August was a pretty cracking month for eShop delights, with plenty of titles absolutely worthy of your time.
These awards aim to celebrate the best of Nintendo's digital store, giving some love and attention to the games that could so easily be missed in the Switch's ever-growing library.
So, let's get started. Here are the best Switch eShop games of August 2021!
While these titles didn't quite make our top three this month, they're still certainly worth checking out:
- Doctor Who: The Lonely Assassins | Review: 9/10
- Spelunky 2 | Review: 9/10
- ISLANDERS Console Edition | Review: 9/10
- Mayhem Brawler | Review: 8/10
- Spelunky | Review: 8/10
- Hoa | Review: 8/10
- Love Esquire | Review: 8/10
- Townscaper | Review: 7/10
- Garden Story | Review: 7/10
3. art of rally (Switch eShop)
Taking third spot this month is art of rally, an abstract take on top-down rally that's sure to have you jumping in for race after race.
The visual shortcomings present on Switch are undeniably a shame when compared to other versions, but the gameplay itself is challenging, feels authentic, and is boosted further by the game's overall artistic vision. With lots of tracks, cars, and optional objectives to enjoy, this is well worth a look if you can overcome some of the Switch version's performance shortcomings. We gave this one a very strong 8/10 in our review, and it's been winning over the NL team ever since.
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2. Quake (Switch eShop)
In second is the new re-release of Quake, the definitive version of an iconic first-person shooter.
We described this one as "a stellar port of one of gaming's true greats and an absolutely essential addition to your Switch library" in our review. Oh, did we mention that we gave it a staggering 10/10? Yeah, it's that good.
This is a super slick remaster boasting flawless 60fps action, tons of content, and a wealth of online and co-op options. If you've never played Quake before, or if you're liking the sound of playing a super-duper version of the game you once loved, you've got to get this downloaded.
1. Axiom Verge 2 (Switch eShop)
Very narrowly (and we mean very narrowly) beating Quake to our top spot this month, however, is Axiom Verge 2.
We're always up for trying out a good Metroidvania here at Nintendo Life, and the Axiom Verge games are right up there with some of the best the genre has to offer. We're happy to report that Axiom Verge 2 is a worthy follow-up to the original that perfectly balances familiar elements that made that first game great and new ideas that give the sequel its own identity.
With a huge world to explore, well-paced gameplay throughout and a fittingly mysterious atmosphere to absorb, Metroidvania fans owe it to themselves to check this one out. What a month, eh?
< Nintendo Life eShop Selects - July 2021
How we decide our eShop Selects top three: As we reach the end of every month, the Nintendo Life staff vote on their favourite titles from a list of games selected by the editorial team. To qualify for this list, these games must have been released as a digital-only Nintendo Switch eShop title in that particular month, and must have been reviewed on Nintendo Life; we select the qualifying games based on their review scores.
Staff are then asked to vote for three games that they think deserve to sit right at the very top of that list; first choice gets 3 points, second choice gets 2 points, and third choice gets 1 point. These votes are then tallied to create a top three list, with the overall winner taking that month's top prize.
Probably Islanders for me so far but there's still a few on my wish list that I've got to pick up at some point. I suspect that Monster Train will be my favourite once I actually getting around to buying and playing it.
And yet, no love for Monster Train; such an addictive roguelike card-battler and an easy recommendation to Slay the Spire fans, or anyone that's least bit interested.
Amazed Art of Rally is above Spelunky, or really on any top list, after they bungled the release so badly.
Also the fact that you guys missed Dreamscaper this month is almost criminal.
Doctor Who a 9?!
Never would have given a game with a licence behind it any attention but I will check it out now. 😀
Normally I’d be a bit outraged that Spelunky wasn’t in your top 3 as it’s a long overdue classic and I’m loving it, but yes, I see August was quite a strong month for the eshop.
I’m also surprised Dreamscaper didn’t get at least an honorable mention!
That game looked temptingly beautiful and compelling to play in the little I saw of it.
If I wasn’t being crushed by my backlog at the moment I’d probably try it out.
Islanders for me - been a while since I picked up a cheap eshop title (less than £5) on a whim and then got decidedly addicted to it! Apparently I have cracked the top 100 on the global scoreboard which I find hard to believe!
Spelunky 1 has also been great fun so far (missed out on this back in the day) and might get the sequel too some day.
Fell off Axiom Verge on first playthrough so not desperate to play the sequel. Might pick up Art or Rally in a sale.
Spelunky 2 for me. All day long!
Art of rally is quite addictive but it’s so bare bones even on series x it looks rough glad it was on gamepass it was worth trying but I wouldn’t buy it
What about No More Heroes 3? I was put off initially by mixed reviews but bought it and love it!
Nothing for me last month from the eshop, looks like there will be plenty this month though
Something else = Monster Train
It’s Quake all the way for me. It’s been fantastic. But yeah this has been a good eshop month.
