In this selection of articles, we will discuss our picks for the must own titles on the platform. The titles chosen will try and cover as many genres but will not be selected solely on covering all genres. Over time these lists will be updated to reflect new games that are released worthy of being added. Welcome to the Nintendo Switch Edition.
Super Mario Odyssey
In what is arguably Mario’s best adventure to date– this game offers a low skill entry for playability and enjoyability as well as a deeper challenge for gamers eager for the experience. The mechanics of controlling Mario in a 3D space are perfected yet again. With callbacks to the franchises legacy sprinkled throughout the game and instances of pure joy when using the capture mechanics on certain characters and objects for the first time, Odyssey is the smile-inducing platform perfection that we had hoped for.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
A masterpiece, a perfect entry into a legendary Nintendo franchise. Zelda BOTW not only changed the formula of what we’ve come to expect from a Zelda game, but it also changed the way how we will look at open world games from any developer going forward. The scale, sense of adventure, and ingenuity of interacting with the world around you and solving puzzles is unrivaled within the industry. Breath of the Wild is the new benchmark for open world adventure games.
Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove
One of the best indie games in the last few years, jam-packed with three, and eventually a fourth, campaign– This game will offer hours of retro platforming goodness with modern gameplay mechanics. Perfect for fans of retro platformers that have a dash of difficulty. But don’t get it twisted, Shovel Knight is not a grab at your childhood cloaked in a retro-stylized adventure, but instead a celebration of an era of gameplay and an art-style that will entrance anyone with it’s nostalgic aesthetic
Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle
A surprise hit this year, Mario + Rabbids brings polished, tactical strategy RPG gameplay exclusively to Nintendo’s portable home console in an adventure we didn’t know we needed. The Mushroom Kingdom gets invaded by Rabbids in this crossover of universes, in an enjoyable, easy to pick up, and satisfying to master turn-based strategy game. This game has appeal for both casual and hardcore gamers who are fans of turn-based combat. Playing through this raucous adventure will leave you hoping for a sequel– a feeling I never thought I would yearn.
Nintendo’s take on the team-based shooter genre is an inventive and refreshing change of pace. You and your team compete in objective based game modes trying to out ink your opponents to secure a victory. With a small-scale single player experience, this game flourishes as an online and local multiplayer experience. Nintendo has some lackluster approaches to how connecting with your friends should function, but that aside Splatoon 2 offers a casual and competitive shooter experience. With a constant flow of updates, timed events, and future support promised– Splatoon 2 wedges itself nicely in the team-based shooter genre.
Released this year on the Switch, this Steam hit feels right at home on the hybrid console. A perfect experience to be played in bite-sized moments or chunks of time at once. In this farming sim with RPG elements, you create and maintain your own farm and build upon your relationships with other villagers in your town. There isn’t anything else quite like this on the console yet, so this highly regarded game fills a hole in the Switch’s roster that many casual and hardcore gamers will enjoy.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
Mario Kart 8 was arguably the best entry in the series to date when it released on the Wii U, but since then the Switch version has improved upon what was already a fantastic racing game with the release of Deluxe. Additional modes, a fleshed out roster, and perfected controls bring this game that was previously trapped on an underperforming console to a new group of gamers and a larger community. Still bogged down with some of Nintendo’s odd internet play choices, the game excels as both a fun single player and multiplayer game– locally or online.
Covered in a delicious retro aesthetic, Sidebar Games’ Golf Story takes golfing mechanics and RPG elements and spins them together to produce one of the most unique and enthralling experiences on the Switch to date. You play as an amateur golfer who must traverse through multiple towns and golf courses, interacting with the towns people, completing quests, and of course– golfing. With gameplay that feels simple, yet fun and difficult to master, Golf Story offers a surprisingly dramatic and comical single player experience as well as a competitive local multiplayer.
Battle Chef Brigade
An outstanding medley of genres served up fresh from Trinket Studios, Battle Chef Brigade is part action adventure combat and part puzzle match game, that melds together to create a truly unique dish– uhh game. Set out to hunt for ingredients to concoct dishes to impress the judges by vanquishing monsters with combos and magic and rushing back to the kitchen to defeat your opponent on the skillet. The hand drawn art style, tight controls, and rush of both the battle on the field and at the counter top bring something delightfully refreshing to the palette. Vive la brigade!
A game that Brenden hails as one of the best platformers he’s played in the last decade— The Messenger has easily traversed its way onto our list of must own Switch games. Whether you’re a fan of the retro aesthetic or not, this game dives to depths you wouldn’t expect. With its attention to detail in style and gameplay, homage to a flurry of retro games, and stuffed with humor and story beats you may not be expecting– The Messenger is a lovingly crafted indie gem that oozes appeal and deserves your time.
The critically acclaimed indie title, Undertale, has finally made its way onto the Nintendo Switch and subsequently shimmied its way onto this list. With a unique turn-based RPG fighting mechanic, and a story that has memorable characters and multiple outcomes depending on how you choose to play– Undertale is something special and worth playing if you’re a fan of JRPGs and interesting stories. Or maybe if you just want to laugh a little.
Say what you will about battle royales or Fortnite— there’s no denying this game is currently at the pinnacle of popularity and offering something truly new in this age of gaming with the ability to play with other gamers on any other platform and track game progression between your account. With a game that can be enjoyed solo or with friends, competitively or laid back– this 100 player skirmish offers up interesting ways to play, is ever evolving and being balanced, and has a price tag of zero dollars. Though this is in no way the definitive version of this game, this should be on everyone’s Switch just based on the fact that it’s free. Where PC and other platforms have multiple options for shooters and battle royales, it fills a gap in these genres that currently have little to no representation on the Switch.