15 Best Nintendo Switch Puzzle Games to Exercise the Brain
If you enjoyed the Nintendo Switch, you’ll know that there are plenty of all kinds of genres you can play on the console. And if you like puzzles? Yeah, they have a hat en masse as these 15 games will show you.
#15 Changing Tides
A sequel of sorts to Far Lone Sails, Far Changing Tides places you on a large boat, where a young man tries to sail it in order to get to a new place to live in a world that has been nearly flooded.
The puzzles here reside both in the world around you, as you will need to activate certain things to open paths for your boat to pass, as well as your ship itself. Dive deep into the ship to understand what it’s all about, how to properly operate it, and more.
It’s you and your ship against the world, and you will find that this adventure will take you through highs and lows while providing you with a unique atmospheric experience.
#14 The gardens between
For a lighter adventure, you might want to try The Gardens Between. Because this solo title puts you in a story that focuses on “time, memory and friendship”.
You play as Arina and Frendt, two friends who fall into a “dream world,” and that world happens to be filled with relics of their time together as friends. Now you’ll control the two friends and work together to solve puzzles to learn more about their friendship, what they really mean to each other, and more.
It’s a very unique title that dives deep into its narrative, so you might just want to play it to see where the “bittersweet” story goes… and ends.
#13 The Bedroom Series
The Room series is for those who like an in-depth approach to their puzzle titles while warping perceptions of what these games can be. Because in the game, and the many following ones, you will be a person locked in a room or dimensional space, and all you will be left with are puzzle boxes and clues as to what you need to do.
With each puzzle you solve, your “world” expands a little, but again, so does the mystery. You will learn about various dark sciences and practices and wonder how it will all end. More than likely…you won’t be able to guess…
With several games in the series, you’ll be able to try them out on Switch and have plenty going on for a while.
We’ve argued for a long time about whether “games are art”, and the answer is very obviously “yes”. But if you want a game that really proves that sentiment, you need look no further than Gorogoa.
Because in this game you will solve puzzles in a very special story, the particularity is that these puzzles are linked to illustrations (thousands of them) that have been made by a singular man: Jason Roberts. How you use these illustrations/art pieces will depend on the puzzle and what you are trying to do.
The visual style here is really unique, as is the way you use it in terms of gameplay. So if you want a truly visual yet deep puzzle experience, here you go!
#11 The Trine Series
Set in a fantasy world, the Trine games focus on a set of heroes who use an object known as the Trine to solve puzzles and fight evil. All this so that they can save the kingdom in which they find themselves.
The twist here is that unlike typical fantasy games, the combat and other elements are all tied to physics-based puzzles. Each of the main characters in the examples have skills that will affect things in a way that can solve puzzles or throw objects at enemies to make them explode.
Due to the freedom and skill of your characters, there are multiple ways to solve the puzzles in the series. Plus, since there are 4 different games in the series, that’s a lot of puzzles to solve.
#10 Baba it’s you
As an evil man once said, “True power distorts the reality around you”, and it’s a perfect introduction to the title Baba Is You. Because in this game, with each level you play, you can change the rules of the game and the reality in which you play.
This is because the “rules” are displayed in blocks, if you change them, everything changes with them. And that means anything and everything can happen depending on how you want to play.
Plus, with over 200 levels to ‘bend the rules’, it’s a lot of potential and possibility for chaos! In a fun way, of course.
So dive into Baba Is You and see how you can change the world!
#9 The Talos Principle
Sometimes the best puzzle games are the ones that make you ask questions about everything that’s going on. In The Talos Principle, you are an entity in a world of ancient ruins… but also modern technology. Whoever built you has given you a “mission” to solve over 120 puzzles scattered throughout the place.
But the question becomes… will you do it as your master wants? Or will you try to solve the puzzles to find out more about yourself, then find a way to escape?
The Talos Principle has a deep and twisted story that will ask a lot of big questions, while still giving you the puzzle-solving experience.
Arguably one of the best puzzle games ever made, Fez puts you in the role of Gomez, who is a 2D creature…who suddenly “reveals” himself the third dimension. Curious to find out what’s going on, Gomez embarks on a journey to uncover the truth, leading to a grand puzzle adventure you’ll enjoy.
