

What's new in Warriors Orochi 4?

Warriors Orochi 4 introduces a new focus on magic through the Sacred Treasures system, which is activated by pressing a trigger button and then using the regular attack buttons for special, magical attacks. Unlike your regular attacks, your magic is limited by a magic gauge that will need to be refilled to continue using attacks, so you can't simply spam these powerful moves. The system is still fairly simple and easy to use, as the types of attacks mapped to buttons when Sacred Treasures are activated mirror your normal light and heavy attacks in strength and type.

Who are all these characters?

Warriors Orochi 4 brings back every character from past Warriors Orochi games, along with five brand new characters. In total, there are 170 characters that are playable, and you can unlock every single one of them through normal gameplay. Characters from Dynasty Warriors 8 and Samurai Warriors 4-II will also join the roster.

The five new, original characters are:

  • Zeus (Power)
  • Athena (Technique)
  • Loki (Technique)
  • Ares (Speed)
  • Odin (Power)

How do I play?

In any given battle, you'll need to complete specific objectives such as capturing a certain area, defending it, defeating a large enemy, or similar. Take a look at your map to track down your next objective, and beware that sometimes it isn't obvious or that you'll have to backtrack some to get to it. If you're lost, try revisiting areas you already cleared.

To get where you're going you'll have to clear lots of enemies and allow me to reassure you that in Warriors Orochi 4, you'll rarely have trouble doing this. You can basically just spam attacks to demolish the small enemies in front of you, using basic and charge attacks. It's good to swap characters right after a charge attack to help chain moves together and fill your Musou gauge, and you should use Magic whenever your Magic gauge has enough juice in it, as these attacks are more powerful.

If you need to get somewhere faster, don't forget your mount button on RB + B!

If for some reason you do seem to be struggling, try revisiting previous areas to pull in some more experience and Growth Points, which you can then allocate to whatever character you wish. You can also check your equipment and see if you've acquired stronger weapons, or perhaps another character has a more powerful weapon that would better suit the challenge ahead. But for story purposes, this will rarely be a problem.

Additional tips

  • If you get a weapon with the Appraisal trait early on, I highly recommend you equip it and use it liberally. Appraisal allows you to get more, better weapons with more slots and traits, and early on especially it can help you get equipment that will let you mow through enemies far faster than you otherwise could.
  • At the end of each scenario, you can return to the menu and allocate Growth Points to characters, even ones who didn't participate in the battle that earned them. This is a great way to level up characters you want to play but who have fallen behind or to just pack all your points into a single character you want to be overpowered. Keeping a wide variety of characters leveled is key for a balanced team.
  • Want more characters? Just keep playing scenarios. There aren't any super secret unlocks in Warriors Orochi 4. If you play all the scenarios and complete objectives, you'll eventually collect all 170.
  • The same goes for unlocking Divine Forms. Keep playing, and you'll receive super-powered Divine Forms for certain characters that can be unleashed in battle and turn the tide instantly.
  • Because of the game allowing you to allocate levels, you should feel free to swap around your characters any time you're struggling. Every character plays a bit differently, uses different weapons, and has different strengths. If one doesn't work for you, just change it up for next time. With Growth Points, you can level a new character quickly when you find one that suits you.

How much does it cost?

Warriors Orochi 4 is out now for Nintendo Switch and costs $59.99.

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Any questions?

Still struggling to tear through the Warriors Orochi 4 battlefield? Let me know in the comments, and I'll help you out!

Nickelodeon Kart Racers: Everything you need to know

Nickelodeon Kart Racers brings a small but mighty cast of Nicktoon characters together for a zany racing event on the Nintendo Switch!

Need a burst of 90s cartoon nostalgia? Nickelodeon Kart Racers is trying to bring that to the Nintendo Switch by combining the familiar mechanics of kart racers like Mario Kart with a handful of Nicktoon characters. Though the roster is small and the gameplay doesn’t seem to stand out, from what we’ve seen so far, Nickelodeon Kart Racers appears to be a competent kart racer that will be great to play with kids.

Here’s everything we know about the game so far.

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What is Nickelodeon Kart Racers?

Nickelodeon Kart Racers is a racing game with a lot of similarities to Mario Kart, but featuring characters from various Nickelodeon kids TV shows. The game has a total of 24 tracks and 12 playable characters from (sadly) only four different Nickelodeon series. Ten characters at a time will race three laps around a track, with certain zany, Ni…

Nickelodeon Kart Racers brings a small but mighty cast of Nicktoon characters together for a zany racing event on the Nintendo Switch!

Need a burst of 90s cartoon nostalgia? Nickelodeon Kart Racers is trying to bring that to the Nintendo Switch by combining the familiar mechanics of kart racers like Mario Kart with a handful of Nicktoon characters. Though the roster is small and the gameplay doesn't seem to stand out, from what we've seen so far, Nickelodeon Kart Racers appears to be a competent kart racer that will be great to play with kids.

Here's everything we know about the game so far.

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What is Nickelodeon Kart Racers?

Nickelodeon Kart Racers is a racing game with a lot of similarities to Mario Kart, but featuring characters from various Nickelodeon kids TV shows. The game has a total of 24 tracks and 12 playable characters from (sadly) only four different Nickelodeon series. Ten characters at a time will race three laps around a track, with certain zany, Nickelodeon-themed obstacles causing mayhem as they do.

That's about all there is to it, but if you already love the kart racing shenanigans of Mario Kart or have kids around, then this may prove a unique spin on the genre they can enjoy.

What's special about Nickelodeon Kart Racers?

While Mario Kart has physical course obstacles, Nickelodeon Kart Racers uses, of course, slime. Scattered around each track are various pools of classic Nickelodeon green slime. Driving through them can fill up your kart's slime meter, which can then be spent to get a big speed boost. In certain scenarios, karts can also turn into big jet skis and sail at top speed across large pools of slime. These areas are typically large and open, so it's easy to get going really fast if you have enough slime power, speeding and sailing past your opponents.

