Cuphead was an absolute masterpiece when it launched on Xbox 18 months ago and nothing has been sacrificed in its move to the Switch. It's the same visually jaw-dropping, aurally delightful, knuckle-whiteningly difficult game it was on Microsoft's console and the Switch's library is all the better for its presence. Its focus on intense boss battles won't be to everyone's tastes, but as long as you know what you're getting yourself into we can't recommend it enough.
My Time At Portia is an ambitious game that actually delivers on what it sets out to do. The crafting can be extremely overwhelming at first and the presence of some in-game timers can be a mild annoyance, but get your head round its detailed multi-step building missions and you'll end up with a game that could end up racking hundreds of hours on your Switch.
It takes a while to get going and it has its fair share of annoying quirks, but as it progresses Aragami becomes a solid stealth game with a compelling story. The addition of extra DLC chapters gives the game a welcome boost in longevity, and though its temperamental mechanics prevent it becoming an unarguable gem, its stylish look and the range of abilities you acquire by the end mean fans of stealth games (and fans of stealth only) will still have a fun time with it. Eventually.
If you originally missed out on the 3DS port, this is about as essential a retro release as you can get. Out Run has always been an infinitely playable game, and the new unlockables and online rankings only increase its longevity further. Those with the 3DS version will have to decide whether it's worth buying what's more or less the same game again in order to play it on their TV, but for everyone else with an interest in retro gaming, it's a must-have.
Too much hand-holding in games can be a problem, but Battle Princess Madelyn goes in the opposite direction with its main Story mode and is just as annoying (if not more so) as a result. Thankfully, its alternative Arcade mode really does save the day, stripping away all the convoluted and confused exploration and leaving nothing but pure, unfiltered arcade action goodness. It's just a shame its main mode – and perhaps the key reason the developer wants your £15.79 / $19.99 – is so frustratingly unhelpful and awkward to play. Still, fans of Capcom's Ghouls ‘n Ghosts will most definitely want to check this out.
V-Rally 4 is an old-school rally game at heart, for better and worse (but mainly the latter). If you stick with it you'll eventually start to master and enjoy it, but the slippery handling and unforgiving ‘no mistakes allowed' rally races make getting to that point a real slog. On top of this, its numerous performance issues are so severe that they aren't just ugly, they're downright distracting: the result being that although this is now the best rally game on Switch by default, pretty much every aspect of it leaves acres of room for improvement.
Quantity over quality has never been exhibited so perfectly as it is here. Having 150 games is undoubtedly impressive, but when the vast majority of them are barely decipherable, let alone playable, you're probably only really left with around 15 titles that will hold your attention for more than a minute.
It takes a little while for Aaero's mechanics and its combo system to click, but once they do there are fewer better rhythm games out there. Its fantastic soundtrack exudes cool from every pore, and the way it integrates with gameplay (while running beautifully smoothly while docked) makes it one of the most immersive experiences you'll find on the Switch.
We're very careful when we use this word, but Gris is a masterpiece. Its jaw-dropping visual style and heart-wrenching score combine for one of the most emotional pieces of interactive art you'll ever play. It may be too short for some, its puzzles may be on the simple side and the lack of any real challenge may not be to everyone's taste, but this is a game focused more on fragility than ability and as long as you're willing to go along for the ride, it's one that will stick with you for a very long time indeed.
Rather than building on the solid foundations its predecessor set last year, Gear.Club Unlimited 2 slams into reverse gear and delivers racing gameplay that feels significantly more laggy and sluggish than the original. With no attempt made to cut its remaining mobile roots and more performance issues than a drunken West End actor, we just can't recommend dropping a whopping £54.99 on this unoptimised, clunky effort.
Monster Boy is a tremendous accomplishment. It's a gorgeous looking game with a fantastic soundtrack and does its spiritual predecessors proud by nailing the Wonder Boy mechanics while still offering something that will appeal to modern audiences. As long as you can appreciate that it's still very much an old-school game at heart and you're going to get some 8-bit era platforming trickiness as a result, you're going to thoroughly enjoy playing through this adventure for the 12-15 hours it'll take you to beat it. It may not be Wonder Boy by name, but it's definitely wonderful by nature.
Toki is an absolutely beautiful remaster, with fantastic hand-drawn backgrounds, brilliant character animation and impressive boss designs. Aesthetics only go so far, though, and while the game itself is fun to play (if a little cheap with its deaths at times) the reality is it's an arcade game at heart. As such, its six stages won't last you too long, especially if you're the target audience – someone who remembers Toki back in the day and has continued to play platformers for the three decades that followed – and once it's done there's no real replay value.
If you're an R-Type fan you already know that R-Type Dimensions EX is worth getting. Both games are handled brilliantly, whether playing with the old-school sprite-based art style or the enhanced polygonal one. Interestingly, the gamers who may get the most out of this are those who generally struggle to do well in shoot ‘em ups: the brilliant Infinite mode makes a usually hardcore genre far more accessible, meaning everyone – regardless of skill level – can enjoy the satisfaction of beating the game, submitting their score to the online leaderboards and trying to improve next time.
If you've been craving an arcade racer for your Switch, look no further. Horizon Chase Turbo is a hugely enjoyable love letter to a gaming era when the cars were fast, the music was catchy, the action was smooth and the sky was bluer than an Eddie Murphy stand-up routine. Its enormous selection of tracks, addictive World Tour mode and excellent local multiplayer make it an absolute must-have for anyone even remotely interested in the genre.
Anyone who fondly remembers the original Saboteur! will get enough out of this Switch release to scratch a nostalgic itch. Everyone else will be frustrated by its archaic controls, the half-hearted way it offers it graphical filters and the general clunkiness that comes with a 33-year-old Spectrum game.
This is how retro compilations should be done. Although the emulation has a few little hiccups along the way and single Joy-Con multiplayer is sadly missing, the overall package here is wonderfully presented. Rather than just slapping a rudimentary menu over a bunch of old ROMs, it's clear there's been a lot of effort made here to catalogue an often forgotten period in one of Japan's most important game developers. As with all compilations there are a few misses, but the quality is generally high, and the supporting museum mode is an absolute treasure trove for retro enthusiasts.
Black Bird is a unique little shooter that only gets better as you play it more and uncover its secrets. Its vintage-style art direction is charmingly melancholy, and its strange soundtrack only adds an extra layer of quirkiness to proceedings. It's very much a score challenge game, though, meaning players expecting a wealth of things to see and do may be left feeling underwhelmed by its meagre four stages - especially when you consider the rather high price tag. This is very much a case of quality over quantity, and as long as you're up for repeat playthroughs, you're in for a wonderfully bizarre treat.
FIFA 19's numerous improvements on and off the pitch mean it overtakes its predecessor as the best football game released on a Nintendo system, and it's still a technical marvel when played in handheld mode. That said, EA's decision not to improve Ultimate Team and Career – arguably the two most popular modes – feel like a missed opportunity. It's better than last year's game, then, but not as much as it could have been. If you're new to FIFA, then add one point to the score below; this is the best soccer game on Switch by a mile. However, if you're a grizzled veteran - as pretty much anyone who is contemplating a purchase is likely to be, given the advanced age of EA's premier sports franchise, then the score stands.