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Review: Nira (Nintendo Switch) – Pure Nintendo

Nira is an action-adventure role-playing game developed by Baseline Games and published by Graffiti Games. If you’ve played games such as Minecraft or Terrariums beforehand you will be familiar with the mechanics of Nira. But does it stand out from other titles in the genre?

Review: Nira (Nintendo Switch) |  PureNintendo.com

The game doesn’t have much of a story. Nira starts with a totem that wakes you up and drops you into a randomly generated area. From there, you can explore, collect materials, craft items like weapons, and build a home. There are also enemies like goblins and orcs that come out at night.

You start with two wooden axes to help you gather basic materials like wood. I enjoyed walking around collecting materials until I realized I had to find feathers for the totem. Unfortunately, that left me hanging for a while. There were birds around but I couldn’t figure out how to find feathers.

Review: Nira (Nintendo Switch) |  PureNintendo.com

I ended up wasting a whole day and when night fell I was attacked by enemies and died. The first time you die, the totem will give you all your belongings back. However, after that you lose everything every time. This made the beginning of the game quite stressful and boring.

I was also on an island surrounded by water. I could swim to nearby islands with no problem, but there were sharks in the water that were much faster than me.

When you start with Nira you can choose the level of difficulty of the game from easy, normal or hard. I’ve tried playing on all three levels of difficulty and each has been difficult in its own way. It takes a while to get used to the game mechanics and figure out the best way to survive based on what you start with.

Review: Nira (Nintendo Switch) |  PureNintendo.com

Most of the Nira controls are responsive. But unfortunately, I always had a hard time fighting enemies, which resulted in the fact that I lost all my progress many times. It got to the point at times that I would stop angry. In fact, there was one gaming session where I played for about ten minutes and then had to stop because I got so frustrated so quickly.

However, making and collecting materials was easy enough. As long as there were no enemies around, the gameplay was easy. If there had been a creative mode with no enemies, I think I would have enjoyed it more. I could at least get a good feel for the game before diving into hordes of enemies.

Review: Nira (Nintendo Switch) |  PureNintendo.com

The pixel art was cute and charming, as was the music and sound effects. Together, these design choices got me immersed in the game, not that I ever want to be trapped on an island.

Overall, Nira was an interesting experience. I don’t see myself going back to the game to play during my downtime, but I had fun with it while it lasted. There are ways Nira can improve, but I can see it can be a solid game for some. If you enjoy survival / crafting games, give it a try. But after a while I lost interest.

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