Relaxing Switch Games

Relaxing Switch Games

Chill with some Nindies

A.J. Maciejewski

Written by for Rapid Fire Reviews on

With so much nonsense going on, it's often a good idea to take it easy and play some relaxing games so here are 7 of them for Switch.

Locomotion Review Switch ★★★★☆

I love slowly figuring out how to master practical puzzles so if you do, too, here's the enjoyable and rewarding Nindie Locomotion!

Locomotion screenshot
Snatching all the gold is oh so satisfying

Locomotion tasks you with guiding a train along a track in order to reach each stage's goal. Along the way, you can acquire gold if you want to complete each level 100% and you can also retry stages and try to finish them in as little distance as possible which adds some fun replay value. Anyway, each stage is filled with gimmicks that you'll have to interact with in a particular order if you want to progress as efficiently as possible. Whether you're switching track routes, pushing carts with magnets and fans, hitching train segments to your engine, driving through one-way switches, or trying to place cargo on pressure buttons; everything works together beautifully to make a laidback puzzle-filled formula. Plus, its western theme, adorable visuals, and goofy narrator add a lot of lighthearted fun to the equation.

I have a big soft spot for trains and puzzle games and Locomotion combines both into a very innovative and enjoyable campaign.

Locomotion gameplay video →

Highrise Heroes: Word Challenge Review Switch ★★★☆☆

Connecting letter tiles to form words has been great fun ever since PopCap's Bookworm but does Highrise Heroes live up to the classic?

Highrise Heroes: Word Challenge screenshot
If no one else will save these goofy chimps, I will!

Highrise Heroes: Word Challenge is an interesting game. Not only do you try to create words by matching adjacent tiles, you also have to rescue people by having them drop down to the bottom of the playfield. Along the way, they'll need oxygen so if you connect blue tiles and form a word with them in the chain, they'll receive some air and can stay on the playfield for a bit longer. As you progress, you'll encounter new kinds of characters, tiles, and abilities so taking advantage of whatever you're given in order to master each stage becomes quite a fulfilling feat. With that being said, I found the fact that you can put characters and stuff in the middle of words made the gameplay a bit too easy because you can cover a large area of the playfield by simply chaining together non-letter tiles. On the plus side, Chimp Challenge mode offers additional stages that pose unique challenges which can be rather rewarding to master.

Forming words while saving folks is a surprisingly fun formula and Highrise Heroes: Word Challenge provides satisfying puzzle gameplay.

Highrise Heroes: Word Challenge gameplay video → Similar game: Letter Quest: Grimm's Journey Remastered

Nowhere Prophet Review Switch ★★★☆☆

If you're looking for a survival game with card-based battles then Nowhere Prophet is surely a game that you'll want to check out.

Nowhere Prophet screenshot
That's the shiftiest scavenger I've ever seen

Nowhere Prophet has you play as a mystic who can interact with electricity. You go on a journey across a post-apocalyptic world while trying to keep your dedicated followers alive as you fight card-based battles and make crucial decisions. The whole point of the campaign is to simply survive so you can reach the sought-after Crypt. You'll probably have to start the campaign over at least a few times but each run allows you to play at your own pace and taking in the story pieces within the procedurally generated roguelike campaign will certainly spark your imagination. On the downside, I found there to be many unfair moments and the randomness of each run seemed to affect my success more than strategy and skills. It's still a cool and rewarding game, though, and the striking visual style is fantastic.

Surviving Nowhere Prophet's grueling world offers laidback gameplay but that is unfortunately undercut with some frustrating moments.

Nowhere Prophet gameplay video →

Country Tales Review Switch ★★☆☆☆

Running a small town in the old west sounds like a pretty straightforward job so with that in mind, here's the indie sim Country Tales.

Country Tales screenshot
There aren't many tales, that's for sure...

