Best Nintendo Swiitch Games (Updated 2020)

Summary List

For many of us, Nintendo is the standard when it comes to video game consoles. Since the early 80’s, they’ve released a system for every generation, and we can always count on them to bring back those lovable characters that’s occupied their creative worlds. The Switch is the newest system from the brilliant minds at Nintendo that has the gamer community clamoring. It’s a hybrid video gaming console that can be enjoyed by handheld gamers that are on the move, or you can set it up as a home system that the whole family can play.

With so many platforms to choose from, and many new ones on the way, (Xbox Series X and Playstation 5) choosing a new gaming system can be very difficult, even for expert gamers; and especially hard for those who’ve never owned a gaming console before. With the Nintendo Switch’s release in 2017, gamers got an experience that all other competitors couldn’t give them, and for this reason, consumers should give it a hard look. To make the choice a little easier, we’re made a list of the top 10 games on the Nintendo Switch.

Across platforms, there are few titles that are renowned as The Legend of Zelda. If you’ve owned a Nintendo console at any point of your life, or you know someone who let you play their Nintendo console, you must have played this series. But that doesn’t mean that you should be expecting similar gameplay from older iterations. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a surefire essential buy as a Nintendo Switch owner. It’s one of those games that pulls you in by design, and gives you more than you payed for.

The world is gorgeous and vast; it’s everything we use to love about Zelda turned up to 11. The designers gives players free reign to do what they please. That’s a statement thrown around a bit too often without being true. However, Nintendo really does give the gamer freedom to explore the entirety of Hyrule in their own unique way without much in limitations. Everything on the map is accessible, and should be when the terrain is this huge. This installment of Zelda is one you’ll want to take your time with, and make a real adventure out of it. There may not be a denser game than The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on the Switch, and it isn’t a stretch to put in 60+ hours of real time and still not get bored.

The gameplay is purely addicting, and as varied as the game's environment. The combat is excellent and never gets stale because of the different weapons you can wield and distinct enemies you will encounter. Their’s something for every type of gamer in one experience. You can travel the winding forests, climb tall mountains, solve challenging puzzles, brew curious elixirs, and even cook your own food.

Breath of the Wild is the best game of the Zelda series, and was the undisputed game of the year in 2017. Imagine being able to have one of the best games ever with you wherever you go.

Key Features
  • Original soundtrack
  • Diversity of environments and puzzles
  • Playable in different languages
Specifications
  • Genre: Adventure
  • Mode: Single Player
  • Rating: Everyone 10+
  • Publisher: Nintendo
Pros
  • Freedom to roam
  • Improvements to previous Zelda games
  • Satisfying combat
Cons
  • Graphics are not great

Every console that Nintendo has released has helped spearhead the gaming industry in one way or another. The best example of this may be the Nintendo 64. There were so many things about that system that made it groundbreaking; the 3D graphics, the controller, and so much more. What also made this system special was the release of classic game after classic game. One of those classics that debuted on the 64 would come to be simply known as “Smash." Super Smash Bros. is now a staple of every Nintendo console, and a fan favorite for most hardcore gamers. The Nintendo Switch’s release of it’s new installment of Smash was patiently awaited by the gaming community. Ultimate is more of the same from this historic series.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the embodiment of video game greatness coming together after decades. Every single game in the series is represented. It feels like all of the Smash Bros. games "smashed" into one game. With over 80 characters, every fighter who’s ever been in a Smash game is playable in Ultimate. As such, it’s easy to see why most are calling Ultimate the best Smash ever.

36 franchises are represented within the entire scope of the game, some not even part of the Nintendo family. With over 800 songs, the nostalgia of the soundtrack is amazing and will pump you up for a battle.

Make no mistake; this game isn’t just a “jambalaya” of recycled gameplay from previous Smash games. Nintendo added some new details as well as new characters and new stages to bring the total past 100. Further, the fighting combat has more of the 64 feel to it with quicker movements and combos.

