The Switch can be anything anyone wants it to be. It has all the big Nintendo-magic hits you could hope for from the Mario, Zelda, and Pokemon series (we all continue to mourn the extended hibernation of Metroid and F-Zero), a slew of high profile cross-platform gems old and new to suit any budget and taste, and even quirky not-games like KORG Gadget and SmileBASIC 4 — tools that allow you to create your own music or dip into programming respectively.
And to a certain extent that's only to be expected: a good modern console should have a healthy mix of fantastic exclusives, terrific third-party support, and the occasional bit of oddness thrown in for good measure - but a great one will offer even more. A great console will do all of that and then take you far away to forgotten corners of gaming you either never had the chance to experience the first time around or may not have known you were missing at all.
So, sweep aside all of the increasingly expensive tiny arcade cabinets, shrunken consoles, mini handhelds, and revamped Game & Watches that every company with a passing interest and the rights to something or other keeps asking us to dip into our pockets for — Nintendo's Switch trounces the lot of them, a nigh perfect portable slab of retro gaming heaven that's already home to some of the most legendary, challenging, and niche arcade releases of all time.
We're about to take you on a guided tour through some of the best games the system has to offer which began life in the arcades...
ACA NEO GEO
Let's get the most familiar arcade giant out the way first: SNK's Neo Geo. Released in 1990 and so far ahead of everything else at the time, this was literally a cutting-edge arcade machine for the home sporting cartridges roughly the size and thickness of a VHS ta— ...
Okay, that comparison probably doesn't work any more. Take a look at a Switch sitting in its dock with the Joy-Cons off. Yep, that chunk of plastic's more or less the size and thickness of a single Neo Geo cartridge. These games could cost hundreds of pounds each when they were new and have mostly increased in value from there, now commanding the sort of prices that have dedicated AES (that's the proper name of the Neo Geo's home equivalent) collectors thinking 'I could sell a shelf of games and buy myself a car'.
SNK's eagerness to allow ports of these games on anything and everything has seen the Neo Geo become virtually ubiquitous but even so, these titles — some thirty years old now — still retain the elevated standards that has always made playing them feel like a brush with gaming royalty.
And so, thanks to Japanese publisher Hamster, we have all the now-usual greats on Switch: an unbroken run of The King of Fighters from '94 all the way through to '03, Garou, Samurai Shodown to V Special, both Last Blades and six different Metal Slugs. And so we should — they're undeniable classics — but they're also now very ordinary. Who hasn't played the impeccably-animated Garou by now? Who doesn't have a favourite Metal Slug? And this is where Hamster's Switch collection of 109 Neo Geo games (on the US list) really starts to show its strengths, the sheer volume of titles not only soundly outdoing even the most fully-featured Neo Geo Mini (which doesn't even hit 50 games), but enabling the collection to go beyond the safe classics and into more unusual territory, making the likes of Waku Waku 7, Blazing Star, and even the understated brilliance of Big Tournament Golf just a few button presses and a relatively small fee away.
Recommended NEO GEO Games:
- Samurai Shodown II: Most home consoles at the time just weren't up to the task of doing this incredible game justice and by the time everyone else had finally caught up with SNK's mighty hardware, the sword fighting series had moved on to pastures new, making this popular game surprisingly hard to find outside of an arcade. Packed with incredible characters, fantastic fighting, and more real secrets than a nineties Mortal Kombat game had rumours (did you know the falling decorations on the title screen change depending on the day of the week?), it remains a highlight of not only its own series but weapons-based fighting in general.
- Shock Troopers: Not the most obscure Neo Geo title available but definitely one whose quality far exceeds the faint praise and scant attention it's received over the years. It's more precise and shmup-like than screenshots may make it appear, and the multiple routes and differences between each character give players of all skill levels a good excuse to keep coming back.
Further reading: Every ACA Neo Geo Game On Nintendo Switch, Plus Our Top Picks
Hamster's tireless work doesn't end with the Neo Geo. From arcade classics to Nintendo exclusives, their wider range of non-SNK arcade titles — games that were once only found in the best arcades around or locked away on expensive import collections — includes an impressive range of hits from publishers as well known as Namco, Konami, and Taito to under-appreciated industry legends like Seibu Kaihatsu, Irem, and Jaleco.
Thanks to Arcade Archives X-Multiply can rub shoulders with Kiki KaiKai, Sunset Riders, and even Ninja Gaiden, an arcade title that hasn't been brought home half as often as the general familiarity with its name would suggest. In the near future, the colourful single-screen platformer Rod-Land will join them too, marking the first time since it was on the Commodore Amiga that that adorable game has had an accurate home port (one that's stuck around, anyway — it was very briefly available on iOS, many years ago).
