In a little over two years Switch has amassed a huge amount of software - more than any Nintendo fan dared to dream after the slim pickings of the Wii U generation. Of course, this abundance of riches leaves us in something of a pickle - too much software, not enough time to play it all. In fairness, it's a very nice problem to have - Help! There are too many excellent games to choose from!
To help you sort through the pile of new games dumped on the eShop every week, we've assembled this collection of the 50 best games on Switch so far. We say we assembled, but in actual fact you are responsible for the titles that comprise this list of winners. As with our round-up of the 50 best 3DS games of all time, the order here is taken from the user ratings associated with Switch games on this site's database.
This means that the list is fluid and the rank can change according to the rating. If you've previously rated the games, just sit back and enjoy. If, however, you've yet to give your personal score, clicking on each game's rating below will enable you to cast your vote and affect the list.
Can't see your favourite? Head to our library of Switch games (click the games tab at the top of the page) and input your own ratings. A game needs a minimum of fifty ratings to become eligible, so it's entirely possible to influence the ranking and get your favourite games onto the list.
As great as this selection is already, there's still plenty to come from Nintendo's hybrid handheld. The future's bright for Switch owners, and it will be most interesting to see how this list evolves over time. Without further ado, let's dive into this selection of the best Switch games until now...
While locking the game behind a £25 Founders Pack might be a little cheeky for a game that’s actually free-to-play, the game itself is an easy sell. As exciting, tense and rewarding as Overwatch, Paladins: Champions of the Realm brings the cross-platform hero shooter to a new platform without sacrificing the moreish gameplay tenants that’s made it such a hit with both gamers and pros. There’s a definitive learning curve for those looking to play competitively, but it’s nonetheless one of the console’s best new multiplayer additions.
With its exclusive use of some substantial Star Fox content, you’re getting the best version of Starlink: Battle for Atlas on Nintendo Switch. And with a more accessible and ultimately enjoyable version of No Man’s Sky's gameplay mechanics and Mass Effect’s original vision, you’re getting one of the best dogfighting/space exploration games you can buy outside of Elite: Dangerous. Its gameplay loop does run out of steam after a while thanks to the required grind, but with a surprisingly ungreedy approach to content access and toys-to-life integration, Starlink makes you think there might be some life in the genre yet.
The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth+ is a game old-school Nintendo would have never allowed on its home consoles, as was the case until its stance softened with a previous iteration on Wii U and New 3DS; the Switch, ultimately, feels like a perfect fit. It's a game you can pick up and play for 15 to 20 minutes at a time, you can jot down or screenshot your favourite seeds, there are daily challenges, the ability to play in any of the Switch's control configurations and also couch co-op. These features make this a great title for those looking for something a little more portable to add to their Switch lineup, while it naturally also works well enough when played on the TV.
While Nintendo has definitely changed its stance in the last few decades, this game feels like a blend of old-school mechanics and new-age thinking; it's an homage to the challenge and style of old games, while simultaneously presenting itself stylistically as being something more contemporary. If you're looking for a game that will be different each time you play it, look no further.
What happens when you throw arguably the two most popular falling block puzzle games in a blender? It’s a miracle that the result wasn’t a horrible, horrible mess, but Puyo Puyo Tetris mixes the two so confidently that it doesn’t occur to you how catastrophic this cocktail could have been. Sonic Team respects the fundamentals of each series and offers a rock-solid game of both, but isn’t afraid to have fun stirring them together. There’s a bevy of multiplayer options for up for four people, and everything is presented with a vigour and verve which belies the decades-long history behind both puzzle genre titans.
The Story mode is… well, it’s a bit nuts, but it’s there if you want it (we were glad for the skip button). More importantly, the wealth of modes available means aficionados of either series have more than enough to occupy themselves with. In fact, it’s possible to pretty-much ignore your least favourite, but that would be a great shame; this is a glorious firework of a crossover, uniting puzzle fans of all creeds and it shines very brightly on Switch.
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 newly-introduced motion control mechanic is fun but flawed, forcing us to shift from one play style to another to get the best experience, and while efforts have been made to bring the game up to the standard of more recent entries when it comes to depth and complexity, hardcore fans may consider the whole experience too much of a cakewalk.
Still, the game does a superb job of striking a balance between being an easy route of entry for newcomers to the series 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.
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.
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; if anything we’ve mentioned above has you even remotely intrigued by this game, we urge you to consider giving it a go.
L.A. Noire's troubled development resulted in accusations of poor management at Team Bondi, the fallout of which was enough to effectively sink the studio. Despite its troubled history, it's heartening that players are being given the chance to revisit Los Angeles on Nintendo Switch. While the game's myriad faults remain and the revised interrogation system fumbles its chance to fix one of the most egregious part of the game, the great acting, stunning atmosphere and amazing facial animation all combine to make this a detective adventure that's worth experiencing, despite its rough edges. It wasn't a faultless game back in 2011 and that hasn't changed now, yet it somehow manages to be more than the sum of its parts. We suspect it will be regarded as a pioneering classic in the future; few games treat the player to such a grown-up and mature experience as this, and that's important for the video game industry as a whole.
If you haven’t played Cave Story yet, you need to; it’s an essential title for any fan of Metroidvania style games. Its wonderful pacing, fantastic controls and charming visuals make it a must-have for fans of the genre, especially those that have yet to play it. If there was the equivalent of a required reading list for games, Cave Story+ would be on it.
41. ARMS (Switch)
The core fighting mechanics of ARMS are easy to grasp - especially when you're using the pleasantly intuitive motion controls - but they showcase the kind of depth which rewards dedicated players. Mixing up light and charged punches with your dashes and leaps allows you to create an almost balletic style of play, but add in grabs, stuns and features unique to each stage and you've got a truly formidable foundation to build on. The lure of collecting Arms will keep you glued to your console even if you only choose to play solo, but ARMS also proves its worth online; getting into a match is an effortless affair in the most part and for those who want to take things to the next level, Ranked Matches provide the ideal means of proving your skill.