There are a lot of great reasons to own the Nintendo Switch. For RPG fans, though, the portability of the console is a huge plus. Being able to take these massive and lengthy games on the go makes it the perfect console to do your grinding and min-maxing on. We put together a big list of all the upcoming RPGs that will be landing on the Switch in the near future, in case you need help deciding which one to tackle next.
Fire Emblem Three Houses (2019)
The popular turn-based SRPG series is back with its first entry on a Nintendo home console in over a decade. Fire Emblem: Three Houses introduces fans to the world of Fódlan, where the Church of Seiros rules as it seeks to “guide the lost.” As a new addition to the series, players can now also move entire units of troops to aid in battle. As always, players must strategize in each battle and build relationships with the people of Fódlan in an ever-evolving storyline. Fire Emblem: Three Houses is set to release in the spring of 2019.
Known for giving life to everyone’s favorite pocket monsters, Pokémon developer Game Freak is dropping a new Nintendo Switch exclusive in 2019. The game, aptly named Town, features a town of villagers who after years of peace must defend their home turf from invading monsters. Attack, defend, and strategically utilize your fellow villagers to combat the impending threat. These monsters are much bigger and scarier than the pocket monsters Game Freak is known for. We do not yet know whether the game has an online component or is playable as a couch-coop similar to Pokemon: Let’s Go. What we do know is that the game is set to release at some point this year. Stay tuned as new information on Town is available.
New Pokemon (2019)
Pokemon Let’s Go Eevee and Pikachu combined elements of both the traditional mainline titles with the widely popular smartphone app, Pokemon GO. The changes offered a more streamlined experience for players, cutting out wild Pokemon battles and implementing touch controls. One thing is certain: fans are divided on the new features. Now, we know a new generation of Pokemon is among us. Generation eight is right around the corner and I’m interested to see what new elements Gamefreak will bring to the Pokemon series. Only time will tell, but I can’t wait to see what the studio has up its sleeve.
Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 (2019)
Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order surprised us all when it was revealed during the game awards last December. An even bigger surprise, however, was the fact that it’s a Nintendo Switch exclusive this time around. This Marvel partnership is a pretty huge deal for Nintendo, and Ultimate Alliance 3 looks to be quite an impressive title. Seeing the likes of Spider-Man and Wolverine fight side-by-side is something special to behold. It’s not common these days due to all the weird character licenses being owned by different companies. Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 also features a new third-person camera mode, which will surely intrigue a wider audience. I’m eager to see more of this co-op action game in the near future.
Shin Megami Tensei V
The popular JRPG developer Atlus is headed back to the Megami Tensei series with Shin Megami Tensei V on the Nintendo Switch. The producer of the game has shared that Shin Megami Tensei V takes place in modern-day Tokyo and is meant to sympathize with the times and challenges in modern society. The game will combine elements of Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne and the demon-raising features of Shin Megami Tensei IV. The launch date is currently unknown but check back for updates as more information regarding this title is unveiled.
RemiLore: Lost Girl in the Lands of Lore
If you had a good time with Diablo III: Eternal Collection on the Switch but thought: “Dang, I wish this barbarian was a cute anime girl” then, pal, RemiLore is for you. The game is described as a “rogue-lite,” anime-style adventure. You hack and slash your way through a variety of monsters and environments on a quest to get home from the magical world of Ragnoah. Like any good rogue-style game, procedural levels and a huge variety of loot help keep the game fresh no matter how many runs you make. You’ve got two playable characters, and each can be kitted out with a variety of costumes and a custom set of weapons and magical abilities. If you need some back-up, you can even call in a friend thanks to the 2-player co-op feature. We haven’t seen a whole lot of RemiLore yet, but it’s shaping up to be a surprise hit for 2019.