That doesn't mean Nickelodeon Kart Racers skips the goofy items, though. We don't know exactly what all items are in the game or what they do, but like Mario Kart, Nickelodeon Kart Racers uses item boxes that can give players an edge. One item we've seen in a trailer looks like Tommy's bottle from Rugrats - other items seem to affect a player's slime meter.

Who can I play as?

Here are the playable characters in Nickelodeon Kart Racers:

  • SpongeBob (SpongeBob Squarepants)
  • Patrick (SpongeBob Squarepants)
  • Sandy (SpongeBob Squarepants)
  • Leonardo (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Michelangelo (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Donatello (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Raphael (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Arnold (Hey Arnold!)
  • Helga (Hey Arnold!)
  • Tommy (Rugrats)
  • Angelica (Rugrats)
  • Reptar (Rugrats)

Can I play with my friends?

You absolutely can. Nickelodeon Kart Racers includes a co-op mode that allows two racers to compete together and unleash fused attacks that will stop their opponents. It also has a more traditional local multiplayer mode where up to four players can play against one another on a split screen. There doesn't seem to be an online multiplayer mode that we know of at this time.

When can I get it?

Nickelodeon Kart Racers is planned for release on the Nintendo Switch on October 23, 2018. It will cost $39.99.

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Any questions?

Want to know more about Nickelodeon Kart Racers? Ask away in the comments!

The World Ends With You: Final Remix – Beginner’s Guide

The World Ends With You: Final Remix brings the Reapers’ Game to Nintendo Switch – here’s how to get started fighting the Noise

The World Ends With You – Final Mix is finally bringing its particular jam to the Nintendo Switch after years of fans clamoring for a port on a newer system. The game puts you in the shoes of an aloof teenager named Neku who is convinced he doesn’t need anyone else in the world…except now he’s dead and if he wants to go back to his life, he absolutely will have to rely on others as he tries to thwart the week-long “Reapers’ Game” and avoid being erased entirely.

Each day, Neku and his partner will receive an objective to complete, which can be done by exploring the alternate reality version of Shibuya he’s stuck in, looking for clues and hints, and fighting off strange monsters called the Noise. The first few days are fairly straightforward, but The World Ends With You eventually takes off the training wheels and sends Neku and his partner out on their o…

The World Ends With You: Final Remix brings the Reapers' Game to Nintendo Switch - here's how to get started fighting the Noise

The World Ends With You - Final Mix is finally bringing its particular jam to the Nintendo Switch after years of fans clamoring for a port on a newer system. The game puts you in the shoes of an aloof teenager named Neku who is convinced he doesn't need anyone else in the world...except now he's dead and if he wants to go back to his life, he absolutely will have to rely on others as he tries to thwart the week-long "Reapers' Game" and avoid being erased entirely.

Each day, Neku and his partner will receive an objective to complete, which can be done by exploring the alternate reality version of Shibuya he's stuck in, looking for clues and hints, and fighting off strange monsters called the Noise. The first few days are fairly straightforward, but The World Ends With You eventually takes off the training wheels and sends Neku and his partner out on their own. When that happened, here are some tips on how to fight and survive the Reapers' Game.

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The Reapers' Game

The Reapers are mysterious people who run the "game" of sorts Neku and his partners are stuck in. Each day, they assign the players missions, which guide the general flow of the game's story. Along the way to complete the missions, Neku will fight off noise and meet other characters who will provide valuable information to help him survive.

Even though the Reapers' Game has a time limit in the story, you're not actually on a time limit to finish the objectives. Feel free to take your time, and make liberal use of Neku's ability to read minds with his Player Pin. Mind reading is a fun way to get story background, and can also provide valuable clues about your next objective. You can also hold still for a few seconds for an option to speak with your partner, which can also provide a useful tip.

Using Pins

In the game's first few days, you'll be introduced to a handful of Pins, which are how Neku uses attacks in the game. Pins are activated by interacting with the battle screen in different ways - either by using the motion Joy-Con controls in docked mode, or touch controls in handheld mode. I highly, highly recommend going with a touchscreen set-up for the game and ditching the Joy-Cons off the side of the tablet, especially if you have small hands like me. Touch controls are how the Pin system was originally intended to be used, and it's a much smoother experience and easier to control.

However you do it, you'll want to get practice with a lot of different types of Pins. The more you play, the more Pins you'll encounter, and the more you can level those Pins up to make their attacks stronger. It's worth regularly rotating through your Pins to level up as many as possible to max and get a feel for different abilities - I recommend having a set designated for boss battles when you need your strongest attacks that your best at, as well as a "training" set you can use against regular enemies, level up, and have active when you shut the system off so they can gain EXP.

And speaking of that...if you're done playing, don't just hit the Home button and keep the game paused. Save and exit. Returning later will you give lots of Pin EXP, which is invaluable if you're struggling later on.

Fashion do's and don't's

While exploring Shibuya, you'll want to keep an eye on the various fashion trends. Areas will have certain types of clothing that are in and out of style, and you'll get buffs or debuffs to your power depending on what you're wearing. Sometimes it's worth it to equip a weaker hat if it's in-style in the area you're fighting Noise in!

Early on, you won't have too many outfits, and buying them won't be beneficial to you. All outfits require a certain level of the "Brave" stat to equip, and yours will be low at the start. Keep training that stat higher and don't spend a ton of money on something you won't be able to equip for days.

Fighting the Noise

A little ways into the game, you'll gain the ability to "chain" Noise encounters together by tapping multiple at a time on Neku's mind read screen. This is a great way to earn lots of EXP, level up Pins, and improve your skills, but it can be risky. Make sure you know what you're getting into.

