With its HD Rumble, Joy-Con controls, and focus on couch co-op or competition, the Nintendo Switch is perfect for sports games. And though it didn't boast many at launch, slowly but surely, the system has acquired some excellent sports titles from major franchises and indie developers, making some of the best Nintendo Switch games you can buy right now. Whether you're looking for something silly or realistic, these are the best Switch sports games.
★ Featured Favorite
Mario Tennis Aces brings the Mario Tennis series back with an impressive serve after the lackluster Wii U entry. A laidback single-player mode will get you into the game and accustomed to its controls, but the meat of Mario Tennis Aces is in its online multiplayer.
FIFA 18 helped pioneer major, realistic sports gaming in its return to Nintendo consoles, proving the Switch could handle the detailed graphics and complex matches. The latest version of FIFA for 2021 includes the latest kits, clubs, and squads from some of the world's top leagues. There is also an enormous roster of popular players making appearances across numerous teams, and of course, Ultimate Team mode.
Hole in one
Golf Story swung seemingly out of nowhere to find a home among the other indie successes on Switch. Especially given that the system so far lacks a strong Mario Golf title, Golf Story fills that gap and more with its decent-sized story and meaty replayability. Just be warned: this one has a classic 2D 8-bit art style, which might not be for you. This little gem offers sports and a dramatic story for those wanting a little more than just hitting a ball.
NBA 2K21 is the best basketball game you're going to find. You can play MyGM mode, MyLeague, and MyCareer, where you create your own player and follow them as they build their skills, sign with teams, and (hopefully) win a lot of basketball games. The Neighborhoods mode offers a somewhat open world where players can meet others playing simultaneously and play pick-up games.
This boxing game isn't competitive in nature, but it does use the Nintendo Switch's motion controls for one massive benefit. That benefit is to get you moving, as Fitness Boxing 2 is all about giving you a fun cardio workout. The best thing about Fitness Boxing 2 is that you don't need other controller peripherals, just the Joy-Cons that came with your Switch. And if you played Fitness Boxing before, your profile will transfer to Fitness Boxing 2! Easy peasy! Now get movin'!
Be the coach
Less keen on playing sports and more interested in management? Football Manager made its way to Switch with Football Manager Touch 2018, and despite worries that it would be far too scaled down to be enjoyable, it's actually a solid entry in the series. The 2021 iteration is similar to the versions before it. This club simulator includes over 117 leagues from 52 nations, or you can create one of your own for any league in the game, then play either against AI or online with friends and strangers.
Go for the gold
Mario and Sonic characters come together in this crossover Olympic game extravaganza! Beloved fan favorites from both franchises find themselves caught up in a scheme by Bowser and Dr. Robotnik, and end up in a retro Olympic-themed video game from 1984, where the Olympics were held in Japan. Go through a story mode or play Olympic sports mini-games with friends. The game switches between 2D pixel art to modern 3D graphics. Each character has its own strengths and weaknesses, so choose wisely!
Burn those calories
Ring Fit Adventure is this generation's Wii Fit. With the Ring-Con and Leg Strap accessories, you can get a full-on workout with your Nintendo Switch! Ring Fit Adventure has a campaign mode with a story to go through, and you must battle enemies by doing various exercises, along with running in place to move around. If the Adventure mode isn't your thing, the game has custom workouts and sets of exercises that you can do too. Either way, you'll definitely work up a sweat with this game. No gym membership is required!
Start your engines
Customize your car and then hit the field in this fast-paced game that combines racing and soccer. Compete in competitive matches online and take advantage of special modes and in-game events available for a limited time that give you the chance to unlock special items. Progression is made across platforms, whether through tournaments and completing challenges to show off your skills.
Hit the green
The Mushroom Kingdom has made it to the course! Choose your favorite character and either enjoy a nice, calm, traditional game of golf or add chaos with battle golf. Keep track of your stats and become a golf pro.
These classic skateboarding titles have been totally rebuilt and improved for play on the Switch. Players get all the same original game modes, create features, tricks, and soundtracks with upgrades. Get back to the pipe, and let's roll.
Get your sport fix on Switch
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While we may not all be athletic, sports is something that everyone can enjoy, whether it's actually actively participating or spectating. But sports-themed video games let us play whenever we want and have fun doing it. The Switch didn't start with many sports titles in its library, but it's steadily growing over time.
We like all of these sports games, but which one should you get? Naturally, it depends on which sports you like, but if you want something that many different people can pick up and learn quickly, Mario Tennis Aces is it. It's not only tremendously fun, but also lets up to four people play at a time. Be sure to grab it with the tennis racket accessory for your Nintendo Switch if you really want to turn it up a notch.
And if you want to actually burn some calories while you're playing video games, then make sure to get Ring Fit Adventure. It has a ton of different exercises to do, and believe me, you do work up a sweat playing, so it does work and costs less than a year of a gym membership!
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Christine Romero-Chan was formerly a Senior Editor for iMore. She has been writing about technology, specifically Apple, for over a decade at a variety of websites. She is currently part of the Digital Trends team, and has been using Apple’s smartphone since the original iPhone back in 2007. While her main speciality is the iPhone, she also covers Apple Watch, iPad, and Mac when needed.
When she isn’t writing about Apple, Christine can often be found at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, as she is a passholder and obsessed with all things Disney, especially Star Wars. Christine also enjoys coffee, food, photography, mechanical keyboards, and spending as much time with her new daughter as possible.
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