The best Nintendo Switch games

Our picks of the best Switch titles available today.

Astral Chain

by William Lobley |

There are reams of triple-A bestsellers, quirky indie groundbreakers, and remastered classics available on the Nintendo Switch. Couple this with the fact you can take the Switch out with you on handheld mode and load it up with fantastic accessories, and you’re looking at hybrid console boasting hours upon hours of entertainment and content possibilities.

The console has been an undeniable success for the Japanese gaming giant, outselling many other more powerful home consoles. This just goes to show what a little tech innovation and a diverse gaming catalogue can do.

Just because the Switch can be enjoyed every hour of the day doesn’t mean that gamers should make do and play any old video game that they happen to come across. With a little bit of research and a crafty eye, it's easy to uncover a mass of Switch games offering, through a combination of true originality and a little eccentricity, some of the best console gaming experiences available.

We’ve sifted through the Nintendo catalogue to bring you the definitive list of the best Switch games available today.

Make sure to check back in with us soon, as we’ll be keeping this list updated as we find new titles worthy of the title of “best”.


What's the best Nintendo Switch game?

Kirby and the Forgotten Land
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CREDIT: Nintendo

Fun, exciting, and gripping, Kirby and the Forgotten Land is a culmination of Nintendo's releases over the past few years. It takes players to a brilliant and vibrant 3D world, loaded with fun fights and inventive mechanics to explore. The results see this instalment becoming one of the strongest Kirby titles to date. We love seeing Kirby, the pink, loveable eating machine placed in such a desolate, dystopic environment, and we're sure you will too.

Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition
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Xenoblade Chronicles first appeared on the Nintendo Wii way back in 2010. As an open-world RPG of impressive scope and scale, it soon amassed a dedicated and loyal following. Revitalised for the Switch in 2020, the game sees you adventure as Shulk and his companions, fighting your way across the plains of Bionis and Mechonis to unearth the origin of the Monado, a mythical and powerful sword. A true classic that'll thrill newcomers and hardcore fans alike.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons
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The feeling of coming home has always been one of the Animal Crossing series' most compelling elements, and New Horizons continues in this traditional whilst adding in some compelling new features. Starting out on a desert island, gamers will craft, mine, forage and fish their way to comfort and wholesome joy. As the island progresses, the familiar Animal Crossing cast make themselves known, and the player can trade and build relationships which only add to the game's rich loveliness. It's a game that requires a lot of input, but the rewards are huge and not to be forgotten. For anyone who gets into the fandom, there's a whole bunch great merchandise available, too!

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
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Breath of the Wild's map is huge. It's the first truly open-world Zelda map, and it doesn't hold back. You'll take control of Link and explore the vast and enchanting plains of Hyrule, fighting, gathering ingredients, uncovering secrets and solving puzzles. This game easily lasts beyond 100 hours of play.

Astral Chain
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Fight your way through hordes of supernatural baddies in this post-apocalyptic cyberpunk world of crime and violence. The story is great, and really helps to pull the player along through speedy and exaggerated combat sequences. In years to come, people will look back on this game as a Switch classic.

LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga
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The LEGO Star Wars games are an absolute hallmark of gaming; they're light, fun, and bursting with nostalgia. If like us, you've been waiting for a remaster for some time, then you won't be disappointed. LEGO has done the unthinkable and remastered the entire Star Wars collection, from 1-9, so you can experience the entire story completely revamped for the latest generation of consoles. LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga nails the scope of the Star Wars universe perfectly, giving players a Hell of a lot more freedom than they've ever had. Each level, each world is brimming with detail, humour and great gameplay, and we can't recommend it enough.

Super Mario Odyssey
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This launch game set the bar high for the Switch, it is about as good as Mario gaming can get. Set in a series of open environments filled with 3D platform challenges and secrets, Super Mario Odyssey challenges a player's skills and cunning. There are dozens of ways to complete these maps, which gives the game extra life as it can be revisited again and again.

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening
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This remake of the 90s classic will have old fans reminiscing and new fans falling in love. It's a game which many hardcore Zelda fans stand by as the low-key best instalment of the franchise. It delivers what we've all come to expect from the series, it's a genuinely engrossing RPG, full of charm and character.