You will, at some point, likely need to grind levels for a while to ensure you are strong enough to continue in the game (unless you drop the difficulty all the way down, which is absolutely an option but won't get you as many cool Pins). Since Noise encounters sans story-based ones are optional, I recommend fighting a cluster of Noise every time you change screens on your way somewhere - maybe even a few more if you're feeling in the mood for a fight. Overleveling isn't an issue in this game, but being under-leveled in the late-game can be.

It's also worth mentioning that although you can adjust the difficulty slider at any time, it's far easier to drop it down than it is to tune it back up. Lower encounter levels at your own risk, and be aware of the grinding it might take to catch up again.

Your Partners

Neku will, throughout his adventure in Shibuya, get to work together with three different Partners, beginning with the fashion-conscious Shiki. Each partner plays a bit differently in combat, so don't be afraid to take some time to get used to your new Partner when they swap out.

It can be a bit difficult to juggle using both your Partner's moves and your own Pins in combat. In general, all damage is good damage, but do be aware that some Pins might overlap (for example, tapping to activate Shiki's attacks might also let loose your Lightning Pin), so try to be conscious of what you have equipped and what you're doing with it.

One thing to note here is that while you might miss old Partners later on, you should never worry in this game that you've "missed" a critical secret or moment. Once you beat the game, you'll be able to revisit chapters at will to hunt for secrets (like the elusive Pig Noise hiding at the corners of the screen on each day!) and hang out with your former Partners, as well as swap between them at will even on days they wouldn't normally be present. So don't worry, just enjoy your time with whoever is hanging out with Neku.

Help, there are too many Noise!

Have a specific question about something in The World Ends With You? Let me know in the comments and I'll try to help!

Get started with Goosebumps The Game

Here’s what you need to know to escape the Dead House alive.

The Nintendo Switch, as a portable system, seems a logical choice for many genres that are seeing a resurgence, and one of those is the text-based adventure! Goosebumps The Game is out on the system now, bringing R.L Stine’s novels to the genre and the platform in a kid-friendly, spooky adventure that’s perfect for Halloween.

Whether playing alone or sharing the creepy scares with kids or friends this October, here’s a quick run-down of what to expect from the game.

What is Goosebumps the Game?
How do you play?
Wait, there’s a monster!
How much does it cost?
See at Amazon

What is Goosebumps The Game?

Goosebumps The Game is a text-based adventure based on the Goosebumps book series by R.L. Stine. You play as a character whose neighborhood has seen some creepy happenings of late, and you need to track down the source of the commotion by investigating the area, the creepy Dead House, and the town mall.

As you play, y…

Here's what you need to know to escape the Dead House alive.

The Nintendo Switch, as a portable system, seems a logical choice for many genres that are seeing a resurgence, and one of those is the text-based adventure! Goosebumps The Game is out on the system now, bringing R.L Stine's novels to the genre and the platform in a kid-friendly, spooky adventure that's perfect for Halloween.

Whether playing alone or sharing the creepy scares with kids or friends this October, here's a quick run-down of what to expect from the game.

See at Amazon

What is Goosebumps The Game?

Goosebumps The Game is a text-based adventure based on the Goosebumps book series by R.L. Stine. You play as a character whose neighborhood has seen some creepy happenings of late, and you need to track down the source of the commotion by investigating the area, the creepy Dead House, and the town mall.

As you play, you'll examine areas and objects, collect items, and solve puzzles by using those items in appropriate situations.

How do you play?

As a text-based adventure, you'll need to move throughout the different areas of the neighborhood, explore, collect items, and solve puzzles. You can select portions of the screen you see to interact with or examine them, and zoom into some areas and see them more closely.

You can also examine items in your inventory and choose "verbs" to use or interact with them, such as using a key on a door or examining an item for more information about how it might be used. The Verb menu can also be used to interact with the environment by doing actions such as trying doors or gaining more information about objects.

Wait, there's a monster!

Using items correctly to interact with the environment is the main way to progress the game, but you'll also sometimes encounter people you can talk with, and sometimes even monster bosses! You can't participate in normal combat in Goosebumps The Game, but you can interact with others and use items to move forward in such encounters.

Some encounters will just require you to speak with the person or monster you've encountered and select the correct options at the correct times. Use clues from their dialogue, your inventory, and your knowledge of the Goosebumps series to make the correct choices, and don't fear a Game Over. Even if you get one, you'll just reset to the last safe spot you were in, usually only a moment or two before where you died. Game Overs can also occur just from exploring the environment in ridiculous ways. I don't recommend jumping down holes without a plan for how you might safely reach the bottom!

Other, more "boss"-like encounters with monsters can also occur, which also require correct item use on the correct bits of the monster at the correct time. Again, you'll have to use the context clues from items and what you know of the monster and environment to pass them unscathed, but there's little risk of failure. You'll get to try again.

How much does it cost?

Goosebumps The Game is out now on Nintendo Switch and costs $30.

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Want to know more?

If you have any further questions about Goosebumps The Game, let me know in the comments and I'll try to answer!

You can play Dark Souls on Nintendo Switch this weekend (sort of)

Dark Souls: Remastered is the first portable way to experience the challenging adventure!

Lordran — a kingdom ravaged by the dead and withering in the feeble glow of a setting sun. You, the Chosen Undead, can change its fate, but it will take persistence and skill.

The name of Dark Souls has become associated with incredible difficulty, and as a result, many have shied away from it over the years. However, Dark Souls is coming to the Nintendo Switch, and with portability, refreshed visuals, and your best buddy Solaire of Astora in amiibo form, now is the perfect time to don your armor and dive in.

Don’t be daunted by the challenges ahead. Here’s everything you need to know about Dark Souls on Nintendo Switch.

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What’s new with Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch?

September 19, 2018 — Network Test app for Dark Souls added to the Nintendo eShop!

