All the Zelda Games for Switch
Since the world's first introduction to Link, Zelda, and Hyrule, gamers everywhere have enjoyed the popular Zelda franchise. Today, there are several classic Zelda titles available to play, spanning many consoles. However, the Nintendo Switch remains a favorite device for playing these exciting games.
For long-time fans and newcomers to the series, we've compiled all the Zelda games for Nintendo Switch consoles so you can enjoy every adventure. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is releasing on May 12, 2023, so why not catch up with some of Link's great hits in the meantime?
It is difficult and potentially impossible to play all the classic Zelda titles released in the franchise because developers have not remastered all of the retro games, making them compatible with new game consoles. Some games are only available on the WiiU or Game Boy Advance, while others are spinoff Zelda games that don't focus on Link as the main protagonist. In this case, we will only cover all Zelda games on Switch devices where Link is front and center.
What Zelda Games Are On Switch Consoles?
If you're interested in exploring the Legend of Zelda Switch games, you're in luck. There's plenty of content to enjoy and play, spanning across early Nintendo consoles all the way to today's most up-to-date Nintendo Switch. In this article, we've broken down all the Zelda games you can play on the Nintendo Switch, with the exceptions of mini-games and non-main story adventures.
What Legend of Zelda games are on Nintendo Switch devices?
- The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wind
- The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening
- The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD
- Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition
- Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity
- Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the Necromancer
- The Legend of Zelda
- Zelda II: The Adventure of Link
- The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
- The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
- The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
It's critical to note that while these are all the Legend of Zelda games on Switch consoles, some require a membership to Nintendo Switch Online. When you enroll in this plan, you can get access to some of these Zelda games that you can't get anywhere else. This is why some of these games are not available to purchase in physical form.
1. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (2017)
In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, our main antagonist, Link, has woken up 100 years after Ganon has wreaked havoc on Hyrule's lands. This game is great for beginners because it has an open-world concept, allowing you to explore an endless map and learn game mechanisms. You can sharpen Link's skills as you freely wander or head straight to your final boss fight and help Zelda win an epic battle.
This remains one of the most popular Zelda Switch games because it is reminiscent of the original 1986 game. It also lets you enjoy the game in whatever way or order you like, creating a no-pressure and enjoyable experience. You can also use Zelda amiibo for fun in-game extras.
2. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (2019)
The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening takes place in a brand-new setting, not in the traditional Hyrule location. Instead, Link washes up on an island where locals care for him as he recovers.
Link's goal is to find out how to get off the island and figure out the secrets behind the Wind Fish Egg. Since this is an older game adapted for a newer console, some gamers find the content lacking, but it still makes the roster for Zelda games on Switch consoles.
3. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD (2021)
A game originally for the Nintendo Wii, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD is another one of the most loved Zelda games for Switch devices. In this game, you'll learn about who Link and Zelda are, how the world came to be, and the legendary Master Sword. You will also see a young Link attending Skyloft's Knights Academy, traveling from dungeon to dungeon, stopping evil and destruction, and rescuing Zelda.
4. Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition (2018)
Hang onto your hats! Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition is one of the only Zelda Switch games where you can play as other popular Hyrule characters, such as Zelda, Sheik, and many more. It is also a crossover with the Dynasty Warriors series, but you don't need that backstory or knowledge to enjoy playing this game.
In this game, you'll pick your favorite character and fit continuous waves of bosses with multiple fighting attacks and tricks. There's fun music and plenty of battles to take on, so if fighting is more your forte, this might be the perfect game for you. This is a less puzzle-focused game.
5. Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (2020)
Just like Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is also a collaboration with Dynasty Warriors and a prequel to the events of Breath of the Wild. Many gamers would advise you to play this game first because it answers all the questions you likely have while playing Breath of the Wild, such as "Why was Link asleep for 100 years?" "How did the Champions come to be?" and "How did Link become a knight?"
You could claim that this is one of the most important Switch Zelda games because it has a solid story and sets the stage for other games. You get to enjoy good fighting, character introductions, an exciting plot, and an amazing adventure in the world of Hyrule. We advise against skipping this one!
6. Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the Necrodancer (2019)
A music-based, crossover fighting game, Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the Necrodancer is quite different from the other Zelda games Switch players can enjoy. This game features a crossover between the Legend of Zelda series and Crypt of the Necrodancer, a more rogue-style game. It's not for everyone, but you'll fight bosses and travel through levels in time with the music.
A powerful musician takes over Hyrule with sound and captures Link and Zelda. Before long, Cadence enters Hyrule with the power of the Triforce and is well-equipped to take on this new enemy. This game is heavily music-centered, so it isn't everyone's cup of tea, but it does offer an exciting new concept for the Zelda universe and players.
7. The Legend of Zelda (1986)
This was the first game in the Zelda franchise, released in 1986 for the NES (or Nintendo Entertainment System). You must capture all eight pieces of the Triforce of Wisdom, rescue Princess Zelda, and battle with "Prince Darkness Gannon" before completing the game.
It does not have a lot of elaborate details and a more fleshed-out story, as we see in today's games, but you must remember that it was just starting out. Developers worked without any idea of what the future of the franchise would hold.
While it is one of the many Zelda games on Switch consoles, you will need a subscription to Nintendo Switch Online. You'll also have access to other retro Zelda games too!
8. Zelda II: The Adventure of Link (1988)
This game differs from other Zelda games because it has two simultaneous plots, a combination of side-scrolling and up-and-down movements, the ability to explore more locations, and interactions with NPCs. You can play this game if you have access to a Nintendo Switch Online membership.
9. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (1991)
Enjoy another retro Zelda game and prequel with The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. This game has more puzzles than the pre-1991 games and introduces the standard layout of what we learn to expect from Zelda adventures. You'll learn more about the world and the main storyline if you play this game, but you need a Nintendo Switch Online membership to do so.
10. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (1996)
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is another prequel to the main story but goes further back than the others. In this game, you meet Link and learn that he does not have a guardian angel like the others in his village. You also learn that a mysterious force calls on him to stop the forest's curse, so Link ends up journeying to Hyrule, where we often know the franchise to take place.
Many people consider this to be one of the best Zelda games of all time or the one that sparked their love for Zelda Franchise. It is a direct prequel to The Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past, so perhaps you might play the games in the appropriate timeline order. It might make the story clearer!
To access this game, you'll not only need to have a Nintendo Switch Online membership, but you'll also need the appropriate expansion pack. If this is not feasible, don't worry! There are multiple great Zelda games for the Nintendo Switch that you'll love playing, as listed above.
The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom (May 2023)
Previously known as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2, this new game released on May 12, 2023. Consider grabbing this game if you are a long-time fan of the Zelda franchise or want to try something new. Link will have to face off against a villain, and there is evidence that the Master Sword is damaged in some way, but we have limited information about this new adventure.
Now that we've detailed all the Zelda games for Nintendo Switch consoles, we hope you'll consider picking up games in this iconic series. At Fair Game Retro, we offer a huge selection of modern and retro games for Playstation, Xbox, Sega, Legacy, and Nintendo gaming devices.
Check out our website for all your retro game, toy, and collectible needs. Call us at (916) 944-4263, or visit us in Carmichael, CA.