Worth It or Let Down? 8 Most Hyped Nintendo Switch Game Ports, Ranked

Worth It or Let Down? 8 Most Hyped Nintendo Switch Game Ports, Ranked

Amber Stefanson | Apr 26, 2024

Whether your wishlist is filled with new releases or old favorites, you’ve likely had to spend some time waiting for the next addition to your dream portable game library to drop. Many of us Switch gamers know the feeling of waiting months or even years for devs to port over a highly-anticipated game to the Nintendo Switch.

Unfortunately, due to the technical limitations of the Nintendo Switch, many games fall short of our expectations. The Switch is prone to long load times for certain games, but a slow port is just the tip of the iceberg: glitching, crashing, and poorly mapped controls are a few of the qualities of Switch ports that make them absolutely unplayable.

Trying to decide whether to buy that Switch port you’ve had your eye on? Don’t waste your money on a low-quality Nintendo Switch port. To help you decide which game to add to your library next, I've collected some of the most highly anticipated ports and ranked them

How I'll be ranking them

Some of these games are old gems ported over to or emulated on the Switch, while others are recent releases that needed a little extra time to roll out to the Switch. I’ll be rating each one based on how two categories: graphics and gameplay. 

For graphics, we’ll be looking at whether older games were remastered or left blocky. For newer games, we'll be looking at whether the textures were optimized well for the Switch or completely wiped out. 

For gameplay, we’ll be looking at how well the game runs — does it stutter, lag, crash, or load for too long? Are the controls intuitive? 

I rated all the games on these qualities and scored them out of 5. These are the results. Without futher ado, here are the most highly anticipated games to be ported to the Nintendo Switch, ranked from best to worst.

5/5 : Persona 4 Golden


Image Credit: Atlus

Beloved JRPG Persona 4: Golden came to the Nintendo Switch last year, reviving an old fan favorite for the current generation of console. Since its release, the Switch port has quickly become to go-to way to play this game.

The Persona 4 Switch port not only runs perfectly — it also looks better than the original! Originally released as Persona 4 for PlayStation 2 in 2008, and then remastered as Persona 4: Golden for PS Vita in 2012, the original game came with a native resolution of 960 x 544 pixels

On the Switch, however, it has been remastered and upscaled into 1280 x 720 pixels

Regarding gameplay, Persona 4: Golden is a smooth, effortless transfer of this older game that feels native to the Nintendo Switch. No doubt, this is because the Golden edition that was ported to Switch was already optimized for handheld gaming from its previous release for the handheld PS Vita

In fact, many gamers have reported that it feels more natural to play Persona 4: Golden handheld on Nintendo Switch than on other modern consoles, such as Xbox Series X and PS5. Others report that the UI looks better in handheld mode than when it's enlarged on a TV screen.

 For these reasons, the Nintendo Switch is the absolute best modern console you can use to play Persona 4: Golden in 2024. Highly recommend.


5/5 - Runs pefectly


5/5 - Remastered graphics give it a new lease on life

Overall Quality

5/5 - So natural that it doesn't feel like a port

4.75/5 : Cuphead


Image Credit: THQ

Some thought it impossible for Microsoft-exclusive Cuphead to ever grace their Nintendo Switch libraries, so you can imagine the excitement when it came to Nintendo only two years after its initial release

Cuphead is well known for its watercolor backgrounds and hand-drawn illustrations that have been digitally altered to look like an old 1930s cartoon. This style translates very well to the Nintendo Switch.

It looks just as crisp on the Switch's 720p display as it does on anything else. Developers Studio MDHR ported Cuphead to the Nintendo Switch in-house with the same care as they developed the game for Microsoft, and it shows. None of its old-timey charm was lost in the conversion process, save that load times are slightly longer.


4.5/5 - Seamless gameplay; slower loading times


5/5 - Strong artistic style that looks beautiful in 720p

Overall Quality

4.75/5 - Perfect port by dedicated in-house devs

4.5/5: Sphinx and the Cursed Mummy


Image Credit: SEGA

Ported over from Gamecube, Sphinx and the Cursed Mummy came to the Switch in 2019. If you're looking for a nostalgia trip, this refresh of the original 2003 game is solid and definitely worth picking up.

Sphinx and the Cursed Mummy has been updated with fresh HD graphics. While there's a huge improvement to the textures in the Switch remaster, there aren't many updates to the models, so you'll find some of the characters and objects are a little low-poly.


The Switch remaster is a huge improvement from the original
(Image Credit: Group M Pro)

To see how they modernized the graphics, check out this comprehensive review by Group M Pro on YouTube.

As far as gameplay goes, there aren't any improvements, but the game has translated very nicely to the Nintendo Switch. Load times are slightly longer, but that's to be expected with the new textures. Overall, this is a solid port that brings a beloved older game to a playable level 20 years later.


4.5/5 - The game runs smoothly, but load times are slightly longer


4.5/5 - Remastered for Switch, but low poly models date the game

Overall Quality

4.5/5 - A great port that revives an old classic

4/5: Firewatch


Image Credit: Campo Santo

Firewatch is one of the most beloved indie games available on the Switch. However, despite being one of the most highly recommended games to play on the Swtich, the port itself has mixed reviews, especially from those who have played it on other consoles.

The main cause for criticism: the frame rate is too low. Reduced to help the game run on Nintendo Switch, the lower frame rate helps gameplay run smoother, but on the flip-side, the game tends to stutter and jitter when players move the view too quickly. 