Dragon’s Dogma is one of the most interesting games Capcom has ever made. Released back in 2012, this is an open-world action-RPG set in a dark, high-fantasy medieval world. Picture an open-world epic based on the Berserk manga series and you’ve got a pretty solid picture of Dragon’s Dogma. The combat is one of the big things that makes Dragon’s Dogma stand out from other games. As a melee class, you can cling to giant creatures and crawl around on them (Shadow of the Colossus style) to strike at their weak points. As a magic user, you can conjure an insane variety of unique and breathtaking spells that are a league above the standard fireballs and thunderbolts of other games. Dragon’s Dogma is an RPG masterpiece that’s been ported to a bunch of consoles, but in 2019 it’ll be a portable experience for the first time ever thanks to the Nintendo Switch release.
Dragon Quest Builders 2 (2019)
Dragon Quest Builders brought Minecraft-style crafting exploration into the colorful world of the iconic Dragon Quest series. Builders 2 aims to be bigger and better, adding a suite of new features and improvements. Building limits and material types have been expanded to allow for even more creativity, and you can customize the look of your character even more than you could in the first. The story is expanded even further, too, bringing new insights into the world of Dragon Quest 2. There’s even multiplayer for up to four players so you can craft and create with your pals! Dragon Quest is getting bigger and bigger in the West. Hopefully, Builders 2 continues that trend.
Lapis x Labyrinth
Lapis x Labyrinth is the kind of game that Uncle Scrooge would freaking love. It’s a side-scrolling action RPG where you combine character attacks and string together combos to rack up big points and even bigger rewards. Each of the eight playable classes has different abilities, equipment and weapons to use, and you can stack your four party members on top of each other to combine their abilities for huge results. The bright and adorable art style that everything is rendered in is classic Nippon Ichi Software style, too. If you’re a fan of Disgaea but want less of a tactics experience and more real-time action, Lapis x Labyrinth is worth checking out.
FF 7, 9 (2019)
There are a lot of classic Final Fantasy games coming to the Nintendo Switch in 2019, but these are arguably two of the most classic ones. Final Fantasy VII is the first 3D entry in the long-running franchise and one of the most influential JRPGs ever. It’s focused on iconic blonde-haired pretty boy Cloud Strife, a mercenary who teams up with a group of eco-terrorists in order to stop an evil corporation from using the life essence of the planet as an energy source. Final Fantasy IX (out now!), is a totally unrelated story taking place in the medieval world of Gaia. It centers on a bandit boy named Zidane Tribal, who kidnaps Princess Garnet and ends up embroiled in a war between nations. These are both incredible games that helped shape the world of JRPGs, and bringing them to the Switch is a great excuse for any fan to revisit them.
FF 10, 10-2 (April 2019)
Final Fantasy X presented a lot of big firsts for the constantly changing JRPG series. While previous games used flat pre-rendered backgrounds, Final Fantasy X was the first to take place in fully 3D, real-time environments. It was also the first game in the series to feature full voice-acting, which helped bring the sweeping story to life. It also introduced a new leveling system called the Sphere Grid, as well as the wonderful sport of blitzball. Final Fantasy X-2 had its own share of big firsts for the JRPG series. It was the first direct story sequel in the history of Final Fantasy, building off of the events of Final Fantasy X. It was also the first game in the series to have an all-female cast of playable characters. Both of these games got PlayStation Vita ports back in 2013, a Nintendo Switch port is guaranteed to run better and look better.
FF12 Zodiac Age (April 2019)
Nearly every 3D entry in the Final Fantasy series shook the formula up in considerable ways, and Final Fantasy XII did a huge amount of shaking up. It was the first single-player entry in the series to switch from segmented environments to a fully open game world. It also made the bombshell change of having enemy encounters occur in real-time in the environment, instead of being random encounters that whisk you away to a separate battle area. There’s also the impressive “gambit” system that let you customize the behaviors of your AI team members, and the “license” system that determined the jobs and abilities of each character. Final Fantasy XII has all of the depth and content of an MMO, but contained in a single-player RPG experience. It’s the perfect kind of game to be able to hop into anywhere you want thanks to the Nintendo Switch re-release.
