What are the worst and the best Pokemon games on Nintendo Switch? We ranked the most appealing releases on the Switch consoles.
Nintendo, alongside Game Freak and The Pokemon Company, continues to dominate the industry with Pokemon. And that’s only natural considering the franchise’s massive history in the entertainment industry.
As one of the best-selling gaming franchises, Pokemon also has a comprehensive lineup of games on the Switch. But what are the best Pokemon games on Nintendo Switch? Here are the hits and misses of the pocket monsters on the Nintendo handheld.
What are the best Pokemon games on Nintendo Switch?
Since its launch in 2017, Nintendo Switch has had phenomenal titles like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Animal Crossing. That said, the following years didn’t go well for Pokemon fans.
That changed a lot though, as the handheld gaming console now has a large arsenal of Pokemon games. Here are the best and the worst of the franchise on the Switch.
You can also find the latest Pokemon news here.
10. Pokemon Quest
Start with Pokemon Quest, a free-to-play game with distinctive graphics of voxel Pokemons. Released on Android and iOS alongside the Switch, Pokemon Quest takes players to Tumblecube Island.
Their task is to create and improve a base while exploring the island. The players must also overcome the island’s challenges while expanding the Pokemon roster.
While the concept of Pokemon Quest sounds exciting, the game gets repetitive quickly. It is even safe to say that it is a glorified mobile game drenched in Pokemon sauce. That’s why you might want to steer clear of Pokemon Quest.
On the other hand, if you are looking for a casual mobile experience, you might as well give it a shot since it’s free to play.
- The gameplay gets repetitive easily
- Pokemon in voxel graphics look cute
- Automatic gameplay and the energy refill process render it boring
- At its core, it is a mobile game
9. Pokemon Cafe ReMix
Pokemon Cafe ReMix is a puzzle game that allows you to create and improve a cafe. Your task is to prepare meals and unlock new dishes to make your cafe shine.
In the process, you also need to recruit Pokemons and utilize their gimmicks. As you complete more orders and objectives, you can also expand your Pokemon staff with iconic monsters from the series.
Puzzle fans might fancy this Pokemon puzzle game. But in its essence, Pokemon Cafe ReMix feels like another game that will lose its luster fast. Here’s why:
- Puzzles are too easy
- Wonky controls
- The gameplay loop becomes dull pretty fast
8. Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX
Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX is a remake of Blue and Red Rescue Team. The remake expands upon the 2005 title with a couple of exciting features. The most prominent among these features is the introduction of the Mega Evolution.
As the veterans of the series know, Mega Evolution is one of the most significant concepts in the entire franchise. That’s why it is always good for a Pokemon spin-off or a remake to introduce such features.
That being said, what Rescue Team DX brings to the table is nothing more than this feature alongside a unique art style. While it comes with overhauled gameplay, Rescue Team DX isn’t still one of the best Pokemon games on Nintendo Switch.
- New art style and Mega Evolutions features are appreciated
- The general improvements don’t boost the game
- The gameplay loop tends to get repetitive
7. Pokemon Unite
Imagine DOTA 2 or League of Legends under a coat of Pokemon paint. That’s what Pokemon Unite offers, or at least trying to offer on Nintendo Switch.
The Pokemon MOBA allows you to pick one of the 52 pocket monsters. Then you can dive into the battlefield to best other iconic creatures in the series.
With a Metascore of 72.5, Pokemon Unite allows players to scratch the MOBA itch with Pikachu, Charizard, Snorlax, and more. Fortunately, the game successfully immerses you in its core loop with solid gameplay mechanics.
The problem with Pokemon Unite starts with its confusing system of in-game currencies. The game quickly turns into an aggressive title, hungry for microtransactions.
Still, for those who want to try out a different genre in a familiar setting, Pokemon Unite might be a good stop.
- A refined MOBA game with Pokemon
- Good gameplay mechanics
- Intrusive microtransactions
6. Pokken Tournament DX
You might fancy the world of Pokemon but not its 20-years old monster-catching formula. That’s where Pokken Tournament DX takes the scene with its arcade-fighting mechanics.
Pokken Tournament DX offers you to chance to clash against various Pokemon and delve into solid fighting action. As you can understand from the title’s name, it draws heavy inspiration from the long-running Tekken series.
In its essence, it is a gutted-down version of a Tekken release. But it still offers a rewarding experience for those who want to dive into Pokemon duels.
