Nintendo Switch. (Illustration by Marlowe Pody, Rhode Island School of Design)
What are the best games that this hit console has to offer? (Illustration by Marlowe Pody, Rhode Island School of Design)

The 10 Best Nintendo Switch Games So Far

As the portable console enters its fourth year, its popularity is only skyrocketing, so we’re counting down the best games it has to offer.

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Nintendo Switch. (Illustration by Marlowe Pody, Rhode Island School of Design)
What are the best games that this hit console has to offer? (Illustration by Marlowe Pody, Rhode Island School of Design)

As the portable console enters its fourth year, its popularity is only skyrocketing, so we’re counting down the best games it has to offer.

After the failure that was the Wii U, Nintendo needed a big moneymaker to get back into the console race. Enter, the Nintendo Switch. The Switch was created for a gaming scene largely dominated by the Xbox and the PlayStation. However, Microsoft and Sony have been in command for good reason. Their consoles have, for the most part, superior graphics, more enticing games and better online play than other available gaming systems. Yet Nintendo has stuck around due to the absolute love for its first-party games, like the Super Mario franchise, The Legend of Zelda and Pokémon.

Thus, many were skeptical of the new Nintendo Switch console, and they had valid reasons. With only one really enticing launch title, many marked the Switch as another failure that would put Nintendo out of the console wars for good.

Fortunately, the Nintendo Switch became a smash hit. With creative games being released every year, the Switch has become a mainstay in the gaming market. But it’s hard to find the best games when there are so many to choose from, so here is a list of the top 10 picks so far.

10. Splatoon 2

Like the original Splatoon game, Splatoon 2 enables players to engage in endless paintball warfare by taking control of various “inklings.” The sequel added a bunch of new features to enhance gameplay, such as new mechanics, a new story mode and better online play. The game continues to have a dedicated online fanbase and is a must-have if you’re looking for multiplayer fun.

9. Pokémon Sword and Shield

The latest entries in the hit Pokémon franchise were met with some heavy criticism, particularly due to the game’s weak graphics, strange gimmicks like “Dynamaxing” and the decision to exclude more than half of all Pokémon. Nevertheless, Sword and Shield both still offer fans a phenomenal experience as they explore the new Galar region, with tons of new Pokémon to catch and befriend. Along with the introduction of the “Wild Area,” catching old and new Pokémon is as exciting as ever.

8. Luigi’s Mansion 3

The third entry in the spin-off series finds our favorite green plumber traveling to yet another haunted location. This time, it’s a haunted hotel, and Luigi must solve various puzzles and obstacles on each floor to rescue his brother and Princess Peach. With fun new twists like the introduction of Luigi’s doppelganger, Gooigi, gamers are sure to have a blast busting ghosts in Luigi’s Mansion 3.

7. Super Mario Maker 2

The sequel to the highly successful Mario Maker released to critical acclaim. For the first time, gamers could make and design their own 2D Mario levels. The original release on the Wii U was a smash hit, and Super Mario Maker 2 looked to enhance the experience. The sequel added a number of new mechanics to allow players to make their most creative and ambitious Mario levels yet. With the introduction of slopes, the angry sun and the chance to use the 3D elements of the Super Mario 3D World game, you’re sure to have a blast constructing your own levels with this Nintendo Switch game.

6. Astral Chain

From the makers of Bayonetta came the original new title Astral Chain. You play as an officer engaged in a war with strange interdimensional beings called “Chimeras” who threaten all life on Earth. Using your “chain,” you are able to capture some of these Chimeras and engage in a two versus one fighting style. Astral Chain offers some of the most innovative combat put to screen and an engaging story that is sure to get gamers hooked.

5. Celeste

This indie game burst onto the Nintendo Switch field back in 2018. You play an innovative 2D platform as the character Madeline as you embark on a journey to climb a mountain, while also conquering some inner demons. This game has breathtaking gameplay and a unique take on the 2D platform, while also asking gamers to explore their emotions.

4. Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Unlike the endless need to save a princess in either the Mario or Zelda franchise, Animal Crossing: New Horizons allows gamers to relax and spend some time in a virtual town that they create and live in. The latest installment in the franchise allows players to build their own virtual island where they can farm, catch food and make friends with fellow villagers.

3. Super Smash Brothers: Ultimate

The hit fighting franchise took the world by storm when it debuted 21 years ago. Now, the fifth installment in the crossover game hit the scene with a bang by bringing back every single fighter from the franchise. That, paired with a whole new batch of character options and stages, makes Super Smash Brothers: Ultimate a must-buy for gamers looking to win ultimate bragging rights against their friends.

2. Super Mario Odyssey

The latest installment in the Super Mario series took the franchise to new heights — literally. It’s the age-old story as gamers guide our favorite Italian plumber on a quest to save Princess Peach from Bowser. This time, however, we are accompanied by Cappy, a spirit that takes control of Mario’s iconic red hat. With Cappy, Mario can become anything he throws his hat at, including Goombas, fish and even a giant T-rex. It’s truly an adventure that celebrates Mario and his impact on video game history.

1. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

What else could the number one Nintendo Switch game be? The newest adventure in the Zelda series allows players to explore a vast and innovative world. The game drops you down and says “have fun” as you take on an array of enemies while finding hidden items, exploring shrines and climbing up rainy mountains. Gamers have poured hours and hours into this beloved game, and we are all eagerly awaiting the much-anticipated sequel.

These are the top 10 best Nintendo Switch games so far. But with a slew of upcoming projects on the way, gamers can’t wait to find out where the Switch will take us next.

Writer Profile

Alex Luna

University of California, Berkeley

Student at UC Berkeley currently majoring in English. Lover of all things anime, literature, sports and debating the possibility of parallel universes.

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