Country Tales has you manage a small town by allocating money and resources to individual portions that make up each stage. Believe it or not, it features a very odd story where the protagonist named Ted moves to this town, gets a job as the mayor's assistant, and falls in love with his boss's fiancé. Does that story tie in with the gameplay? Not really; so, what's the point? Anyway, clicking around the sections of town in order to clear debris, construct and enhance buildings, and collect taxes makes for an incredibly simplistic formula that'll likely put you to sleep. The main challenge is all about time management yet being able to master stages is quite easy to do and if you ever fail somehow, replaying a stage will make it much more unchallenging as you'll know exactly what to expect.

Its dated and clunky visuals and simplistic gameplay make Country Tales a relaxing albeit hard to thoroughly enjoy experience.

Country Tales gameplay video → Caveman Tales Review

Hotel Sowls Review Switch ★★★☆☆

Exploring a strange and possibly haunted hotel is an interesting premise for a game so let's check out the creative indie Hotel Sowls.

Hotel Sowls screenshot
Yes, you can dress this fellow up with all sorts of accessories

The first thing you'll notice while playing Hotel Sowls is how unique and distinct its visuals are. Everything is presented in a monochrome dotted style which is intermixed with subtle gradient backgrounds and other odd effects. On top of that, the characters are goofy-looking with sprites that look like they were designed by children yet it all works together to create an interesting aesthetic that actually elevates its atmosphere. Throw in chill music and you're left with one immersive game world. The gameplay merely involves talking to folks and using items in order to uncover clues about where your missing stone has gone. Although I found it difficult to put down, I must admit that the campaign is very straightforward and doesn't require much critical thinking or problem solving which makes it feel flat.

As one of the most visually unique indies out there, I recommend playing Hotel Sowls although its campaign isn't all that challenging.

Hotel Sowls gameplay video → More detective video games

Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel Review Switch ★★★☆☆

It seems like Cateia Games has been releasing their entire catalogue on Switch and here's one of their classic adventures.

Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel screenshot
Bridget has a lot less fear than I would in this situation

Speaking of detective games set in strange hotels, here's Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel! You play as a detective named Bridget Brightstone who's tasked with investigating a medieval castle that was turned into a hotel. Along the journey, you'll meet plenty of memorable characters and some may be belligerent at first yet grow to enjoy working with you after you prove that you're not to be messed with. Although I usually find the puzzles and hidden object portions of these games to be the most stand-out aspects, I actually enjoyed the character interactions in this one, especially because you can choose different responses which sets it apart from most of the other Cateia adventure games. Also, the spooky atmosphere is well done although it's undeniably cheesy; as to be expected.

Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel is a solid adventure game and one of Cateia Games' most unique offerings. I recommend it.

Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel gameplay video →

Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Strix Review Switch ★★★☆☆

If you can't get enough adventure games from Cateia Games then here's yet another title to add to your expanding Switch library.

Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Strix screenshot
What the heck is this silly creature and where did it come from?!

Yes, 2 Cateia Games reviews back-to-back! This is a strange one because Tales from the Dragon Mountain 2: The Lair released before this sequel and I had no idea who the very odd creature known as Malik was and he's sort of just there in the sequel. Now that I played the first game, I'm still perplexed because he kind of just shows up. Anyway, although Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Strix looks exceptionally dated and its dialogue is tough to sit through, its puzzles are some of the best in Cateia's catalogue of adventure games. Piecing things together then having it culminating in some sort of mini-game makes for a satisfying campaign so if you liked the other games, you're sure to dig this, too. Plus, you can now play through Mina Lockheart's entire duology of games which is nice.

Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Strix is a retro adventure game that's a bit too old-school at times yet it remains fairly rewarding.

Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Strix gameplay video → Tales from the Dragon Mountain 2: The Lair Review Where Angels Cry Review Where Angels Cry: Tears of the Fallen Collector's Edition Review The Man With The Ivory Cane Review Black Rainbow Review Myths of Orion: Light from the North Review
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Gameplay video playlist for Relaxing Switch Games 74:36
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