- Wide character roster
- Runs wonderful on Nintendo Switch
- Campaign is a bit dull
5. Pokemon Sword and Shield
Pokemon Sword and Shield has a critic score of 80 on Metacritic. But the website’s user score on these games doesn’t spell good things.
Launched back in November 2019, Sword and Shield takes players to a new region inspired by the United Kingdom. Known as Galar, this vast region is filled with Gyms waiting for you to take on.
The games also come with exciting version-exclusive features alongside many new Pokemon. On the other hand, the players weren’t content with Pokemon Sword and Shield.
Especially the Isle of Armor expansion received negative backlash due to its unimpressive story. This was the problem of the main games as well.
- A ton of quality-of-life improvements
- One of the most accessible Pokemon games for newcomers
- New Galarian forms of Pokemon look exciting
- Expansive, and a fresh 3D world
- Z Moves and mega Pokemon removed
- Low-quality fighting backgrounds
4. Pokemon Scarlet and Violet
As some of the most recent installments, Scarlet and Violet are another set of Pokemon games on Nintendo Switch, Scarlet and Violet was highly criticized for their performance issues alongside their approach to the series.
These two mainline entries in the series tried to be more innovative. One of their innovations was introducing a large open world to the Pokemon formula.
At its core, the open-world Pokemon game sounds quite thrilling. That’s why Scarlet and Violet hit some of the right spots with an open-world design. But the games were lackluster overall regarding other elements and game systems.
This resulted in a very low user score as the fans weren’t happy with a gutted-down open-world. But still, Scarlet and Violet are some of the most notable entries on the Switch.
- A 3D world fun to explore
- İmpressive story
- Brilliant new Pokemon design
- Glitches and performance issues
- Combat gets buggy often
- Gutted-down open-world elements
- Lack of level scaling
3. Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl
Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl have a mediocre user score of 5.3 on Metacritic. These remakes aim to offer an enhanced experience of the original Diamond and Pearl games of 2006.
The duo of remakes are essentially developed to faithfully offer the Pokemon Gen 4 experience on the Switch. While they succeed in their task in some aspects, Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl can only shine thanks to their quality-of-life improvements.
When it comes to the fundamentals though, Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl felt like they needed a bit more work and polish. But despite all of their sins, these remakes are some of the best Pokemon games on Nintendo Switch for newcomers.
If you missed the original games in Nintendo DS back in 2006, you might jump into these on the Switch. Moreover, fans who want to return to the series can also give these games a chance.
- Offers a rather dull experience for veterans of the series
- Good entry point for newcomers
- Great graphics
- The gameplay is faithful to the original
2. Pokemon: Let’s Go Pikachu! and Let’s Go Eevee!
These wonderful remakes are some of the best Pokemon releases on the Switch. Released during the 20th anniversary of Pokemon Yellow, Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee will ensure you experience the classic Pokemon-catching adventure.
It boasts enhanced visuals along with easy-to-learn control schematics. These games also come with several game modes that enrich the gameplay even more.
While they don’t allow you to take on battles against wild Pokemon, this duo of games are still great for many reasons. Rest assured that they will take you to the golden days of Pokemon.
- Brilliant control schematics
- Solid quality-of-life improvements
- Great entry point for newbies
- Faithful remake of the original Pokemon Yellow
1. Pokemon Legends: Arceus
Pokemon Legends: Arceus is the most recent mainline entry in the Pokemon series. It has one of the most most immense scopes in any Pokemon game. The title expands upon new concepts and formulas, while introducing a unique gameplay experience. That’s why it is also one of the best RPGs in 2023.
Legends: Arceus also takes place hundreds of years before the previous titles. In fact, it is possible to say it is the first game you should play if you want to follow the chronological order.
Moreover, it is simply the best Pokemon game on Nintendo Switch. Unlike previous titles, Legends: Arceus successfully implements new concepts into the 20-year-old gameplay mechanic.
- Open world exploration
- A ton of Pokemon
- A solid gameplay loop that keeps on giving
- Great battle and camera controls
What is the best Pokemon game on Nintendo Switch to start Pokemon?
The best Pokemon game to start the series would be Let’s Go Pikachu! or Let’s Go Eevee!. That’s because these games are highly accessible to everyone. Whether you are a long-time Pokemon fan or a newcomer to the series, you’ll adore these great games on the Switch.
Also, here are a lot of great Pokemon games on Nintendo Switch. Of course, some of them in the lineup are not as successful as others. But they are still good to satisfy that Pokemon content.