As much as we’d like to see the esteemed likes of The Witcher III, Overwatch and Battlefield 1 on Nintendo Switch, it’ll never happen. The system simply lacks the horsepower, and the fact that Nintendo has opted for cartridges probably doesn’t help the current software situation either.
It appears the system has more in common with last-gen tech, with FIFA on Switch allegedly running on the Xbox 360 version’s engine. We have a feeling that NBA 2K is based on the last-gen iterations too. That’s not to say we aren’t going to see any current-gen stuff, though – I Am Setsuna and Steep are on their way. Developers must either put the extra effort in – hence why Steep isn’t out until later in the year – or choose games that aren’t too graphically demanding.
So here are five games that could feasibly be released on Nintendo’s shiny new system, all of which we’d be very pleased to see. Day one purchases all around.
A quick kickabout on FIFA, a couple of rounds of Splatoon, some 1-2-Switch shenanigans to liven up a dull party – these are the kind of experiences the Switch is intended for, thanks to its portable nature and focus on multiplayer.
In an ideal world, Nintendo would be chasing Psyonix for a Switch version of Rocket League. Perusing software isn’t exactly the Kyoto giant’s strength, however, so we can only hope that Rocket League makes the jump somewhen – it’s a perfect fit for the system, offering short bursts of instantly gratifying entertainment. It holds huge appeal too; a sports game that anybody can pick up and play.
The vehicles may have to be made slightly less curvaceous to bring the polygon count down, but we’re still confident the Switch could handle a competent conversion.
With Nintendo planning to charge for the Switch’s online service, it’ll need a strong line-up of online games to justify the cost. Splatoon and MK8 are fine and dandy, but the chance to play online Rocket League while on lunch break could help make Nintendo’s online fees easier to swallow.
Rise of the Tomb Raider
No, we haven’t overestimated the Switch’s power – lest you forget, Lara’s latest graced the ageing Xbox 360 alongside Xbox One. While the last-gen version didn’t receive a great deal of press coverage – there are no critic reviews on Metacritic whatsoever – it was apparently an excellent conversion, with a sturdy frame rate and impressive visuals.
Once Breath of the Wild is done and dusted, core gamers are likely to be hankering for another adventure, and so we’re sure Rise of the Tomb Raider would go down a treat on Switch. It’s not like Lara is a stranger to Nintendo formats either – Crystal Dynamics’ Tomb Raider: Legend graced the GameCube while Tomb Raider: Underworld made it to the Wii.
Square-Enix is one of the few publishers to announce more than one title for the Switch, which makes this conversion likelier than some of the others on this list. Perhaps even the most likely.
Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon
When this spook hunting sequel hit 3DS back in 2013 many critics claimed that it felt like a console quality game crammed onto a handheld. The adventure lasted three times longer than the GameCube original, and it had the surprise addition of an online multiplayer battle mode.
Despite being a lengthy experience – around 16 hours, if memory serves – it was also clearly designed for on-the-go gaming, with mission objectives and challenges each taking less than ten minutes of your time. The checkpoints were sometimes far apart, but this is something Next Level Games could easily fix if they were given the chance to give Dark Moon a HD makeover.
The visuals would also need a lot of work to bring them to Switch standard, but it would ultimately be worth the effort – almost four years on from release, the 3DS version still commands full price, suggesting that it remains a desirable title.
This emotional adventure is another single-player game, and one that a lot of gamers have already played. But what if the focus was put onto two-player instead? We’d wager that it would be worth playing through once more with a friend by your side.
For those who haven’t played Brothers, the control system sees you moving both brothers yourself – one analogue stick controls the stronger, taller, brother while the other manoeuvres their smaller, slimmer, sibling. Together they solve puzzles, and use their size and strength overcome obstacles and open new paths for one another. Just one action button is used…because that’s all is needed.
Adding a two-player mode would put a welcome spin on a stone cold classic, prompting players to converse about what to do and where to go next. At the very worst, the Switch would have another 9/10 game under its belt.
We aren’t entirely sure if Platinum Games owns the Vanquish IP, but we’re sure that Nintendo could strike up a deal with original publishers SEGA if necessary. If Bayonetta can get a re-release, then so can this extraordinarily lavish sci-fi shooter.
It’s more than deserving of Switch conversion – six years on from release it remains both a joy to play and behold. No developer has thought, or perhaps dared, to pilfer its slide boosting mechanic – a visually alluring manoeuvre that allows the power-suited and booted hero to launch themselves off enemies and into the air. Its quirky sense of humour would go down well with Nintendo fans too – it isn’t quite the gritty, gung-ho, experience it may initially seem.
Of course, we’d also settle for a fully-fledged Vanquish sequel (with this original thrown in as a bonus, a la Bayonetta on Wii U). What a wonderful thing that would be.