Eager to get some time with the upcoming Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch? You can! Starting Fri…

Dark Souls: Remastered is the first portable way to experience the challenging adventure!

Lordran — a kingdom ravaged by the dead and withering in the feeble glow of a setting sun. You, the Chosen Undead, can change its fate, but it will take persistence and skill.

The name of Dark Souls has become associated with incredible difficulty, and as a result, many have shied away from it over the years. However, Dark Souls is coming to the Nintendo Switch, and with portability, refreshed visuals, and your best buddy Solaire of Astora in amiibo form, now is the perfect time to don your armor and dive in.

Don't be daunted by the challenges ahead. Here's everything you need to know about Dark Souls on Nintendo Switch.

See at Amazon

What's new with Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch?

September 19, 2018 — Network Test app for Dark Souls added to the Nintendo eShop!

Eager to get some time with the upcoming Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch? You can! Starting Friday, September 21 through Sunday, September 23 from 5pm - 9pm PDT there will be a Network Test for the game. That means you'll be able to play parts of Dark Souls, but you won't be able to save your progress or play offline.

There's a great big warning this test is an unfinished version of the game, but if you need to get your fix you can grab the Network Test version from the eShop now and be ready when the first test starts!

August 29, 2018 — Release date confirmed, and the Switch port is looking smooth

Digital Foundry recently took a look at the Switch version of Dark Souls Remastered. The game will run in 720p during docked mode and 1080p in docked mode, but will retain a 30 frames per second framerate in either scenario. This is a bit disappointing considering the other remastered versions of this game get a nice bump to 60 frames per second. Here's what Digital Foundry had to say about it:

The presentation when playing in handheld mode is certainly crisp, and in line with the publisher's website, which states that users should expect a native 720p pixel-count for mobile play, rising to 1080p when docked. It's also confirmed that Dark Souls Remastered opts for the original release's 30fps, as opposed to the double frame-rate seen in the other remastered editions. We noted a touch of slowdown during alpha-heavy scenes in the boss battle, but overall, while the sample of gameplay we had was limited to say the least, Dark Souls Remastered is looking good.

With that, we also got recent confirmation that Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch will arrive Oct. 19, 2018.

The game wasn't initially set to launch alongside other platforms, but the original estimate given by From Software was in one of the summer months. This is much later than Switch fans had been hoping for, but the wait should be well worth it.

May 25, 2018 — Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch launch date postponed

In case you hadn't already heard the news, Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch has been delayed. Nintendo is noting a new release time frame of "Summer 2018." It's out for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 as of today, but Switch gamers will have to wait a bit longer. Hopefully, not too much longer.

You can still preorder Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch on Amazon, but the current release date shows December 28, 2018. Don't let that scare you, though. The default release date for preorder games that don't have an official launch date is always in December. It will be updated when the Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch launch date is announced.

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You, the Chosen Undead

At the start of Dark Souls, you wake up in a cell with nothing but the clothes on your back (maybe), a single item chosen during character creation, and a key to the outside. You'll carefully pick your way out of the Undead Asylum, facing Hollow and broken Humans and a gargantuan Asylum Demon, all who want to stop you from leaving. Why are you headed out? What is there to do once you reach Firelink Shrine? That's up for you to decide and learn as you play.

Dark Souls is notoriously vague about its storyline, with much of what's going on revealed through set pieces, item descriptions, and very occasional references in dialogue. That leaves you free to interpret what's going on as you wish. On the bright side, you won't have to guess at the controls. Your brief stint in the Undead Asylum at the start serves as a tutorial for the different types of moves you'll execute in this action RPG. Pay close attention, even if you've started as a spellcaster. Dark Souls is not just a game you can mash buttons through. You'll have to watch your enemies, learn their tells, and react accordingly. That's part of what makes Dark Souls both incredibly challenging, and incredibly rewarding.

Remastered, rekindled

The version of Dark Souls coming to the Switch isn't just any old Dark Souls. It's Dark Souls: Remastered. Veteran players might find great reasons to revisit Lordran even if they've already faced down Gwyn. For starters, the game looks a lot better, running in 1080p at 30 fps on the TV and 720p at 30 fps in handheld mode. Goodbye, Blighttown framerate woes!

In addition, many improvements have been made to online play. Now, up to six players can play online together (up from four), and password matchmaking has been made available (ala Dark Souls III) in addition to matchmaking with friends. Of course, even if you're only interested in solo play, you'll still be able to leave and read the memorable glowing messages on the ground for others playing the game around the world. Be careful about trusting anything that tells you a path is safe!

You may notice a few other tweaks here and there, such as the ability to switch Covenants at Bonfires and some convenient changes to how items are picked up and selected. None of these will drastically change the familiar Dark Souls experience. Rather they are quality of life adjustments that smooth a few rough edges of the original adventure.

Praise the Sun!

The Nintendo Switch version of Dark Souls: Remastered gets one extra bonus: an amiibo. A Solaire of Astora amiibo will launch alongside the game. By tapping it, your character will perform the iconic "Praise the Sun!" gesture. Yes, that's all it does.

Solaire may be tricky to track down, though. He's currently a sold-out GameStop exclusive, so there's no way to pre-order him anywhere. If you want to praise the sun with your favorite knight friend, you'll have to keep an eye out at GameStop on launch day and hope for plenty of stock.

Upcoming Network Test

If you want to try out Dark Souls: Remastered on the Switch ahead of its release, there will be a brief network test window where you can try the game for free with a Nintendo Switch Online subscription.

The test will take place from Friday, September 21 through Sunday, September 23 and will occur from 5pm - 9pm PDT on each day. You can download the network test file from the eshop now so you're ready to play when it launches.

Single and multiplayer content will both be available, but you will only be able to play in the Undead Parish for the purposes of the test, and your progress will not carry over into the full game.

When can I prepare to die?