Absolutely nothing. But my wallets about to get a work out this month...
Might pick up Spelunky 2 for Switch despite having it on ps5. Same with Monster Train but spent a good deal of time with it on game pass. Also picked up Quake on gamepass but could be a good “sitting in bed” game! Honestly I kinda froze buying games because I can’t decided what next. I really want Dark Souls for switch too 🤷🏼♂️ Why does that never go on sale?
I know technically it came out in July, But Fuga: Melodies of steel is really being missed by people.
It's a great game with some real tension and deserves some more attention from people!
To paraphrase a steam review... It's the only game I'm aware of that lets you sacrifice a 4 year old child to power a super weapon
I only bought 3 new releases last month but they're all really good.
3rd - Rush Rally Origins
2nd - Spelunky 2
1st - Quake
I was looking forward to Art of Rally but what I've seen of the Switch version was enough to put me off. I'd say Rush Rally is the better of the 2.
Looks like you still are not aware of how good Monster Train is
@Alexface Just checked out some gameplay from Fuga, it looks very good. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.
Got Quake, and it has stand the test of time very well, I'm having a lot of fun with it. Doom Eternal and Ghost Runner have ecplipsed my time with Quake, but I'm going to put it back on my gaming schedule this week!
Am I the only person that just didn't like axiom verge 2, I found it way too easy and there was no real punishment for dying. I know you can slide difficulties but I beat it on the default settings. Really enjoyed the first one, anyways back to Hades almost have the "true" ending.
Axiom Verge 2 for sure. I enjoyed every minute of it. I mean, I was genuinely surprised I hit the endgame when I did, but it was a very solid 6 hour first play through. I liked it better than the first one, to be honest. Best indie game so far this year.
Axiom Verge 2 was a huge disappointment. The most sterile writing, combat and bosses I had in years. Couldn't push myself to finish it.
I’ve already put 90 hours into Monster Train.
@OorWullie do itttt!!! It's very good. Hope you enjoy it!
I’ve been playing tons of Art of Rally, but on Xbox Game Pass. Same for Quake, though that’s giving me a bit of motion sickness.
Rush Rally Origins deserves to be somewhere in the mix here in my opinion. Really fun gameplay, sweet top down rally action, flawless 60fps performance, it all comes together to make a great Switch racing game at an excellent price.
Guts 'n Goals rocks!
Spelunky 1 and 2. Nothing else comes close, even with Quake and Axion Verge 2 on the list (both incredible games too).
Been addicted to Quake since buying it. On episode 4 now, albeit on easy mode because I suck at FPS games lol. Defo gonna replay it on normal afterwards though!
I am very surprised and disappointed that Nintendo Life hasn't commented at all on Fuga: Melodies of Steel's release. It's in the same series as Tail Concerto and Solatorobo: Red The Hunter, and from the same developer as the .hack games. I really wish it was getting more attention
I have only 3 of those games including the honourable mentions. Most of the rest are on my wishlist however.
I’m short on funds so it’s free online gaming only for me. I’m playing WoW, Diablo 2 and MtG Arena.
This is off topic, but I'm blown away by WRC 9 on PS5. I only play it in 120hz mode, and I'm playing on a 1080p 144hz monitor from 5 or 6 years ago. It looks like magic. The replays stick to 120fps, unlike F1 2021 and Dirt Rally and some other games. Sometimes during one of these 120fps replays the camera flys above the car and follows it. When it does that the countryside, road, and car can look like a hyper-real vivid dream glimpse into a magic snowglobe with a dream rally happening inside that I get to watch through a wonderful secret portal. I can't believe how good it looks. Talk about art of rally! I'm so impressed I'm getting WRC 10 just to support what these devs are doing. The dual sense controller is great too. I like the solid rumble giving me a feel for how my car is connecting, or not, with the rocks and surface of the road. The sound is pretty good too, hearing debris under my car via the controller's speaker. I also like some of the songs. There's one that sounds like it copies a melody from a favorite Radiohead song. I love hearing that one during one of these perfect replays. But it mostly comes down to that effing sweet frame rate. Fortnite, Borderlands 3, Doom Eternal, Devil May Cry 5, and other games look wonderful at 120fps, but for some reason WRC 9 is the one that brings everything home for me. What a smooth, beautiful, and fun racing game!
@Teksetter I like Dreamscaper. I've played about an hour of it on my Switch and it's a good game, I'd say. It runs at 60fps, which is nice. I should play further...
Nothing from this list for me. Can't wait for Eastward! I have a good feeling of seeing that title in next months feature.
For neither Spelunky title to be in that top three is a crime against gaming.
Baldo for me. I haven't hit a single glitch yet, so there's been nothing standing between me and its sublime top down adventure gaming
Wow! Baldo got robbed!!
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