With Christmas fast approaching, there is no doubt that the Nintendo Switch is going to be a popular item going under people’s trees. Not even nine months in, Nintendo has shown us why we need to own this system.
For those who have yet to own it, you will need to know what games to get. Sure, you can get plenty of games on the eShop, which we will discuss in another article, but let’s look at the quality games brought to retail that will appeal to an assortment of family members.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
I picked this game up at launch with the simple interest of having a prospective collector’s item; little did I know that this game would be worth my time. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is a lengthy RPG that will keep players busy for a long time.
What makes it so appealing is its story and world. Whether playing in handheld or on the TV, the world of Alrest is breathtaking, and the sense of scale makes you want to explore every corner.
As for its story, you play as Rex, a young salvager who takes on a big job that accidentally brings him into contact with a powerful being known as the Aegis. Working with the Aegis, you seek to find a place known as Elysium in the hopes of bringing peace to the world. Sadly, a simple description cannot do this story justice, but trust me, Xenoblade Chronicles 2 has you laughing and, at times, crying. With every story beat I was entertained and driven forward.
The gameplay, however, is just okay. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 has an audience for its combat systems, and the combat is decisive for whether you'll like the game. Once it gets going, there is plenty in the combat to make most fights interesting but it may be a bumpy road for you.
This is still a great game that provides hours of entertainment for patient players, and if the original is any indication this one could be a future collector’s item. You might want a copy now.
Fire Emblem Warriors
If you are coming into Fire Emblem Warriors with standard Fire Emblem knowledge, you need to leave that at the door. Warriors is nothing like a traditional strategy game, with the twist removing the typical turn-based strategy in favor of fast-paced action. Where this shift wasn’t as huge a shock for Zelda in Hyrule Warriors, Fire Emblem Warriors is a massive change for the series' standard, and one for the best.
No franchise under Nintendo’s belt fits the Warriors branding better. The battles that take place in this game feel like they could have been enacted on a traditional scale. The Warriors twist allows a new perspective, focusing more on a traditional war system as opposed to timing and patience. Each battle is expertly crafted, challenging, and satisfying as you fight through waves of enemies to clear an objective.
Fire Emblem Warriors still won’t appeal to everyone, but it is worth a playthrough. It is surprising how much fun this game can be, how the story, however silly, may affect you. This stands as one of the Switch’s finest games and one that should be played by anyone capable.
If you look back at the Wii U’s library, you might remember Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Pikmin 3, Super Mario Maker, and others. Undoubtedly one of the strongest offerings was Splatoon. This game was a different act from Nintendo as it had a dedicated focus to online play with traditional, though family friendly, gunplay. It was a shooter, Nintendo-fied.
With the Switch’s announcement, it was exciting just to imagine Nintendo putting the original game on the system, making the announcement of Splatoon 2 even better. You could argue that it does not feel like a sequel, but that doesn’t matter. For general consumers, the game is new and exciting.
Splatoon 2 is a competitive shooter that focuses less on kill counts and more on objectives. The key mode is Turf War, where you fight for territory by painting the ground with your color, but there are other option, each with a different twist on a classic game mode.
Splatoon 2 is a blast of a game that offers hours of fun whether you immerse yourself in the plethora of online content or go for the more subdued single-player campaign.
The Switch had a solid launch line-up whether you were heading to retail or buying digitally. Among the digital offerings was Snipperclips, a clever and cutesy puzzle game that had two players work together to complete objectives by snipping each other. At launch this was a great game, but as the year has drawn to a close the developers decided to add even more content and provide a retail release.
The latest version of Snipperclips, otherwise known as Snipperclips Plus, offers a series of new challenges. You have to complete seemingly simple objectives that prove to be nefarious.
A word of caution: choose your partner carefully, because some puzzles get infuriating, and a lack of communication can frustrate players. Even still, every level oozes with creativity, charm, and imagination.
Definitely pick up Snipperclips Plus - it's one of the Switch’s best multiplayer experiences.
In the grand scheme of the Switch’s library, this final pick is likely unpopular, but 1-2 Switch is worth your time. In a console ripe with multiplayer experiences, there is no game I have played more with my family than 1-2 Switch. For what this game lacks in visual flare, it more than makes up for it with charm and the laughter it inspires.
Whether playing an elimination game of Soda, waiting to hear a loud “Fire,” or playing a love-struck Gorilla, there are laughs and good times. Sure, 1-2 Switch may be a simple minigame compilation without the flare of Wii-era collections, but if given a chance, 1-2 Switch can make you smile and will happily entertain the entire family in short but fun bursts.
If you are after a Switch, these five games will offer enjoyment for you and the different people in your life. From lengthy RPGs to zany party games, the system has no shortage of software to offer that will keep players happy.