Dark Souls: Remastered has received a new release date of Oct. 19, 2018 on Nintendo Switch. You can pre-order the game at Amazon. The Solaire of Astora amiibo will launch alongside the Switch version.

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Lordran is calling!

If you have more questions about Dark Souls: Remastered on Nintendo Switch, let me know in the comments!

Updated September 2018: Added details about the Dark Souls: Remastered network test.

What’s new in Child of Light Ultimate Edition for Nintendo Switch!

Child of Light: Ultimate Edition is out today on the Nintendo Switch. Here’s everything that comes with it.

Child, tuck yourself in bed. And pick up your Nintendo Switch, because Child of Light: Ultimate Edition is out for the system today. The “Ultimate Edition” moniker can sound a bit daunting, but this is still the artistic, poetic adventure of a young princess named Aurora in the kingdom of Lemuria that you’ll recall if you’ve played the game before.

Child of Light: Ultimate Edition comes with all the game’s previous DLC already included, plus an extra feature on Nintendo Switch that lets you play the game in co-op mode with a single Joy-Con. Here’s a breakdown of everything extra you’ll get on top of the base game:

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The Golem’s Plight

The Golem’s Plight is an additional questline added to Child of Light: Ultimate Edition that begins in Chapter 3, and allows Aurora to befriend a Golem party member. For the quest, you’ll need to gather four pieces of a Golem …

Child of Light: Ultimate Edition is out today on the Nintendo Switch. Here's everything that comes with it.

Child, tuck yourself in bed. And pick up your Nintendo Switch, because Child of Light: Ultimate Edition is out for the system today. The "Ultimate Edition" moniker can sound a bit daunting, but this is still the artistic, poetic adventure of a young princess named Aurora in the kingdom of Lemuria that you'll recall if you've played the game before.

Child of Light: Ultimate Edition comes with all the game's previous DLC already included, plus an extra feature on Nintendo Switch that lets you play the game in co-op mode with a single Joy-Con. Here's a breakdown of everything extra you'll get on top of the base game:

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The Golem's Plight

The Golem's Plight is an additional questline added to Child of Light: Ultimate Edition that begins in Chapter 3, and allows Aurora to befriend a Golem party member. For the quest, you'll need to gather four pieces of a Golem in the Tree of Thorns to restore it and have it join you. The first piece, the head, will give you the quest initially, at which point you can continue into the tree and track down the remaining pieces.

Light and Dark Packs

The Light and Dark DLC packs are simply skins for Aurora that change her appearance. They will already be loaded in at the start of the game and can be accessed through the Options menu. One turns Aurora and sort of greyscale color, and the other gives her darker hair and a blue dress. They have no other effect on the game beyond cosmetics.

Extra Stardust, Oculi, and a Skill

You'll automatically start the game with several extra items from the Stardusts and Oculi Packs.

Stardust is an enhancement tool you can collect throughout the game that will let you increase the stats of characters you choose. Oculi, meanwhile, are collectible gems that can be attached to character weapons and armor to also adjust stats, though they can be mixed and matched at will while Stardust is a permanent boost. The packs that come with Ultimate Edition will give you a variety of both Stardust and Oculi in your inventory from the start, so your characters can start off strong and with lots of different build options.

In addition, Aurora will begin the game with an extra Healing Skill on her skill tree that she didn't have in the first game.

Play with Igniculus!

Finally, the Nintendo Switch version of Child of Light includes something extra special. Previously, the game allowed for co-op play if you so desired by giving a second player control over Igniculus, the tiny light whisp that accompanies Aurora on her journey. On the Switch, Igniculus can be controlled by a single Joy-Con and motion controls, meaning you don't need a second controller beyond what you have to enjoy the game's co-op with a friend.

Any questions?

The rest of Child of Light: Ultimate Edition on the Switch is just as it was on other platforms. If you still have questions, let me know in the comments!

Crayola Scoot: Everything you need to know!

There’s not a lot to Crayola Scoot, a game about scooters that spit out crayon colors.

What would happen if Tony Hawk Pro Skater got together with Crayola and Nintendo’s Splatoon team and decided to make a kids’ game for Nintendo Switch? Crayola Scoot, apparently. Crayola Scoot was announced just before E3 as a collaboration between Outright Games and Crayola, and if crayons and scooters don’t sound especially mind-blowing to you, I can confirm that you’re not missing a whole lot.

I was able to watch a live demo of Crayola Scoot at E3 2018, and as impressive as the demonstrator doing tricks was, there just didn’t seem to be much to the game. It’s a laidback skating game with some gimmicky color mechanics and limited replayability. Here’s everything I was able to learn from the demo.

What is Crayola Scoot?

Crayola Scoot is a skating game, but with scooters, and without an awful lot of complicated tricks. You can grind on rails, perform flips and spins, and do a few other variati…

There's not a lot to Crayola Scoot, a game about scooters that spit out crayon colors.

What would happen if Tony Hawk Pro Skater got together with Crayola and Nintendo's Splatoon team and decided to make a kids' game for Nintendo Switch? Crayola Scoot, apparently. Crayola Scoot was announced just before E3 as a collaboration between Outright Games and Crayola, and if crayons and scooters don't sound especially mind-blowing to you, I can confirm that you're not missing a whole lot.

I was able to watch a live demo of Crayola Scoot at E3 2018, and as impressive as the demonstrator doing tricks was, there just didn't seem to be much to the game. It's a laidback skating game with some gimmicky color mechanics and limited replayability. Here's everything I was able to learn from the demo.

What is Crayola Scoot?

Crayola Scoot is a skating game, but with scooters, and without an awful lot of complicated tricks. You can grind on rails, perform flips and spins, and do a few other variations on tricks, but from what I could see that's basically it. Also, your scooter can leave a trail of colored paint behind it ala Splatoon (it even uses similar lingo, referring to "splatting" your friends in multiplayer), a function necessary for some of the game's challenges and completely extraneous for others. Your color is limited and will restore slowly over time, but you can gain it back faster by riding over your own color. Apart from some occasional stage hazards that sprayed your color around, I didn't see much use for it outside certain game challenges requiring you to color the floor, and there's no obvious penalty for riding over your opponent's color.

