For the past 3 decades, the Pokemon franchise has captured the hearts of the world. But have you managed to capture the best Pokémon games on Switch for your collection?
While not every Pokémon game on Nintendo Switch will take your fancy, we have no doubt that the dozen or so listed here will bring days upon days worth of entertainment. To help you choose which are the best titles to download on your device, we invite you to continue reading below to discover the 12 most recommended Pokémon games on Switch this year.
From Kanto to Sinnoh, Galar to Hoenn, the Pokémon realm is vast and full of Pokémon both new and old to capture. Now, without further ado, here are all the Pokémon games on Switch that you must buy. –
Pokémon Scarlet & Violet
Release Date: 18th November 2022
Released 18th November 2022, Gen 9 once again has two different versions of the same adventure coming to Switch with Pokémon Scarlet & Pokémon Violet. But players should not expect just your run of the mill Pokémon adventure. Oh, no. Both Pokémon Scarlet & Violet are set to be the franchises’ first purely open-world adventure that will become an absolute game-changer.
Choosing between Sprigatito, the Grass Cat Pokémon, Fuecoco, the Fire Croc Pokémon, or Quaxly, the Duckling Pokémon to be your first partner Pokémon, players will once more set off on your journey through the new region and uncover what lies beneath the tall grass.
Right now, that’s all we can say about Pokémin Scarlet and Violet. However, we have no doubt that these two will be superb additions to the franchise.
As the most recent Pokémon release, Pokémon Legends: Arceus presents as a semi-open world Pokémon adventure that reworks many mechanics which have been staples of the franchise since Pokémon Red & Green launched on Game Boy in 1996. While players will be disappointed to learn that Pokémon Arceus is not the full-blown open-world adventure rumoured, the game is phenomenal nonetheless.
Players commence in Jubilife village which is a hub to prepare for excursions and enter other areas of the game through the Hisui region. As a hub of sorts, Jubilife is your typical Pokémon town. After survey work has been finished, players will need to return once more to prepare for their next task.
Stealth your way through the long grass to survey, catch, and research wild Pokémon in a long-gone era of Sinnoh to complete the region’s first Pokédex. It’s a blast from the past in a modern era and we absolutely love it. Pokémon Legends: Arceus feels like the result of the developers learning lessons for 25 years, refining the formula, and finally taking the franchise in a new, incredibly exciting direction.
Got a passion for Pokémon and taking impressive photos?
As shown through the New Pokémon Snap Trailer, this title is set to become one of the most popular Pokémon spinoff games ever. As the name eludes, Pokémon Snap sets players down in the Lental region to research Pokémon by photographing them. Using an on-rails hovercraft, this game is very much like the story experiences at theme parks.
While the gameplay might sound simple and boring, you might be surprised to learn that it is actually quite difficult to take clear, close-up pictures of Pokémon in their natural habitat! If you, as Todd Snap, are lucky enough to take some exclusive photos, you will have to take your Photodex to Professor Oak to get your rating.
For anybody who leans on the side of perfectionism, there is plenty of replay value here. However, for anybody who gets bored easily, you will be pleased to know that since the initial release in April 2021, the developers have managed to squeeze in new features to improve the gaming experience for everyone. Today, there is now an option to retouch photos before submission, new locations, additional camera options, and a new in-game phenomenon that you certainly shouldn’t miss!
As much as Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl would not make the cut as some of the best Pokémon games on Nintendo Switch, they are absolutely brilliant titles nonetheless. Released in celebration of the 25th anniversary of Pokémon, both are remakes of the original Pokémon Diamond and Pokémon Pearl released back in 2006. And, once more, the difference between the two is mainly that each game features a handful of monsters that can’t be found in the other version, including the legendary Pokemon at the heart of the story: Dialga and Palkia.
Aside from the clearly overhauled graphics, this nostalgic, multiplayer game stayed true to the storyline of the original version while adding a few more features and cut scenes with some returning characters. The main goal of the players here is to progress through the levels and interact with other Trainers (to challenge to team up) worldwide.
Ready for a classic PVP battle? Push your lanes and catch ’em all with the new Pokémon Unite in this 5 v 5 battle to the death. Initially released in July 2021, this fast-action combat-based game has turned many regular gamers into Pokémon fanatics. It is Pokémon’s first strategic team battle game and is guaranteed to deliver hours upon hours of fun.
The gameplay will remind you of how popular MOBA games work with their complex roster of characters, signature abilities and powerful attack combinations. During battles, each player takes control of one Pokémon; working with the whole team to defeat other players to earn Aeos energy and capture new Pokémons. While the game is free to play, you can also shell out a few bucks to obtain limited edition characters to become “the very best”.
