15 upcoming Nintendo Switch games in 2023

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We could easily end up having one of the best yet lineups of Nintendo Switch games in 2023, with the six-year-old hybrid console as popular as ever and with a whole host of big releases to look forward to. From family friendly Kirby remasters and Minecraft Legends, to long-awaited sequels like Octopath Traveller 2, Pikmin 4 and (of course) The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.

We’ve curated a list of 15 big Nintendo Switch games to look forward to in 2023, so let’s dive in!

Persona 3 Portable & Persona 4 Golden

NSW, PS5, PS4, XSX|S, XBO, PC | 19th January 2023

With the popularity of Persona 5 over the last few years, it’s really a no-brainer for Sega and Atlus to bring fresh ports of Persona 3 Portable and Persona 4 Golden to current machines, and what more fitting platform for these PSP and PS Vita releases than the modern handheld phenomenon that is the Nintendo Switch?

Both games see you take on the role of a high-school student who has to delve into the mystical goings on surrounding their school and city or town. There’s many sides to these games, from the narrative drive that sees you engaging in Persona battles, to the need to stick to the day-to-day of high school life and make friends. Persona 3 has plenty of fans, but it’s Persona 4 Golden that was widely regarded as being one of the finest JRPGs ever made… up until it was somewhat superseded by Persona 5.

Fire Emblem Engage

NSW | 20th January 2023

The past decade has seen the Fire Emblem series go from strength to strength, building on the breakout popularity of Fire Emblem Awakening on 3DS, leading to a resurgence of popularity for the tactical RPG series. Fire Emblem Engage is the latest take on this formula, stepping more toward, and sure to be one of the biggest Switch games in 2023.

Mixed in with the returning ideas are new Emblem Ring summons that can see heroes like Marth and Celica from previous games be brought in to battle on your side, as you, the Divine Dragon, look to defend the world of Elios from the corrupting influence of the Fell Dragon.

Read our final Fire Emblem Engage preview here, and look for a full review this week!

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake

NSW, PS5, PS4, XSX|S, XBO, PC | 31st January 2023

The enduring popularity of SpongeBob SquarePants has led to The Cosmic Shake, a brand new game that rips SpongeBob and Patrick out of Bikini Bottom for an adventure across a multitude of Wishworlds, each one with a unique setting and set of rules to follow.

Announced back in 2021, it looks like a pleasantly wild and varied adventure, and it’s coming from a studio that’s got plenty of experience with SpongeBob SquarePants. Purple Lamp was last seen having made Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated, the remake of the PS2 era platformer that was released in 2020.

Atelier Ryza 3: Alchemist of the End & the Secret Key

NSW, PS5, PS4, PC | 24th February 2023

The Atelier Ryza saga continues, with our titular heroine happily living their lives on Kurken Island when a whole bunch of new islands suddenly appear nearby. Now she’s off on an adventure to save Kurken while also getting to the “roots of alchemy”, and getting to team up with characters old and new along the way.

Atelier Ryza 3 promises to take the world exploration even further than the last game – which was already a big step forward for the series – with the field now stitching maps together seamlessly, promising a “living” field. Add to that different keys that can be used to affect each part of the game, and there’s some intriguing new ideas for what feels like a trilogy ending game.

Octopath Traveler 2

NSW, PS5, PS4, PC | 24th February 2023

Square Enix has turned the HD-2D art style that the original Octopath Traveler to several different games now, but now they’re working on a full sequel to the game that started it all. It’s an engine and visual direction that has matured in the last five years, featuring more 3D effects alongside the stand-up pixel art characters, still slathered with lush bloom-filled lighting and a gorgeous tilt shift effect.

Octopath Traveler 2 will feature a similar form to the original, with eight short RPG stories, each following a distinct character – Throné, for example, is seeking her freedom, while Osvald is after revenge. You’ll be able to choose who you start playing with, and the order in which you tackle the tales and quests, also choosing who is in the leading party as you go. It remains an interesting narrative concept, we just hope it feels a little more cohesive than the original with its story-telling.

Kirby’s Return to Dream Land Deluxe

NSW | 24th February 2023

After Kirby’s first fully 3D adventure released last year – Kirby and the Forgotten Land was pretty darned great, by the way! – Nintendo has rummaged around in their archives and pulled out Kirby’s Return to Dream Land to receive a Nintendo Switch remaster.