The online gameplay never gets stale, and the more you play the story mode, the more characters, items, and stages you’ll unlock. Like Smash on the 64, one day in the distant future, you may find yourself dusting off the old Switch to play the classic Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Key Features
  • Over 100 stages
  • Ranked online gameplay
  • Have an 8-player battle
Specifications
  • Genre: Fighting Game
  • Mode: Multiplayer
  • Rating: Everyone 10+
  • Publisher: Nintendo
Pros
  • Excellent soundtrack for all stages
  • Graphics are great
  • Awesome family game
Cons
  • A few characters are overpowered

Hands down, Rocket League is one of the greatest concepts in the history of video games. There’s no way to explain what type of game it is because there’s truly never been anything like it. When Rocket League was first released in 2015, the gaming world paused, and collectively speculated what it would be like. It’s a sports game, but with cars, but it isn't a racing game? Not something easy to wrap your head around. If you haven’t played it before, just believe us when we tell you, the chance of you loving this game is very high. Rocket League is known in the community as one of the most addicting games you can play.

Game designers tend to sometimes add too much and get too fancy with stories, and graphics and what not. Yet, Rocket League is a reminder of what video games were intended for; being fun and exciting. The level of enjoyment you get from driving around in a car you designed and chasing around a giant soccer ball with your friends is unparalleled. There’s a good reason why Rocket League is one of the most critically-acclaimed releases in modern times.

Online play is a blast, and there are different game modes, like a basketball-type game mode. Further, the subtle nuances of this game are excellent. Customizing new vehicles makes this game awesome. Give it a new paint job, some decals, your country's flag, and finish off the ensemble with a top hat.

The game physics and presentation are also on point, complementing the varying game modes. Season mode allows you to customize your team, and online play is competitive and electric. It's a chaotic game, so there is a learning curve. But once you apply skill to it, you’ll score goals that will make you jump out of your seat.

Nominated for over 100 game of the year awards, Rocket League is an idea that will define a generation of online gameplay. And there may not be anything better then being able to play this handheld on the Nintendo Switch.

Key Features
  • Over 100 Billion Customizable Combinations
  • Professional Tournaments Available
  • Free online version
Specifications
  • Genre: Sports
  • Mode: Multiplayer
  • Rating: E
  • Publisher: Psyonix
Pros
  • Great deployability
  • Excellent game physics
  • Split-screen for local/online play
Cons
  • Game file is very large

The Nintendo Switch offers a collection of ports that are known to gamers originally on other home consoles and computers. It’s the advantage of owning the Switch; take some of the most iconic games from the last decade, and play them with portability. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is a prime example of a game that people loved on the pc platform, but can now hold it in the palms of their hands.

A masterpiece adventure game that brings all our favorite mythical creatures to life with an intense storyline. Find out why the dragons have returned to Skyrim, while you nerd out over mystical wizards and powerful elves. With exclusive gear based on The Legend of Zelda series, the player is equipped with the weapons, spells and armor to last to the end. The Nintendo Switch takes the Skyrim combat and gameplay to new heights with motion control technology. Use the joy cons to swing your sword, aim a bow and arrow, and pick the the most difficult locks in Skyrim. Bethesda Game Studios outdid themselves with this mammoth virtual world, especially when it comes to the graphics. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is definitely one of the best looking games on the Nintendo Switch, submerging the gamer even more into another reality.

When it comes to RPG’s, Skyrim is a must-have. The Elder Scrolls won over 200 game of the year awards with its original 2011 release, and rightfully so. Just thank Nintendo for making it available on their platform, because playing a game with this much depth on handheld wasn’t popular until the release of the Switch. Although it may not run like a beast as it does on a desktop, the Switch version certainly won’t disappoint.

Key Features
  • Motion control friendly
  • Vast world to explore
  • Duel wield weapons
Specifications
  • Genre: Action RPG
  • Mode: Single Player
  • Rating: Mature 17+
  • Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Pros
  • Winner of 200+ game of the year awards
  • The combat is awesome
  • Epic narrative
Cons
  • Overwhelming for some gamers

When building a game collection, it’s important to cover all of your tastes in genre and gameplay. That’s why there's so much parody in this compilation of video games that you should buy on the Nintendo Switch. Shooters haven’t really been a focus of Nintendo’s from the start. The general public sees Nintendo as the system you buy for the whole family. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t titles for the gaming community that just want to wreck havoc on their virtual enemies. The question is, which shooter is the best?

