Feature: Nintendo eShop Selects

Feature: Nintendo eShop Selects
eShop Selects August 2023
Image: Nintendo Life

Pinch yourselves — it’s eShop Selects time again! Autumn (or fall, depending on where you are in the world) is just around the corner. The leaves will start going brown, and the temperature will start cooling off — or maybe it’s getting warmer if you’re on the other side of the hemisphere. This seasonal intro is not working out, is it? Let’s just get on with it and look back at August…

So… last month was ridiculously good for video games, right? Sure, there weren’t any big AAA Nintendo games for Switch, but the eShop exploded with hidden delights and highly-anticipated games that actually lived up to the hype.

Let’s not wait around then, shall we?

Honourable Mentions

You can’t go wrong with any of these, so take your pick from all the lovely 8s, 9s, and even a Nintendo Life 10! Red Dead Redemption is included this month despite it getting a physical release later on in the year — but you can’t get that at the time of writing this, hence its inclusion.

3. Blasphemous 2 (Switch eShop)

Blasphemous 2 (Switch eShop)

Blasphemous 2 (Switch eShop)

Publisher: Team17 / Developer: The Game Kitchen

Release Date: 24th Aug 2023 (USA) / 24th Aug 2023 (UK/EU)

Let’s kick off the top three with a highly anticipated sequel — Blasphemous 2 takes everything that made the first game fabulous and polishes it to a fine sheen. New weapons, new enemies, and new locations lie in wait for The Penitent One at Cvstodia, and it’s just as brutal and beautiful as ever.

Blasphemous 2 is one of the best-looking pixel art games on the Switch, with stunning, grotesque enemy and boss designs and fantastic animations, The Game Kitchen’s passion and craft are near flawless. It helps that the gameplay is so good, too, with a fantastic difficulty balance that ramps it up just enough.

This ungodly sequel is anything but a blasphemer, as we scored Blasphemous 2 a 9/10 in our review.

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Blasphemous 2

2. Vampire Survivors (Switch eShop)

Vampire Survivors (Switch eShop)

Vampire Survivors (Switch eShop)

Publisher: Poncle / Developer: Poncle

Release Date: 17th Aug 2023 (USA) / 17th Aug 2023 (UK/EU)

Next in our top three is another highly anticipated title — a port of one of the most addictive games ever made. Vampire Survivors will suck all of the time out of your day by throwing you into hordes of enemies. And when we say hordes, we’re not exaggerating.

Vampire Survivors has such a simple gameplay loop, but the dopamine hit when you make it just a little bit further through a run, or manage to clear a 30-minute run, is unparalleled. You can never have too much of this game as it constantly feeds you with new challenges, characters, weapons, items, and upgrades. Oh, and it’s not even a fiver. And there’s DLC? Oh no…

We scored Vampire Survivors a fiendish 9/10, and we now totally see why this game won Game of the Year at the BAFTAs.

1. Sea of Stars (Switch eShop)

Sea of Stars (Switch eShop)

Sea of Stars (Switch eShop)

Publisher: Sabotage / Developer: Sabotage

Release Date: 29th Aug 2023 (USA) / 29th Aug 2023 (UK/EU)

Sea of Stars has been a long time coming, and we’re thrilled to say that it lives up to the hype. Rounding out August’s top three eShop titles, this retro-inspired turn-based RPG manages to capture the magic of the SNES and 16-bit days of the genre perfectly, filling us with glee.

Sabotage has really understood the brief with this one — the combat is simple yet engaging; the characters are fun; the world is stunning; and the exploration is sublime. Even if Valere and Zale’s tale is pretty simple, the twists, turns, and gorgeous environments had us feeling like kids again. More of this, please.

Sea of Stars is yet another highly-anticipated title that lived up to our expectations, and we gave this one a 9/10 too!

< Nintendo eShop Selects - July 2023

How we decide our eShop Selects top three: As we reach the end of every month, the Nintendo Life staff vote on their favourite titles from a list of games selected by the editorial team. To qualify for this list, these games must have been released as a digital-only Nintendo Switch eShop title in that particular month, and must have been reviewed on Nintendo Life; we select the qualifying games based on their review scores.

Staff are then asked to vote for three games that they think deserve to sit right at the very top of that list; first choice gets 3 points, second choice gets 2 points, and third choice gets 1 point. These votes are then tallied to create a top-three list, with the overall winner taking that month’s top prize.

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