Stardew Valley
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In this title, the player starts by taking over their grandfather's farming plot in the rundown and sleepy town of Stardew Valley. With only a few coins and some ancient gardening equipment the player sets to cultivating both the land and friendships in the humble surrounds. This is a simple title, but it's a bestseller for very good reason. It's charming, absorbing and highly rewarding, and mixes up its traditional framing simulator roots with the cave exploration and fights, marriages and fishing sprees. A brilliant little indie title.

Luigiu2019s Mansion 3
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The classic charming comedy-spook franchise's Switch debut has you venture through a rickety hotel as Luigi. Armed with a hoover and not much else, the world is a fun and rewarding place to explore full of memorable puzzles and encounters. A must-have for any Mario and Luigi fan.

Metro Redux
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Twenty years after the world was thrown into a post-apocalyptic wasteland, Artyom goes beyond the city limits in an effort to save the scattered remains of humanity. What follows is an adventure of political intrigue and loads of monster-blasting FPS action. It's often a fear with ports from other consoles that they're not going to translate well on the Switch system. Thankfully, Metro Redux has proven the potential of the Switch once again by being utterly brilliant. This one is best played with a Pro Switch controller, however. Metro Redux brings the first two games in the series together, complete with DLC.

Pokemon Sword & Shield
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In Pokemon Sword & Shield, players take control of a young person whose sights are set on climbing the Pokemon League. So far, so Pokemon. However, in this Pokemon-outing, players will be adventuring through Galar, an all-new world based on the British Isles. Here, the Pokemon are effected by the phenomenon Dynamax, which occasionally causes standard Pokemon to be pumped up to gigantic proportions. It's whacky, but good whacky. It appears that the move to console with Switch has allowed for gameplay improvements and a crisp art style which feels very welcome.

Dead Cells
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Dead Cells is a really hard game. So hard, players will often wonder whether they're having fun. Despite this, they won't be able to put the JoyCons down. This unforgiving platformer couples tough battles, complex maps and perma-death to bring one together one of the best gaming experiences of the last decade. With fist, whip and more than a little magic, the player will struggle from swamps through to grand halls, crushing (or desperately trying to avoid) everything in their path. And, thanks to the skill building and alternative playthroughs available, players will always return to Dead Cells.

Cadence of Hyrule - Crypt of the NecroDancer
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Rhythm-based action and a Zelda RPG shouldn't work, but somehow it really, really does. This game will have you dance-fighting through dungeons dark and deserts dry to relentless and catchy chiptune beats.

Fire Emblem: Three Houses
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This series has freed itself from the constraints of the 3DS to take full advantage of the Switch's more powerful platform. This strategy game introduces new tactics, unit and battalions to enliven the plains of battle, and also gives the narrative a boost to allow space for greater character and plot development.

Super Mario Maker 2
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By mixing side-scrolling platform action with creative freedom, Super Mario Maker 2 provides hours of entertainment. You can build and play your own levels, upload your creations to the cloud for others to enjoy, and download and play other player-made maps.

Super Smash Bros Ultimate
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This instalment of Nintendo's greatest brawler series lets you go toe-to-toe with over 70 video game stars from across genres and generations. The battles are over the top and hectic, creating a game that's a button-smashing joy. It's best enjoyed with friends, present or online.

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Oxenfree is another indie title bringing a unique love of gaming and 1980's teen-flicks together to create a highly-accomplished title, loaded with atmosphere and character. The player follows Alex and his friends as they trespass on an abandoned military base, intending to hit up a party. Instead, a portal to another dimension is ripped open letting out all sorts of villainous badness. With the ultimate goal of closing this hell-gate, the player's choices impact the story at every juncture. It's a really well-delivered title that's worthy of anyone's time.

Don't forget to protect your Switch with one of the best cases - after all it's mostly screen!

As you can see, the Switch gaming catalogue is a varied as can be. For as many genres hosted on the console, there's just as many controller options, promising to deliver a refined and improved Switch gaming experience. We decided that we'd decide what controller was worth picking up, and put together an article to help you do that same. Be sure to read our picks for the best Nintendo Switch controllers.

READ MORE: Hori Split Pad Pro Switch controller review

William Lobley is a Content Writer and reviewer for WhatsTheBest, specialising in technology, gaming and outdoors. He also writes for Empire Online.

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