Top 25 best Nintendo Switch RPGs in 2023
Updated on February 16, 2023 - added download links. Original story by Emily Sowden, updated by Artur Novichenko.
The Nintendo Switch is now home to an absolute bounty of brilliant games including RPGs. The compact console may lack the technical capabilities of the PS4 or Xbox One, but its unique portability means that it's the only console to let you continue your adventure on the road. Or the toilet.
When it comes to titles which astonishing playtimes it's the Nintendo Switch RPGs that really serve as the attention-holding powerhouses, be that because of their stories, expansive worlds, or clever mechanics. If you're looking for a great new way to spend your time on this portable console, look no further than our list of the finest Switch RPGs.
The ultimate list Nintendo Switch RPGsWhen your average role-playing game takes tens, if not hundreds, of hours to complete, the increased accessibility that the Switch offers is a massive bonus. Why wait to get home before you delve into that dungeon? Get started on the bus, the train, or in the carpool. When you add the console's sheer popularity into the equation, it's easy to see how Nintendo's hybrid console has assembled such an exemplary roster of role-playing games.
Other Switch genres that you might like:
They come in all shapes and sizes too - classic rereleases, major platform exclusives, lavish rereleases, and quirky indie efforts all sit side by side in what is one of the most robust game libraries of all time.
So, without further delay, click on the big blue button below to find out what are, in our opinion, the top 25 best Switch RPGs.
Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition
One of the finest JRPGs - scratch that, one of the finest games - of the Wii generation finally gets the HD treatment it was always crying out for. Xenoblade Chronicles is the real deal, offering a vast adventure that will last you into the triple digits.
Monolith's child offers one of the most imaginative and wonder-filled worlds in gaming, a whole civilisation built upon the carcasses of two hulking god-beasts. Another highlight is the snappy, MMORPG-influenced battle system.Download Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition ($59.99)
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
If you've never heard of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim you've probably had your head in a hole for years (I'd get that checked out). Besides missing out on many 'arrows to the knee' memes, you've also got some catching up on one of the greatest role-playing games ever.
Though this role-playing game looks a little outdated on the Switch, you'll be far too busy getting your hands dirty, killing mythic beasts, taking on malevolent enemies, travelling across beautiful landscapes, and trying not to accidentally steal a wheel of cheese from an ally's house.Download The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim ($59.99)
From light-hearted and adorable to disturbing and difficult, Darkest Dungeon isn't here to give you an easy ride. With a whole team of carefully-chosen explorers to keep an eye on, you need to be a good manager and send them off to heal up, gain skills, or complete missions.
That sounds pretty standard, but a huge element of Darkest Dungeon is your heroes' stress level. You can help them chill out, of course, but if left unchecked your hero might start behaving difficultly. Too much stress and they might just die of a heart attack, so try NOT to get to that point. certainly one of the best Switch RPGs!
While we haven't got a Switch review for it, we do have a Darkest Dungeon tier list right here. Before you ask, yes, it is as dark and bloody as you might expect!Download Darkest Dungeon ($24.99)
This is a pretty classically-styled RPG with meaty turn-based combat, where you're piloting war pawns. It might sound confusing but bear with me here. While we would like to see it a tad bit more realistic, it is, in fact, extremely spot-on. This almost chess-like title relies more on tactics and strategies than on graphics.
In a way, it smartly modernises and streamlines certain aspects, so you can focus more on the actual role-playing aspect than on other more distracting elements.Download Battle Brothers ($29.99)
Diablo III: Eternal Collection
Though Diablo III belongs in a few categories, it absolutely has a place on the list of best Switch RPGs. Choose between a number of different classes and stand strong in Sanctuary as angels and demons throw their hats in the ring for it. Better still, this collection comes with the Reaper of Souls and Rise of the Necromancer expansion, so there's even more to do.
If you don't fancy going at it alone, you can always call in a few pals to help out in the local co-op mode. There's never been a better time to crush demons in your slobs. We've stood by in in the past, and we will continue to do so in our Diablo III review right here. If you want some insight on how it actually plays on Switch, check it out!Download Diablo III: Eternal Collection ($59.99)
In a world where you need to fight your opponents non-violently, Undertale offers up a unique and engaging story. With an emphasis on humour, dialogue, and player choice, your experience is affected by your actions alone. So, don't blame the mailman for delivering your parcel at the wrong time, okay?
Running about eight hours long, you're faced with a mixture of narrative and bullet hell combat systems in each enemy encounter. The key idea is to be nice to your foes to make them like you, but if you prefer to do things the hard way that's cool too.Download Undertale ($14.99)
Bravely Default II
Bravely Default II gives players, without a doubt, one of the most wholesome role-playing experiences. This ambitious title has everything that one might expect from the genre: a sprawling story, a vast open world, meaningful narrative choices, deeply tactical combat, and an involving character customisation system.