Unlike many others on this list, Fes doesn’t need “overdone” or even “super realistic” graphics to get things done. The visual style is simple for a reason, and it lends to the deep world the game is trying to portray in its own way.
Believe me, the game is deeper than you think, and so if you haven’t checked this game out yet… you should.
#7 Little Nightmares 2
There are some pretty dark titles on this list as you’ve seen so far, and Little Nightmares 2 is another example.
In this sequel, you play as Mono, who finds herself in a nightmarish world full of distortions and monsters. The reason for this is a signal tower, and it’s up to you and another named Six to reach the tower and figure out what’s going on.
You’ll have to get the two characters to work together not only to solve puzzles, but also to battle the various creatures that inhabit the dark and mysterious areas you’ll travel through.
It’s definitely a title for those who prefer a very scary element to their games. So try Little Nightmares 2 which matches your style.
#6 Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
It took us a while, but here is indeed a first-party puzzle game. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker was first released on the Wii U, but ported to the Switch (like so many games before…and after…) so more people could try it. And you absolutely must.
You will play… who else? Captain Toad! And in each level, you’ll need to use all camera angles and perspectives to figure out how to get from place to place, get all the treasures, and avoid enemies and traps!
You can even play co-op to have someone help you with those enemies! It’s a light and simple title, but sometimes… isn’t that what we really need?
It’s honestly hard to describe a game like Inside without diving deep into spoilers, so I’ll try to keep it light.
In this game, from the creative team at PlayDead, who created the equally dark and lauded title Limbo, you’ll find yourself as a young boy who is drawn to a certain building where a “dark project” is underway.
What exactly is going on here? It’s up to you to figure out in this story-driven puzzle title. You will have to cross the boundaries of the building, solve puzzles, avoid detection and learn the truth. But as these games like to show…sometimes it’s better if the truth…isn’t revealed at all.
#4 World of Goo
Here’s another classic that has finally made its way to Switch. World of Goo gives you control of living glob entities that you can both obtain and then place in order to build various things. Like what? Bridges, buildings, slingshots and more. As long as you have the right structure and the right amount of goo, you can do it.
Why do you need to do this? Because the levels in the game are all meant to do something specific, and you have to get your slimy creatures to build the right kind of structure to accomplish the task.
It may sound simple, but it is not. Each level is special and may even present dangers for your slimy creatures. So use them wisely and move on to the next challenge!
#3 Portal Series
…so, who wants cake?
The Portal series is indeed on Switch, and Switch gamers are lucky to have this title as it is one of the most important puzzle franchises ever created.
In it, you are stuck in Aperture Labs and an evil robotic entity known as GLaDOS “guides” you through the place in order to perform various tests. You won’t have an in-game weapon to help you, all you have…is your portal weapon.
The puzzles, creativity, and feel of this series are S-grade in every way, and that’s part of what makes it so enjoyable to play over and over again. And now that you can play it on the go… you have even more reason to try it on Switch.
#2 Puyo Puyo Tetris
I admit I’m a bit biased with this game because it’s something I found really fun even though I didn’t know what Puyo Puyo was.
Basically, this game is a fusion of two puzzle game worlds with adorable and hilarious characters interacting with each other to try and save the universe! And of course, you will save it by playing Puyo or Tetris against other characters and even against each other.
There’s a lot of depth to this game, believe it or not, and it makes it all the more enjoyable to play not just the story modes, but all of the other game modes.
There are two games in the series on Switch, so don’t miss them!
#1 Tetris 99
There are a lot of reasons why I put Tetris 99 on top despite it not being a “typical puzzle game”. But in fact, Tetris as a whole IS a puzzle game. You try to put the pieces together (like a puzzle) in order to get points and continue.
In Tetris 99, the difficulty is increased because you will face 98 other players who try not only to beat you, but also to bury you in Tetris blocks.
So you’ll need to play fast AND play smart so you can trip them before they trip you, as well as get out of any sticky situations you find yourself in.
Do well enough, and you’ll be #1!