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Best Nintendo Switch games for families

Family games for Nintendo Switch

Family game night is an excellent way for the whole family to connect and do something that most kids, teens and even adults enjoy. Nintendo is known for creating content for the sake of having fun, rather than intense competition or violence, so the Nintendo Switch makes an excellent pick for any family. There are thousands of Nintendo Switch games, but some truly stand out. After reviewing our top picks, you’ll be equipped to choose the game that’s right for your family.

What to know before you buy a Nintendo Switch

Are all Switch games for families?

The Nintendo Switch has titles rated T for teen and even M for mature, but the console is known for its vast selection of family-friendly games. One thing that sets Nintendo apart from brands like XBOX and PlayStation is their focus on couch co-op and party games like Super Mario Party.

What are the best accessories for Nintendo Switch games?

Docking station: The Nintendo Switch comes with its own docking station, but the design obscures the screen when docked. If you want to play games directly on the Switch while charging, you’ll need a dock like the Ponkor Docking Station that doesn’t hide the screen.

Nintendo Switch Game Case: If you want to easily take your switch and all of your games with you on the go, getting a case is your best bet. Cases like the one from HEY STOP can hold your Switch, along with several games and extra controllers. 

Steering Wheel: If you plan on playing Mario Kart, or another racing game, the steering-wheel-shaped joy-con accessories are a great way to feel more immersed in the game.

Accessory Bundle: If you want all of the accessories you can get, opting for a bundle is the easiest way to get set up. The Orzly Geek Pack comes with a carrying case, screen protector, two joy-con grips, a play stand, a joy-con charger, two steering wheel accessories, a stylus and more.

Best Nintendo Switch games for a family

Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury

With not one but two games included, this is an excellent value for the money. With tons of fun powerups, including Cat Mario, you’ve likely never experienced a Mario game quite like Super Mario 3D World. In Bowser’s Fury, Bowser has grown to an enormous size. It’s up to Mario and Bowser Jr. to bring him back to his standard size before he destroys the island.

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New Pokémon Snap

Whether you’re a new fan or a longtime pokemon-lover who played the original game from the ‘90s, New Pokemon Snap is hours of fun. In this game, you work with Professor Mirror to study Pokemon in their natural habitat and collect photos. New Pokemon Snap has the fun addition of filters, frames and stickers that you can use to edit your photos as well.

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Animal Crossing: New Horizons

This laid-back game allows you to design an island full of unique island residents. You can build furniture, grow gardens, catch bugs, go fishing and several other relaxing activities. Animal Crossing deploys consistent updates that don’t cost you a dime, adding special holidays and events that align with the seasons.

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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

This game is an all-out blast with a massive roster of Nintendo characters that you’re sure to recognize. Battle against Samus, Mario, Kirby, Link and countless others in a fight to see who can knock the other character off the screen. There have been several DLC characters released since the game first came out as well. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is known for its smooth controls, stunning visuals and great online play.

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Luigi's Mansion 3

Luigi may not be the bravest Nintendo character, but that doesn’t stop him from facing off against ghosts in Luigi’s Mansion 3. Thanks to his impressive ghost-catching tools and abilities, you’ll have no trouble defeating the ghosts that occupy the mansion. Luigi’s newest ability is a gooey green doppelganger called “Gooigi” that allows you to walk on dangerous surfaces and slip under cracks.

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The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

This game became an instant classic and is still considered one of the best games on the Nintendo Switch platform. Breath of the Wild manages to stay true to the Zelda series without feeling stale. The open-world gameplay and breath-taking graphics make it easy to spend hours at a time playing.

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Chances are pretty good your kids already play Minecraft, but it doesn’t have to be a solo game. The console versions of Minecraft allow for split-screen play for up to four players. If you’re unfamiliar with the game, Minecraft allows you to traverse an open world environment and collect crafting materials that you use to build countless handy things. Build, destroy and craft with your family in this cube-based world for tons of creative fun.

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Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Mario Kart brings together all of your favorite characters from the Nintendo universe for a fast-paced competitive race through tons of unique environments. The Mario Kart 8 Deluxe version has improved graphics, new characters and a feature called “smart steering” that is great for younger players.

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Just Dance 2021

Just Dance is an excellent addition to any family game night, and the 2021 edition has over 600 songs. Just Dance 2021 allows you to create custom playlists, track moves with the companion smartphone app and more.

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New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe

Up to four players can join in on the fun in this exciting addition to the Mario series. Each player only needs a single joy-con, making it easy to start a four-player game. Play as Mario, Luigi, Toadette and Nabbit in a side-scrolling adventure reminiscent of the older Mario games, but with a few added twists.

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Cody Stewart is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

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