Nintendo’s portable console continues to be incredibly popular with consumers, and its lineup of titles will certainly be sought-after during the annual sales extravaganza, which takes place on November 26. (You’ll want to keep your eye on our Black Friday Nintendo Switch deals for all the latest and greatest discounts.)
Black Friday is a great time to pick up Switch games as, historically, we rarely see any significant discounts on Nintendo’s first-party titles. Unlike many of the best PS5 games and best Xbox Series X games, Switch games tend to hold their value and often remain at the same recommended retail price for many years. Discounts, then, are always welcome.
So which of Nintendo’s best-selling Switch games will likely see the biggest price drops, and should you pick them up now or wait until Black Friday begins? Let’s take a look at some of last year’s offers and round up any early deals that might be worth considering.
1. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe – 38.74 million copies sold
Nintendo’s go-karting phenomenon has now become the best-selling game in the series’ history, eclipsing the seemingly unsurpassable Mario Kart Wii. The Deluxe Switch port has sold a staggering 38.74 million copies, beating out the Wii’s entry which sits at 37.38 million. For a port of a Wii U title, and considering the Switch still has a significantly smaller install base than the Wii, that’s pretty good going – though we’d love to see Nintendo release some Mario Kart 8 Deluxe DLC.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe was part of a popular Nintendo Switch bundle last year, and it looks like that same bundle could make an appearance this time around. It cost $299.99 from Best Buy and included 3 months of Nintendo Switch Online.
Discounts on standalone copies of the game usually fall between $15/£15 off, which is a great deal considering it’s easily one of the best games on Switch and a blast to play with family and friends.
2. Animal Crossing: New Horizons – 34.85 million copies sold
Animal Crossing: New Horizons deals couldn’t have come at a better time. Nintendo has just released a free 2.0 update, which adds a new café run by Brewster the pigeon, the option to travel to a new (randomly generated) island via Kapp’n the turtle once a day, and various other tweaks and changes that plump up the game’s content.
The update also coincides with the new Animal Crossing: New Horizons Happy Home Paradise DLC, which is so jam-packed full of new things to do, you could consider it a mini-sequel of sorts.
There’s no doubt that Animal Crossing: New Horizons will be popular, then, and we did see the title go on offer during Black Friday last year. You can already save £10 off the RRP in the UK, but we’d expect to see it drop a bit more when the sales event kicks off in earnest.
3. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate – 25.71 million copies sold
With characters included from almost every video game system and series, it’s easy to see why Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is so popular: who doesn’t want to see their favorite video game characters throw down?
Discounts on Nintendo’s premier fighting game tend to be few and far between, so if you see even $10/£10 knocked off the asking price, it’s usually worth picking it up.
4. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – 24.13 million copies sold
If there was ever an example of a Nintendo game holding its price, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is it. Despite launching alongside the Nintendo Switch in March 2017, Link’s open-air adventure very rarely goes on sale and usually demands the full asking price for those who are interested in picking it up.
Thankfully, even if you do pay top dollar for Breath of the Wild, the experience is almost certainly worth it. There’s a reason why so many consider the game to be one of the greatest pieces of entertainment the video game medium has ever produced. It’s just that damn good.
But will we see a Black Friday deal for Breath of the Wild? Maybe, but we certainly won’t see any groundbreaking discounts on one of Nintendo’s most esteemed titles.
5. Pokémon Sword/Pokémon Shield – 22.64 million
Few would argue that Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield are the pinnacles of the series, but that hasn’t stopped Game Freak’s latest mainline entry from becoming the fifth best-selling Nintendo Switch game of all time.
You can’t go wrong with either version (they’re basically the same game but include different types of Pokémon), and even though the formula may have grown tiresome for some, there’s no question that catching pocket monsters remains a popular pastime.
In terms of Black Friday deals, we do expect to see some discounts on Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield. But if you’re a fan of the classic, top-down style of games’ past, we’d honestly wait for Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Pokémon Shining Pearl which releases on November 19. There’s also Pokémon Legends Arceus to look forward to in the new year.
6. Super Mario Odyssey – 21.95 million copies sold
Super Mario Odyssey is everything you’d want in a 3D Mario game: incredibly colorful worlds, larger-than-life characters, and a litany of secrets and platforming challenges to discover. It also includes one of the best theme tunes Nintendo has ever written. Oh, and you also get to see Mario without his top on. Sold!
Super Mario Odyssey is worthy of its impressive sales number, then, and if you’re interested in picking it up during Black Friday, you may find a deal that will make you “jump up in the air”, just like Mario. We expect the game to drop to a sweet spot of $30 / £30, so hold off until then before you rush out and grab it. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Super Mario Odyssey included in some Switch bundles, too.
7. Super Mario Party – 16.48 million copies sold
A surprise entry in Nintendo’s best-sellers list, Super Mario Party takes full advantage of the Joy-Con motion controls to add more fun to the series’ famous minigames. We may see the game be discounted heavier than usual due to the release of the excellent Mario Party Superstars, which we believe is the better game of the two.
If you’re looking for something to play with the family during the holiday period, Super Mario Party is definitely worth a look. Nintendo also thankfully added online play, so you don’t have to just play against your brother, sister, and two cousins, who usually cheat anyway.
8. Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu!/Pokémon Let’s Go, Eevee! – 13.83 million copies sold
A more casual and accessible approach to Pokémon, Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Let’s Go, Eevee! will appeal to younger audiences and nostalgic older Switch owners alike. The catching system is based on the popular Pokémon Go!, so it will be immediately recognizable to anyone who has played the mobile game.
Again, it’s not our favorite entry in the Pokémon franchise by any means, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had in this updated take on the classic Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue Game Boy games.
9. Splatoon 2 – 12.68 million copies sold
If you’re after an online shooting game that turns the usual formula on its head, Splatoon 2 is for you. Instead of blasting each other to smithereens (though that’s still technically something you do), Splatoon 2 sees you competing to cover stages in more ink than your opponent.
If that all sounds a bit weird, well… it sort of is. But there’s no denying that Splatoon 2 is also one of the best multiplayer games out there and a must-have for Switch owners. Luckily, the game does have a tendency to go for a bit cheaper than other games on this list, so keep an eye out for any discounts during Black Friday.
10. Ring Fit Adventure – 12.21 million copies sold
Last but by no means least is Ring Fit Adventure. There was a period of time when the game was harder to find than a PS5 in stock, but thankfully that’s no longer the case. Supply has improved dramatically, which means that while we can’t guarantee there will be any big discounts during Black Friday, there should at least be enough stock to go around.
Ring Fit Adventure is the type of title that seemingly only Nintendo would take a punt on, and it’s a game that’s arguably flourished during the pandemic, where many of us had no choice but to stay indoors.
Ring Fit Adventure uses the Joy-Con and a new accessory, the Ring-Con, to pump up players’ heart rate and gamify exercise to make it more enjoyable. If you’re a keen gym-goer who thinks Ring Fit Adventure won’t provide the type of comprehensive workout you’re used to, think again. You will definitely feel the effects of a few levels the next day.