Switch owners are also lucky enough to play Nintendo's VS series of arcade games — VS Tennis, VS Wrecking Crew, VS Balloon Fight and so on — at home for the first time, proof if ever any was needed that Hamster's work goes beyond just making good old games easily available and extends into the realm of true historical significance; an interactive museum of arcade history at your fingertips.
Recommended Arcade Archives Games:
- City Connection: Help Clarice drive an adorable little car across floating platforms all over the world in this 1985, um, car 'em up to change their colour while avoiding police cars and collecting cans of oil. It's one of those very eighties arcade titles that sounds a lot like a fever dream on paper but soon becomes something you can't put down when played.
- Zero Team: We readily admit we have a weakness for side-scrolling beat 'em ups (or belt scrollers, or whatever else we're supposed to call them), and Zero Team scratches that particular itch perfectly with four player co-op side scrolling beat 'em up mayhem and a final boss who spends most of the game looking like he got lost on the way to a Phantom of the Opera dress rehearsal.
Further reading: Every Arcade Archives Game On Nintendo Switch, Plus Our Top Picks
The Switch's unique design means the hardware comes with a huge built-in advantage for one of arcade's oldest genres: Vertically scrolling shmups. Just slide out the Joy-Cons and prop the console itself up somewhere and you've got an instant arcade display. Heck, you don't even have to go to the trouble of finding a safe resting place for your Switch, just slide it into a Flip Grip, slot the Joy-Cons in either side, and you've got a portable setup gamers could only dream of when they were degaussing their tilted CRT TVs a few console generations ago.
As it's such a perfect fit, it'll come as no surprise to learn the Switch has plenty of arcade-born shmups to keep even the most ardent genre fans busy, from the timeless red/blue chaining of Treasure's Ikaruga to Cave's ESP Ra.De. Psi and Psikyo's Shooting Stars Alpha and Bravo packs, both of which contain an embarrassment of shmupping riches.
Horizontal shmups are just as well represented with a whole raft of Gradius' and Salamanders to choose from, as well as Thunder Force AC, Last Resort, and In The Hunt. Whether you long for screens so tightly packed with bullets only your ship's tiny hitbox is visible or wish to dive into shoot 'em up history with Konami's 1981 title Scramble, there's a real wealth of choice here — from yesterday's most popular classics to true hidden gems.
- ESP Ra.De. Psi: Cave began as a shining light in their chosen area of expertise with 1995's DonPachi and over the years morphed into something of a stubborn holdout, the one company that can be relied on to makes shmups even when they know it won't pay the bills just because they love them so much - and this outstanding dedication to their craft shows in every game they make.
- Bells & Whistles (AKA: Detana!! Twinbee): Konami's cute 1991 pastel coloured shmup is a welcome break from the usual sci-fi ships and magical flying people that tend to dominate the genre, but underneath that approachable exterior is a game that's as quick to punish inattentive players as much as any other shmup.
Further reading: Best Nintendo Switch Shmups
Being able to pick and choose exactly what you spend your money on across decades of arcade gaming is brilliant, but sometimes being made to buy a compilation can be even better as you get the chance to fall in love with something you perhaps wouldn't have paid for by itself. Maybe you wouldn't have bought Namco Museum Arcade Pac to play Rolling Thunder or Galaga, but if they're already there you may as well have a go, and that quick five minutes may be all an old title needs to work its charms on you.
Konami Arcade Classics, Darius Cozmic Collection, Atari Flashback Classics and more all give you the opportunity to dip in to your favourite releases from each themed collection as well as try out a broader range of older titles you might have otherwise passed over if faced with a simple purchase screen and the chance to spend money on something more familiar, helping to give overlooked titles a second chance.
Recommended Retro Compilations:
- Capcom Beat 'Em Up Bundle: Every single game on here is something to be treasured but our heart will forever belong to Battle Circuit. This game lets a young girl riding a pink ostrich with an eyepatch team up with a man-eating alien plant-person and if that doesn't sell you on a game then nothing will.
- SNK 40th Anniversary Collection: This pack's filled with all the games you knew wanted, all the games you didn't know you wanted but now can't live without, and even more you may have never heard of at all. A true "something for everyone" collection, the breadth of games on offer is so great you're bound to discover a new favourite and learn a lot about SNK's pre-Neo Geo history along the way.
