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Best Nintendo Switch games: Every game you need for your Switch, from Zelda to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Find out the best Nintendo Switch games to play in 2020, including Super Mario, Zelda and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

The Nintendo Switch is a wonderful little console. Just like when Nintendo’s controller-flailing Wii pushed gaming convention aside way back in 2006, the Switch mixes things up yet again, creating a proper 2-in-1 console that’s great for all ages.

The Switch’s hardware may be impressive, but its extensive list of top-quality games is what really gets the fingers twitching. There are many marvellous titles at your fingertips, from Mario Kart 8: Deluxe to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild but, with so many great games to choose from, which are worthy of your time?

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We’re always Switching here at Expert Reviews, at lunchtimes, on the commute and at the weekend, so we’re well versed in which Nintendo Switch games you need to play in 2020. Below, you’ll find our regularly-curated list of the best games the Nintendo Switch has to offer, catering for all tastes and every budget.

Best Nintendo Switch games 2020

1. Super Mario Odyssey

Price: £42 l Buy now from Amazon

If you were worried about a semi-open world Mario game, you can relax. Super Mario Odyssey is here and it’s a triumph. A creative whirlwind of a game that offers plenty of fan service to games of the past while offering something truly fresh and brilliant at the same time.

It’s also enormous. There are over 850 moons to collect throughout the game, and I’m still nowhere close to collecting them all. If you buy one Switch game this year, Super Mario Odyssey better be it. 

Read our full Super Mario Odyssey review for more details

2. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Price: £48 l Buy now from Amazon

The AAA title every Zelda fan has been waiting for, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is Nintendo’s top-notch system seller. As ever, you play as Link, but in a first for the franchise, he goes all open world – crafting weapons and items while dispatching those pesky foes. It’s a game that has you discovering more and more every time you pick up you Joy-Cons

Stumbling across Hyrule’s more quirky denizens is wondrous and finding peculiar challenges – such as a desert island that puts you into a Lost-style survival challenge – never fails to put a smile on your face. Breath of the Wild isn’t just good, it’s easily the best Zelda yet and one of the best open-world RPGs ever made.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is one of the best reasons to buy Nintendo’s latest console.

Read our full Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild review for more details

3. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Price: £42 l Buy now from Amazon

You might have heard of Mario Kart. While the eighth instalment has been kicking about on the Wii U for a couple of years now, there’s a shiny new console to play it on. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe offers the same great racing action you remember, with all DLC tracks, racers and karts thrown in at no extra cost.

A couple of much-needed tweaks – such as a Battle Mode that actually works – make this the most well-rounded Mario Kart yet, helped by the fantastic versatility of the Switch. Got a few hours to kill on the train? Share your Joy-Cons and get racing.

Read our full Mario Kart 8 Deluxe review for more details

4. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Price: £45 l Buy now from Amazon

Chances are, you’ve probably already played Skyrim at this point. Bethesda’s fantasy epic has been around for quite some time now, popping up on almost every games console since its launch back in 2011. The thing is, the arrival of the Nintendo Switch means that Skyrim can be played on the go for the very first time.

And this is a particularly big deal. Because of the sheer size of Skyrim – your play time will easily reach triple figures – being able to vanquish frost trolls and absorb dragon souls on the go is a match made in Valhalla. it also runs quite well, despite the sheer size of the game map and amount of NPCs, and you’ll also find some Switch specific content, too. Tapping an amiibo on the controller’s joystick, for instance, unlocks all sorts of in-game goodies. 

Skyrim is the perfect game if you’re looking for something particularly meaty to sink your teeth into on the morning commute. 

5. The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

Price: £45 l Buy now from Amazon

A proper blast from the past, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening is a 2019 reimagining of the classic Game Boy RPG from the ’90s. Players take control of Link from a birds-eye view in order to help him escape a mysterious island filled with all manner of colourful characters while facing a wide variety of monsters. The tilt-shifted art style is a delight, and the new improvements to some of the core game mechanics are an added bonus too.