For decades, players have yearned for a fast-paced Pokémon battle game and Pokémon Unite certainly does not disappoint. Think DOTA but with Pokémon and you’ll have a good idea of what this game is all about. –
Pokémon Café Mix
Release Date: 23rd June 2020
Ready to serve those hungry customers?
It is interesting to see the diverse range of gaming genres that Genius Sonority can release. One of their most gorgeously designed puzzle games to date is the Pokémon Café Mix, released in June 2020. You will instantly notice from the game its aesthetically pleasing graphics that will excite both kids and young adults.
Tired of catching Pokémon? Based on the title itself, players will run their own Café in this game with the help of their favourite pocket monsters. The horde of customers needing a coffee fix will massively increase throughout the levels, which is why you must also save up and recruit as many Pokémon you can.
Every time you successfully complete a puzzle, you will be prompted to upgrade your café to attract more Pokémon customers. Aside from those mechanics, there’s not much to know about the storyline, which means that this is a perfect game to pass the time.
You just cannot refuse that tempting $0 price tag, right? –
Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX
Release Date: 6th March 2020
Ever wondered what it feels like to live as an actual Pokémon?
Well, you will be able to do all that and more in the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX. First released in March 2020, Mystery Dungeon provides an exclusive chance to bond with other Pokémon while exploring dungeons and accomplishing missions.
Once you load up the game, you will instantly be required to answer a short personality test to determine what type of Pokémon you will be in the game. As for creating your rescue team, you are free to pick and recruit any available Pokémon within the game.
Of course, if you want them to accept the mission, you must have good relationships with each Pokémon that you plan to deploy.
As much as Pokémon HOME is not a game per-se, for serious Pokémon trainers, Pokémon HOME is an essential Switch application that is entirely free. It will help you store all the Pokémon you have captured from other games (like Pokémon Sword & Shield and Let’s Go Pikachu!, Let’s Go Eevee!) to provide a master Pokédex that is up for trading with other trainers.
While technically Pokémon HOME is not a game in itself, the platform allows you to store up to 6000 Pokémon. Through trading comes a new type of Pokémon experience as your barter and negotiate with other trainers across the globe with the ultimate goal of completing your set.
The free version of the app allows you to keep 30 Pokémon, however, you will need to pay a monthly subscription fee to unlock more slots. Is it worth the expenditure? Well, that comes down to how serious you are in the Pokémon fandom. –
Pokémon Sword And Shield
Release Date: 15th November 2019
Introducing the Galar region and even more cute wildlife, Pokémon Sword & Shield sees once again a budding Pokémon trainer learn from the pros. Officially released in November 2019, this title is undoubtedly one of the most highly recommended Pokémin games on Switch for beginners in the franchise.
It has an outstanding storyline, a massive new wild area, fantastic graphics, and veers away from the regular Pokémon character roster. So much so, it brings back tons of memories of the original Pokémon games for Gameboy but with much-advanced graphics and storylines.
As you start the game, you will live the life of a beginner trainer who aims to become the world champion by dethroning Leon. To do this, you will have to seek the help of trainers, farm and raid, explore the area, capture Pokémons, and prepare for intense Dynamax battles. You must also be on the watch out for Surprise Trades and try your best to interact with other young trainers as well.
As we all know, Pokémon Go was a huge success since its release in 2016, which is why there is no surprise that the company decided to develop another set of titles intended for Switch. These games are known as Let’s Go Eevee and Let’s Go Pikachu. Both titles were introduced in November 2018, and the gameplay followed the same concept as Pokémon Yellow (1998).
Since this is the upgraded version, you will face several twists and new quests that will surely keep you on your toes for countless hours. As a trainer, you will be joined by either Eevee or Pikachu, and you are free to customize them to your heart’s desire.
One thing we noticed, though, is that the wild Pokémon can simply be caught using a Poké Ball without the need to partake in any battle. Basically, the fights are limited to gym battles and trainers. As much as this is great at limiting the tediousness of wearing Pokémon down before launching a Pokéball, we cannot help but be a little disappoint seeing as that is a fundamental part of the game.
Released in April 2018, the Pokémon Quest quickly became a fan favourite because it featured original Kanto region characters from the Pokémon Red and Blue. The game’s premise is that users will be tasked to manage a camp, explore the 12 locations on Tumblecube Island, train Pokéxels, and gain a new Pokéxel buddy. On top of that, you can create your own expedition team and let them lead you as they look for loots and ingredients.
The concept somewhat looks like it came right out of Minecraft.