Further reading: Best Nintendo Switch Collections And Compilation Games
All the riches above are just a drop in the arcade ocean and it won't take mucht thought to come up with the name of a much-wanted arcade title that's not available for sale anywhere. When will home consoles ever see the Hyper Neo Geo 64's Buriki One, for example? Or the incredible side-scrolling beat 'em up Knights of Valour 2: Nine Dragons? Or Namco's Smash before Smash title Outfoxies? The Strider-like Cannon Dancer? And where's our console port of Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder, Sega?
But even with these inevitable (and often understandable) gaps, the Switch's selection of arcade greats still covers systems and even entire decades that have been left languishing for too long, and we hope this enjoyable and educational selection of releases from gaming's history only continues to grow in the years to come.
Let us know below which arcade classics you've revisited — or discovered for the first time — on Switch, and feel free to share arcade games you'd like to see arrive on Switch in the future.
Too bad there’s no folders to put all of these games in. I’ve purchased every Neo Geo game and many of the arcade classics, and it’s very annoying to not have any way to organize these games into folders.
If only Sega AGES had focused more on classic arcade releases than on their already-rereleased-many-times titles like Sonic and Alex Kidd.
@SuperWeird folders would be great, or at least a way to manually sort games — right now mine go FF9/7/8...
My switch is an absolute arcade beast. See you on the highscore leaderboards.
since the Wii, I’ve always appreciated how Nintendo gave players access to past hits via the virtual console although limited mainly to the games from their past consoles.
with the Switch, I love that they have brought a ton of classics in their original arcade format! as a child who grew up in arcades in the 80’s, the Switch has become the arcade of my dreams in the palm of my hand!
Continue? yes I will! (inserts virtual coin) 🪙
To complete the experience you can also pick up the Hori Real Arcade Pro V Hayabusa controller and the Myriann DIY hardwood arcade cabinet!
The Neo Geo collection was a dream come true for me, I always wanted those games but they were always insanely expensive to collect. Buying them all at $8 a pop was the ultimate bargain in comparison, I got the whole collection for less than a single original cartridge would cost me.
Of course putting Mame and Retroach on it is the best way to play, you can even have !!!a folder!!! called ROMS too. Hacked Nintendo Switch does what Nintendon't.
I've bought a bunch of the Arcade Archives games and have not been the slightest bit disappointed. For me, the price is fine. I bought Bells & Whistles a few weeks ago and have been totally addicted. Thank you to Hamster for resurrecting these games so I can enjoy them in their original glory for the rest of my years.
Capcom Beat'em Up Bundle is pointless with the Capcom Arcade Stadium coming soon.
Xbox needs to get these all on Game Pass
Still don't see why we don't have the Vs Marvel series or the classic Mortal Kombat games on the Switch.
Now if we could only get Sega Dreamcast Classics on the Switch as well. 😉
Certainly a feature on the best arcade sticks to use on the Switch would be useful too? There are plenty of options and the new Hori Switch stick is coming out too. I use the Neo Geo Arcade Stick Pro (a nice bit of kit in its own right, especially with Hylo hack on it) with Seimatsu parts swapped in and running through MAGIC-NS. Having a weighty, clicky joystick and solid buttons really improves the experience for some of these games.
@Lordplops you bothered to hack your switch just to play roms you can play on any phone?
Or to steal AAA switch titles?
No question that thanks to Hamster, M2, and the various compilations mentioned in the article that the Switch has the best overall representation of arcade games of any console to date. That said, as the end of the article states, there are still many great and even iconic titles yet to be seen. Sadly, some of these may never be available again due to licensing and other issues. Just a few:
Namco: Ms. Pac-Man, Xevious, Pole Position, Pole Position 2, Ridge Racer, Point Blank series, Tekken
Sega: Zaxxon, Star Wars, Congo Bongo, Pengo, Super Star Wars Arcade, Daytona USA, Daytona USA 2, SCUD Racer, Afterburner, Virtua Fighter 2, Sega Rally Championship, Super Monaco GP, Out Run 2006, Super Hang-On
Konami: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, TMNT: Turtles in Time
Capcom: Marvel vs. Capcom, Marvel vs. Capcom 2
2021... Where's Raiden?
Would be really nice to have the option to put all of the games into folders. Would also be nice if themes would be added onto the Switch...it's been black or white since launch, and you would think that after the 3DS had them, they'd add them over to the switch...i'd love to get a pikmin one for it!!!!
