Best cheap Nintendo Switch game deals January 2023
The Nintendo Switch is one of the most popular consoles ever released, one with an ever-expanding library of games to choose from. Odds are if a game is capable of working on the Switch’s hardware, it’s either already available, or it will be soon.
Thankfully, a number of games are currently receiving price breaks if you’re looking to expand your collection, including first-party offerings like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Paper Mario: The Origami King. However, if you want to add some less conventional titles to your collection, Persona 5 Royal and 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim are also discounted right now.
Below, we’ve rounded up some of the deals on Nintendo Switch games. In many instances, the Nintendo eShop is typically the best place to find deals on digital downloads, especially if you prefer the indie variety, but there are some exceptions where retailers will discount titles that would otherwise be full price on Nintendo’s storefront.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Taking place in a massive open world, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a much different take on the Zelda series, one that stresses exploration, experimentation, and emergent gameplay. BOTW is much tougher than previous entries in the franchise but presents multiple, unconventional ways to tackle the game’s more difficult challenges. Mastery of the game comes more from learning and exploiting the systems in the world rather than looting a bunch of sweet gear.
Years after its release, players are still discovering new wrinkles in the aging classic. While this isn’t the most recent title to feature Link, Breath of the Wild remains an essential entry in the franchise. It offers all of the hallmarks of a traditional Zelda title, including challenging combat and puzzles, but within a gorgeous, open-world design. Read our review.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a different take on the Zelda series with an emphasis on exploration, experimentation, and emergent gameplay.
New Pokémon Snap is the sequel to the hit Nintendo 64 game from 1999. In it, players traverse the Lental region taking pictures of pokémon thriving in their natural habitats, which is a refreshing change to the typical catch ’em-all gameplay loop. Read our review.
In a refreshing change of pace, New Pokémon Snap lets you take photos of all your favorite pokémon in the wild instead of catching them.
A prequel to Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, Pokémon Legends Arceus has you exploring the large, standalone areas of the Hisui region in an effort to catch and study pokémon as you build out the region’s first-ever pokédex. It represents a fairly radical shift in the Pokémon formula. Read our review.
A prequel to Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, Pokémon Legends Arceus is a different take on the established franchise.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
If you’re into kart racing and love Mario, there’s no better mish-mash of the two than in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe for the Switch. The popular racing title is packed with plenty of courses and characters, with even more available as paid DLC. This installment in the Mario Kart franchise is essentially a souped-up version of the original Mario Kart 8 that debuted on the Wii U, with better visuals, performance, and all the DLC from the Wii U version (and then some).
While the basics of this franchise have remained largely the same over its lifetime, Mario Kart 8 represented some of the best improvements the series has seen, and its remastered port only improves on the original with new modes, kart parts, and an adorable cast of drivers.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is still receiving updates for the Nintendo Switch in the form of new characters and tracks to choose from.
A sequel to Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon, Luigi’s Mansion 3 sees players controlling the titular Luigi as he explores a haunted hotel in an effort to rescue his brother and friends. Despite only having text dialogue that’s supplemented by jibberish and pantomime, this 3D platforming adventure is surprisingly witty and comical, with plenty of Nintendo’s trademark charm to go around. And while some of the puzzles can be cumbersome and the controls overly complex, there are few games like it. Not nearly enough games star the taller Mario sibling, but Luigi’s Mansion 3 proves that Luigi is more than capable of holding his own. Read our review.
Luigi’s Mansion 3 is an adorable puzzle platformer with light co-op elements.
Yoshi’s Crafted World, in a nutshell, is a yarn-and-cardboard-flavored platformer featuring everyone’s favorite green dinosaur. It’s one of the more charming titles to come from Nintendo, with levels and characters made from everyday objects, and a difficulty that serves as the digital equivalent of a weighted blanket — or in this case, a hand-knit scarf. It’s not the most crushing or inventive title, but many of the levels in Yoshi’s Crafted World introduce new mechanics and wrinkles to keep things fresh as you make your way through a variety of theme-based worlds. There aren’t many games that do exactly what it says on the box, but Yoshi’s Crafted World is definitely one of them. Read our review.
Yoshi’s Crafted World is a cute, cooperative platformer with an upcycled art style.
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is best described as Dynasty Warriors by way of Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. This title shares a similar aesthetic to the 2017 hit but is drastically different in terms of its gameplay. In it, you’ll take control of a cast of familiar characters from Breath of the Wild, like Impa and Zelda, and guide them through a linear narrative that leads up to the events that precede Breath of the Wild.
