Is there any better way to spend your afternoon than busting out of bunkers with Bowser?
Nintendo, and their mascot plumber, have been putting out golf simulations since the NES, so it’s little surprise their popular Nintendo Switch system has countless options when it comes to golf games. From concentrated gameplay experiences to whimsical narratives within eighteen holes, there’s plenty of great titles on offer and hundreds of holes to birdie.
This list isn’t set out to find a definitive best golf game for Nintendo Switch but is intended to guide you to the gaming experience most akin to your gameplay needs or visual preferences.
Of course! Did you expect anything else?
Mario and friends take to the course in the newest edition in a long line of Mario Golf titles, bringing putting greens and bunkers to the Mushroom Kingdom.
While the story is as convoluted as you’ll find in a Mario game, and Nintendo is not short on convoluted narratives, the courses are a treat for the eyes as they ever were, and the gameplay is solid.
Online mode also offers an additional challenge to previous series entries. Despite a ranked system not as rewarding as other online sports sims, the multiplayer mode does create balanced and enjoyable matchmaking lobbies.
Often cited as one of the best launch-year Nintendo Switch releases, Golf Story combines SNES style golf simulation with RPG mechanics and a zany storyline, featuring more twists and turns than a waterside par 5.
You take control of the protagonist, a down-on-his-luck and dumped amateur golfer, as you rise through the ranks with the support of the apt named Coach.
Golf Story is the most downright amusing game on this list, combining a witty narrative with nostalgic and intuitive golf mechanics.
EA’s powerhouse PGA series landed on Nintendo Switch with the 2K21 edition, and this is the closest to life gameplay experience you’ll find on the console. While there are plenty fewer gimmicks and tongue-in-cheek references than other available golf games, this one nails the mechanics and gameplay systems.
It’s also one of the few titles to feature real-life courses and players, so if it’s your dream of playing Royal Portrush, or you just don’t want Toad staring you down as you make a putt, this might be the pick for you.
World’s away from the reality of PGA TOUR 2K21, Golf Peaks is a game much more geared towards inducing a zen-like state of peace than it is to fire you up to take out opponents on the tee. As a result, you’ll find no shot meter in these mountains.
Instead, Golf Peak opts for a distinctive twist on the genre and employs a card game mechanic to make putts.
This gameplay feature feels a little off at first but develops deeper than anticipated and is almost addictive to an almost annoying extent. It’s not quite Yu-Gi-Oh on a golf course, but you can bet it’s still worth playing.
While not the most polished example on this list, Golf With Your Friends is the best option available on the Switch for multiplayer minigolf.
The game includes an impressive number of courses, some designed with more game intelligence than others, and an easy to learn but challenging to master shot system.
There is also the option to adorn your golf ball with an emoji poop, which in all honesty should be a choice in every eighteen-hole simulator. Still, if you’re looking for a solo experience, you’d be best elsewhere as there is no story or career option.
You might not know it from the title, but this is the original Mario Golf. First released in 1987, NES Open Tournament Golf takes the Mario Bros across three different courses in the UK, Japan, and Europe.
It’s not the most accessible golf sim to just pick up, and it’s questionable whether the experience stands the test of time, but if you’re a disciple of the church of Mario Golf, you need to take a little time to respect the OG in this case.
Ok, so this one is straight out wacky. This 2D pitch-and-putter trades out tour pros and golf balls for dogs and hockey pucks in a unique experience for gamers. Both the game world and the mechanics take some getting used to, but you’ll want to keep playing once you’ve invested in both.
One golf game element DOG GONE GOLFING shares with the other games on this list is the lush visuals, and the varied locations are a refreshing surprise compared to other less adventurous 2D golfers.
With this list, you should be more than ready to pick up your console and take to the links.
Some games didn’t quite make the cut, so you’ll have to take to the E-shop once you’ve completed all the entries and earned your unofficial club-pro status to keep on battling for birdies.
Until then, enjoy making par with Mario, McIlroy, and all the mutts you could muster up on Nintendo Switch.
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