Horace is something very special — the only vaguely negative thing we can say about it is the fact that there are so many spectacularly brilliant indie games on Switch already vying for your attention that we fear Horace may fall somewhat by the wayside. If you have any interest in superb level design, excellent storytelling, terrific art, evocative music, great characters, hilarious situations and emotional gut-punches, Horace is a no-brainer. It's moving without being manipulative, clever without being smug, and nostalgic without being a lazy rehash.
A very pleasant surprise indeed, In Other Waters is a bit of a minimalist masterpiece that you'll often want to dip into for a more contemplative experience than the majority of the Switch's library. It has found a perfect home on the handheld, the form factor of which massively works in the favour of the game's mood and atmosphere to create an exceptional and unique experience. What you're getting here is a story that you're an integral part of, and it's one of the coolest, cleverest games we've played in a long time. An absolutely first-class effort.
Ultimately Levelhead will live or die on the commitment of its community, but even without the creation aspect it would still be an enjoyable platformer. Smart design in every department - challenge, creation and curation - means that Levelhead is a surefire winner, and we only hope it catches on. After all, there's more to the 'maker' genre than just Super Mario.
What the Golf? is a sterling effort for Switch that has clearly had enormous amounts of love poured into it. Its aesthetic is a little bit indie-by-numbers but there's so much to see and do here that'll have you (and a friend) laughing out loud. It may not be the most difficult game in the world, but it's damn good fun, even if you don't like golf. Especially if you don't like golf, in fact.
Sunset Riders finally gets its due as this beloved arcade classic hits Switch with a bang. It's nothing but pure side-scrolling boss-blasting fun, the likes of which are often imitated but never quite captured. There's a reason so many people remember this game so fondly; it's got personality to spare. One of the greatest games that Hamster has deigned to release and as far as we're concerned one of the crown jewels of Arcade Archives. Can we have the spiritual sequel Mystic Warriors next, Hamster? Please?
What this all amounts to is a brilliant little tactics game, right up there with Into the Breach and XCOM – if not even better. The bite-sized structure belies a deceptively complex and meaningful game, where all your decisions ultimately mean something significant for that final desperate attack. If you enjoy stealth or tactics games – or you're simply looking for a way into either genre – then Invisible, Inc. deserves your attention.
A masterpiece to this day, Duke Nukem 3D is done proud by this Switch conversion. It looks and runs briliantly, the online options are a welcome inclusion and it's not compromised in any way from its earlier console release. It's a shame that a handful of previously-available expansion packs are missing, but given the low price of World Tour Edition, it feels churlish to complain. In the words of the Duke himself, come get some.
Along with the expected multiplayer modes (ranked and casual battles), Faeria delivers a compulsive, interesting and frankly enormously fun card battle experience. While not the easiest game to explain, it's an impressive teaching tool for itself, but never feels overwrought or tiresome in said education. Of the card games we've enjoyed on Switch, Faeria is easily the highlight of the bunch so far, and it deserves to do well. It's a full-featured package and stands out as an excellent card/board/strategy experience. If you want to play a fantasy card game on Switch, buy this one first.
Lots of care has gone into the creation of this game, and it shows with the gorgeous graphics and atmospheric soundtrack. It's a game that feels vast, and a slow burn experience for the patient gamer. It's possible that its difficulty will take some time to get used to, but it's worth persevering with this truly rewarding and excellent game. Phoenotopia: Awakening is a thoughtful, coherent game which, if you click with it, doesn't lose a step. A marvellous surprise.