I would absolutely love Children of the Atom on the Switch. But I would lose it entirely if I had easy access to Marvel vs Capcom 2
There's certainly some arcade gems on Switch if you know where to find them (I love Puzzle Bobble) but to be honest I find most of the offerings a little bit TOO old and dated... :-/ I'd love to see more 90s/00s Sega and Namco games like Tekken, Ridge Racer, Daytoma, Virtua Cop, Crazy Taxi and others...
My own very first game ever bought on Switch was Waku Waku 7. Friendly pricetag towards the tighter gaming budget at the time and a quirky game I had once emulated on PC but obviously couldn't access anywhere beyond my student years. Still one of my favourite fighters on the console, even in the presence of juggernauts like Smash Bros and Guilty Gear nowadays.
I remember emulating The Revenge of Death Adder, too (tasked to write a fanzine article about it way back when), and it would be a damn high priority on my Switch wishlist indeed - how many games boast playable female centaurs in general, let alone beat'em ups? And now, after a namedrop in this feature and a quick search, I want The Outfoxies on Switch as well! But then again, I want pretty much everything on Switch, so who am I to talk?
As long as I have internal or sd memory storage....which right now is getting tight and a 1tb might be in the works for my needs.
Don't forget pinball games like the Williams games on Pinball FX 3. Those are arcade also
Ikaruga is all about chaining black and white, not red and blue. 😊
My favorite Neo-Geo game will always be Magician Lord.
Dang, I thought they were announcing folders, or a comprehensive arcade collection.
I wish Sega would capitalize more on this arcade market for the switch. There's some stuff, like the genesis classic collection, but barely anything saturn or dreamcast.
Garou mark of the wolves is a superb choice I always think of it as SNKs sf3 3rd strike I have realised since reading this article I have so many arcade archives titles as others have said folders would be great
@doctorhino an assumption of this day and age - some of us do not own mobile phones.
@Gwynbleidd nobody cares - what I do with my Switch is my business, I'm not breaking any laws
@OorWullie Actually, Ikaruga is all about chaining red and blue, just like every other Treasure game with the exception of Radiant Silvergun where there's 3 colours, red, blue and yellow.
Look at the halo's around the bullets in Ikaruga, they are red and blue.
It’s a shame Sega decided to stop Ages. With the continuing increase of install base, ‘Surely’ they would sell if the picked the right titles ? Or release some collections (Golden Axe collection, or AM2 collection, or something like that)
Folders or any way of organising games would be nice.
I hope that Hamster may with any classic puzzles from Taito: The Puzzle Bubbles series, Cleopatra Fortune and Puchi Carat are my wishes.
Also, It could be the possibility that some Arcade games from the mid 90's and early 2000's might be on Switch?, There are many games that I would like to play and remember: Cruin's series, Cleopatra Fortune 2
@Sooty68 I can honestly say I've never noticed that, despite owning the game on Dreamcast and Switch, spending 25 hours+ with it on the latter and taking part in 2 high score challenges with a few other NL members , the 2nd one currently ongoing. I'll likely play it later tonight and will probably notice the blue /red instantly.
@WaveWitch For me, the high score leaderboards and Caravan mode make the Hamster releases worth paying a little extra for. With most arcade games being all about high scoring, having those leaderboards means I know I'll play them a lot more than if they were just bundled in a collection.
Sadly Sega still ignore most of their best arcade efforts but yeah the Switch has a fantastic collection of arcade games overall and coupled with a good arcade stick is a lot of fun. Saturn is still my favourite for Arcade games overall with some shmups like Radiant Silvergun and Cotton 2 on there plus the likes of Power Drift, Sega Rally and the many fighting games. That said I do use my Switch primarily for the arcade games available
I should get more old arcade titles, so far I’ve only got Turf Masters. It is awesome.
One of the main reasons I love the Switch (and I am glad VC is gone) as the amount of arcade games we’ve gotten and their loving treatment is a dream come true. I wish for a few more Neo Geo games but we got the best so it’s more the fangirl in me than anything else.
It should be added that Switch in handheld mode has the lowest input lag of all consoles, by far.
OK it's emulation and so it adds input lag. But far less than when played docked or on PS4/5 or Xbox consoles.
And just for that, the Switch is a wonder. And it's the best place to enjoy retro games that asks for precision, like arcade games. (best place is still the MiSTer but it's a little less official 😅).
@WaveWitch Input lag is the lowest on Switch in handheld mode.
No developers back in the day imagined that those games would be played with input lag in the future.