There are many reasons why this creation should be in everyone's inventory. Still, from one player to another, I'll just mention THAT feel when you can finally experience one high-quality RPG the way it should be experienced. It's that good.Download Bravely Default II ($59.99)
Divinity: Original Sin II
Divinity: Original Sin II is one of the best cRPGs ever! We are ready to draw the swords if you think otherwise! All jokes aside, it was a real blessing to see it on Nintendo Switch as well, and although there was some fear about whether will the developers be able to make it work on the console or not, it turned out great!
For those unfamiliar with it, Divinity: Original Sin II is set in the fantasy world of fantasy - Rivellon. The player will be introduced into the world right after Lucius, chosen by the Seven Gods to keep the Void out of the world had died. Of course, Void started pouring into the world causing chaos, but that's just one bit of it. You'll be drawn into all kinds of intrigues and forced to make some unwilling choices while gathering the party of champions. What we really love about it, is the option to play with others as each player can take the role of one party member. Astounding role-playing game for Nintendo Switch and other platforms, that real fans of the genre shouldn't miss.Download Divinity: Original Sin II ($49.99)
An ambitious JRPG from the Square-Enix team behind Bravely Default, Octopath Traveler stands out for its phenomenal tilt-shift art style and wonderful turn-based combat. This Switch original really is something to behold.
We weren't entirely taken with its fragmented approach to storytelling - splitting things up into eight unconnected stories doesn't quite work - but it's heartwarming to see a major studio concocting something so fresh with such well-worn materials. Yeah, it's not a 10/10 RPG for Switch, but we would definitely give it a solid 8.5!Download Octopath Traveler ($59.99)
The Witcher III: Wild Hunt
Not just one of the finest Switch RPGs, The Witcher III: Wild Hunt is one of the finest RPGs of the past decade, with memorable writing and a rich dark fantasy world to explore. It's remarkable that this graphically rich open-world masterpiece has been made to work - and work well - on Nintendo's wonder hybrid.
The narrative provides that genuine Witcher experience we all know and love from the books and from the PC games, and the fact that it's on a handheld device doesn't change a thing. It's certainly one of the must-play titles in our book!Download The Witcher III: Wild Hunt ($39.99)
The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III
There are an awful lot of high-quality JRPGs available to Switch owners, to the point where some brilliant examples can fall through the cracks. Don't let The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III be such a game.
This is a full-sized adventure with lavish 3D graphics, a vast cast of well-formed characters, and a compelling sci-fi world to dive into. The turn-based battle system isn't half bad either.Download The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III ($59.99)
Tales of Vesperia Definitive Edition
This reworked JRPG classic takes the decade-old original, polishes it up, and makes the full experience available to a Western audience for the first time. And what a splendid adventure it sends you on.
Tales has always been known for its semi-real-time combat system, and that's all present and correct here. If you usually find JRPG battles a little stilted, this is the one for you. The story, meanwhile, is a series' high point.Download Tales of Vesperia Definitive Edition ($49.99)
Pillars of Eternity: Complete Edition
Genre specialist Obsidian went back to the genre's '90s heyday with Pillars of Eternity, a classic isometric adventure from the Baldur's Gate mould. As the name suggests, this is a complete package, with all of the additional content that followed its initial 2015 PC release.
While its heart is firmly in keyboard-and-mouse land, it works surprisingly well on console. Of course, if such old-school titles haven't been your bag in the past, Pillars of Eternity will do nothing to change your mind. But for hardcore fans of the genre, this is a blast. We could even say it's among the best Nintendo Switch RPG games out there.Download Pillars of Eternity: Complete Edition ($49.99)
Child of Light
Child of Light is an absolutely incredible RPG for Nintendo Switch. In this game, your character is Aurora, whose goal is to save her sick father and the kingdom. The game also has a co-op mode where the second player controls Igniculus.
The game mechanics are typical for RPGs, however, the use of light in the game nicely complements the gameplay. The graphics in the game are simple but cute, and the soundtrack is good as well.Download Child of Light ($19.99)
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
Do you fancy an RPG that offers the sprawling open-world wonder of Breath of the Wild with the rhythmic underpinnings of an MMO and a meaty JRPG plot? Meet your new friend, Xenoblade Chronicles 2.
Featuring one of the most evocative settings in gaming - the whole world is built on the backs of god-like titans - Xenoblade Chronicles 2 takes you on a truly epic quest. It's not flawless, but boy is it ambitious.Download Xenoblade Chronicles 2 ($59.99)
This stunner is an action RPG that will leave you breathless. It's beautiful in style and amazing in gameplay and narrative. What makes it even more of a winner though, is its flawlessly done Switch adaptation. Hades will keep you glued to your screen for hours, and you might even get a sore finger or two - but that will not matter if you just get to slay one more enemy.
