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Missing Metroid, F-Zero, and Super Smash Bros. on Nintendo Switch? Play these 12 alternatives to your favourite franchises instead

Ninten-do buy this instead!
Product: Nintendo Switch | Publisher: Nintendo | Format: Switch
Nintendo Switch Switch, thumbnail 1
The Nintendo Switch is a great system with an impressive library despite being a mere seven months old.

That being said, it is still missing a fair few key Nintendo franchises, many of which haven't even been announced for a Switch release yet.

But don't despair. We've scoured the eShop to find the closest match to your favourite franchises so you can get a similar experience while you wait for the real thing.

Here are 12 alternatives to your favourite Nintendo franchises that are either available right now, or soon will be on your Switch.

2D Metroid - Axiom Verge

Axiom Verge just launched, and admirably fills in the Switch's 2D Metroid void. It's a good thing too, because 3DS owners just got Samus Returns. Lucky gits.

But Axiom Verge is very close to the real deal, with pixelated visuals, an ominous alien environment, and lots of weapons and equipment to unlock that allows you access to unexplored areas.

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3D Metroid - Morphite

We know that Metroid Prime 4 is on the way, and will probably launch next year, but there's a third party solution launching sooner - Morphite.

Morphite combines No Man's Sky with Metroid Prime. You'll visit alien planets, fight scary creatures, and do an awful lot of scanning.

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Animal Crossing - Stardew Valley

Sure, Stardew Valley is more like Harvest Moon than Animal Crossing, but they do share a fair few similarities.

If you like making friends with villagers, decorating your house, and gathering lots of stuff both Animal Crossing and Stardew Valley have that in spades. It's the closest thing on Nintendo Switch right now.

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Mario Golf - Golf Story

Miss the halcyon days when Mario Golf was a weird combination of golf and RPG? Well, you're in luck as the recently released Golf Story provides similar thrills.

It's like a 16bit JRPG, except instead of battling you'll play golf. It's cute, fun, and reminiscent of Game Boy Color and Advance Mario Golf.

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F-Zero - Fast RMX

Why hasn't Nintendo hired the Fast RMX crew to develop an F-Zero yet? Imagine what a partnership like that can achieve?

Fast RMX is a remix of Fast Racing Neo, which originally launched on Wii U. It's the closest you can get to F-Zero these days by an absolute mile as well.

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Mario Party - The Jackbox Party Pack

So The Jackbox Party Packs are more like collections of board games, but if you're looking for a way to play a bunch of minigames quickly with friends this is the Mario Party replacement for you.

It might even scratch that WarioWare itch.

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2D Mario - Rayman Legends / Shantae / Shovel Knight

Mario Odyssey will release imminently, but there's still no word on whether or not we'll see a 2D Mario launch on Switch. I seriously hope we do!

If not, there are a fair few decent 2D platformers on the system that should scratch that itch - chief of which is the excellent Rayman Legends.

If that isn't your bag, you could give Shantae: Half-Genie Hero a try. You might know the franchise already, as it's been on Nintendo platforms since the Game Boy Color. It also has a very similar visual style to Mario.

Finally, there's the excellent Shovel Knight, which looks every bit like an NES game but plays like something made in the 21st century.

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3D Mario - Snake Pass / Poi / Yooka Laylee

Super Mario Odyssey will launch this month, so the wait for a 3D Mario is far from a long one. That said, if you can't wait at all you can grab Snake Pass now. It's not a traditional platformer, but it's got all the collecting and challenges you love.

If an open world Mario game isn't for you, then you could instead look forward to Poi or Yooka Laylee, both of which are a little more traditional in their platforming design.

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Traditional Zelda - Oceanhorn

Breath of the Wild launched alongside the Switch, and is arguably the best Zelda, if not video game, to date.

Still, that doesn't mean we can't hanker for a traditional Zelda experience, and Oceanhorn has that in spades. It's closest to Wind Waker in visual style, so fans of that one will particularly love this.

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Fire Emblem - Mario + Rabbids / Disgaea 5

Fire Emblem is one of those huge franchises that doesn't look likely to come to Switch anytime soon, and no, the hack and slash Fire Emblem Warriors doesn't count.

Those looking for the strategic turn-based fun of Fire Emblem will be well served with Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle. It shares a fair few similarities with Fire Emblem's battling.

The same can be said of Disgaea 5 as well, and it even looks a little similar. Neither will give you the wealth of relationship options though.

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Super Smash Bros. - Brawlout

Super Smash Bros. has been rumoured for Switch pretty much since launch, and given how Nintendo is really pushing multiplayer it's only a matter of time until we see it on Switch.

Still, Brawlout is coming out sooner, and it's heavily inspired by Super Smash Bros. Sure, you can't play as your favourite Nintendo characters, but you'll live. It's out in late 2017.

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Earthbound - I am Setsuna

Again, this isn't a like for like comparison as I am Setsuna is a lot closer to Final Fantasy than Earthbound. But still, it's the closest you'll get on the platform right now.

Much like in Earthbound, I am Setsuna includes turn-based battles, your characters visually follow you while wandering the world, and, well, it's a JRPG. What more do you want?

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Reviewer photo
Glen Fox 10 October 2017
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