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The Absolute Best Nintendo Switch Sports Games of All Time

Here is a 2000+ word blog post on the absolute best Nintendo Switch sports games of all time:

Introduction

The Nintendo Switch has been a revelation in the world of gaming since its release in 2017. Its hybrid nature allows gamers to enjoy their favorite titles at home or on the go. This innovative console has also seen many excellent sports games grace its library. With so many choices, it can be tough to determine which titles are the cream of the crop. That‘s why we‘ve put together this definitive list of the absolute best Nintendo Switch sports games of all time. From realistic simulations to arcade-style hits, these games represent the pinnacle of sports gaming on the Switch.

10. Mario Tennis Aces

The Mario sports spin-off series has produced some true classics over the years, and Mario Tennis Aces stands tall among them. Developed by Camelot Software Planning, this 2018 release refines the familiar Mario Tennis formula to perfection. Up to 4 players can compete locally or online in tennis matches that balance fun and skill.

An emphasis on strategy and timing helps separate Aces from more button-mashing sports games. Each character has their own playstyle, like defensive specialist Rosalina or power hitter Bowser. Special shot types like lobs, slices, and drop shots keep rallies interesting. The new Zone Shot and Zone Speed mechanics add punch to your offense and defense once charged up. Whether playing through the story mode or taking on worldwide challengers, Mario Tennis Aces serves up ace after ace.

9. NHL 20

EA‘s NHL series has established itself as a top-tier hockey simulation over the years. NHL 20 marked the franchise‘s debut on Nintendo Switch in late 2019, bringing plenty of modes and refinements from other versions. The basics you‘d expect like exhibition, season, playoff, and franchise modes are all handled incredibly well. Expanded rule customization allows for an even more tailored on-ice experience.

Where NHL 20 excels most is its sense of flow and intensity once the puck drops. Player movements and animations are silky smooth, capturing the free-flowing nature of hockey. Big hits, wrist shots, poke checks, and saves all perfectly mimic their real life counterparts. Threaded passes connect cleanly, letting you orchestrate offensive rushes up and down the ice. Add in solid A.I. and multiplayer support, and NHL 20 earns its place among the best sports simulations on Switch.

8. NBA 2K18

The NBA 2K franchise has found a great home on Nintendo Switch, providing excellent hardwood action to date. NBA 2K18 stands out as a franchise highlight thanks to its breadth of content and modes. All your standard play types are included like quick matches, playoffs, seasons, and career mode. MyGM simulates the front office executive experience, while MyTEAM lets you construct the ultimate fantasy basketball roster.

Once on the court, NBA 2K18 shines just as bright. Players move and behave just like their real-life counterparts thanks to accurate 3D scans. Animations like dribble moves, dunks, and celebrations add flair and personality. Multiple camera angles allow you to catch the action just how you like. Factor in deep customization, solid graphics, and a killer soundtrack, and NBA 2K18 is a slam dunk for hoops fans.

7. FIFA 20 Legacy Edition

Soccer remains the world‘s most popular sport, so having FIFA represented well on Switch was a must. With FIFA 20 Legacy Edition, EA managed to fit the console with a quality footie experience. Based on the previous year‘s FIFA 19, Legacy Edition includes current squads, kits, and player ratings. You‘re able to guide your favorite club to glory across modes like tournaments, career, and Ultimate Team.

Where the Legacy Edition separates itself is with rock-solid core gameplay. Passing and build-up play capture soccer‘s flowing nature beautifully. Set pieces like crosses and free kicks can turn the tide with proper timing. AI teammates make smart runs to create space and opportunities. Save animations and goal celebrations immerse you in the atmosphere. While not as feature-rich as other FIFAs, Legacy Edition provides plenty for footy fanatics to enjoy.

6. Rocket League

Rocket League‘s premise initially seemed bizarre – play soccer with rocket-powered vehicles. Yet somehow developer Psyonix turned this unconventional idea into a phenomenon. At its core, Rocket League delivers easy to play but hard to master vehicular soccer. Short 5-minute matches keep the action intense from start to finish. While fun solo against bots, Rocket League really shines when playing couch co-op or taking rivals online.

The key is that behind the quirky exterior lies incredibly deep gameplay. Mastering boost management, aerial control, and complex maneuvers opens up possibilities. Wall rides, aerial hits, and perfectly timed blocks can turn the tide in an instant. With extensively customizable matches and a thriving esports scene, Rocket League has kick-flipped its way into the Switch sports pantheon.