The bulk of the game involves traveling to three different skate parks and completing challenges and games there, while occasionally competing with your scooting rivals to increase your scooting notoriety. You can also customize your character and scooter with unlockable clothing and swag you'll get as you progress.

Scooting along

The hub world of Crayola Scoot is a small skate park where you can practice your tricks, visit the shop to customize your character, or travel out to other parks. There's not much to do in the hub beyond using it as a hub and a practice area, even though the demonstrator showed off some nifty hidden areas that seemed like they should house rewards for effectively scooting there. However, it seems to be the only place you can freely scoot.

The other three worlds host a series of challenge games for you to complete. These games include collecting more crayons than your opponents, covering more of the ground in your color paint than your opponents within a time limit (Turf War, anyone?), or scoring the highest amount of points by doing tricks in a given period of time. Only one world is available at the beginning, but you'll quickly unlock the other two and can tackle them in any order from there. However, there are only a handful of types of challenges, so you'll effectively be competing in the same games again and again.

At certain intervals, you'll also be challenged by a rival scooter to a game of SCOOT (it's HORSE, guys) where you must continually one-up their tricks until one of you fails and gets a letter. If you win the match, you'll increase your rank among your fellow scooters and unlock more gear for your character.

Is that it?

From what I can tell, yeah, that's about it. There is a multiplayer mode that allows you to play with friends either in teams or solo, but there are only six events and, again, there doesn't seem to be any free skate. All in all, Crayola Scoot seems like a fairly limited experience best enjoyed by younger players who aren't quite able to get into the complexities of skating games but still want to dabble.

I still want to Scoot, so when can I do it?

Crayola Scoot launches on Nintendo Switch on October 23, 2018, and will cost $39.99.

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Colorful questions?

Want to learn more about Crayola Scoot? Ask me anything about the game in the comments!

Disgaea 1 Complete for Nintendo Switch: Everything you need to know

Disgaea 1 Complete is Disgaea: Hour of Darkness reborn and remastered – here’s everything you need to know about it!

After the success of Disgaea 5 Complete on Switch, Nippon Ichi has taken it upon themselves to bring a retro flashback onto the Nintendo Switch as well in the form of the series’ first game. Disgaea 1 Complete is a remastered version of Disgaea: Hour of Darkness and a perfect compliment to the tactical gameplay of Disgaea 5, as well as numerous other tactical RPGs that have found success on the Switch.

Before you pick up this throwback to original Disgaea, dood, here’s everything you need to know about it:

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What is Disgaea?

The Disgaea games are a series of single-player, tactical RPGs from Nippon Ichi. The games are set in places called “Netherworlds” occupied by angels, demons, and other creatures who regularly turn the rules of right and wrong upside down. There have been a total of five main games, each with its own self-contained story, though …

Disgaea 1 Complete is Disgaea: Hour of Darkness reborn and remastered - here's everything you need to know about it!

After the success of Disgaea 5 Complete on Switch, Nippon Ichi has taken it upon themselves to bring a retro flashback onto the Nintendo Switch as well in the form of the series' first game. Disgaea 1 Complete is a remastered version of Disgaea: Hour of Darkness and a perfect compliment to the tactical gameplay of Disgaea 5, as well as numerous other tactical RPGs that have found success on the Switch.

Before you pick up this throwback to original Disgaea, dood, here's everything you need to know about it:

See at Amazon

What is Disgaea?

The Disgaea games are a series of single-player, tactical RPGs from Nippon Ichi. The games are set in places called "Netherworlds" occupied by angels, demons, and other creatures who regularly turn the rules of right and wrong upside down. There have been a total of five main games, each with its own self-contained story, though there are a number of common threads between them and gradually evolving mechanics.

Disgaea 1 Complete is an updated version of the original Disgaea - Disgaea: Hour of Darkness. The game originally released back in 2003 on the PlayStation 2, saw PSP and Nintendo DS ports years later, a PC port two years ago, and is now joining Disgaea 5 on the Nintendo Switch to help those who enjoyed it catch up on the series' origins.

How do you play?

In between cutscenes, the primary gameplay of Disgaea takes place on a grid where the player controls various units. Your goal is to move those units to attack enemy units in tactical ways to eventually wipe out the enemy forces and win the match. Different units have different abilities that affect how they move, where they move, and how much damage they can do to enemies.

Something unique to Disgaea is the ability to throw friendly units at enemies, allowing them to move farther distances in a turn. Throwing in certain ways can even allow you to capture enemies and turn them to your side for use later!

Units can wear armor and hold weapons, which are purchasable at the game's main hub, Laharl's castle.

Finally, it's worth taking note of Geo Panels on the field, which are unique grid squares that can provide buffs or debuffs to characters. You can use them to strengthen your party or force enemies into them to weaken them, though be careful to avoid debuff panels yourself.

It's recommended when you get control of your character in the hub the first time to make for the Dimension Gate and play through some tutorials, especially if you've never tackled a Disgaea game before. The game doesn't force you to work through these, but the tutorials are great introductions to the grid map, how to use different attacks, and how units work.

What's new in the Nintendo Switch "Complete" version?

Not too much! Disgaea 1 Complete is still Disgaea: Hour of Darkness. The biggest, most noticeable change is in the game's graphics, which are of the quality of Disgaea 5 on the Switch. Sprites, character portraits, and backgrounds have all improved, and the game looks especially tight in handheld mode.

A few other tweaks have been made to UIs and menus, and a new playable character, Asagi, is available.

