The Nintendo Switch is on the way to being one of the greatest gaming systems of all time, with an incredible library of first and third-party content after only four years on the market. The ability to take these triple-A Nintendo titles anywhere and also have them available on the TV is an incredible feature, and many developers are taking advantage of it. Here are ten of the best Nintendo Switch games you can play in 2021.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
One of the most relaxing excursions in the gaming landscape, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, makes searching for shells and collecting fruit fun. As you progress, you’ll constantly see your island improve with new residents interested in staying in the area. The game’s cute graphics and adorable interactions make this one of the purest and sweetest games in the Nintendo Switch library. So, sit back, relax, have a cup of coffee, and play Animal Crossing: New Horizons when you get the chance if you haven’t already.
Hailed as one of the greatest indie games ever created, Celeste has immaculate platforming gameplay that comes hand in hand with its heartwarming narrative about depression and fulfilling a goal. The journey is certainly tough, but it completely makes sense when you think of the story’s context. Madeline, the protagonist, is trying to overcome her fears and finally climb a mountain, but she’ll come across many struggles and intriguing characters along the way. Once you’ve finished the treacherous journey, it will all be worth it. I’m not a big fan of super difficult platformers, but Celeste is worth overcoming its challenges.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses
Any strategy RPG lover needs to get their hands on Fire Emblem: Three Houses. This game, released in 2019, has an engrossing storyline that’s split into three ways. Without spoiling anything, there is a twist at the end of the first act that will leave you going to one faction or the other. This offers plenty of replayability for an already lengthy game. Regardless of its gimmick, Fire Emblem: Three House features top-notch strategy gameplay that will keep you on your toes, as well as a cast of wonderful characters you’ll get to know throughout your adventure. We haven’t even gotten into the outstanding music by Takeru Kanazaki, Rei Kondoh, and Hiroki Morishita, such as “The Edge of Dawn,” “Tearing Through Heaven,” and “Fodlan Winds.”
Thrilling combat? Check. Relatable characters? Check. A gorgeous art style? Check. Hades from Supergiant Games checks all the boxes you’d want from an action RPG/roguelike hybrid. The main protagonist Zagreus is trying to escape his father Hades’ realm and figure out what happened to his birth mother. To do that, you’ll have to face the game’s hardest bosses and toughest monsters to be in for a chance to get out. As you inevitably fail over and over again, you’ll learn about the characters of the world and relate to them. Hades throws twists and turns that you won’t see coming, and as a roguelike, it offers one of the best storylines in its genre.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is the culmination of what makes the series so great. Sporting lovely visuals, Mario and his friends (and Splatoon’s Inklings and The Legend of Zelda’s Link) race through some beautifully designed tracks inspired by the Mushroom Kingdom. It is the best-selling Mario Kart in the series’ long three-decade history for a reason. Just don’t use any blue shells on us, okay? Deal? Deal.
Super Mario Odyssey
Super Mario Odyssey is in the running to be one the best 3D platformers ever created. Each world is meticulously crafted with excellent game design all around. It will constantly surprise you as you explore every kingdom from top to bottom. The objective is to save Peach from the evil Bowser, who is trying to marry her against her will. To get to them in time, Mario and his new friend Cappy must find enough moons to power their ship. Cappy is a fantastic gameplay addition to the classic 3D formula as he allows you to control other living beings for gameplay advantages or solve puzzles. We hope his addition is permanent. The game is also a love letter to fans of Mario, with plenty of references and nostalgic segments.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
The greatest crossover in all of gaming, Super Smash Bros Ultimate is a must-buy for any Nintendo Switch owner. It’s simple but hard to master fighting game systems of knocking the opponent off the stage is satisfying and rewarding. Its dedication to video game history with each stage and character move set is unparallel. While it could be a simple party game for those who want to have Pikachu and Link fighting Minecraft Steve and Sephiroth, it is equally fun to play competitively with its deep systems. Now, can we please get Kingdom Hearts’ Sora in the game?
Tetris 99 takes the classic game we all know and love from the Game Boy era and brings it to the 21st century in a battle royale-like setting. You and 99 other people are competing to be the best Tetris player. As you finish each line, the garbage is sent to other players. There is also an element of strategy involved as you can target random people, your attackers, or those on the brink of losing. It’s a fun, fast-paced version of the classic Tetris formula, and the best thing is that it’s free for all Nintendo Switch Online members.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a revolutionary take on the classic series as Link’s adventure went open world for the first time. Anything you see can be reached, and that in itself is a powerful element of Breath of the Wild. Interacting with fire makes the grass go aflame, and collecting ingredients throughout the world can be used in recipes. The puzzles are cleverly designed as you enter shrines throughout the world. Exploring the quiet land of Hyrule and solving how to tackle its landscapes is a magnificent task as you prepare yourself for the big battle with Ganon. You can try to battle him straight away, funnily enough, but we wouldn’t recommend it.
The Xenoblade Chronicles series
We surely would be amiss without mentioning the Xenoblade Chronicles series. They are beloved by the games’ fans for their thrilling MMO-like combat system and engaging storylines that will keep you interested from beginning to end. There are so many missions to complete, and an average playthrough, according to How Long To Beat, for the first game would take you around 79 hours. Completionists have reported 130 hours of playtime. Wow! There’s a lot of value in this series, and while the resolution does look blurred admittedly, the art design is stunning. Oh, and the music is unbelievable, too, with its mix of sweeping orchestral themes to its rock-infused battle themes. “You Will Know Our Names” will always be one of our favorite video game tracks of all time.
- Bayonetta 2
- Monster Hunter Rise
- Sonic Mania
- Splatoon 2
- What Remains of Edith Finch