You can swap between characters during battles to make use of their combos and special abilities, but you’re also responsible for directing legions of soldiers to assist you in completing your objectives. Age of Calamity provides fans of Breath of the Wild with more backstory in a game that feels wholly different but strangely familiar in the best ways. Read our review.
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is all about hacking and slashing your way through tons of enemies alongside characters from the Zelda franchise.
Mortal Kombat 11
Mortal Kombat 11 is a title synonymous with fighting games. The same gratuitously violent, combo-based gameplay is on display here, but the latest entry in the franchise builds on that legacy by fine-tuning many of the technical elements. This makes MK11 arguably the best entry in the franchise to date, with tight gameplay that’s easy to learn and difficult to master.
In addition to the roster of 25 characters from Mortal Kombat lore, MK11 includes DLC for fighters from some unexpected IPs. So if you were ever curious about how the Terminator would fare against Rambo, this is your chance to find out. Each fighter can also be customized with different moves and gear, meaning that you’re unlikely to fight against the same character twice.
Mortal Kombat 11 is the ultra-violent fighting game you know and love with a massive list to fighters to choose from.
Rayman Legends: Definitive Edition
Rayman Legends: Definitive Edition might just be the best platformer for the Nintendo Switch that isn’t part of the Mario franchise. The excellent title features a vivid art style, tight controls, and a soundtrack that’s sure to stick with you well after you’ve stopped playing. Plus, in addition to a surprisingly large cast of cute characters, the entirety of Rayman Legends can be played cooperatively with up to four players. If you’re a little tired of stomping Goombas, you might want to give Rayman Legends a spin.
Rayman Legends: Definitive Edition offers a Mario-esque platforming experience with enough wrinkles to carve out its own space on the Nintendo Switch.
Burnout Paradise: Remastered
Burnout has always been a series that’s about wrecking cars, going fast, and causing wanton destruction. Burnout Paradise continues that proud tradition by unleashing you on an open world that’s littered with stunts, races, and — of course — lots of crashes.
Burnout Paradise may be a couple of console generations old at this point, but it has never lost its charm. The nauseatingly fast game always has something for you to do, and while the lack of real-world cars is a bummer, you’ll never have a better time jack-knifing your sports car into a fuel tanker at 300 miles per hour.
Burnout Paradise: Remastered is an open-world racing game that’s all about going ludicrously fast and causing collateral damage.
Axiom Verge, an ambitious Metroidvania developed by a single person, has gone on to become an essential entry in the genre thanks to its clever level design, spectacular soundtrack, and awesome boss battles. And while the game is clearly inspired by classic entries in the genre like Super Metroid and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, it still manages to do its own thing.
Much like other games in the genre, Axiom Verge has you exploring a map that gradually expands as you defeat bosses and gain new abilities, allowing you to traverse previously inaccessible areas. A large part of what makes this game unique, however, is the title’s setting and aesthetic, which lies somewhere on the spectrum between hellish and surreal, leaving us with something that feels like the works of HR Geiger if he were given a 16-bit palette to work with.
While there are plenty of other contemporaries that draw on this same formula, including Hollow Knight and Metroid Dread, Axiom Verge is an excellent title that won’t disappoint fans of the genre.
Axiom Verge is an ambitious Metroidvania with a spectacular 8-bit-inspired soundtrack and art style.
If Pacific Rim didn’t have enough high school drama for you, then you might want to check out 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim, a game that is equal parts visual novel and turn-based strategy game. In Aegis Rim, you play through the interconnected stories of 13 teenagers who also happen to be massive robots charged with defending humanity. It would be easy to dismiss the premise as silly if the voice acting and art direction weren’t so damn good, and while the story beats can get a bit muddled at times, the delivery on virtually every other aspect of Aegis Rim is spot-on. Read our review.
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is a narrative-driven game with turn-based strategic elements.
Immortals Fenyx Rising is a game that takes the open-world gameplay and color palette from Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and slaps it on the mythology from God of War. The design might be iterative, but the result is amazing. In true Ubisoft fashion, the massive, vivid environment is chock-full of collectibles, activities, and puzzles to strengthen your character.
One aspect that sets this title apart from its obvious inspirations is the combat, which combines simple, RPG-like skill trees with a variety of godly powers earned from aiding various deities. A decidedly more comical and lighthearted approach to the Greek pantheon, Immortals Fenyx Rising is a fun and witty open-world game that wears its inspiration on its sleeve. Read our hands-on impressions.
Immortals Fenyx Rising blends the open-world gameplay of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild with a cast of gods and monsters from Greek myth.
