10. Bayonetta (Switch eShop)

Bayonetta (Switch eShop)Bayonetta (Switch eShop)
Publisher: Nintendo / Developer: PlatinumGames
Release Date: 16th Feb 2018 (USA) / 16th Feb 2018 (UK/EU)

After almost a decade Bayonetta is starting to show her age, but that doesn’t stop this hyperactive melee/shooter action mashup from being one of the most rewarding and memorable cult hits of the previous generation. Retooled for Nintendo Switch, one of Platinum Games’ most accomplished titles feels revitalised in both handheld and tabletop modes, serving up a meaty first course in the full witchy buffet to come.

9. Octopath Traveler (Switch)

Octopath Traveler (Switch)Octopath Traveler (Switch)
Publisher: Nintendo / Developer: Square Enix
Release Date: 13th Jul 2018 (USA) / 13th Jul 2018 (UK/EU)

Octopath Traveler was developed by the Square Enix studio behind Bravely Default, and boy does it live up to those high expectations. From its dazzling art style to its mechanics, it's the kind of game that keeps an eye on the past while walking bravely into the future. All elements link together perfectly to make for a harmonious and immersive experience that you’ll find difficult to put down. We’d recommend Octopath Traveler to both fans and newcomers of RPGs; it does a fantastic job of straddling that line of accessibility and depth, satisfying both camps with its dizzying amount of content. Classic-inspired gameplay, an orchestrated soundtrack, and a unique approach to storytelling make this a game that you won’t want to miss.

8. Undertale (Switch eShop)

Undertale (Switch eShop)Undertale (Switch eShop)
Publisher: 8-4 / Developer: 8-4
Release Date: 18th Sep 2018 (USA) / 18th Sep 2018 (UK/EU)

Undertale is a brilliant and smartly-designed game that understands well what makes a good RPG work; so much so that it can upend expectations and deliver something that’s almost a satire of the genre. It’s been a long time since we’ve played a game that manages to surprise so often and in so many unique ways, and even if it doesn’t look like much, Undertale has way more going for it under the surface. Excellently written characters, a genre-bending battle system and a solid soundtrack make this one an easy recommendation, especially to RPG lovers.

7. Mega Man Legacy Collection (Switch eShop)

Mega Man Legacy Collection (Switch eShop)Mega Man Legacy Collection (Switch eShop)
Publisher: Capcom / Developer: Capcom
Release Date: 22nd May 2018 (USA) / 22nd May 2018 (UK/EU)

Digital Eclipse did a great job with all the details in Mega Man Legacy Collection, presenting the original games in their best possible light, while tossing in a handful of extra features and challenges on top to sweeten the deal. The rewind feature is a welcome inclusion that helps to mitigate the difficulty of some of the games, and the overall quality of the series difficult to dispute. We would highly recommend you pick this one up — all the included extra features coupled with the ability to play these games both at home and on the go make it a no-brainer.

6. Mega Man X Legacy Collection (Switch eShop)

Mega Man X Legacy Collection (Switch eShop)Mega Man X Legacy Collection (Switch eShop)
Publisher: Capcom / Developer: Capcom
Release Date: 24th Jul 2018 (USA) / 24th Jul 2018 (UK/EU)

Mega Man X Legacy Collection is a fantastic re-release of several must-play gaming classics, presenting them as authentically as possible while still including a few modern features on top that help to improve the overall experience and keep it from feeling antiquated. Throw in the new X Challenge mode and an enormous archive of museum content and this stands as the definitive way to play the Mega Man X games in the modern era. Four fantastic games, a bevy of extra content, and the ability to play at home or on the go — nothing not to like here.

5. Bayonetta 2 (Switch)

Bayonetta 2 (Switch)Bayonetta 2 (Switch)
Publisher: Nintendo / Developer: PlatinumGames
Release Date: 16th Feb 2018 (USA) / 16th Feb 2018 (UK/EU)

Despite coming from the previous generation, Bayonetta 2 shines brightest on Nintendo Switch. It runs without a hitch at 60fps, looks incredible in both TV and tabletop modes, and offers an addictive free-flowing combat formula that sprinkles in platforming, light exploration and a ridiculous story to create something that you simply need to experience. If you’ve never played it for before, you’re in for a treat. If you’ve already played it, it’s even more bewitching as a handheld gem.

4. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (Switch)

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (Switch)Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (Switch)
Publisher: Nintendo / Developer: Retro Studios
Release Date: 4th May 2018 (USA) / 4th May 2018 (UK/EU)

There's no doubt about it, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is one of the most refined and enjoyable platformers money can buy. The levels are all beautiful, the characters move with fluidity and brilliant responsiveness, and the inclusion of Funky Kong brings balance for those who have less experience with brutally tough platformers. It’s so well-made that it’s almost too well-made; there's an absence of a certain 'rough-and-ready' charm found in Rare's original DKC trilogy. You know you're splitting hairs when your biggest complaint is that a game is too polished, though. After beginning life on Wii U, Donkey Kong’s Switch debut is streamlined, rewarding, and immensely good fun; any fan of 2D platformers simply has to get this game.