The interface boasts this charming voxel-style design and lively colour palettes, which definitely makes it stand out. However, the storyline runs short, which is perfect for providing casual gamers with ample distraction. There’s not much depth, and you can quickly complete the whole main story within 24 hours. –
Pokkén Tournament DX
Release Date: 16th July 2015
As one of the original Pokémon games on Switch, Pokkén Tournament is your stand out battle game within the series.
Staying true to the concept of battles in Pokémon, Bandai Namco Studios introduced in September 2017 the revamped version of the Pokkén Tournament. This title is one of the most hyped-up fighting games in the franchise, for it is all focused on action. In fact, it is rebranded as Pokémon Tekken in other countries.
You will select your favourite Pokémon and control it during the Field and Duel Phase in the arena to play. To make sure you land critical hits, you must review the skills sheet for the 21 beastly creatures and identify the best combinations. If you’d rather wing it, then you will surely enjoy the classic random-button-mashing in this game!
With so many Pokémon games available on Nintendo Switch, playing them all may not be feasible. So, here is our roundup of the top 10 Pokémon games on Switch ranked in order of how much we enjoyed playing the titles.
#1: Pokémon Legends: Arceus
#2: Pokémon Sword
#3: New Pokémon Snap
#4: Pokémon Unite
#5: Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu!
#6: Pokken Tournament DX
#7: Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX
#8: Pokémon Brilliant Diamond
#9: Pokémon Café Mix
#10: Pokémon Quest
As much as Pokémon Shield and Pokémon Shining Pearl are also very good titles, they are almost identical to Sword and Brilliant Diamond so we have left these off our list of top 10 Pokémon games for Nintendo Switch. Much remains to be seen with the upcoming launch of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, however, we tip that the open-world nature of these two games will easily slot into our top 10 list of Pokémon switch games.
Best Pokémon Games On Switch Roundup
Pokémon has come a long way and has been a major part of life for a few generations now. Aside from the anime, which has been here since 1997, it’s great to see that Pokémon continues to attract a new generation of fans through its official game titles.
As we proved in our list of popular Pokémon games for Nintendo Switch above, there’s still a lot going on in this franchise, and you can certainly expect new games on different genres to be released soon. We cannot wait for the open-world versions to be released. This is exactly what the series has been missing for a long long time.
Which of these Pokémon Switch games is your favourite?
We would love to hear your thoughts! Let us know in the comment section below. Also, don’t forget to read our other related articles:
If you want to be the very best like no one ever was, then get to grips on all there is to know about Nintendo Switch Pokémon games by scrolling through some of our readers’ most pressing questions. Take a look at what fans just like you want to know more about Pokémon games on the Switch and Switch Lite.
Can I get old Pokémon games on Switch?
No, you cannot play old Pokémon games on Switch unless they are available within the eShop. There is not such way to port older Pokémon games to the Switch. So, for the moment, you will have to continue using Pokémon Emulators on via your original consoles.
Can you get Pokémon red on Switch?
No, you cannot play Pokémon Red on Switch. As of this writing, there is no way to play the original Pokémon Red on your Nintendo Switch. For now, you will need to use Emulators or go the old fashioned way and find your cartridges for the Gameboy.
Is Pokémon Emerald on Switch?
No, at this time, Pokémon Emerald is not available on the Nintendo Switch. There are also no signs that Nintendo will be porting the game across to the Switch either with major focus on new Switch Pokémon game releases.
Can you trade Pokémon between the Switch and 3DS?
Yes, you can trade Pokémon between the Switch and Nintendo 3Ds. To transfer Pokémon, you must be subscribed to Pokémon Home. Once you have your Pokémon Home Premium Plan you can follow the steps below to transfer Pokémon between Nintendo 3DS and Switch.
Subscribe to Pokemon Home Premium Plan
Subscribe to Pokemon Bank
Open Pokemon Home on Nintendo Switch
Select “Move” to receive a “Moving Key” code
Open Pokemon Bank app on 3DS without a cartridge inserted in 3DS
Agree to rules of transferring Pokemon to Pokemon Home
Select the Pokemon Bank boxes to move to Pokemon Home
Enter Moving Key
As soon as you have entered the Moving Key, your Pokémon boxes will be transferred onto your Pokémon Home account. Then, compatible Pokémon can be moved back and forth between Pokémon games. Please note that imported Pokémon cannot be moved back to the 3DS or to Pokémon Go.
Content Disclaimer: This handpicked shortlist of the best Switch Pokémon games in Australia has been independently written. We have not been commissioned by Nintendo, nor have we received any royalties for this article. This includes financial reimbursement, free advertising or free gifts.
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