While this is annoying, I won't dock too many points from gameplay, since it doesn't affect one's ability to play the game too much. Firewatch is plot-focused and not very demanding of one's skills as a gamer. Still, some players find the dropped frames to be too distracting or even nauseating. If you find this concerning, you might prefer to play Firewatch on PC or PS5.

However, you would be missing out on a gameplay feature that isn't available on any other console. On the Switch version of the game, there’s an exclusive N64 mini game. So, any completionist gamers out there would be remissed to play through Firewatch on any other console.


4/5 - Great gameplay with a sligtly choppy framerate
Bonus points for the Switch-exclusive minigame!


4/5 - Beautiful art syle, but graphics take a small hit compared to PC version

Overall Quality

4/5 - A good quality port. Choose the Switch version over other options for extra content!

3/5: Hogwarts Legacy


Image Credit: Warner Bros. Games

Avalanche Software took nine months to port Hogwarts Legacy to the Switch, and the wait was well worth it. Gameplay transfers beautifully to the Nintendo Switch.

Naturally, the game runs in lower resolution with slightly longer loading times. The game is well optimized, so loading times are not bad at all for a Switch port considering how large the game is. 

However, some find the low-poly hair textures and overall worse graphics quality on the Nintendo Switch to be reason enough not to purchase Hogwarts on the Nintendo Switch. Check out this graphics comparison video by Games Version Comparison to decide for yourself if the graphics are a dealbreaker. 


Hair and skin textures take a significant dip in quality
Image Credit: Games Version Comparison

But if you don’t have a gaming computer or next-gen gaming console, the Nintendo Switch version of this game is totally serviceable and well worth the purchase.


4/5 - Load times are slightly longer, but the game runs very smoothly


2/5 - Graphics are much worse than in the PC and PS5 versions

Overall Quality

3/5 - Decent, but not the best console choice for this game if you have another option

2.75/5: GoldenEye 007


Image Credit: Nintendo

Everyone's favorite N64 James Bond game dropped on the Switch last year. You can now play the 1997 version of GoldenEye 007 in the N64 emulator found in the Nintendo Switch Online expansion pack. 

Unfortunately, the port is pretty much unplayable. It’s not that the game port is necessarily bad, but the controls are horribly unintuitive. Save for its slightly-improved graphics, little about the game was changed to optimize it for the Nintendo Switch. The controls are mapped with the same pattern as the old N64 controller. 

For instance, the N64 controller didn't have a trigger button, so on a Switch controller, the shooting button isn't on the right trigger, where you would expect it to be. This makes it extremely difficult to play on a modern controller. But that doesn’t mean that you should sleep on this N64 classic.

You can customize the controls to a more intuitive layout for a better experience. You can also play GoldenEye 007 with a NexiGo Gripcon, since they have mappable buttons that you can use to move controls to a more convenient location

With these small adjustments, GoldenEye 007 becomes totally playable on Nintendo Switch. Prepare yourself for the nostalgia trip!


2/5 - Horrible default controls, but there's an easy way to fix them


3.5/5 - Looks slightly better than the original, but the graphics are extremely dated


2.75/5 - Not great out of the box, but with a few tweaks it's playable

2.5/5: Outer Wilds


Image Credit: Annapurna Interactive

After four years, the Outer Wilds Switch port was finally released in December 2023, and fans are relieved to learn that the game runs very smoothly with intuitive controls. This space exploration game relies on weird physics, so it's important for the console to be as smooth and responsive as possible.

However, its impressive performance came at a cost. The poor texture quality makes the world look as if it’s perpetually buffering, with little-to-no detail on any of the models. No doubt, the textures were the first thing to go while optimizing this beloved sci-fi game for the Nintendo Switch.

Many find the graphics impossible to look past. However, if you can get past the low graphics quality, it does play nicely on the Switch. 


4/5 - Load times are slightly longer, but the game runs smoothly


1/5 - Distractingly bad; many models are lacking textures

Overall Quality

2.5/5 - Great game done dirty by a bad port

2/5: Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night


Image Credit: 505 Games

This highly-anticipated Metroidvania game was funded on Kickstarter and surpassed all of their stretch goals. The Switch version, originally meant to release at the same time as the PC and console versions, came out a week late — a delay that raised a few eyebrows. 

The evental release was nearly unplayable, due to its input lag, long loading time, and constant crashing. The graphics are also noticeably worse, with flatter textures, muddier backgrounds, and less character detail. However, the lower resolution is to be expected for the Switch's 720p screen. And it isn't too distracting, especially if you've only played the game on the Switch.


Nintendo Switch (left) has flatter textures than PS5 (right).
(Image Credit: Direct-Feed Games)

The team behind the game solved many of these issues over a series of small updates. However, the game is still not perfect. It's playable on the Switch, but if you have another console you can play Bloodstained on, I recommend skipping the Switch version.


1/5 - Severe performance issues make the game frustrating to play


3/5 - Noticeably worse than other versions, but not too distracting

Overall Quality

2/5 - A great game, best played on another console

Take Your Library to the Next Level

Thanks for reading! I hope this list makes it easier to make an informed purchasing decision for your game library. 

If you're looking for ways to optimize your Nintendo Switch, check out our Switch Accessories Buying Guide, which will walk you through which gaming accessories to get to enhance your gameplay. It covers everything from mappable buttons to portable HDMI docking.

As always, keep an eye on our blog and our Medium page for more gaming content.

Like what we do? Stay tuned for more.

Whether you work at home or in the office, NexiGo provides a wide range of quality and affordable technology to elevate your daily life. Our products encompass everything from webcams and portable monitors to projectors and gaming accessories.

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