by Craig Lloyd on
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Nintendo has a packed schedule of new games coming out this year. While we don’t know the specific release date of all of them yet, it’s a good bet you’re going to want to order them before they come out so you’ll be ready for them on launch day.
In general, pre-ordering games is a bit of a gamble because you can’t exactly return them once they’re opened. However, Nintendo has a decent track record so it may be worth giving it a shot if a game looks like a title you’d enjoy. Even better, if you have Amazon Prime, most of these games are available for about 20% off (or $48 for a normally-$60 game). That’s a pre-order bonus we can get behind. Not only that but Amazon doesn’t bill you until the day they prepare your order for shipping and you can cancel at any time between your pre-order date and the release date. Even better, if the game is ever available for less between the pre-order and the release, they’ll automatically adjust your price to the lowest price point.
Armed with those pre-order benefits, what’s worth looking at? Check out our top Switch picks for 2018.
Kirby is getting a new platformer on March 16th and it looks delightful. In this game, Kirby can throw hearts at his enemies to turn them in to allies. If you’re playing alone, the game will play the allies for you, but you can also recruit up to three friends to support you in co-op multiplayer. Kirby’s allies can also enable new combination powers, expanding the powers and abilities you can use far beyond the normal number of enemies. It looks like an exciting addition to a series that hasn’t always gotten the love it deserves.
Calling Nintendo Labo a “game” is a bit of an oversimplification. It’s an entire kit that lets you build some incredible accessories out of cardboard, then play unique games with them. Labo comes in two flavors: the Variety Kit ($70), which includes two remote-control cars, a fishing rod, a toy house, a motorcycle, and a functional 13-key piano. The larger Robot Kit ($80) only has one accessory, but it’s a big one: a wearable cardboard mech suit. Both kits come with a Labo app that can also be used to make your own gadgets. The Labo Kits don’t seem to be included in Amazon’s Prime discount, but you can still make sure you get yours on day one. Both Labo kits will come out on April 20th.
Technically, this game is already out for the Wii U, but since Nintendo has already sold more Switches in a year than it sold Wii Us over its entire lifetime, there’s a good bet you haven’t played it yet. Despite the many Donkey Kong games out there, there aren’t a ton in the sidescroller genre. This one, though, goes back to DK’s roots (though not back too far) with another adventure, through six different worlds. As usual, Donkey is accompanied by members of the Kong family, including Diddy, Dixie, and Cranky, to solve puzzles and beat up baddies. Of all the games on this list, this is the only one you can read reviews of and still pre-order, so if you want to get a game for cheaper than launch price that you’re still reasonable sure you’ll like, this one may be it. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze will come out on the Switch on May 4th.
Yet another game that came out for the Wii U, Hyrule Warriors is a Zelda-themed version of Koei Tecmo’s Dynasty Warriors game. In it, you play as Link as you hack and slash your way through wave after wave of enemies, in a non-canon adventure to find the shards of Ganon’s soul and prevent him from being resurrected. You know, again. The Definitive Edition will include every map and mission, plus all 29 characters from both the Wii U and 3DS versions of the game. You can pre-order the game now, and it will be released some time in Spring 2018.
Yoshi’s getting his own new game some time this year. In this game, you play a fuzzy Yoshi as he adventures through some cardboard sidescrolling platformer levels. As seen in the demo video above, players can move “behind” the levels to get a different perspective and solve puzzles. Not much else is known about the game or how it plays, and Yoshi may not even be the final title. While we don’t know the exact release date, Nintendo says it will launch sometime in 2018, and you can still pre-order it now.
Nintendo had solid gold on its hands with the Metroid Prime series, but we haven’t seen a new entry in the first-person action series in over ten years. And no, we don’t count that one. To make up for it, Nintendo gave us a trailer for Metroid Prime 4 in the middle of last year. Though “trailer” is a little generous. All we got to see was the number 4 and the title. We don’t even know for sure if it will come out in 2018. That hasn’t stopped Nintendo from putting the game up for pre-order, though. We’ll probably hear a lot more about the game before it comes out, so you’ve got plenty of time to cancel your order if it turns out it’s not your cup of tea. Then again, if it follows in the tradition of the previous Metroid Prime games, it may well be worth the money.
When you think Nintendo, your mind might not jump straight to a woman tearing through demonic forces with her high heeled gun shoes, but that’s what the Bayonetta franchise delivers. The first Bayonetta was met with rave reviews when it came out on the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3, but since then the franchise became a Nintendo exclusive. Bayonetta 2 was originally released for the Wii U, but just came out on the Switch this month. That new-to-you game should be able to hold you over until Bayonetta 3 arrives in the far-off time of “some day.” Like Metroid Prime 4, all we know about this game is that it’s in development, but you can still pre-order it if you’re a die hard enough fan that you know you’ll want it.
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