The Nintendo Switch has been a game-changer for many time-scarce gamers. Being able to enjoy proper console games on the go as well as at home has proven a huge plus point for consumers. But how do you know which are the best Nintendo Switch games to play? We have the answer.
We’ve narrowed down our list to the very best titles you can buy on the console right now, making sure we encompass as many genres as possible so that there’s something for everyone. As new great games come to the platform, we’ll obviously be updating this list.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
- Beautifully realised and huge open world
- Incredible depth
- Very satisfying gameplay
- Beautiful art direction
- It’s tough, but always fair
- So-so voice acting
- Minor performance dips
Breath of the Wild is a masterpiece of modern game design. Its beautiful open world is absolutely packed with unique mysteries to discover, all of which feel brilliantly rewarding in their own way.
Despite overhauling many of the series’ core ideas, it’s quintessentially Zelda, updated for the modern age with what feels like an imaginative stroke of genius.
You’ll also stumble upon a number of firsts for the franchise, such as voice acting, shrines and an expansive open world that never, ever holds your hand.
Super Mario Odyssey
- The best Mario has ever been
- So many nods to the series’ history
- Hundreds of Power Moons to collect
- Looks stunning
- Phenomenal soundtrack
- Some of Cappy’s moves require motion controls
Super Mario Odyssey is near-perfect. It carried ginormous expectations, but somehow Nintendo has managed to leapfrog over the bar by a huge distance. Offering the most satisfying gameplay experience of any Mario game to date.
Some will debate whether or not it matches Galaxy, but for me it does, thanks to its brilliant reinvention of the sandbox formula and incredible use of so many different tools.
You’ll become obsessed with collecting outfits and Power Moons, and fall in love with every kingdom you visit. Nintendo has had a wonderful 2017 and is rounding it off in style with the best Mario.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
- Looks absolutely gorgeous on Nintendo Switch and on the TV
- Battle Mode is a superb addition
- Plenty of challenge here for all skill levels
- New assists for beginners work a treat
- So many tracks and racers
- Some will want a brand-new Mario Kart game on Switch
Nintendo has delivered the definitive Mario Kart experience to Nintendo Switch. Combining the greatest Mario Kart ever in the form of MK8 with the versatility and dynamism of the Switch is a match made in heaven.
With plenty of new customisation options to help newer players get to grips, as well as added depth via new levels of drift boosting, 200cc trial modes and the all-new Battle Mode, this is an absolute must-buy for Nintendo Switch owners.
- Looks gorgeous both on Switch and TV screen
- Multiplayer still a unique and fun offering
- Plenty of new guns, each fun to use
- Doesn’t feel like a full sequel
- Can be slow to get into a match
Splatoon 2 is a multiplayer shooter unlike any other, and it’s exactly the charming outing you’d expect from Nintendo. Instead of bullets, your weapons are filled with coloured ink used to splat your enemies and cover the environment in paint.
Matches are incredibly fast-paced and satisfying, offering a tense competition that always feels fun and refreshing. You’ve also got a meaty solo campaign to dig into alongside a bunch of neat customisation options for your personal squid kid.
Buy now: Splatoon 2 for £44 / $53 from Amazon
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
- An absolutely stunning world
- Deep combat system that isn’t at all complicated
- So much fun to play
- The two worlds work really well together
- Not much to do outside of combat
- Sharp difficulty spikes
Nobody imagined Mario and Rayman’s Raving Rabbids would make such a wonderful match. We especially didn’t expect the pairing to translate into a deep, compelling and unbelievably charming strategy title.
We had lots of fun with the game, as you can see from his 8/10 review:
“Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle is yet another great Nintendo Switch exclusive, and one of the most original Mario titles we’ve seen in a long time. It may not do much outside of the core combat, but even that is enough to keep you entertained for its duration.”
- Brilliant motion controls result in a genuinely fresh fighting experience
- The best online game Nintendo has ever released
- It looks great
- Surprising amount of depth to the combat
- Traditional controls don’t feel great
- Lack of single-player content may leave some feeling cold
- Annoying arms-unlock system
ARMS is another example of Nintendo creating something entirely new and it working a treat.
A boxing game like you’ve never played before, ARMS lets players take on friends on the couch or online and take full advantage of the Joy-Con’s motion controls. Throwing punches with twists and turns to bend your character’s spaghetti-esque mitts, there’s a surprising level of strategy involved in what at first looks like a simple bash-em-up.
Once you get hooked on ARMS, it’s hard to stop playing, as there’s always a new challenger on the horizon.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
- Huge and beautiful world
- Deep yet accessible combat
- Plenty of stuff to do
- Nia is bloody lush
- Amazing soundtrack
- Easy to be overwhelmed in the opening hours
- Inconsistent localisation
- Performance problems in certain areas
Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is a positively staggering JRPG offering hundreds upon hundreds of hours of content for players ready and willing to dig into its sprawling story and uncompromising systems. Its addictive combat system is complimented by an excellent ensemble cast you’ll come to root for as they aim to save the world of Alrest.