Look no further than the Doom reboot that released on the Switch in 2017. Quite clearly, this is the only pure shooter to make it on this list, and for good reason. Doom runs extremely smooth on the Switch where other shooters simply don’t. One usually wouldn’t be able to play this on their bus commute back home. But the Nintendo Switch is a system powerful enough to play this game handheld, which has to make Doom one of the best first person shooters ever made for a handheld system.

One of the pioneers of the multiplayer deathmatch, Doom brings back the classic split-screen action in some new multiplayer modes that will blow you and your friends away. It’s the fast-paced mayhem located on Mars that made the Doom franchise a favorite of the gaming community. The mechanics of the game is fluid, and the combat and shooting physics are something to behold.

The campaign is truly like no other. Take on some of the baddest adversaries you’ll battlet, and use the game's wide array of guns in the process.

Key Features
  • Runs at 30 FPS
  • Classic Doom multiplayer mode included
  • Rated M
Specifications
  • Genre: First-Person Shooter
  • Mode: Multiplayer
  • Rating: Mature
  • Publisher: Nintendo
Pros
  • Improvement to older Doom games
  • Great storyline
  • Fast gunplay and action
Cons
  • Not the best graphics

Since it’s release, Fortnite has taken the gaming world by storm, and it just keeps growing in popularity. Showered with almost every accolade the award circuit had to offer, all other games had to take a backseat. It’s playability is based on competition, style of play, and skill. Fortnite literally changed the game as a battle royale that was downloadable to the public for free. The best part about the online action is that it’s cross-platform, so you’re able to play against Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, and even players on cell phones when you rock on the Switch.

The attention to detail that went into the game physics is unmatched. Bullet trajectory is as real as it gets, especially from long distances. The gameplay can get serious and ultra competitive when you’re in the eye of the storm. Yet, Fortnite nearly takes a Looney Toon approach in its theme. Not only can you win customized gliders and skins from different brands like Marvel and the NFL, but you can equip your characters with dance moves and celebrations like a weapons loadout.

Victories are hard to come by in Fortnite. One of two on this list, the free version offers online game modes for a squad of four, two, or you can even go solo. Schedule some time with a few buddies and grab some headsets to get the full impression one of the best battle royale games around. Strategy is key, as you have to play to your strengths as a gamer. You can go complete beast mode and find where the action is, or you can take a secret agent approach and save your only kill for the end. Once you get familiar with the map and loot, you may put in enough time to challenge the professionals.

Key Features
  • Battle Pass customizations
  • Rapid updates to maps and weapons
  • Free online version
Specifications
  • Genre: Battle Royale
  • Mode: Single Player
  • Rating: Teen
  • Publisher: Epic Games
Pros
  • Excellent game physics
  • Fun additions like dancing
Cons
  • No real story line

Not all video games have to be fictional. Is there a better genre than sports at injecting realism into your gaming experience? The distributer EA Sports has been the main supplier of quality made video games across every major sport. It’s no doubt that the FIFA franchise has been a beloved title of the public. Soccer is the world’s most popular game, and it has never felt better to control your favorite team than in FIFA 20 on Nintendo Switch.

Their are two great things about sports games: one, they usually release a new one every year, and two, the opinion of the people are taken into heavy consideration in the making of the new game. Electronic Arts does a great job of this, and it shows in FIFA 20. The improvements are all across the board from the previous year. Better graphics, more advanced artificial intelligence, also much better game physics. Most sports games aren’t for everyone, so there’s a reason this is the only title that made it on the list. FIFA 20 is very fun and easy to learn compared to other sports video games. The nuances in the gameplay make you feel like you’re in the stadium during pressure moments. The sound design is wonderful at every level, from the classic Dutch commentary to the soundtrack compiled with music from all over the globe.

The animations of players on the field is nothing short of amazing. Online gameplay is among the best on this entire list, and the competition is respectful and intense. Choose from club, international, historic, and women’s teams; even customize your dream squad from multiple eras that could never exist. Does it get more excellent than playing with your favorite footballers on handheld? Perhaps so, with the ability to recreate some of the greatest goals in the history of soccer, with all the legends of the sport.

