Nintendo Switch occupies a unique position in the gaming industry. While consoles like PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X offer many core games with more mature themes, Switch excels in its variety of casual games, designed to delight casual gamers and multiplayer families.
In January 2023, Newzoo’s Game Performance Monitor revealed that family games performed amazingly in terms of monthly active users (MAU), underscoring this market position in practice. Let’s dive into the best Nintendo Switch games and see what publishers, developers and brands can learn from these trends.
In January, Fortnite was the most played game on Switch and also topped the charts on PlayStation 4 and 5.Fall Guys also topped the charts, surpassing its popularity on other platforms including PC.
The remaining top 10 games were almost exclusive to Nintendo. These titles included Pokémon Scarlet/Violet (#2), Mario Kart 8 (#5), Animal Crossing: New Horizons (#7), and Nintendo Switch Sports (#9).
Let’s analyze it a little bit. Fortnite, Fall Guys, and Rocket League are F2P (free-to-play) titles, making them more accessible.The monetization mechanisms built into these games make them want to play, and the cross-platform play options give people the ability to play with friends on other consoles. It was therefore to be expected that these titles would work well. Meanwhile, Nintendo titles come with a price tag and don’t offer great monetization.
simulation games are also popular on the Switch, with three titles in the top ten. Stardew Valley’s indie title made the top 10, which is quite significant since an indie title is often less likely to make the top 10 or top 20 on other platforms.A notable comparison of the Switch’s top 10 MAU charts with those of PlayStation, Xbox, and PC is that only two games on Nintendo’s list were shoot-em-ups or heavy mechanics. Seven of the top 10 games for other platforms contained some form of gunfighting. This underscores how Switch is promoting family-friendly titles across multiple genres.