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first_img Trade In Your Nintendo Switch For a Better Battery (With a Catch)Controller Patent Teases SNES Games on Switch Stay on target In this age of Peak Content, we’re constantly recommending stuff to each other all the time. Partially because we want to people to discover and support cool things that could get lost in the shuffle, but also to show off our own impeccable taste in media. With so much possible stuff to be catching up on at any given moment (movies, books, games, TV) it’s also easy to be skeptical and resistant to the newest must-watch/play thing. Why commit more of your precious time? And even though a lot of this job revolves around staying current with pop culture trends, it really takes a lot for a new recommendation to sway me personally.However, sometimes when everyone tells you to check something out it turns it they had a point. Two games I’ve recently been playing on my Nintendo Switch are two games folks had been telling me about for months or even years. And it turns out they were all right, Reigns and Cities: Skylines are both pretty great.Both of these games debuted on other platforms, and arguably make more sense on those platforms than on Switch. Reigns (and its queen-centric sequel Reigns: Her Majesty) is a mobile game that brilliantly uses Tinder’s hot-or-not swiping as the main mechanic for a choice-driven role-playing game. The result isn’t the same when played on a TV with a controller, although the Switch tablet at least has a touch screen. Cities: Skylines meanwhile is a classic city-building game that swooped in to capitalize on how bad the 2013 SimCity reboot was. And any game built to tax PCs with sprawling simulations of urban planning is going to have performance issues on Nintendo’s modest machine.Still, the Switch is just an innately appealing video game machine to me, and both of these games remain strong enough for their greatness to shine through. Reigns winds up being the kind of roguelike I can get into because its “swiping as kingdom management” gameplay is fascinating enough to make the deaths and restarts palatable. The sheer amount of well-written (so not randomly generated) story vignettes even make the restarts more exciting because they could be so different.Despite being presented as just text, events like following a dog to find Satan, coming back to life as a vampire, remembering the right dance steps, or treating my subjects so charitably they trampled me to death out of love were hilarious and thrilling. It’s like a social strategy game, especially if you decide to make choices with a friend in the new co-op mode. The contemporary dating app swiping interface belies an RPG with influences as old-school as RPGs get, and it’s an intoxicating mix.Meanwhile, Cities: Skylines continues to great inexplicable trend of Switch getting neat janky PC games. Is a controller the ideal interface from perfectly arranging your industrial and residential zones along the highway or making sure every building is connected to a water line? No, of course not. But fortunately these games are slow-paced enough that a single wrong input won’t ruin anything. It’s about pouring over nerdy minutiae, not twitch reflexes.You can still absolutely get into the methodical zone of creating your ideal community with police, education, business, housing, and amusement all in perfect balance. Or you could say screw it and let the elementary school burn down while you surround the dog park with cemeteries and spend infinite money on infinite airports. It turns out the freedom and self-motivation of city-building is another genre that works great either on the TV for hours or on the go for a few minutes.Check out the recent Nintendo Direct for more cool older games new on Nintendo SwitchThe main thing tying these two games together for me is that they both happen to be recent Switch ports of acclaimed older games I happened to play for the first time around now. That’s really it. But I will say playing multiple games at the same time does tend to dredge up interesting connections between them. And something Reigns and Cities: Skylines share is a remarkable systemic ability for little micro-narratives to emerge from player choices.I would love to talk about the fall of my kingdom in Reigns or the self-destruction of “Thicc Beach” during my time as an awful selfish right-wing mayor in Cities: Skylines. Being monarch and mayor also gives both games an unavoidable political edge I embraced. Cities: Skylines even has a fake Twitter, the most political message.Staying current is overrated. Anything really good will stay good whenever you get around to it, so spend your time however you like. Right now I’d recommend both Reigns: Kings and Queens as well as Cities: Skylines on Nintendo Switch. But feel free to play them, or not, whenever you get the chance.For more on old games check out the Switch’s ongoing Virtual Console replacements as well as our review of the SNES Classic Edition.Buy it now!Nintendo SwitchProtect Your Nintendo Switch With These Awesome CasesLet us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more