You’ll be hacking and slashing as you progress through the game, earning new abilities as you complete some fiendishly tricky dungeons in order to escape. You can even create your own dungeon levels if you fancied an extra challenge. Fans of the original game shouldn’t pass this one up.

5. Luigi’s Mansion 3

Price: £45 l Buy now from Amazon

Who you gonna’ call? Why, Luigi, of course! Mario’s green-wearing brother is back at it again in the third instalment of Nintendo’s ghost-busting action game. With the usual array of equipment and weaponry at his disposal, this time around Luigi finds himself trapped in a spooky hotel, capturing ghosts as he ascends the 17 different themed floors. 

As you rid the hotel of pesky ghosts with your trusty torch and vacuum cleaner, you’re also joined by a colourful bunch of new and returning Mario characters, as well as a new player-controlled character – who can be used for two-player co-op and puzzles – called Gooigi. It’s silly, it’s spooky and it’s satisfyingly brilliant – Luigi’s Mansion 3 is a must-buy. 

6. Celeste

Price: £18 Buy now from Amazon

Don’t let the cute 8-bit art style fool you, Celeste is a notoriously tricky 2D platformer. From the minds behind multiplayer hack n’ slasher Towerfall, players are tasked with helping Madeline ascend the lofty heights of Celeste Mountain, facing all manner of obstacles and tricky platforming sections along her way, all while combatting her own inner demons. 

The soundtrack is equally wonderful, and the story – which plays out as you meet new characters – is a real treat. Without spoiling too much, Celeste does a great job at keeping you engaged with Madeline’s personal journey, without distracting from the intricate platforming gameplay. 

7. Super Mario Party

Price: £43 l Buy now from Amazon

Super Mario Party is an absolute gem of a game. Oozing personality and charm, it’s a near-perfect, shining example of the Switch’s couch co-op prowess. Essentially a four-player digital board game, you each battle it out through a variety of challenges in an effort to gain the most amount of stars at the end of the predetermined amount of turns.

It’s absolutely frantic, and you’ll be shouting at each other while doing so. With the Switch’s excellent Joy-Con controllers used to their full potential, and a whole host of new, action-packed game modes, Super Mario party is an essential purchase. Just make sure you have at least four Joy-Cons for the best experience – Super Mario Party doesn’t support any other controller.

Read Alphr’s full Super Mario Party review for more details

8. Ring Fit Adventure

Price: £70 l Buy now from Amazon

Like the Wii Fit that came before it, Nintendo’s Ring Fit adventure gamifies your fitness routine – simply attach the Joy-Cons to the included “Ring-Con” and leg strap, and begin your adventure. In-game, you’ll be exploring a fantasy world and defeating the bodybuilding dragon’s evil minion using a variety of real-life exercises. 

Jog in places to traverse the world, strike some yoga poses to refill your health, and attack your enemies by squeezing the controller – Nintendo’s Ring Fit Adventure is an ingenious way to get you active, even if you aren’t a regular gym-goer. 

9. Dr Kawashima’s Brain Training

Price: £25 l Buy now from Amazon

After a three-year hiatus, Dr Kawashima is back again to help stimulate your grey matter – this time, making his first appearance on the Nintendo Switch. As before, you’ll be challenging your brain in a wide variety of minigames, taking advantage of the Switch’s Joy-Con controller tech: you’ll be competing in a game of rock paper scissors, performing mental arithmetic with your fingers, or challenging an opponent in one of the many two-player head-to-head battles. 

If you’re feeling brave enough, you can also share your brain age improvements (or failures) with your friends online and compete for high scores. Dr Kawashima’s Brain Training is ideal for those that are hoping to qualify for a Mensa membership. 

10. Super Mario Maker 2

Price: £40 l Buy now from Amazon

Mario Maker is back, with even more ways to create some truly bonkers courses. The single-player story mode offers fans the chance to try and complete some tricky pre-made levels, but the online courses are where it’s at with Mario Maker 2.