And so, difficulty for most of those games is based on responsiveness.
It's so important in arcade games that it makes the Switch the best official place to play arcade games, by far. In handheld mode.
No arcade in my dreams doesn’t have Daytona USA.
Definitely, I agree that the Switch needs folder support. I would also encourage them to port Badge Arcade over and either let us move over our current badges from 3DS or I’m such a sucker that I would work to get badges again so I could put them on the folders. I’m also the guy that is fighting to get Miiverse back though. Pipe dreams...
I keep waiting for a little known arcade gem called Peter Pack-Rat. Nobody remembers it, and it hasn't been ported since the Atari days, but it was a blast when I was a kid. I feel like it's only a matter of time 'til Hamster gets its hands on it.
@WaveWitch Tough question. The lag on Switch a big topic.
In handheld mode, with joy-con attached, I don't feel any lag and I'm very sensitiv to lag over 10ms.
It's a big surprise for me. I'm not a handheld gamer neither, like you, but I have to admit this configuration is awesome.
With a Pro Controller, you'll have more lag. It's a bad wireless controller for lag, far more than the PS4 (which is good) and X1 (good too).
With a wired Pro Controller... turns out you'll have even more lag because the freaking Switch's dock adds a lot of it !
To answer your question honestly, the best place today to play arcade games if you're not a handheld gamer enthusiast, is on a MiSTer FPGA linked on to CRT. It's an amazing device with zero lag.
I got a MiSTer FPGA for Christmas... and finally, I found back the feeling of the arcades in the 90's. It's awesome. Really. I own a PS5 and I found out myself playing more with the MiSTer than the PS5 those holidays 😅
@WaveWitch Caravan mode is my favourite way of chasing high scores as it only lasts for 5 minutes. With arcade games being as challenging as they are and me being the average skilled veteran that I am, even lasting for 5 minutes in most of them can be tough but at the same time,it's doable. Provided you can see out the 5 minutes with a good run, racking up some score chains/ combos or whatever in the first few minutes, then earning a respectable place in the top 50 is likely. Which is a lot more motivating to keep me going than when I do a normal high score run, feel like I've done well, only to see I've just sneaked into the top 5000. Usually with a Japanese dominated top 100 and one player leading the way with a seemingly impossible score that I couldn't get close to, even if I dedicated the rest of my life to trying.
With just 5 minutes to play, even first place doesn't seem too out of reach. I've managed to place in the top 10 in quite a few games and for a couple of weeks, was the 2nd best Sengoku 3 player, just missing out on first by a ball hair. Two more seconds and I'd have been top.
As for input lag, it's not something I really notice fortunately. I love the Psikyo shmups yet they were slated on here for having bad lag. Yet I just don't notice it myself, even after being made aware of it.
@OorWullie Most people don't notice lag.
But lag raises the difficulty of the game nonetheless, making them less enjoyable than there were supposed to be.
As arcade games are made to be difficult by asking a lot of responsiveness from the player (to make him insert more coins), lag becomes a real issue if there's a lot. Even if you don't notice it.
Luckily, Switch in handheld mode has practically zero lag.
You really can enjoy old arcade games on it, as it was intended to.
I'll try to illustrate why I love the Switch. Aside from Nintendo's first party stuff being on fire this gen;
My fave arcade game: Bomb Jack
My fave Master System game: Wonder Boy Dragon's Trap
My fave Megadrive game: Warsong
My fave Dreamcast game: Ikaruga
My fave PS1 game: G-Darius
My fave PS2 game: Katamari Damacy
My fave Gamecube game: Super Monkey B- yeaah, not that one.
It's library is absolutely amazing. And continuing to grow!
(Full disclaimer: my fave can change from day to day lol!)
I have a slew of Arcade, Atari, NES, SNES, Genesis, and NEOGEO games on my Switch. Absolutely love revisiting them whenever and wherever I please. Looking forward to the new Capcom collection and anything else they send our way.
So... Switch good? Yay!
Can't believe I forgot about Midway. They need a compilation on Switch ASAP, from Marble Madness, Root Beer Tapper, Joust, and Defender to Hydro Thunder and Mortal Kombat.
Virtual console on Wii was better.
I wish Sega Ages had continued just for Dreamcast games. And honestly, I’ve played more arcade games in Yakuza and Shenmue than outside of them!
I've heard Android has been doing this since forever!
MAME exists, folks. Just saying.