This one’s a classic 2.5D side-scrolling platforming adventure for 1-4 players, with the classic Kirby copy ability meaning you can take the pink puff ball and friends through the game wielding whips, attacking with swords and floating around with a parasol. This was the game in which the Mecha Copy Ability made its debut.

Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon

NSW | 17th March 2023

Following on from Bayonetta 3, I doubt anyone expected PlatinumGames to take us back to the origins of everyone’s favourite witch. Cereza and the Lost Demon will tell the story of how she met and bonded with her very first demon, Cheshire, while exploring a treacherous Avalon Forest. There’s a new twist to the action as the left controls move Cereza and the right move Cheshire in combat, combining the two’s attacks and abilities.

Compared to the coquettish tone of the main games in the series, this prequel looks positively PG, thanks to the more water colour art style and narrated story scenes that take the form of an illustrated storybook.

Master Detective Archives: Rain Code

NSW | Spring 2023

Coming from the minds behind the twisted high school murder mysteries of Danganronpa, Master Detective Archives: Rain Code promises a very different style of adventure… even if you are still solving a few murders!

Taking place in a city where it constantly rains, all manner of Master Detectives, each with a unique power, have come to solve the mysteries that plague this city. You play as amnesiac trainee detective Yuma Kokohead, haunted by the death god Shinigami as he investigates, going from gathering evidence to battling mystery phantoms in an otherworldly realm. You can definitely see some of Danganronpa’s influence coursing through this game.

Minecraft Legends

NSW, PS5, PS4, XSX|S, XBO, PC | Spring 2023

What’s next for Minecraft? Well, alongside the main game, which remains as popular as ever, and the dungeon-crawling Minecraft Dungeons, 2023 will also see the release of Minecraft Legends. It’s sure to be another family friendly game for Xbox in 2023, especially because it will feature four player co-op.

With all the familiar blocky visuals of the Minecraft setting, Minecraft Legends will be an action strategy game, tasking you with saving the world from the invasive Nether corruption of the piglins. There’s a different perspective and scale to this take on the Minecraft setting, with a player character that’s able to roam around quickly, gathering resources, crafting and leading cute and cuddly allies into battle.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

NSW | 12th May 2023

Easily the most highly anticipated game of 2023 for Switch owners, Tears of the Kingdom is the long-awaited sequel to Breath of the Wild. Hyrule has been torn asunder, with large chunks of the Kingdom now floating high in the sky. While skydiving and gliding around on giant stone birds will naturally fit in with the new locales, there’s some funky new abilities that Link will have at his disposal, such as being able to transform into a droplet of water, using time reversal abilities, and more.

We’ve only really seen a few glimpses of what this game will offer, but needless to say, we can’t wait to play later this year.

Story of Seasons: A Wonderful Life

NSW, PS5, XSX|S, PC | Summer 2023

A remake of the 2004 GameCube game Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life, this game promises to deliver plenty of joy for fans of the slice of life farming sims. Settle down in Forgotten Valley, following your father’s farming dream, making friends with the locals and even putting down roots to start a family.

It’s more than just a straight up remake, but also contains features and improvements from A Wonderful Life Special Edition and Another Wonderful Life, adding the ability to play as a female farmer and adding more characters to romance.

Disney Illusion Island

NSW | 2023

Join Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy in this new 2D platformer for 1-4 people, and with all the striking visual panache of the Mickey Mouse Shorts animations. It looks rather lovely, evoking some of the style of the classic Rayman Legends, and is sure to be great for young families looking for some new Switch games in 2023.

Disney Speedstorm

NSW, PS5, PS4, XSX|S, XBO, PC | 2023

From platforming to battle racing, Disney Speedstorm will be a free-to-play arcade racer featuring a whole host of Disney and Pixar characters.

Coming from Gameloft and the team behind the long-running Asphalt series, there’s some interesting ideas mixed into Disney Speedstorm, such as having a ‘crew’ of characters that offer racer stat boosts.

Pikmin 4

NSW | 2023

Compared to the previous games on GameCube and Wii U, Pikmin 4 will have the best chance of any game in the series to capture the imaginations of millions of players, and with that in mind, Nintendo are working to make it more accessible and easy to understand. There will be a lower Pikmin-level perspective point and simpler controls, which will enable ‘Dandori’, which refers to the ability to more strategically plan and put Pikmin into the correct place.

As you can see, there’s a great selection of Nintendo Switch games in 2023, and a lot of them already confirmed for the next few months. Stay tuned to TheSixthAxis for all the news on these big releases and everything else that’s happening in gaming. 

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