If you own a Nintendo Switch, you're probably already playing Super Mario Odyssey and Zelda: Breath of the Wild. But did you know that there are a wealth of lesser-known, wallet-friendly gems waiting for you in the eShop?
Nintendo's hybrid console is already home to a vibrant selection of awesome indie titles, which run the gamut from nostalgic platformers to off-the-wall party games and often cost less than $20. If you're looking for something fresh to play on your Switch, now that you've saved Hyrule or conquered Bowser, here are 15 games that may have flown under your radar.
Credit: Asteroid Base
Need to unwind? Stardew Valley is a relaxed but engrossing role-playing game that lets you manage your own charmingly pixelated farm. You can raise all kinds of animals and crops, befriend the game's many charming characters, level up your farming and combat skills or simply hang out and catch some fish. If you're looking for a laid-back but endlessly addictive life sim in the vein of Animal Crossing or Harvest Moon, Stardew Valley is just what you need.
Described as "rhythm violence" by its creators, Thumper is a frenetic music game that you simply have to experience to fully understand. Your goal is to guide a space beetle through a set of mesmerizingly bleak courses as you tap along to a haunting industrial soundtrack — a task that starts off simple, but quickly pushes your reaction times to the limit. Thumper's punishing gameplay is incredibly satisfying to conquer, and its spooky atmosphere is uniquely engrossing for a music game.
If Hotline Miami starred the X-Men's Nightcrawler, it would look a lot like Mr. Shifty. This stylish top-down action game casts you as the ultimate teleporting badass, as you'll phase through walls, dodge enemy bullets and even slow down time while punching your way through a top-secret facility. Equal parts challenging and empowering, Mr. Shifty is a wonderful bite-size burst of adrenaline.
Credit: Team Shifty
The sequel to 2013's indie platformer smash, SteamWorld Dig 2 gives you even more vibrant worlds through which to dig, jump and fight your way. This unique 2D adventure blends Metroidvania-style exploration with tight platforming and combat, which are more dynamic than ever, thanks to new abilities such as the hookshot and jet engine. SteamWorld Dig 2 is also simply a delight to look at, and its vibrant, secret-filled worlds will keep you coming back.
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It's the golf role-playing game you didn't know you needed. Golf Story is a charming top-down adventure that lets you explore a variety of different towns and level up your tee skills as you set out on one last attempt at golf stardom. With a captivating retro art style and a healthy mix of traditional and off-the-wall golf challenges, Golf Story is a wonderfully weird hybrid that makes for one of the Switch's best indie games.
Credit: Sidebar Games
If you yearn for a classic platformer in the vein of Mega Man or Castlevania, Shovel Knight is the game for you. This lovingly crafted 8-bit adventure evokes the NES era but feels impressively modern, as you'll bounce and slash your way through masterfully designed levels using your trusty shovel. Whether you get the complete Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove package or pick up the new Specter of Torment expansion on its own, you'll be treated to some of the finest 2D platforming you can find on Nintendo's new console.
Credit: Yacht Club Games
Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime is a psychedelic co-op space shooter that feels right at home on Nintendo's multiplayer-friendly machine. You and up to three friends each control a different part of a spaceship as you explore treacherous solar systems and rescue adorable space-bunnies, meaning that constant communication and teamwork are key. It's an excellent co-op game for the couch (or anywhere you decide to take your Switch), and its soothing music and neon-colored visuals are infectiously smile-inducing.
Credit: Asteroid Base