Yesterday I talked about the Switch launch,my emotions and feelings about the device before and after release. Today I’ll be going over every retail Switch game I’ve played this year and discussing my feelings on them.
1, 2, Switch
This game is the weakest on this list by far, and I still feel it would have been far better serviced by being a game bundled with the platform. The fact that it shows off so much of what the Joy-Cons can do while also providing a fun distraction for party settings means that it could have bought Nintendo some good will and been considered a worthwhile game.
Instead the game was packaged on its own for a full retail price, which led to it becoming the butt of a joke for Nintendo’s newest console. While all that is true, I still have enjoyed the game for what it was. Especially early on in the console’s life this was a welcome piece of software to show casual gamers the system. With its myriad of wacky mini games, this led to more than one person leaving a play session determined to get their own system.
My kids still ask to play this game to this day, especially the youngest, so it still gets dusted off now and again. I think it could be salvaged with some free DLC adding more games, and since the game flopped perhaps Nintendo should bundle it with all future Switch consoles.
Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
It isn’t any secret how much I love this game. I talk about as much as I’m allowed, and I consider it my favorite game of all time. This game owned my time and heart for hundreds of hours throughout 2017. During the launch period if I wasn’t playing Breath of the Wild, than I was thinking about playing Breath of the Wild, or gushing over it with the rest of the internet.
Later in the year I bashed my head against the challenge of the Trial of the Sword over and over again, and then during the holiday got to drive an awesome motorcycle around Hyrule. Even though I have every shrine in the game, and have consumed all the story quests and content I can, I still turn this game on now and again to hunt some Korok Seeds.
Super Bomberman R
Caught up in the Nintendo Switch launch hype I went a little overboard, and bought this game. My family and I did manage to have some fun with it, and it was later supported by some free character DLC, but ultimately it just fell flat.
The story mode’s difficulty was uneven and spiked randomly, especially when playing with two people. Most of all the isometric viewpoint often made it difficult to keep track of what was going on and hampered enjoyment. All of this might be mildly forgivable, if the game hadn’t been a full priced title. However, because it was massively overpriced it should have been a definite pass.
This is the only game I’ve bought on the system that I’ve been horribly disappointed by.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
I played hundreds of hours of Mario Kart 8 on the Wii U between the main release and the fantastic DLC. Even so, I picked up the Switch version for the couple of added racers and the phenomenally fun battle mode that was added, and never looked back. It is a no brainer that Mario Kart 8 is an amazing game, but it was the additions most probably didn’t notice that really made me adore the deluxe version.
Namely the ability for my younger child to turn on a guidance mode to keep her from driving off the track constantly. My daughter can now play with me and my son without us having to slow down, and she still feels the thrill of racing in Mario Kart. This makes it not only one of my favorite games to play, but one of the best to play with my children.
My daughter was absolutely in love with Ribbon Girl from the moment she saw the first trailer, she even wanted to be Ribbon Girl for Halloween, though we could not figure out how to make it happen. And why shouldn’t she love Ribbon Girl? The game’s bold and colorful character designs are extremely well done, giving instant life to another new Nintendo IP.
I was initially completely turned off by this game when we saw it during the streamed event in January, but upon playing the Test Punch beta I was completely sold. This is a fun frenetic fighter that seeks to bring some of that Mario Kart accessibility to the fighting genre, and more or less succeeds. A long tail release of fighters and stages kept me coming back all of 2017 to digest new fantastic content.
A lot of people thought this would really be Splatoon 1.5, but in my opinion they’ve been proved horribly wrong. The new campaign was everything I loved about the first turned up to 11, and the multiplayer had so many great tweaks to the formula that it improved upon the original in every way; the sequel continues to this day to provide new content for free.
Even when I lapse with this game, every time they have a Splatfest I’m right back in the thick of things. Turf War is multiplayer shooter done in true Nintendo fashion, and it is amazing in its own right. The real star of the show though? The new Salmon Run mode, which leads you and 3 buddies to rally against hordes of Salmon enemies as you seek to survive and earn cool new gear as well as rewards that can be used elsewhere in the game.
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
When this game was originally announced most of the internet, including myself, dismissed it entirely because of the Rabbids. Imagine our collective surprise when the game is released, and turns out to be an amazing game overflowing with charm. We all now know that this game is a fantastically funny turn based game that takes XCom tactic,s and owns them with all the wackiness of the Rabbid universe; going on to win numerous awards
It deserves all the praise it gets, as it is a masterful blend of charm and accessibility applied to a deeper strategy genre that can be as challenging as you prefer through additional levels in the game. Humor is difficult to pull off in a game, but more than any other title this last year it had me consistently laughing thoughout my 40 hours with it.
I’m looking forward to putting even more time into the game when Donkey Kong joins the crew along with a new world later in the year.
Fire Emblem Warriors
This game was done a vast disservice by coming out so close to Super Mario Odyssey, because it turned out to be one of the best Warriors games I’ve ever played. That is saying something considering how much I adored Hyrule Warriors due to its Zelda theme. Fire Emblem Warriors really treats the franchise with careful love, customizing so much of the experience to echo as much of the series as it can.
The ensemble cast inherent in the Fire Emblem games lends itself perfectly to the hack and slash genre, with tons of your favorite characters showing up. The gameplay of Musuo games can sometimes be boring, but the addition of the ability to command your troops makes it feel more like an actual strategic battle. You can play with two people across the entire campaign, and though it drops some fidelity when you do split screen, it is a constant rotation in our house for co-op.
Super Mario Odyssey
What can I say about this game that hasn’t been said by the whole internet? It is another Mario based masterpiece, joyful to play in every moment. No matter if you are jumping, throwing the cap, or rolling down a hill, every move blends into another motion making getting around an absolute blast.
The capturing mechanic is where the game truly shines though, some of these captures are so much fun to play that they could have an entire game based around them on their own. Super Mario Odyssey is filled with pleasant surprises and wonderful nods to the franchise throughout. Recently it received a new mode where you can visit Luigi to hide balloons, or seek out ones others have hidden. I recently dipped my toe into this portion of the game and it is good fun, but I’m still slowly working my way through the myriad of moons.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
This game was such a mixed experience for me. It was essentially 90 hours of anime, for all the good and bad that entails. When the game isn’t busy perving on its female characters the story is a well done one, with themes that rise above the surrounding game. The combat itself is very well done, filled with depth while also being interesting to participate in. Collecting Blades is a lot of fun also, though the random nature of getting the majority of them kills the drive to go back for me.
I had fun going through nearly 100 hours of this game, but it certainly had its overall flaws. You can check out my review here.
Puyo Puyo Tetris
I received this as a Christmas present from my brother, after we played this game head to head for hours at a time weeks earlier. Tetris is a mainstay of the gaming world and Puyo Puyo is popular in its own right, but I doubt anybody could have expected them to get smashed together. Enter Puyo Puyo Tetris, where no matter which you enjoy, you’ll be able to destroy your friends with it.
With a large variety of modes, rock solid puzzling, and the ability to swap between two of the best puzzle games in this generation, you really can’t go wrong here.
What was your favorite Switch game of 2017? Let us know in the comments below and be sure to come back tomorrow: I’ll be going over all of the eShop titles I played throughout the year of 2017 and discussing my feelings of them.