Key Features
  • Has Women’s International Cup
  • Fun offline career mode
  • New skills games
Specifications
  • Genre: Sports
  • Mode: Multiplayer
  • Rating: E
  • Publisher: EA Sports
Pros
  • NPCs are advanced
  • Graphics are great
  • Great soccer gameplay
Cons
  • Technical limitations on the Switch

Sega! If you didn’t sing that, then strap in for a trip down memory lane. That name held as much weight as Microsoft and Sony do now, and it still does for those that remember. Similar to the introduction of every iconic console that’s been discussed thus far, Sega came up with an unforgettable character to be the foundation franchise. Theirs was a blue little hedgehog named Sonic. Playing Sonic the Hedgehog is still a fun experience to this day. In an alternate timeline, playing it in the present would only be possible by getting your hands on a Sega system. Thanks to Nintendo, this generation can also enjoy a new game that features the speedy fur ball.

Sonic Mania on the Switch is a throwback to a simpler time in gaming. That is, a simpler time when pixels didn’t matter all that much, and concepts were basic but still entertaining. This game is for the entire family to play, with its head-to-head and co-op game modes. Seriously, could we really call it a quality Sonic release without Tails and Knuckles? Even the diabolical Dr. Eggman has returned with his robot army and some new villains. The Nintendo Switch is the perfect platform for a game like Sonic Mania. The classic 2D graphics running at 60 FPS gives you that retro feel. Not to mention, the construct of the Switch when handheld can trick you into thinking you’re playing Sonic on the retro handheld devices.

The gameplay of Sonic hasn’t changed much, the speed and moves of the characters are still the same. However, everything else has been updated and upgraded. All of the levels have been redesigned with the addition of all-new single and multiplayer game modes. Sometimes, you have to go old school to get it done.

Key Features
  • Redesigned levels from old Sonic games
  • Runs at 60 FPS
  • Includes a new “Competition” mode
Specifications
  • Genre: Platform Game
  • Mode: Multiplayer
  • Rating: E
  • Publisher: SEGA
Pros
  • Fun for entire family
  • Classic Sonic The Hedgehog experience
  • Polished platforming gameplay
Cons
  • Not a long story line

There are a number of iconic franchises on this list of Switch games. But is there a more beloved franchise than Pokémon? The advantage of the Nintendo Switch works both ways. Not only is it great for taking games made for home consoles on the move, but it gets much better when playing a traditional handheld video game, and introducing it to your home entertainment system with a flat screen tv and surround sound. The Gameboy Color was a monumental release for Nintendo largely due to different versions of Pokémon games that came out with it.

Pokémon Sword & Shield is the equivalent of yesteryear’s Pokémon Red & Blue. For those that don’t know, Red & Blue were a big deal in their day, though many beliieve that the new Sword & Shield are the best in the exemplary franchise. It's the only game package on this list simply because its too hard to choose between them. However, unlike the other remakes and reboots we’ve compiled, Pokémon Sword & Shield have a ton of major differences that you won’t recognize in older chapters.

The biggest enhancement is the new “Wild Area." It’s an open terrain in the new Galar Region that features a bunch of different Pokémon dens and other locations like lakes and fields. It’s the most open and interactive world that has been in any type of Pokémon game. There are also three new starter Pokémon to choose from, and species that are exclusive to the Sword or Shield game. Have no fear, the stage is filled with the original 150 Pokemon. The only difference is now you can get your hands on the new ones.

Key Features
  • Player camera control
  • Have epic gym battles with Dynamax
  • New story and world
Specifications
  • Genre: Role-Playing Game
  • Mode: Single Player
  • Rating: E
  • Publisher: Nintendo
Pros
  • One of the best games in series
  • Includes familiar characters
  • Great for handheld gaming
Cons
  • Lags in certain areas

Nintendo has generally been backed by legendary fighting games, especially during the 90s when the arcade craze was at its pinnacle. The genre is still going strong today with great fighting games based on anime franchises like Dragonball Z, Naruto, and One Piece. The concept of the traditional fighting game is simple: two characters with bad blood, pitted on opposite sides of the television screen ready to duke it out. There’s been illustrious fighting games that we’ve witnessed, but Mortal Kombat 11 is exceptional among them.