Yokai Watch 4 (2019)
Yokai Watch rose and then quickly fell in popularity, but the upcoming Nintendo Switch sequel looks like it’s doing a lot of big things that might just revitalize the franchise. While the previous 3 mainline games were Pokemon-style turn-based RPGs, Yokai Watch 4 is opting for real-time action combat that looks really similar to what you’d find in the Ni No Kuni series. Hardcore fans of Yokai Watch will get a kick out of the story, too, as it aims to bring together the protagonists and worlds of three separate Yokai Watch universes together in a massive franchise crossover. It’s all rendered in gorgeous, crisp 3D that easily outdoes the graphics of any of the 3DS entries. Yokai Watch has long been seen as a game series aimed mainly at children, but Yokai Watch 4 looks like it’s doing a lot to try and become the cross-generational hit that the series really needs.
Dragon Quest XI S
Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age took the PS4 by storm in 2018. It was the first home-console release of a main Dragon Quest game since 2004, and it was packed full of love. The modern visuals and addictive RPG mechanics combined with classic Dragon Quest monsters and music was a recipe for nostalgic success. The upcoming Switch release isn’t just a port of this memorable JRPG hit, though. It aims to add full voice acting to the story, as well as brand new story content exclusive to the Nintendo Switch release. Nintendo faithful are in for a treat when Dragon Quest XI lands on the Switch in 2019.
Vampyr is definitely one of the more unexpected third-party ports coming to the Nintendo Switch in 2019. The minds behind Life Is Strange and Remember Me have crafted a dark and gloomy video game about a doctor who’s been afflicted with vampirism, and the choices you make to help him either embrace or avoid his vampiric fate. It’s equal parts narrative heavy dialogue-decisions and action-RPG combat, but both parts come together to create a truly unique experience. Every character you encounter in this gothic world has wants, needs, and unique personalities. Killing or sparing them will drastically alter the course of your playthrough. It’s a sharp departure from their work on Life Is Strange, but it’s an interesting RPG experience that will definitely be worth checking out when it hits the Switch in 2019.
You can’t take more than five steps in the video game industry without landing in a Dynasty Warriors spinoff. Fate/Extella was one such game, slapping horde-battling gameplay onto the ever-growing Fate multi-media franchise. Extella was set right after the events of Fate/Extra CCC, a spinoff game about cyber-servants battling in a virtual world. Extella Link picks up right after where the 1st game left off, and packs in a heap of new gameplay features. 10 new playable servants join the 16 from the original game, including fan favorites like Astolfo and Scáthach. There’s also a new base camp you can walk around in and explore in-between missions, where you’ll be able to chat with your servants and get to know them better. On top of all that, a new 4-versus-4 online multiplayer made makes the package even heftier. It’s always fun having a mindless Warriors-style action game on the go, so hopefully, Fate/Extella Link will be worth grabbing on the Switch when it launches in 2019.
RPG Maker MV
It may not be Super Mario Maker but it’s the next best thing, RPG Maker MV is coming to Nintendo Switch. RPG Maker MV isn’t an actual role-playing game, instead, it’s a set of tools that let you create your very own RPG. RPG Maker MV lets you create your own game without all the tedious and infuriating coding of traditional game development. With an insane amount of graphical assets, you can create a huge variety of games. From high fantasy adventures to modern high school dramas, “if you can dream it, you can make it”. The game ever lets you choose from a large selection of Japanese and English voices. And you can choose text in a number of languages: English, French, Italian, German, and Spanish.
An incredible aspect of RPG Maker MV is you’re actually able to play games made by creators with a free Switch app called RPG Maker MV Player, even without owning the RPG Maker MV software. This is the future ya’ll, and we’re a part of it.
Create your very own clown school dating simulator, or play hundreds of free games in RPG Maker MV for Nintendo Switch this March.
