The Nintendo Switch version of South Park: The Fractured But Whole is no great leap on from the mechanics of the first game, but it still offers both an ideal introduction for players looking to try out a turn-based RPG and a worthy addition to any genre fan's collection. If you never played the first instalment, and you’re a fan of Matt Stone and Trey Parker’s two-decade-long animated lampooning, then you’ll love just how authentically authentic it is. From the 2D recreation of every inch of the Colorado town (including a taco shop run by Morgan Freeman, naturally) to the unflinching satire of every demographic imaginable (a ‘Hooters’-style bar run by kids, anyone?), it’s as true to the franchise as any of its myriad TV seasons.
Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! are beautiful reimaginings of a video game classic, updating a 20-year-old game in ways which make it infinitely more accessible and user-friendly for a modern audience, while keeping the magic first discovered all those years ago. On the downside, the motion control mechanic is fun but flawed, forcing you to shift from one play style to another to get the best experience. Still, the game does a superb job of striking a balance between being an easy route of entry for newcomers and offering just enough post-game challenge and competitive play elements (and nostalgia, of course) to please series veterans; as a result, these new titles really do offer something for everyone, which can't always be said of the mainline Pokémon entries. They might not be an absolute masterpiece, but we’d urge any Poké-fans out there to give these ones a go.
Less of a game, and more of an interactive story with some light platforming and exploring to tie it all together, Night In The Woods is one of the most rewarding experiences you can play on Nintendo Switch. A curio better played for yourself than described by us, it’s an indie title that will no doubt leave an impression with its enchanting soundtrack, disarming story and instantly identifiable character arcs. Strange and wonderful in equal measure.
Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition is a great time-sink game, featuring mindless but fun action gameplay that offers up the potential for dozens - if not hundreds - of hours of content. Though it certainly feels like a game that’s too bloated in places, it manages to balance the Zelda and Dynasty Warriors elements well. Group all of that with stellar presentation and impressive portable gameplay, and you’ve got a game that does a great job of doing something new (and weird) with a classic Nintendo property. We’d give this one a recommendation, especially to fans of the Zelda series who have always wanted there to be some sort of 'anniversary' game. Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition may not have a ton of depth, but it’s way more fun than it has any right to be, and you’d be missing out by not picking up this complete edition.
Darkest Dungeon has always been an RPG that finds ways to make life uncomfortable for the player, and this Switch version manages to add a couple of usability issues to that list. However, this remains a dauntingly deep, thoroughly absorbing dungeon crawler that will swallow you up for hours at a time.
Owlboy is a three-pronged attack of success: the gameplay is tight, satisfying, and remains fresh throughout; the game’s world is visually stunning thanks to some truly masterful pixel art and you’ll find yourself really caring about the cast of characters and the world surrounding them thanks to a compelling storyline and background lore. This is a game that is absolutely worth your time and we urge you to consider giving it a go.
While some of the games included in this compendium are rendered somewhat superfluous by the fact that far superior sequels and updates exist alongside them, Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection remains an utterly essential purchase for any self-respecting fighting game fan. This is like a history lesson in how the one-on-one fighter has evolved over time. The experience really benefits from using the right controller; while the Joy-Con are perfectly acceptable when you're hosting impromptu local multiplayer challenges and the Pro Controller's D-Pad is passable, we found the 8bitdo SN30 and SN30 Pro pads to be much better options, and if you have an arcade stick that's compatible with Switch, now is the ideal time to dig it out – this is fighting game nirvana, pure and simple.
Sega's had more than one stab at creating a comprehensive collection of its best Mega Drive titles and, as a result, Sega Mega Drive Classics does lose some of its impact due to sheer familiarity; for example, we already have an immaculately-ported version of Sonic on the Switch eShop right now. Even so, it's hard to argue with the 50-odd games that ship with this new compendium, and only a fool would contest the fact that it showcases some of the best games of the 16-bit era. The modern-day enhancements are welcome too, and while this isn't the first time many of these games have gone portable, it's a real boon to be able to play the likes of Phantasy Star IV or Story of Thor on the bus. When you take into account how much quality there is on offer here, Sega Mega Drive Classics becomes an easy recommendation.
While Digital Extremes hasn’t quite perfected the formula it needs to make Warframe completely accessible - the sheer number of interconnected systems and customisable elements suggests it never quite will - it still offers a co-operative third-person shooter with all the MMORPG elements you never thought you’d see running on Nintendo Switch. From the impressive visual fidelity Panic Button has maintained, to the sheer breadth of content you can access for free, Warframe represents another milestone for the console.
Both classic Dragon Quest RPG and Minecraft-style building sim, Dragon Quest Builders takes just enough ingredients from each side of the developmental kitchen and gently stirs them into a dish that never manages to overpower either of its core mechanics. If you’ve ever wanted to try Mojang’s ubiquitous hit but found it a little too intimidating in its vagueness, then this is the alternative for you. Fun, empowering and Dragon Quest to a tee; its combat and camera can be a little erratic, but they never manage to derail your new building adventure.