Unfortunately, unlike other Switch ports of the Disgaea games, Disgaea 1 Complete does not include any new scenarios to play through or extra story. That makes it best to pick up if you missed it back in the day and already love Disgaea - there's a lot of replay value even without new scenarios, as you can level your characters up absurdly high in these games and take on more and more challenging maps.

When can I get it?

Disgaea 1 Complete will launch for the Nintendo Switch on October 9, 2018, and will cost $49.99.

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I need to know more!

Still have questions about Disgaea 1 Complete? Let me know in the comments!

Valkyria Chronicles 4: Everything you need to know

Valkyria Chronicles 4 marks the series’ Switch debut. Here’s everything you need to know about the game ahead of its release.

Valkyria Chronicles is a well-established series dating back to 2008 and the PS3, with plenty of spin-offs and even an anime and manga in between then and now. Over three main releases, Sega has honed its BLiTZ (Battle of Live Tactical Zones) systems and its watercolor-like visuals. Its latest entry, Valkyria Chronicles 4, marks the first time the series has been on a Nintendo console with its release on the Nintendo Switch. But never fear. You don’t need knowledge of the series to appreciate Valkyria Chronicles 4. In fact, it may be a great fit for Fire Emblem fans already enjoying their Switches.

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What is Valkyria Chronicles 4?

Valkyria Chronicles 4 is a turn-based strategy game taking place on an alternate version of Earth around the 20th century. It heavily relies on story in between tactical battles where the player controls multiple un…

Valkyria Chronicles 4 marks the series' Switch debut. Here's everything you need to know about the game ahead of its release.

Valkyria Chronicles is a well-established series dating back to 2008 and the PS3, with plenty of spin-offs and even an anime and manga in between then and now. Over three main releases, Sega has honed its BLiTZ (Battle of Live Tactical Zones) systems and its watercolor-like visuals. Its latest entry, Valkyria Chronicles 4, marks the first time the series has been on a Nintendo console with its release on the Nintendo Switch. But never fear. You don't need knowledge of the series to appreciate Valkyria Chronicles 4. In fact, it may be a great fit for Fire Emblem fans already enjoying their Switches.

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What is Valkyria Chronicles 4?

Valkyria Chronicles 4 is a turn-based strategy game taking place on an alternate version of Earth around the 20th century. It heavily relies on story in between tactical battles where the player controls multiple units at a time to strategically win battles in an overarching war.

Fortunately, you don't need to have played the previous games to enjoy this version. Valkyria Chronicles 4 takes place in the same world as other Valkyria Chronicles games, but it has a completely separate plot and will teach you the ropes as you begin. It also has automated and smoothed certain systems from previous games to make the system more accessible for new players or those wanting to focus more on the strategy than with juggling systems.

What's new in Valkyria Chronicles 4?

Though the game is similar to its predecessors in style, it is a continuation of the universe established in those games with a new cast of characters.

The game includes a new class, the Grenadier, which shoots explosive shells from mortars over obstacles such as walls or hills, hitting enemies hiding behind them. Grenadiers pair well with other units that can gather battle intel quickly, as they can ht enemies they can't see as long as they can know about them otherwise.

In addition, Valkyria Chronicles 4 boasts larger maps than the series has seen before, more units available on a map at a time, and other tweaks to combat.

Finally, you'll see the Brave system make an appearance in 4, which gives allied units a major boost if an allied soldier is nearing death.

How do I play?

As a tactical RPG, you'll have a view of a battlefield with both your units and your opponents. On your turn, you can spend action points to move units, attack enemies, or buff or heal allies. Your units will have different classes that will allow them to do different actions - some can fire from long distance, some attack up close, some can heal other troops, some can move farther than others, and so forth. If you've played Fire Emblem, Valkyria Chronicles games are of a similar style, albeit with more guns. You'll even recognize the rock-paper-scissors style of weapon strengths as you try to determine which unit would be best suited for which situation.

Additionally, characters will have certain personality traits that will help or hinder them and may interact with others. Two troops who are friends might be able to encourage one another, though a character who is nervous might have trouble firing under certain conditions.

Each mission has different objectives, which may include capturing points or protecting a particular unit. You'll need to use strategy, taking into account battlefield layouts, classes, and traits to determine the best way to complete those objectives in each battle.

Finally, there are some things you can do outside of battles, such as visiting R&D, to give your forces, vehicles, and weapons a boost for the next bout.

When can I get it?

Valkyria Chronicles 4 launches on September 25 for Nintendo Switch, and will cost $59.99.

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Any questions?

Need to know more about Valkyria Chronicles 4? Let me know in the comments!

You can play Dark Souls on Nintendo Switch this weekend (sort of)

Dark Souls: Remastered is the first portable way to experience the challenging adventure!

Lordran — a kingdom ravaged by the dead and withering in the feeble glow of a setting sun. You, the Chosen Undead, can change its fate, but it will take persistence and skill.

The name of Dark Souls has become associated with incredible difficulty, and as a result, many have shied away from it over the years. However, Dark Souls is coming to the Nintendo Switch, and with portability, refreshed visuals, and your best buddy Solaire of Astora in amiibo form, now is the perfect time to don your armor and dive in.

Don’t be daunted by the challenges ahead. Here’s everything you need to know about Dark Souls on Nintendo Switch.

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What’s new with Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch?

September 19, 2018 — Network Test app for Dark Souls added to the Nintendo eShop!

Eager to get some time with the upcoming Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch? You can! Starting Fri…

Dark Souls: Remastered is the first portable way to experience the challenging adventure!

Lordran — a kingdom ravaged by the dead and withering in the feeble glow of a setting sun. You, the Chosen Undead, can change its fate, but it will take persistence and skill.

The name of Dark Souls has become associated with incredible difficulty, and as a result, many have shied away from it over the years. However, Dark Souls is coming to the Nintendo Switch, and with portability, refreshed visuals, and your best buddy Solaire of Astora in amiibo form, now is the perfect time to don your armor and dive in.