This is a gamer’s video game. Going strong for over 25 years, the saga continues with it’s bone crushing, ruthless style of gameplay. If you enjoy video games that feel like movies, Mortal Kombat 11 has a story mode for you. The fable behind this video game is so good, it was worthy of two big-screen appearances in the 1990s. The best part about it is that all of the returning MK characters, as well as the new characters have their own storyline within the single-player story mode. The main plot is based around Raiden and other characters fighting against a new villain who can manipulate time. It’s also filled with all those special move easter eggs that the Mortal Kombat franchise has always been known for.

Players can put together deadly combinations, and end the match with their character’s signature Fatality, if they have the skill to pull it off. But that’s not all; Mortal Kombat 11 on the Nintendo Switch has a new feature to customize fighters. Explore a near infinite combinations of intros, special abilities, gear, skins, and victory cinemas. Taunts and brutalities and can also be earned through moving up the tournament ladder. The graphics are awesome in this game, and allows the player to see the fight and stage in its greatest form. If you’re going to buy a Switch, you should have a few games that you would normally buy for a home console to take advantage of the portability. In that category, Mortal Kombat 11 is a flawless victory.

Key Features
  • Has custom character alterations
  • Runs at 60 FPS
  • Wide selection of available fighters
Specifications
  • Genre: Fighting
  • Mode: Multiplayer
  • Rating: Mature
  • Publisher: WB Games
Pros
  • Great storyline
  • Fluid gameplay mechanics
  • Excellent presentation
Cons
  • Not the best for portable play

The Nintendo Switch is rife with a diverse selection of quality titles, but how do you determine which one is the perfect fit for your gaming tastes? To determine this, we need to take a deep dive into some of the most important features you should be looking for in a video game and which features hold the most weight in the various types of games covered here.

Single-Player vs. Multiplayer

This could be the most crucial specification when buying a video game. Because it’s not the most advertised feature; a world does exist where you think you’re getting one type of game, and you come home with something that doesn’t quite meet your expectations. This means that knowing who you’re buying for, and how they will use it is crucial.

There are a lot of video game genres that are standard multiplayer genres like sports, puzzle, and fighting games. But what if you want to get a first-person shooter, an action-adventure, or a role-playing game? These are not all made equal and don’t all come with multiplayer options. Make sure you do your research if you want to buy a game on this list and you plan on playing locally with your family and friends. Also, be sure to find out if there is a multiplayer split-screen option for online gameplay.

A Compelling Story & Characters

Storylines are the basic structure of many video games, and the characters are the drivers of the story. When looking into purchasing a game for the Nintendo Switch, you should keep in mind that you want to get the most for your money in an engaging narrative if that's a priority. You don’t want to buy a story-heavy game that will only take a weekend to finish. Find a title that has a well fleshed-out world and storyline like The Legend of Zelda.

Games like these will give you hours upon hours of gameplay, and that’s the goal. Also, find interesting characters that occupy these worlds and stories that appeal to you. For instance, some people aren’t into elves and dwarves in fantasy settings.

Alternatively, a lot of video game characters are based on comics, folklore, or even real life. It makes the choice a bit simpler when you apply what attracts you in other entertainment mediums when buying a video game.

Quality Gameplay

Many designers believe that gameplay is the number one quality that makes a video game good or bad. It really doesn’t matter if the story is compelling or if the graphics jump off the screen. If the gameplay itself simply fails to entertain, then you most likely will stop playing it after just a few minutes.

Gameplay is the more technical aspect of any given game. Frankly speaking, it’s what makes a game enjoyable. Gameplay is the way the characters move, how they're controlled, and the physics and consequence of actions made wiith characters. In other words, it is the basic structure of a video game. Its online performance is an important factor if you're looking to compete with others in an online multiplayer game.

The Nintendo Switch is a unique system with very unique controls. While peripherals exist in the form of classic-type controllers, the Switch is equipped with two smaller controllers on either side of the screen in handheld mode, which can be detached when docked for gameplay on a TV screen.

There are plenty of choices available in its variety of games, so be confident in what you choose to play on the Nintendo Switch.

We hope you like the items we recommend! CBR has affiliate partnerships, so we receive a share of the revenue from your purchase. This won’t affect the price you pay and helps us offer the best product recommendations.

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  • 9.90/10 1. Editors choice: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
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  • Rocket League amazon Shop
  • 4. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
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