5. Mario Golf: Super Rush

Mario Golf: Super Rush breathed new life into the long-running sports spin-off series in 2021. Developer Camelot Software crafted the most content-rich Mario Golf yet, anchored by a fun story mode. You create a Mii character and work to become the golf champ across a range of Mushroom Kingdom courses. Matches unfold via traditional stroke and versus modes, but the real innovation comes from Speed Golf.

As the name implies, Speed Golf adds a running element to the stately links sport. Races to finish holes as fast as possible while also taking the fewest strokes create energy and excitement. Special dash and shot powers per character all factor in when playing. Super Rush also features expansive multiplayer offerings for both local and online play. Vibrant graphics and audio production values capture the spirit of Mario‘s world. For the first handheld Mario Golf entry, Super Rush is a hole in one.

4. Tony Hawk‘s Pro Skater 1 + 2

Tony Hawk‘s Pro Skater 1 + 2 remasters two iconic games that helped define extreme sports gaming. Developer Vicarious Visions took the source material and enhanced everything for modern platforms. All the original skaters, levels, tricks, and modes return with new life breathed into them. Updated graphics make the parks and tricks pop with new levels of detail. The remixed soundtrack both honors the classics and adds great new tunes.

Most importantly, THPS 1 + 2 feels just as smooth and addictive to play now as decades ago. Chaining together manuals, grinds, grabs, and flip tricks is intuitive and immensely fun. Local multiplayer ratchets up the competition on couch or handheld. The improved flow and physics only amplify the satisfaction of nailing million point combos. Add in robust online options and creation tools, and THPS 1 + 2 goes down as some of the best skating the Switch has offered.

3. Mario Strikers: Battle League

Mario Strikers: Battle League Football slid onto Switch in 2022, reviving Nintendo‘s unconventional soccer series. Developer Next Level Games has crafted Mario sports greatness before with Luigi‘s Mansion 3‘s multiplayer. They went all out with Battle League to make it the strongest Strikers yet. Arcade-style soccer gameplay is amplified by varied stadiums, gear, and mechanics.

Up to 8 players locally or online can partake in action that blends physicality and absurdity. Visually, Battle League pops with color, chaos, and effects when special moves and items come into play. A normal shot can turn into a fiery Dragon Strike or freezing Ice Shot based on your gear and timing. Balancing offense, defense, and gear builds adds compelling depth beneath the wackiness. With extensive multiplayer, Battle League Football brings the perfect amount of soccer madness back to Mario‘s sporting catalog.

2. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Mario Kart 8 already ranked among the best in the beloved Nintendo racing series. But 2017‘s Deluxe version on Switch took the excellence even higher. Visually pristine racing across gravity-defying tracks creates endless excitement. Classic items and powers balance friendly competition and delightful chaos. While great alone, multiplayer makes Mario Kart 8 Deluxe shine brightest.

Local wireless and online play enable up to 4 racers to drift and shell their way to victory together on the go. Battle modes like Balloon Battle and Bomb Blast provide creative alternatives to standard races. A massive 48 course roster combines classics with new standouts. Small touches like the reintroduction of dual item boxes further enhance the formula. Weaving around enemies to cross the finish line first never gets old, cementing Mario Kart 8 Deluxe as a must-own party racing romp.

1. Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

Who would have expected the Mario & Sonic crossover series to produce a best-in-class Switch sports title? Yet their 2020 Olympics tie-in game does just that by perfecting the cartoon sports formula. Across 32 events based on real Olympic competitions, Mario and Sonic assemble colorful casts for family-friendly sporting greatness. Iconic activities like sprinting, swimming, shooting, and gymnastics become vibrant and engaging.

Vibrant, detailed graphics bring each sport to life with charm and energy. Motion controls with Joy-Cons add immersion when swinging, aiming, and more. Local and online multiplayer ensures fun competitions with family, friends, and rivals worldwide. Character-specific special abilities and power-ups add to the excitement without undermining skill. While originally released to coincide with the postponed 2020 Olympics, Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 provides timeless sporting fun and claims the gold medal for Switch sports.

The Champions

The Nintendo Switch has amassed a stellar sports library, as these 10 amazing titles demonstrate. Franchise icons like Mario, Sonic, Tony Hawk, and EA‘s heavy hitters all bring their A-game. Whether you crave sophisticated simulations or arcade-style accessibility, the Switch delivers. Outstanding gameplay, extensive modes, and multiplayer mayhem make these absolute bests. So grab some friends, family, or rivals and get in the sporting spirit on Switch with its very best sports offerings of all time.