Don't be daunted by the challenges ahead. Here's everything you need to know about Dark Souls on Nintendo Switch.

See at Amazon

What's new with Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch?

September 19, 2018 — Network Test app for Dark Souls added to the Nintendo eShop!

Eager to get some time with the upcoming Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch? You can! Starting Friday, September 21 through Sunday, September 23 from 5pm - 9pm PDT there will be a Network Test for the game. That means you'll be able to play parts of Dark Souls, but you won't be able to save your progress or play offline.

There's a great big warning this test is an unfinished version of the game, but if you need to get your fix you can grab the Network Test version from the eShop now and be ready when the first test starts!

August 29, 2018 — Release date confirmed, and the Switch port is looking smooth

Digital Foundry recently took a look at the Switch version of Dark Souls Remastered. The game will run in 720p during docked mode and 1080p in docked mode, but will retain a 30 frames per second framerate in either scenario. This is a bit disappointing considering the other remastered versions of this game get a nice bump to 60 frames per second. Here's what Digital Foundry had to say about it:

The presentation when playing in handheld mode is certainly crisp, and in line with the publisher's website, which states that users should expect a native 720p pixel-count for mobile play, rising to 1080p when docked. It's also confirmed that Dark Souls Remastered opts for the original release's 30fps, as opposed to the double frame-rate seen in the other remastered editions. We noted a touch of slowdown during alpha-heavy scenes in the boss battle, but overall, while the sample of gameplay we had was limited to say the least, Dark Souls Remastered is looking good.

With that, we also got recent confirmation that Dark Souls Remastered for Nintendo Switch will arrive Oct. 19, 2018.

The game wasn't initially set to launch alongside other platforms, but the original estimate given by From Software was in one of the summer months. This is much later than Switch fans had been hoping for, but the wait should be well worth it.

May 25, 2018 — Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch launch date postponed

In case you hadn't already heard the news, Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch has been delayed. Nintendo is noting a new release time frame of "Summer 2018." It's out for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 as of today, but Switch gamers will have to wait a bit longer. Hopefully, not too much longer.

You can still preorder Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch on Amazon, but the current release date shows December 28, 2018. Don't let that scare you, though. The default release date for preorder games that don't have an official launch date is always in December. It will be updated when the Dark Souls: Remastered for Nintendo Switch launch date is announced.

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You, the Chosen Undead

At the start of Dark Souls, you wake up in a cell with nothing but the clothes on your back (maybe), a single item chosen during character creation, and a key to the outside. You'll carefully pick your way out of the Undead Asylum, facing Hollow and broken Humans and a gargantuan Asylum Demon, all who want to stop you from leaving. Why are you headed out? What is there to do once you reach Firelink Shrine? That's up for you to decide and learn as you play.

Dark Souls is notoriously vague about its storyline, with much of what's going on revealed through set pieces, item descriptions, and very occasional references in dialogue. That leaves you free to interpret what's going on as you wish. On the bright side, you won't have to guess at the controls. Your brief stint in the Undead Asylum at the start serves as a tutorial for the different types of moves you'll execute in this action RPG. Pay close attention, even if you've started as a spellcaster. Dark Souls is not just a game you can mash buttons through. You'll have to watch your enemies, learn their tells, and react accordingly. That's part of what makes Dark Souls both incredibly challenging, and incredibly rewarding.

Remastered, rekindled

The version of Dark Souls coming to the Switch isn't just any old Dark Souls. It's Dark Souls: Remastered. Veteran players might find great reasons to revisit Lordran even if they've already faced down Gwyn. For starters, the game looks a lot better, running in 1080p at 30 fps on the TV and 720p at 30 fps in handheld mode. Goodbye, Blighttown framerate woes!

In addition, many improvements have been made to online play. Now, up to six players can play online together (up from four), and password matchmaking has been made available (ala Dark Souls III) in addition to matchmaking with friends. Of course, even if you're only interested in solo play, you'll still be able to leave and read the memorable glowing messages on the ground for others playing the game around the world. Be careful about trusting anything that tells you a path is safe!

You may notice a few other tweaks here and there, such as the ability to switch Covenants at Bonfires and some convenient changes to how items are picked up and selected. None of these will drastically change the familiar Dark Souls experience. Rather they are quality of life adjustments that smooth a few rough edges of the original adventure.

Praise the Sun!

The Nintendo Switch version of Dark Souls: Remastered gets one extra bonus: an amiibo. A Solaire of Astora amiibo will launch alongside the game. By tapping it, your character will perform the iconic "Praise the Sun!" gesture. Yes, that's all it does.

Solaire may be tricky to track down, though. He's currently a sold-out GameStop exclusive, so there's no way to pre-order him anywhere. If you want to praise the sun with your favorite knight friend, you'll have to keep an eye out at GameStop on launch day and hope for plenty of stock.

Upcoming Network Test

If you want to try out Dark Souls: Remastered on the Switch ahead of its release, there will be a brief network test window where you can try the game for free with a Nintendo Switch Online subscription.

The test will take place from Friday, September 21 through Sunday, September 23 and will occur from 5pm - 9pm PDT on each day. You can download the network test file from the eshop now so you're ready to play when it launches.

Single and multiplayer content will both be available, but you will only be able to play in the Undead Parish for the purposes of the test, and your progress will not carry over into the full game.

When can I prepare to die?

Dark Souls: Remastered has received a new release date of Oct. 19, 2018 on Nintendo Switch. You can pre-order the game at Amazon. The Solaire of Astora amiibo will launch alongside the Switch version.

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Lordran is calling!

If you have more questions about Dark Souls: Remastered on Nintendo Switch, let me know in the comments!

Updated September 2018: Added details about the Dark Souls: Remastered network test.