I’ve always enjoyed covering Nintendo Switch ports of games from other platforms to see how the developers enhance experiences with the Switch’s hardware, or what compromises are made to deliver as much of the full experience as possible on the go for Nintendo Switch owners. With the Switch in potentially its final year(s), there are still many fantastic games hitting the platform alongside or later than other platforms. This feature will highlight the best ports and re-releasesThe Best Nintendo Switch Ports of 2023
Company of Heroes Collection
Company of Heroes Collection saw the beloved entry in the series hit consoles for the first time on Nintendo Switch. I was surprised at how good it felt with a controller. While it is still best on iPad, there’s no denying how good Company of Heroes feels on Switch thanks to Feral Interactive’s new release. I can’t wait to play the multiplayer when it arrives in 2024.
The Legend of Heroes: Trails to Azure
While many Falcom games hit Switch in middling conversions, The Legend of Heroes: Trails to Azure on Nintendo Switch is actually the gold standard of how an older JRPG should be brought to Nintendo’s hybrid system. It has massive improvements and upgrades over the PS4 version, and the developer even brought in features we’d only see in PC ports. This is the best console version of an essential JRPG.
Metroid Prime Remastered
Metroid Prime Remastered is an essential for every Nintendo Switch owner. It brings one of Nintendo’s best games ever to Switch in a brilliant conversion at a budget asking price. It almost feels too cheap for the quality on offer, and I hope we see Metroid Prime 2 and 3 also come to Switch like this. Go buy it now.
Persona 4 Golden
After Persona 5 Royal hit Switch with a few technical issues, I was a bit worried about Persona 4 Golden. Despite being based on the PS Vita release, we’ve seen some ports of games from weaker systems hit Switch in less than desirable conversions. Thankfully Persona 4 Golden sees one of the best JRPGs of all time get a stellar port on Switch. I have no complaints about this release barring it not having a physical release available to buy worldwide.
Red Dead Redemption
Even if you already played or own Red Dead Redemption on PlayStation 3 or Xbox, the Switch version is a fantastic release that is a joy to play on the go. The lack of gyro aiming is disappointing, but everything else is better than I expected given this is Red Dead Redemption‘s first ever re-release. This is the best portable version of Rockstar Games’ classic release, and a brilliant game in its own right.
Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection
It took many years, but Atlus’ most consistently great franchise returned with the Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection on Switch and Steam earlier this year. The new HD remasters bring incredible games to Switch with quality of life features, visual enhancements, and more. They even support multiple input methods and are the best versions of the classic DS games. Atlus even added accessibility options to make them more approachable by newcomers to the genre.
Vampire Survivors on Switch is everything I hoped for in a port and more. While it has some frame rate issues, which version of the game doesn’t at this point? Vampire Survivors is a perfect fit for Switch, and I can only hope we get updates on time for future content. That’s my only complaint with it right now. Otherwise, this will be your next obsession on Switch, and poncle needs to do a physical release with all DLC included in the future.
While most people know Vanillaware for Dragon’s Crown or 13 Sentinels, the developer’s 2007-released RTS game GrimGrimoire has always been worth playing. GrimGrimoire OnceMore, a remaster of it with new features, hit Switch and PlayStation this year in the West, and it is the best version of the game by far. It also got a superb Switch port offering the ability to play this Vanillaware classic on the go.
The King of Fighters XIII Global Match
I’m glad SNK finally brought The King of Fighters XIII to modern platforms with netcode that makes it actually worth playing online. Despite the few UI issues, The King of Fighters XIII Global Match on Switch is an easy recommendation as long as you don’t try playing it with the pitiful d-pad on the Joy-Cons. Hopefully this is the start of the modern SNK re-releases finally hitting Switch as well. If you’ve never played KOF13 before, this is the version to get.
Risk of Rain Returns
Risk of Rain Returns does enough to feel fresh, but manages to nail what I loved about the original with my rose tinted memories of it from back in the day. On Switch, performance isn’t perfect during the late-game, but everything else is superb. I’ve had a ton of fun playing it online and offline on both Switch and Steam Deck. This is how a classic indie game should be revived for modern platforms, and I hope it gets a physical release on Switch.
Ys Memoire: The Oath in Felghana
I included Ys Memoire: The Oath in Felghana as a bonus because it hasn’t been released in the West yet, and I played through it in Japanese. Ys: The Oath in Felghana is one of my favorite games of all time, and I’ve played it multiple times on PC and PS Vita over the years. I wasn’t going to wait for an English release for this one, so I grabbed it from the eShop to play. It is the definitive version of the game with rock solid performance, great visuals, and new features. I hope it comes to the West in 2024.
Each year more and more people kept convincing themselves that a Switch Pro would be releasing, and it is good to see many competent developers and publishers release quality ports, remakes, and remasters on the current Switch. I’m looking forward to see what 2024 has in store for the current Switch through re-releases and more. What do you want to see in 2024 and what were your favorite releases on Switch this year?