The course maker tools allow you to build whatever levels you desire, featuring mechanics from almost every single Mario game to date. If like me, you aren’t the creative type, then you can simply play through the countless other courses online, including silly music-inspired levels and near-impossible creations. 

11. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Price: £50 l Buy now from Amazon

Smash is back, and this time its playable roster is more expansive than ever. You can choose from loveable characters such as Kirby and Pikachu to less-well-known characters such as King K. Rool and Mr Game & Watch – each with their own special moves and battle arenas.

If you’re big into your eSports and hardcore fighting games, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a solid pick. And if not, Nintendo’s latest beat-em-up offers a casual enough experience for perfect pick-up-and-play action with up to seven other friends.

12. Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy

Price: £29 l Buy now from Amazon

The demented marsupial with a penchant for spinning towards endangered animals is back. Everyone’s favourite, err, Bandicoot returns with the remastered treatment and, like many of the games on this list, is best played on the Nintendo Switch.

As fiendishly difficult as when the trilogy of games first released on the original PlayStation back in the nineties, this platformer holds up incredibly well and looks good with a fresh lick of paint, too. The reworked in-game cutscenes look lovely, and the gameplay is as satisfyingly tense as ever before. You certainly don’t know true terror until you’re approaching the final stages of a particularly tricky level with no lives remaining.

Get the N. Sane Trilogy if you’re hoping to satisfy the nostalgia itch or, alternatively, crave an old-school challenge. Just try not to get too frustrated when tackling the particularly tricky “High Road” level.

13. Splatoon 2

Price: £42 l Buy now from Amazon

Splatoon 2 is another major system seller. There may be an exhaustive list of great games on the Switch, but nothing stands out quite like this ink-splatting shooter sequel. Simple enough on paper, you’re plonked in a 4v4 multiplayer match, tasked with painting as much of the arena as possible in your team’s colour.

It might sound easy, but there’s a surprising amount of depth once you dig into the nitty-gritty. You can upgrade your gear, weapons and special abilities – each offering their own unique flavours and catering to every playstyle. There’s a fully fledged single-player mode, too, for when your internet keels over and there’s also a horde-based survival mode for you and three of your friends.

It may not entice die-hard Call of Duty or Battlefield veterans, but for everyone else Nintendo’s colourful Splatoon 2 is a must-have.

Read our full Splatoon 2 review for more details

14. Yoshi’s Crafted World

Price: £44 l Buy now from Amazon

Yoshi is back and cuter than ever, with a brand-new look. Ditching the woolly art style of the last game on the Wii U, Yoshi enters the world of arts and crafts, with cardboard scenery and a generous helping of sticky back plastic and PVA glue. 

Not only is the art style dramatically improved, but Yoshi’s much-loved 2D platformer has seen a welcome slew of brand new gameplay upgrades. Two-player co-op returns, although this time around you can customise the look of your character, with costumes obtained from a Gashapon-style vending machine, using coins you collect in each level. The controls are simple enough for younger hands, but some of the later levels are fiendishly difficult, requiring precise platforming skills. Once more, the level design is superb, with fun boss fights and laughably silly Shy Guy enemies – the ninja’s dojo level is a particular treat. 

It’s best not to spoil the sort of experiences you can expect when playing through the game, as you really need to play these things first hand, but Yoshi’s Crafted World offers a truly unique pickup and play platforming experience unlike anything else on the Switch.

15. Snipperclips – Cut it out together!

Price: £25 l Buy now from Amazon

Showing up in the eShop on the day of launch, Snipperclips is a 2D puzzler where your artistic talents come into play. You solve puzzles by cutting out characters and shapes, and you’re not just limited to playing solo. This will have you screaming at your teammates (in a good way), shouting: “Don’t cut me there, cut me down there!” at the top of your lungs. Best not to play this one at night, in case the police come knocking.

It’s fiendishly difficult, with plenty of levels on offer and there’s even a four-player party mode, adding more shouts to the fray. Snipperclips is a must for your shiny new Switch and it’s nice and cheap, too.

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