7 major video game franchises not available on Nintendo Switch missing Call of Duty Madden Metal Gear Solid Mass Effect Yakuza The Sims Call of Duty

What’s the difference between a Nintendo Switch and a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X? You can actually buy a Switch without going to eBay or religiously following the tweets of Wario64. Nonetheless, Nintendo Switch is still selling fantastically well in its sixth year on the market, and most game publishers are eager to put all their big franchises on the console in some capacity. Yet there is still a handful of major video game franchises that are not yet available on Nintendo Switch, and their exclusions are really puzzling. Here are seven particular major game franchises not available on Switch yet, ranging from Call of Duty and Yakuza to Madden and The Sims.

A list of major game franchises not yet available on Nintendo Switch

7. Call of Duty

A new Call of Duty releases annually, and except in years where something like a new Grand Theft Auto releases, COD is consistently the bestselling game of the year, whether you like it or not. And since it’s well established that publisher Activision wants to bleed the money dry from both consumers and its own employees, one might think it would want to send Call of Duty to Switch to make even more money. But it hasn’t to date.

However, if you think about it a little more, there does seem to be a good reason for it. The simple fact is that people who want to play first-person shooters competitively aren’t likely to do it on Switch, often even when cross-play is an option. PlayStation, Xbox, and of course PC are just more attractive options with established player bases already, and the odds of Switch (with or without its family-friendly image) ever catching up to the competition just isn’t likely. It would make sense for Activision to focus on platforms that already have that player base. The same goes for EA with Battlefield (and maybe even Star Wars Battlefront II, as painful as that is to say).

However, compared to with Call of Duty, there is much less reason why the rest of the game franchises on this list aren’t yet available on Nintendo Switch.

7 major video game franchises not available on Nintendo Switch missing Call of Duty Madden Metal Gear Solid Mass Effect Yakuza The Sims Call of Duty

6. Metal Gear Solid

There are rumors that Virtuos is working on a remake of Metal Gear Solid 3 for Konami, but otherwise, the franchise has gone dormant since the failure of Hideo Kojima-less spinoff Metal Gear Survive. However, old Metal Gear and Solid games have been finally hitting PC, and fans are always hoping for a new collection that puts together the whole franchise. Naturally, Switch players would like to see all of Metal Gear Solid on Switch as well. Switch has already become a bastion of remasters of old games; Konami might as well add some of its most celebrated games to that lineup. But as it stands, Metal Gear is currently among the major game franchises not available on Switch at all.

5. Red Dead Redemption

Okay, getting Red Dead Redemption 2 running on Switch might be a big ask — but Red Dead Revolver and the original Red Dead Redemption are options, surely? Take-Two Interactive demonstrated recently that it is actually interested in bringing major Rockstar Games titles to Switch with the (admittedly jank-tastic) release of Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition. Granted, we would obviously want Red Dead Switch ports to arrive at a higher level of quality than GTA did, but it’s frankly just weird that more Rockstar titles aren’t already available on Switch in the first place. After all, Switch feels like the only platform on Earth that doesn’t have Grand Theft Auto V. So, basically, we just want more of anything from Rockstar on Switch.

4. Madden

There’s no need to discuss this one much, since most people already understand the behemoth that Madden is here in the United States. People love or at least tolerate EA’s Madden because it is the one way to get their official NFL fix as a video game, and there are so many casual gamers (think businessmen who travel a lot) who would buy it on Switch just so they can play it on the go. It doesn’t even matter if the game is a huge technical downgrade (as seen painfully with FIFA); people will buy it. Of all the major casual video game franchises, Madden is one of the strangest to not be available on Nintendo Switch yet.

3. Mass Effect

We’ve already discussed the absence of EA’s Mass Effect Legendary Edition on Switch in our article about major RPGs missing from Switch, so there’s no need to repeat ourselves. The bottom line is that developer BioWare has not dismissed the possibility of bringing the acclaimed sci-fi role-playing trilogy to Switch, so it really ought to get going on that.

7 major video game franchises not available on Nintendo Switch missing Call of Duty Madden Metal Gear Solid Mass Effect Yakuza The Sims Call of Duty

2. Yakuza

There is no franchise quite like Sega’s Yakuza. With games set across several decades, it shows how the same fictionalized areas of Japan change and evolve over time, with complex characters getting into a variety of outlandish situations. The games’ overall authenticity allegedly comes vouched by the actual yakuza, yet the games also have a spectacular and absurd sense of humor, making even the sidequests into compelling, memorable affairs. Recent remakes and port collections have made Yakuza easier than ever to access, so it’s time to bring as many of those games as possible to Switch.

Originally a series of brawlers with a lot of RPG elements baked in, the franchise transformed into a full-blown turn-based RPG with its most recent entry, Yakuza: Like a Dragon, which features a new protagonist. Meanwhile, spin-off series Judgment is continuing the brawler gameplay with its own new protagonist. That is to say — Yakuza offers a tremendous amount of variety across the franchise, and Sega could really enrich the Nintendo Switch library by porting some or all of them.

1. The Sims

Aside from arguably Minecraft and whatever the heck Roblox is, The Sims is basically the ultimate casual video game franchise. It’s a game about being human, which is something we can all relate to. And it is absolutely mind-boggling that The Sims is not available on Nintendo Switch, the ultimate casual gaming console. Publisher EA has the ability to put together peanut butter and jelly, but for some reason, EA refuses to share its jar.

EA CEO Andrew Wilson claimed in 2019 that data suggested gamers would rather just play its franchises on other platforms. EA has since changed its tune somewhat, and Lost in Random is pretty great. But no matter how you slice it, the absence of The Sims is intolerable. Of all the major game franchises missing on Nintendo Switch, this is the most baffling.

7 major video game franchises not available on Nintendo Switch missing Call of Duty Madden Metal Gear Solid Mass Effect Yakuza The Sims Call of Duty

There are of course other notable game franchises missing on Switch, as well as franchises that are severely underrepresented like Fallout. But these are the ones we found particularly noteworthy. What other franchises do you really want to see arrive on Switch?

John Friscia
Head Copy Editor for Enthusiast Gaming, Managing Editor at The Escapist. I'm a writer who loves Super Nintendo and Japanese role-playing games to an impractical degree. I really miss living in South Korea. And I'm developing the game Boss Saga!

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