Caligula Effect: Overdose
Caligula Effect: Overdose is an enhanced port of the previously exclusive PlayStation Vita game. It’s an Atlus-published JRPG that features a story led by Persona series veteran Tadashi Satomi — the writer of Persona, Persona 2: Innocent Sin, and Persona 2: Eternal Punishment. Caligula Effect: Overdose is about a group of students who are trying to escape from a virtual world called Mobius. The world is run by a virtual pop-star named Myoo, along with her group of evil music producers and an army of ‘Digiheads’. In other words, it’s a zany yet enthralling story you would expect from a Persona writer.
Caligula Effect offers a turned-based battle system that is truly unique — where timing is literally everything. In these battles, you can see how your string of attacks will work out before you actually make them. You’ll need to strategically plan out your attacks with all four teammates. You can even string together critical hits by matching different fighter’s attacks at the same time.
Caligula Effect: Overdose will launch on February 15th.
Grandia 1 and 2 Remaster (2019)
Grandia is an RPG series developed by Game Arts and was initially published by ESP Software. The original Grandia released on the Sega Saturn and was later ported to the PlayStation in 1999. These two classic JRPGs have garnered a niche following over the past twenty years. So the announcement of these two beloved titles got longtime fans of the series ecstatic. Once again, the Nintendo Switch is now the best place to get all the latest and greatest JRPGs.
Grandia’s 2D sprites on a 3D overworld just never seem to age. It still looks incredible today. I’m eager to see how the game looks in HD. The game does not have a release date yet, but, a demo of Grandia II HD will be playable at PAX West 2018.
The Princess Guide
The Princess Guide tells the unique stories of four princess knights. In this JRPG you will make choices that affect how the story unfolds. During conversations and battles, you have the ability to “Praise” or “Scold” your princess. You will get different outcomes in all four campaigns based on how you treat the princesses. This feature ensures tons of replay value if you want to witness every possible ending of each campaign.
Movement is in realtime as you issue orders to your princess, then you watch them battle with enemy armies on the battlefield. Each princess has a unique set of abilities to utilize during battles. The game’s art style is very cutesy with bubbly looking characters that are bursting with charm. It also features the original in-game Japanese voices with English text.
You can “Praise” or “Scold” your princesses in quarter one of next year on Nintendo Switch.
Super Neptunia RPG
In a world where 2D games reign supreme, an organization called Bombyx Mori forces its citizens to churn out 2D games as offerings to their leader. Those who dare to use new technologies or whose games don’t meet their standards risk banishment to the soul-crushing Trial Grounds.”
If that doesn’t intrigue you I don’t know what will. First off, Super Neptunia RPG features a beautiful 2D art style that pure eye-candy. I’m getting some serious Vanillaware vibes from the animation style, which is a fantastic thing. In this turn-based RPG, you explore gorgeously painted, interactive dungeons. The game is heavily inspired by classic turn-based JRPGs and is even self-aware of that — with gaming culture jokes aplenty.
During gameplay, your party’s attack style changes based on the battle leader. You can switch between leaders in and out of battle. There are also elemental attacks to take advantage of during fights. Swapping leaders and utilizing these elemental attacks is the crux of the gameplay in Super Neptunia RPG, and I’m excited to try it out for myself.
Unfortunately, there is currently no set release date for Super Neptunia RPG.
Langrisser 1 & 2
The latest issue of Weekly Famitsu revealed that classic RPGs Langrisser I & II are headed to Nintendo Switch. Langrisser is a tactical role-playing series developed by Masaya Games in collaboration with Career Soft. The games featured beautiful top-down 16-bit gameplay and large-scale battles that let you control over thirty characters on the battlefield.
These remakes will have new character designs, a new UI, updated mechanics, and more. New information on the titles is set to be revealed on August 29th. The development studio is said to have around 50% completed, so we can probably expect a late 2019 release.
Hazelnut Bastille is a top-down Zelda-inspired action-RPG set in a beautifully created 16-bit world. With it being heavily inspired by top-down Legend of Zelda titles, you can look forward to an open world to explore, clever puzzles to solve, and the iconic sword-slashing combat that gets your nostalgic juices flowing.