With the help of HAMSTER and the ACA NEOGEO and Arcade Archives lineup, Capcom, SEGA, M2, ZeroDiv, G-Mode, Inti-Creates, Johnny Turbo, NAMCO (though, what have you done for us lately, NAMCO?) and others, also shout-outs to Farsight Studios and Zen Studios (I suppose) for thier Pinball contibutions, the Switch probably has the most comprehensive classic arcade lineup of any single console with only a couple major gaps of support (like NAMCO, again, and Midway). Companies are willing to rework and add-on enhancements to those games like some have already (like SEGA AGES) and that's great. 20 years ago, I never thought that would happen, and the most we'd ever see is NAMCO Museum and an occasional Atari compilation.
@Moistnado WiiVC was crap, for arcade games (console was definitely better). They had a very limited number of games in the west (about 21), and we never got the full lineup that Japan had, either.
@GamingDude800 Unofficially, yes.
@Zebetite Yes, MAME exists, and that's it. For me, this isn't the late 90's and 2000's anymore, and I'm not exactly broke anymore, either. The reason I needed to turn to MAME back then was that the games' creators weren't interested in making them available or the official prices were ridiculous (NEOGEO, for example). Now, after a couple decades of compilations and companies like HAMSTER getting involved, the games I want to play are being rereleased, they're getting some minor modern updates (online leaderboards, museum content, etc.), they're getting fixed (Contra and Zero Team for example), rare and "lost" games are seeing the light of day (Sky Skipper), and they're affordable. None of that would have happened if we all turned to emulation. That said, I'm not exactly opposed to it, either. But MAME is now only here to fill in the gaps where licensing can't be overcome or for those really, really niche games that have next to no chance of getting rereleased. And that's pretty much it.
Now if only we had those Midway arcade games on there too, really missed games like Hydro Thunder, Mortal Kombat 1-4, Gauntlet 1 & 2, San Francisco Rush, Cruis'n, MACE: The Dark Age, Killer Instinct 1 & 2, Primal Rage 1 & 2, Xenophobe, NARC, NBA Jam and Tournament Edition, WWF WrestleMania Arcade, etc.
My switch is hacked and im currently playing Dreamcast and Naomi arcade games on it.
It really is awesome.
The beat ‘em up bundle should be on this list smh
@SuperWeird If the games are from the same publisher, I believe there's a way to sort games by that in the Switch's All Apps tab.
@masterLEON Just keep in mind that the people who actually made these retro games aren't making a dime off of these ports and remasters. The money from your purchase goes to corporations and third parties. If you want to purchase these games on modern platforms, you have every right to, but whether or not emulation is used has zero impact on the decision to port these games, aside from spawning lawsuits when a company doesn't want the competition. Hi Sega! Hi Nintendo!
I think what they’re saying is, if everyone turned to emulation, nobody would be buying the games. And if nobody is buying the games, the games won’t get made (companies don’t make products that don’t sell enough, and every sale lost affects both revenue and opportunity cost of development).
I don’t think they’re concerned about who gets the money. The company that currently owns the property and contracts the re-release gets the money... as they should.
Most of us, @masterLEON and myself included, quit emulating because we don’t need to steal anymore. We have jobs and can afford to buy what we want now. It’s one thing when it’s a game never localized that gets an English fan translation, or a game we already bought on the most recent hardware it’s sold on that we simply want the convenience of playing on different hardware it’s not sold on, but there’s really no reason to emulate games that are sold on a currently supported console’s storefront. Not only is it the right thing to do to support these companies, it provides a hassle free way of playing on Switch without needing to jump through hoops with hacking and worrying about online, etc.
Most of us emulate to some extent (for me it’s convenience of playing my GameCube and Wii library in HD from SSD and English versions of Japan only Fire Emblem games)- I hacked my 3DS and had hundreds of SNES/GBA VC games on it, but I’d purchased each and every one that was actually sold on the Wii U/3DS eShop. The rest simply weren’t for sale.
But now, I don’t even wanna mess with it. Emulators have started to feel ghetto. Once you’re working and have an income, the allure of not buying games you want for a few bucks and have properly on Switch without hacking needed just fades away.
I have the Hori Pro V Hayabusa arcade stick. Bought it specifically to play Ultra Street Fighter II, and it’s glorious. I don’t care what anyone says. That’s my favorite Street Fighter game of all time- I LOVE the HD graphics and art style, and Super Street Fighter 2 was already my favorite in the series.