Make friends, fight your inner demons, and be home in time for dinner. Persona 5 Royal is the definitive version of Persona 5, one that adds a ton of new content and quality-of-life features. While the occasionally obtuse story beats and narrative aren’t going to change anyone’s mind about JRPGs, the game’s chill pacing makes Persona 5 Royal a great choice for the Nintendo Switch. Read our review.
Persona 5 Royal is the definitive version of the game, featuring a new character, a new dungeon, and several quality-of-life changes.
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga
Featuring an expansive cast, The Skywalker Saga is the definitive Lego Star Wars experience, tying together every mainline film from The Phantom Menace to The Rise of Skywalker. Just like other entries in the series, the title is chock-full of fan service and light-hearted humor that’s sure to appeal to fans, regardless of their age. It even includes characters from one-shot films like Rogue One and Solo.
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is the definitive Lego experience from a galaxy far, far, away.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Like a good friend, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is a game that’s always there for you. Like past entries in the series, New Horizons lets you go outside and enjoy life with neighbors, pick some flowers, catch a few bugs, and just relish the moment.
The game lets you build and grow your own persistent island and eventually handle the overall welfare of the cast of characters, all of which will call your island their home. By harvesting resources and trading with other islands, you can slowly turn your vacant island into something truly unique. Read our review.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is a game in which you build a town, catch bugs, and manage a series of interpersonal relationships, albeit in an extremely cozy fashion.
Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope
A follow-up to one of the most unexpected pairings of the last decade, Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope is a turn-based strategy game in the same vein as the XCOM franchise but with a cast of the Mario characters and the pure chaotic energy of the Rabbids. The combat blends fire-and-maneuver tactics with special abilities and frenetic movement, which provides an interesting departure from usual turn-based strategy titles.
Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope is an excellent turn-based strategy game that pairs classic Mario characters with the chaotic Rabbids for an encore performance.
Paper Mario: The Origami King
If you thought Mario couldn’t get any more whimsical, think again. Paper Mario: The Origami King offers an adorable, narrative-driven experience featuring the ubiquitous red plumber. More of an adventure game than a platformer, The Origami King pushes its story along with witty writing and a puzzle-based combat system. Read our review.
The latest installment in the beloved Paper Mario series sees its world folded up into origami. The same funny writing is here, and there’s a new twist on the battles.
Tetris Effect: Connected
From Rez and Lumines creator Tetsuya Mizuguchi comes Tetris Effect: Connected, a game that elevates the classic Tetris formula to new levels of sensory excitement through unique visuals and eclectic beats. It’s similar to previous Tetris titles, yet it also allows for local and online multiplayer for both competitive and co-op play.
Tetris Effect: Connected is a reimagining of the classic Tetris through a modern lens, one that incorporates sound and visual elements for a trance-like gaming experience.
Boasting an amazing hand-drawn art style and evocative soundtrack, Spiritfarer is a game that feels like a Studio Ghibli movie come to life. The title of the game refers to your job, which has you taking care of wayward spirits and helping them wrap up their unfinished business on the way to the afterlife. Spiritfarer ties in farming and crafting elements that’ll be familiar to fans of Stardew Valley or Animal Crossing, too, but introduces poignant themes of loss, affection, and forgiveness in its writing for an experience that’s decidedly more mature.
Spritfarer has you taking care of wayward spirits on the way to the afterlife by interacting with a variety of crafting systems while learning how to heal and empathize with people in your life.
Borderlands: Legendary Collection
Borderlands: Legendary Collection includes not only Borderlands 1 & 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel, but all of the various pieces of DLC as well, making this a truly massive compilation of everyone’s favorite looter shooter. While the irreverent humor of the Borderlands franchise doesn’t always land, the core gameplay loop — which has you killing hordes of baddies in an effort to earn weapons that become exponentially more ridiculous as time goes on — remains strangely addictive.
Borderlands: Legendary Collection includes Borderlands 1 & 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel, in addition to all of the corresponding DLC.
Celeste is a platformer that draws heavily from influences like Super Meat Boy and VVVVVV but feels very different. The indie title explores themes of anxiety and depression through its gameplay and the inner dialogue of its protagonist, Madeline, as she struggles to fulfill her grandmother’s dying wish. The platforming is tight and responsive, but unlike its more difficult contemporaries, Celeste features an amazing array of accessibility options, which include graphical adjustments for photosensitive or colorblind players. They also allow you to alter the game speed, remap controls, and even toggle invincibility without altering the core gameplay experience.
Celeste is a platformer that explores themes of anxiety and depression while providing a surprising number of accessibility options.
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