It’s Comic-Con week! If you’re not already in San Diego, you’re packing those last minute snacks, portable batteries, and what not. No doubt many of the Nintendo fans out there are also getting their Switch systems charged and ready to help pass the time waiting for Hall H, Ballroom 20, or the Indigo at the Hilton. To help you kill time why not utilize many of the party mode friendly games and make a few friends while you’re at it. Here are the five best games you and those around you can play on Switch to ease the waiting in and around the San Diego Convention Center.
5. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
No Nintendo system is ever complete without a cart racer featuring everyone’s favorite Italian stereotype. Luckily, consumers didn’t have to wait long after the Switch’s release to get there hands on a Mario Kart game. The game lets nearby players with systems of their own locally connect to each other for epic 12 competitor racing or 8 person battle modes. You can also split the systems mini side controllers (joycons) to let the person next to you race or battle in split screen gameplay. Mario Kart is an easy enough concept for even the most casual of friends to grasp, though you’ll be able to cheat since you already know the short cuts on tracks. Provided your wait isn’t a full night, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is great for those times you have to get in line an hour before your panel starts. It’s currently available for an MSRP of $59.99 but if you search enough you can usually find it for at least 10 bucks less in some places.
One of the games Nintendo fans were most curious about when it was announced during the company’s Switch presentation, Arms is boxing thrown into a world of anime like action. Using the joycon controllers you’ll swing and move your own hands as though you were in an actual cartoon fight. Much like Mario Kart, the game supports local connections to any other Switch owners waiting in line. Though it isn’t the best split screen game around as the action can become a bit staggering, it’s still fun to do if you don’t mind looking like a crazy shadow boxing hobo in line. Remember back in the arcade fighting game days when a person could go for hours fighting new challengers; well that won’t be the case with Arms. It’s certainly fun but a bit exhausting after a few minutes of flailing your own arms around trying to mimic something resembling strategy. Arms is currently available on the Switch for an MSRP of $59.99.
3. Ultra Street Fighter II
The first name in arcade fighting is on the Nintendo Switch. Going back to its more simplistic Street Fighter II form of the 90’s, this game packs all the original Street Fighter II Turbo characters along with the additions of Evil Ryu and Violent Ken. Fighting games can be a bit off putting because, especially in a place like SDCC, you’ll encounter that one child who spends way too much time playing games that he’s become unstoppable at it. If you’re in line around a group of people who just dig the nostalgia factor of Street Fighter II, split your controllers off and invite someone to play. Warning if you have big hands the sideways joycon may frustrate you as you’ll be almost smashing its tiny buttons together. Your mileage in time killing will vary by how many people around you are up to the challenge. It can go from a few minutes of your own excitement to hours of a Hall H line’s worth of new challengers. Ultra Street Fighter II is currently available through digital and retail with an MSRP of $39.99.
2. Splatoon 2
Newest of Nintendo’s first party franchises, Splatoon 2 launches July 21. Splatoon is Nintendo’s multiplayer combat game where instead of blood and bullets you’ll splash paint over squid children called inklings. The objective of a Splatoon match is to paint as much of the arena as possible in your team’s color all the while preventing the opposition from doing the same by smashing them or hitting them with paintballs. So far from playing with other game’s media with review copies, the game is a leap beyond the original. Packed with more content and a few game mode changes that lead to faster paced matches, playing with others in line could lead to some intense competition. The Nintendo Lounge at SDCC will be a big hang out spot for those looking to run tournaments with the game. With it being newly released during SDCC, Splatoon 2 will be one of the best answers if you’re looking to make that overnight wait at the convention center fly by. Just don’t forget the spare portable battery. Splatoon 2 will be available July 21st with an MSRP of $59.99 at retail but Amazon prime members can get it discounted in its release window.
1. Death Squared
The party puzzle game by SMG Studio is a game we previously spoke highly of in our review for its console launch, now it’s available for Nintendos hybrid game system. Cooperation, communication, and robot explosions may not lead to the most competitive game experience, but Death Squared has a fun factor that spreads like a virus. Best played with four players (Switch allows you to use up to 4 controllers on one system), you’ll guide a robot to a color-coded goal, but the path is beset with deadly traps and hazards. Teams of players will need close observation and communication to keep each other alive and discover a solution together. Death Squared is a game that welcomes backseat driving as people who aren’t playing the game can look at what you’re doing and get just as involved as if they were sending innocent bots to their impending doom or freedom. With Switch exclusive levels the Nintendo platform version of the game goes well beyond the 100+ levels in the initial console and PC release. Meaning, you and your friends could easily pass the long hours of the night waiting in line for front row seats to the WB presentation to see Gal Gadot. Death Squared is the most fun you’ll have making and losing friends. Death Squared is available for digital download on Nintendo Eshop for $14.99.
If you’re at SDCC catch me reporting from just about all the Marvel games panels and the Aspen comics panel. Say hi, I’ll be giving away codes for STEAM, PS4, and Xbox One games as long as I have them.