Lol for real though. I just shook my head. And yeah, if anything it's probably more about the latter and stealing LOL
It lags like my grandma on the highway so no thanks I'll stick to my wired X-Arcade 🕹 and Razer Kishi with ZER0 lag and basically infinite games 😄
@JaxonH I've been wanting one for a long time, but unfortunately I can't afford any controllers other than the ones that my Switch came with.
Don't insert that coin! My daughter put a 50 cent piece into the game slot of her ds and it stopped working thereafter.
The Switch gets awesome arcade games from a vraiety of sources: Arcade Archives, Neo Geo Archives, Sega Ages, SNK 40th Anniversary Collection, Capcom Beat-'em-Ups Bundle, Konami Arcade Collection, Atari Flashback Collection (although this last one is no longer available digitally in Russia where I am).
Through these, you can easily put together an awesome, portable hundred-game arcade.
Yeah, a seaside Arcade machine with battered joysticks and an 'out of order' sign across the screen.
I clicked the link to the first recommended Arcade Archives games out of two, City Connection, and saw it got a 3/10 review on here. Makes me wonder about the not recommended games Or is the version nestled within here a much better port?
It's great for people like me, who has the age for having experienced the arcades but for some reason never (or almost never) went, and feels that odd nostalgia anyway.
Of course there are Raspberry and Chinese handheld solutions, but there's something in paying for an official and legal release that I find appealing.
The NES version got 3/10 as the controls are awful. The arcade version plays and performs much better.
Yes the Switch is a great console for all sorts of games, including retro and arcade.
But it does not have duel screen or 3d. It does not have the look, style or portability of the DS.
And it struggles to display new games like Immortals Fenyx Rising or the new Hyrule Warriors. And it can't match a smartphone for playing basic games like chess and hundreds of other games, because a smartphone will always be more pocketable.
The Switch is great but so is the smartphone and the PS5, depending on what you like playing.
i actually bought the switch just for arcade games first, everything else second.
my FIRST game i immediately bought was DOUBLE DRAGON (surprised no mention of this in the article or comments as it was a massive hit in summer of '87!)
i also just bought shinobi sega ages and the ages mode is amazing with 5 second rewind and the white costume as well as stage select. i bought heavy barrel too and that game is terrible. you get to use the weapon the game is named for maybe about 1 minute out of the whole game, on top of the gameplay being extremely repetitive and long, almost as bad as ikari warriors on NES
@w00dm4n is this download only? or can we buy a physical copy in the store?
Enjoyable piece. No mention of one of my faves and the reason I went and bought a Flip Grip (nice kit by the way): Moon Cresta!
Old school for sure but I have fond memories of discovering the arcade machine on holiday one year and spent as much time with it as I did on the beach
ESP Ra.De. Psi isn't even available on the eshop in my region. And the retail version is too expensive.
If I had the brains I would use Mister for emulation but I don’t know the first thing about programing, roms and configuration. So I very much love the nintendo switch for my retro gaming needs. Does it have all the game titles I want to play? Of course not!!! But the games I can play is all configured and I can play and go without any problems. If Hamster is reading these message boards please release Konami Jackal and Taito Rastan as I don’t think you will run into licensing issues.
@Zebetite A cut of the money goes to whoever owns the IP at the moment, that's how licensing works. Double Dragon, Renegade, Super Dodge Ball, etc. goes to Arc System Works, for example. Konami, SNK, and Nintendo get a cut for their own games, obviously. HAMSTER themselves actually own several defunct Japanese IPs including Nihon Bussan (Nichibutsu), UPL, and Video System, so they pocket all those sales. See, the money's not going to unknown 3rd party companies at all. And Capcom, SEGA, NAMCO, and now Taito, while not going through HAMSTER, have released/will release their own games, some with the help of 3rd party specialists like M2 and Digital Leisure. Still, the current companies holding the IPs get a cut. Even in the case of Arcade1UP. They had to get contracts with all the IP owners of the licensed games they're putting out for their discrete cabinet format. Marvel, Capcom, SEGA, Atari, Nickelodeon, Konami, Raw Thrills, Namco, and Warner Bros., for example.
Like I said, I'm not against emulation. It was necessary to keep the interest alive in old games when the original companies weren't interested or dead. Now, most of those companies see that interest is growing, and are now being more open to rereleasing that content. And that relieves some of the dependency we have on emulation for those games. Unless, that is, you prefer MAME's filters and netplay, or lower input latency. Or that you don't want to vote with your wallet by supporting the current IP holders, then that's up to you.
What company's games are you interested in seeing rereleased that isn't tied to licensing hell? Or super stingy IP holders like SquareEnix (Taito), NAMCO, and Midway (Warner Bros.)?