At times it’s hard to believe something like this is running on Nintendo’s portable console as you climb vast mountains and trawl through dark industrial cities. It’s one of Monolith Soft’s finest efforts yet, and feels right at home on Switch.
Super Meat Boy
- Incredibly addictive arcade experience
- Super satisfying platforming
- Loads of levels
- Works brilliantly on Switch
- Chances are you’ve already bought it on another console
- Sharp difficulty spikes
- Unwelcoming for newcomers
Super Meat Boy has been a sensation ever since it launched way back in 2010. Requiring unparalleled reflexes, superlative precision and the patience of a saint to overcome its incredible challenge, this is high-level 2D platforming at its finest.
Also, when you fail, you get to see a lump of meat splatter into lots of tiny little chunks, which is the only satisfying thing about losing a level at the very end.
- Great control scheme
- Looks lovely
- Unique gameplay experience
- Fiddly camera
- Can frustrate at times
Sumo Digital has managed to somehow deliver a truly unique gaming experience in a year where we have more games to play than ever.
As Noodle the snake you must work through a series of levels collecting remnants to open the end portal, but how you collect these items is what makes the game so fun. Using the right trigger will see Noodle slither along, with the face buttons used to help him climb higher to reach ledges, but Noodle must be supported to climb otherwise he’ll fall.
It’s basically like a 3D adventure version of the classic Nokia Snake game.
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Special Edition
- Includes all DLC content for the game
- Motion controls work well
- Nintendo-themed exclusive items
- Really begun to show its age
- Lacks visual upgrades of other current-gen editions
One of the biggest games of all time – and one that has come to every console under the sun since its initial 2011 launch – now comes to the Switch as a Special Edition.
Sporting special Nintendo-inspired skins, motion controls and of course the ability to play the game as a portable, this is an incredible proposition.
- Ingenious puzzle action
- Superb co-op play
- Infectious sense of fun
- Silly four-player party modes
- Doesn’t really make the most of the Switch
If you’re looking for a fun, accessible and downright hilarious multiplayer experience on Nintendo Switch, look no further than Snipperclips. With a Joy-Con in hand, you and up to four friends can work together or duke it out in a series of addictively creative puzzles.
All of these are designed wonderfully around the Switch’s portable screen, making it perfect for popping out in the cafe or on a commute. The charming shapes you control only add to the fun, pulling off a series of ridiculous facial expressions as they contort across the screen.
- Still manages to look excellent on less powerful hardware
- The best port to Switch thus far
- Works great with the Pro Controller
- Naturally makes visual sacrifices on Nintendo’s platform
- Framerate takes a hit in intense sequences
- Smaller analogue sticks affect aiming
When DOOM was first announced for Nintendo Switch we were genuinely blown away. We never imagined such a bloody, demanding shooter would makes its way onto Nintendo’s console. But here it is, and despite some visual compromises, it’s a great experience.
The satisfying gunplay, ferocious monsters and fantastic setting remain, and it plays great on Nintendo Switch both docked and in portable mode. Keep in mind that the multiplayer mode is a separate download, unlike other platformers.
Buy now: DOOM for £40 / $50.16 from Amazon
- Adorably charming visuals
- Fun, addictive gameplay
- Cleverly written and lovable characters
- A real sense of retro place
- Visuals aren’t for everyone
- Golf mechanics could be a tiny bit deeper
Golf Story feels like an ingenious combination of Stardew Valley and Everybody’s Golf, placing you in a luscious world where conquering your neighbours at golf is equally as important as befriending them.
Its sporting mechanics are arguably strong enough to carry Golf Story but Sidebar Games has built a wonderful narrative around its world with 8 unique characters to meet and interact with. Sharp dialogue and tight, responsive controls make it a real joy to play.
Mario Tennis Aces
- A ridiculously good core mechanic that never gets old
- One of the finest multiplayer experiences on Switch
- Accessible and deep simultaneously
- Could offer something for quite some time
- Single-player may leave some wanting
- RPG system is light at best
Mario Tennis Aces is awesome and a must-have if multiplayer experiences are your thing. It blends silliness with seriousness really quite brilliantly and is a testament to Nintendo’s efforts within this space. No one else would ever even comes close.
Wolfenstein: The New Colossus
- The novelty of portable AAA games still hasn’t worn off
- Wolfenstein 2 remains a great, over the top shooter
- Technical downgrades are minor at best and don’t affect the experience
- Tonally it’s all over the place
- If you really care about visuals, you will notice a difference
After a superb port of id Software’s spectacular DOOM reboot, Panic Button turned its head to Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus. And, it’s done the impossible once again by porting a massive first-person shooter to the tiny hybrid console.
Beyond a visual downgrade, nothing has been sacrificed in the transition. Once again, you play as William ‘B.J.’ Blazkowicz as he seeks to overthrow the occupying Nazi force that has invaded America. Sporting an ensemble cast, excellent storytelling, and fast, brutal gunplay, this isn’t to be missed.
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