3. Celeste (Switch eShop)

Celeste (Switch eShop)Celeste (Switch eShop)
Publisher: Matt Makes Games / Developer: Matt Makes Games
Release Date: 25th Jan 2018 (USA) / 25th Jan 2018 (UK/EU)

Celeste is an exemplary amalgamation of style, mechanics and character. A devilishly brilliant action platformer with enough skill required to excite genre purists and the speedrunning community, while at the same time featuring a breakdown of gameplay elements to customize and cater for all audiences. While the game mechanically is great, if familiar, the art style and narrative are truly special, showing both a visual and emotional range and depth that will resonate and inspire. Celeste is the absolute peak of personal exploration and discovery on Nintendo Switch.

2. Hollow Knight (Switch eShop)

Hollow Knight (Switch eShop)Hollow Knight (Switch eShop)
Publisher: Team Cherry / Developer: Team Cherry
Release Date: 12th Jun 2018 (USA) / 12th Jun 2018 (UK/EU)

Hollow Knight feels like it found its natural home on Switch. The game's beautiful 2D world, tactile combat and impressive bevy of secrets constantly drag you in for more, and it proves to be as strong an experience on the move as it is on your TV. On an eShop that's filled with top quality indie games, Hollow Knight is one of the very best; a big, beautiful, foreboding Metroidvania that's absolutely thick with detail. From its punchy combat system to its charming art and sound design, this is one of the finest adventures you can have on Nintendo Switch.

1. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Switch)

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Switch)Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Switch)
Publisher: Nintendo / Developer: Nintendo
Release Date: 7th Dec 2018 (USA) / 7th Dec 2018 (UK/EU)

How does this 'ultimate' version of Nintendo's scrapper stack up? Vocal concerns about past games were actively addressed, every single fighter from the series is present (even Pichu) and joined by an ever-expanding roster of DLC characters form the annals of gaming, the customisability is overwhelmingly vast and it’s all topped off with super-solid single-player modes to boot. We’re not sure how you could make a more robust or pleasing Smash game - Super Smash Bros. Ultimate truly is the ultimate instalment in the series, and it makes you wonder where Masahiro Sakurai can possibly take this franchise next.


Some real winners in that selection, no? Do you disagree with this ranking? Time to get voting, then - remember, this is a fluid, ever-changing selection governed by each game's Nintendo Life user rating. Head to our library of Switch games for 2018 and see about getting your favourites on the list. You can also check out the best Switch games of the 2017, too.

With so many Switch games from 2018, there'll be plenty that passed people by. What are your favourites that perhaps didn't make this top 50 (yet)? Share your thoughts below.

This article is one of our Switch Essentials guides which cover a wide variety of genres, including the Best Switch FPS Games, the Best Switch RPGs, the Best Switch Games For Kids, the Best Switch Couch Co-Op Games and the Best Switch Fitness and Exercise Games. We can also help out hunting down the Best Switch Horror Games, the Best Switch Racing Games, the Best Switch Action-RPGs, the Best Nintendo Switch Roguelikes, Roguelites and Run-Based Games, the Best Free Switch Games, the Best Remakes And Remasters, the Best Switch Music And Rhythm Games, Best Feel-Good Switch Games, Best Switch Open-World Games, Best Switch Soulslike Games, Best LGBTQ+ Switch Games, and even Games to Play After You've Finished Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

Whatever your favourite genre, we've got you covered: Strategy Games, Metroidvanias, Puzzle Games, Party Games, Online Multiplayer Games, Local Wireless Multiplayer Games, Shmups, Twin-Stick Shooters, Visual Novels, Kart Racers, Fighting Games, Football Games, Funny Games, Golf Games, 'Walking Sims' And Narrative Games, Switch Games For Lovers And Lonely Hearts, Detective Games, Hidden Gems, 2D Platformers, 3D Platformers, Puzzle Platformers, Tabletop Mode Games, Run and Gun Games, LEGO Games, Sports Games, Survival Games, Beat 'Em Ups, Camera Games, Chill Games, Family Games, Retro-Inspired Games, Short Games, Card Games and Deck-Builders, and Life Sims And Farming Games.

Still hungry for more? Elsewhere we look at Wholesome Games, TATE Mode Games, Flight Sim and Space Combat, Point and Click Adventure Games, and the Best Switch Exclusives, as well as Every Arcade Archives Game, Every ACA Neo Geo Game, Every SEGA AGES Game On Switch, plus the Best Switch Ports, Best Wii U-To-Switch Ports, Best Switch Collections And Compilations, Best Cheap Switch Games, Best Switch Demos, Games That Are Better On Switch OLED, Switch Games Under $10, $20, $50, and Switch games with the Best Soundtracks and the Best Graphics. Phew!

If you're looking for the best Switch games regardless of genre, our reader-voted selection of the Best Nintendo Switch Games should help you out, and you can also find the Best Nintendo Switch Games of 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021. And finally, if you're interested in other Nintendo consoles and retro games, check out the Best Game Boy Games, Best GBC Games, Best GBA Games, Best Nintendo DS Games, Best Nintendo 3DS Games, Best NES Games, Best SNES Games, Best N64 Games, Best GameCube Games, and Best Wii Games, and Best Wii U Games, as well as Every Available Nintendo Switch Online Retro Game, and ranked lists of Every Nintendo Switch Online NES, SNES, N64 and Sega Genesis / Mega Drive Game.