@TheWingedAvenger Where is Atari Flashback not available, EU? It's currently on sale in NA (jeez $15.99, 4 bucks less than what I got it for).
I’d love to see Wrestlefest, X-Men, Simpson’s, and the Capcom vs games but they might never come. One game I haven’t played in forever, another rights issue, is Popeye. Still, the arcade scene on Switch is wonderful and thanks to many publishers making them available. Now if only Nintendo could do something about their virtual console situation.
One of the best things about the Switch. Nice job highlighting it with this article.
@SuperWeird I literally said the same thing on a different post. I've been wanting folders organization since launch. I don't understand why this hasn't happened yet. Every other past Nintendo console or handheld has had this option.
@doctorhino Why not both?
Great article. The Switch is a dream device for Retro Gaming, whether it be old Arcade or Console games. The flexibility is again key. Other systems also play these games on the big screen but with Switch you can utilise the low input lag of Handheld mode, the easy flip to TATE mode, and the systems ability to accept lots of different Controllers.
Wow, I had no idea Atari was discriminating against Europe. I'll have to correct my previous post. On the e-shop here, there is no Atari Flashback for the Switch. I live in Moscow, so I suppose I'm looking at the European e-shop. But for all I know there might be a separate one for Russia. Anyway, I wonder why they made the game unavailable for certain countries. Atari never had success with a console in Russia, but there are a lot of fans of classic games here nowadays. Just to make sure, I searched using just a single word - first just "Atari" and then just "flashback" - but the game just isn't on our version of the e-shop.
@Moistnado Virtual console on wii was something special, while it had some issues such as 50hz games being released on the eu store and iirc no controller rebinding like the wiiu one, but it had such a big library of systems with decent support, the fact that you could use sonic and knuckles lock on feature was great too (makes me wish gba games on wiiu vc allowed for some form of link feature like golden suns save transfers)
Compared to it i feel the nes and snes NSO apps are dissapointing, the main reason for me being no option to purchase and "keep" the games.
in terms of how retro game purchases were handled i loved how the ps3/psp/vita handled things, where games purchased could be downloaded and played on to any system your account was tied to (though for some reason the crash and spyro games weren't supported on us vita accounts but were with eu)
on the flipside i am happy with the retro collections we have been seeing such as the mana collection, the megaman ones, the assorted konami ones and recently the SaGa collection, some of them even have limited edition physical versions. I would have loved to have seen similar releases by nintendo though i wasnt the biggest fan of the whole "limited release" thing theyve been doing in terms of digital releases (Fire emblem and 3d all stars) where the games are delisted after a certain time with no info on whether they will be available separately and the only reason given being that "theyre anniversary games" (which several other collections have been and not had their digital versions removed) Not the end of the world by any means but somewhat of an odd choice.
@Lordplops Uh.... not sure what to say about that one. If you own a switch and not a mobile you are a very small percentage or very young.
@TheWingedAvenger Man that sucks. There's no point to not release it over there, even if it's a matter of translating menus and stuff it's still leaving money on the table. I even checked my JP account and it's not there, either.
It's cool that there are people over there interested in retro gaming, though. I'm kind of jealous that they get to experience those games at an older age. I wish I was a few years older when I first played Pac-Man or Galaga in 1980. I'd have a more detailed memory of those experiences.
@Mgalens agreed, I do not want to rent old roms. The best way to beat piracy is with convenience and ease of purchase. At present I play my roms on my hacked snes mini but it would have been simpler, quicker and more convenient to buy them. As for Sony, I loved finding a couple of old psp and ps4 cross play gems ready to download when I got a vita. It cost Sony nothing and it stopped me hacking the system to install "backups" of what I paid for in the past. Nintendo should use old purchases to maintain customer loyalty, and make more new games.
I gotta add that the releases I'm always more excited about on my Switch are retro titles, especially Arcade Archives ones. Also physical collections of classic titles, but those don't appear on a weekly basis.
When I was a kid I knew about games I couldn't possibly own, and better yet, I didn't knew about a lot of titles I discovered over the years, even now, and that's great, and the Switch is great for that.
I think terry boguard is from neogeo
Thanks for this - glad to hear that's the case
And Moroboshi, that's a good point. I agree that some retro releases are great for that "couldn't get as a kid, now finally!" feeling. Or titles at the arcade that just cost too much but all you really wanted was to just keep playing (Sega Rally 2 was one such game for me and some other racing titles).
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