Hades is one of those rare gems that appear and stay with you for the foreseeable future. It's not exactly your idle or classic role-playing game, but an action-packed one leaning towards roguelike, that wants nothing less than your undivided attention. It's definitely a must-play and one of the finest RPGs on Nintendo Switch!Download Hades ($34.99)
If you've exhausted Diablo III, or just don't find its brand of by-the-books fantasy particularly appealing, Torchlight III (or even the old Torchlight II) is a brilliant alternative. You're still wandering around bashing stuff, but with a much brighter and more interesting steampunk setting.
It gives you a few skills to learn and upgrade, much like in many other titles belonging to the genre, and it feels extremely smooth on the console. You should definitely check it out.Download Torchlight III ($39.99)
West of Loathing
You're probably not expecting to play anything like West of Loathing, but you really should give it a shot. This slapstick comedy role play is set in the Kingdom of Loathing universe where you've got to punch skeletons, deal with demon cows, and enjoy a wide variety of hats to don.
It's weird, wild, and western - all excellent qualities to find in an open-world RPG, wouldn't you say? We definitely believe so after getting our hands on the West of Loathing!Download West of Loathing ($11.00)
Journey to the Savage Planet
You might very well label Journey to the Savage Planet a first-person adventure, or a survival game. Given its focus on exploration and character progression, we're happy to call it a first-person role-player and move on.
Resisting categorisation is just one of the game's many charms. Exploring a strange, colourful planet, harvesting resources, scanning the local flora and fauna, and steadily accruing more abilities makes for a unique experience.Download Journey to the Savage Planet ($29.99)
Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age
Final Fantasy XII is a standout game in the mammoth JRPG series. It dared to try something new, with a completely fresh combat system that nodded towards MMO rather than the rigid tit-for-tat system the series is known for.
Its story, too, is less concerned with whiny teens than you might be accustomed to, which is refreshing. Add in a fresh lick of paint, and this is a brilliant RPG for Nintendo Switch presented at its absolute best.Download Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age ($49.99)
The Outer Worlds
The Outer Worlds owes a huge debt to the more recent Fallout games. But then, given that developer Obsidian once made the brilliant Fallout: New Vegas, we'll let it slide.
This is a much cheekier, planet-hopping universe than Fallout's, with a corporatised humanity having conquered the stars rather than blown itself up. That doesn't mean there aren't tough narrative decisions to be made and countless raiders to be popped, though. If your variant of the most suitable Switch RPGs includes guns instead of swords, try this one!Download The Outer Worlds ($59.99)
Pokémon Sword and Shield
It's easy to forget that Pokemon Sword and Shield is an RPG. It's all cute and fluffy and super-popular with kids. But at its heart you've got wandering around an overworld map, chatting with NPCs and taking part in countless turn-based battles.
Pokémon Sword and Shield might not be the best entry to the series yet, but it's unquestionably the most lavish. This is also the first mainline Pokémon title you can play on your TV, which is something to be celebrated.Download Pokémon Sword and Shield ($119.99)
For any of you who haven't had the joy of playing Stardew Valley yet, it's another essential for the platform. As a farmer new to the small, community-driven Pelican Town, it's up to you to clean up your late grandpa's old farm. Sure, you'll start weeding and clearing out the debris, but soon you'll be ankle-deep in mud, fish, and friendship, and you'll love it.
Whatever your preferences are concerning this genre, Stardew Valley offers up a light-hearted experience perfect for all ages. You'll plant up your farms by season, chat up the villagers, maybe find true love, and uncover deeper stories as you go. Fair warning: you'll tell yourself 'just one more day', but it'll never be just one more. Never. Trust us, we've been there.Download Stardew Valley ($14.99)
An oldie but a goodie, Bastion is a cracking RPG for Nintendo Switch that'll leave you thinking about it long after you've shut the system down. With more than 40 gorgeous environments to explore, you'll follow 'The Kid' on his mission to collect the Cores that once powered Caelondia. Only then can he hope to prevent the Calamity that destroyed his home.
Combining its beautiful graphics, a fitting score, fantastic narration, and engaging story, this is one you absolutely don't want to miss.Download Bastion ($14.99)
Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch
Having started life on the Nintendo DS with Ni no Kuni: Dominion of the Dark Djinn in 2008, Ni No Kuni finally came full circle with this beautiful Switch port of the greatly enhanced Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch.
If ever there was a JRPG that belonged on a modern Nintendo platform it was this, with its lavish Studio Ghibli-co-created world and bright, bouncy tone.
Oh, and if you still want more, here's a bonus one. Deltarune, another Undertale-esque game from Toby Fox is also available on Nintendo Switch. We hope you liked our list of best Switch RPGs and that we helped you pick the proper one! Enjoy countless pleasant hours.Download Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch ($49.99)
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