The developer is hoping to bring Hazelnut Bastille to Windows, Mac, Linux, PS4, and most importantly, Nintendo Switch. The game has already surpassed its $65,000 funding goal and is currently closing in on $80,000. HB hit its second stretch goal to add more additional content to the game. However, there is still a way to go before the $110,000 Nintendo Switch stretch goal. The studio said it will potentially also bring the game to other consoles as well if support and interest stay strong.
There is currently a playable demo of the game available for download on PC. It features around 2-3 hours of content showing off an overworld, dungeon gameplay, puzzles, and boss fights! Oddly enough, this content isn’t actually in the game but instead gives players an idea of what to expect from the final product.
Monster Sanctuary is an upcoming Metroidvania RPG that features monster-taming and party-based combat. What does that mean? Well, monsters provide different abilities during gameplay like flying or breaking down walls. Then there’s the turn-based combat that focuses on implementing combos with your team. It plays and looks similar to classic Pokemon games, but it’s all done from a side-scroller perspective. The game is looking to implement a ton of different styles of games into one cohesive experience, creating something truly unique of its own.
You can try a demo of the game right now on PC. The first demo the developer released gained a lot of popularity. The studio gathered feedback from the demo and is working on improving it and even adding some new features. As a special release for the Kickstarter campaign, you can currently grab the second demo version of the game. It contains 2+ hours of content and 15+ monsters included.
Monster Sanctuary’s Kickstarter has passed the tier for a Nintendo Switch version, and I’m looking forward to playing the game. It seems like a weird mix of Metroid and Pokemon, which is something I would have never imagined happening. On top of that, it has a pretty darn gorgeous art style, so I’m all in. You can find a bunch more info on over on the Monster Sanctuary Kickstarter page.
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night
I’m almost certain you have heard of Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night by now, but just in case you haven’t, let me bring you up to speed. This is the latest project from Castlevania veteran Koji Igarashi (director of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night). As no surprise, it’s an ambitious Metroidvania game that acts as a spiritual successor to the Castlevania games Igarashi worked on.
Explore and collect new weapons, get in heated fights, and take down some seriously tough bosses. You play as Miriam, an orphan scarred by a curse that is slowly eating at her skin. In order to save yourself and, of course, all of humanity, you must fight your way through a castle filled with demonic creatures. Ritual of the Night is exploration-focused with side-scrolling platforming and RPG elements.
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is set to launch sometime next year with currently no date confirmed. The game was funded on Kickstarter with a campaign originally set for $500,000. It successfully raised more than $5.5 million from backers, making it the most funded video game crowdfunding campaign on the platform until it was surpassed by Shenmue III shortly after.
Tokyo RPG Factory has been putting out some stealth old-school RPG hits over the last couple of years. They debuted with the Chrono Trigger inspired title I Am Setsuna, and then followed it up with Lost Sphear. Both of these games were pretty traditional turn-based JRPGs, but their upcoming release breaks that mold a bit. Oninaki is a real-time action RPG with a beautiful, almost painterly art style.
It tells the story of Kagachi, a so-called Watcher with the power to move between the Living World and the Beyond, where the dead roam. As a Watcher, Kagachi must seek out these wandering souls, known as the Lost, in order sever their ties with the world and send them to the next.
While previous Tokyo RPG Factory games had pretty ordinary art styles, the production values in Oninaki seem to be tuned to 11. Characters are rendered in sharp, vivid colors, and the overall art style is a lot more distinct than any of their previous works.
Oninaki is slated to hit the Nintendo Switch this summer, so we’ll be learning more about how the game plays soon enough.
I’m a writer, voice actor, and 3D artist living la vida loca in New York City.
I’m into a pretty wide variety of games, and shows, and films, and music, and comics and anime. Anime and video games are my biggest vice, though, so feel free to talk to me about those.
Bury me with my money.