Are there any Nintendo switch games for seniors to play and enjoy?
There’s a vast misconception that games and consoles are exclusive to younger generations. Adults and the elderly enjoy video games too!
Some help them unwind and relax after a long day, and others keep their cognitive skills sharp . There’s something for you, no matter your preferences (action, simulation, or even exercising).
I have gathered a list of the 10 best Nintendo Switch games for older adults, although everyone can enjoy them. Read on to find out which they are.
Table of Contents
1) Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Animal Crossing is the number one popular game option for seniors who enjoy peaceful games. The game simulates life in a beautiful village, and you have animal neighbors!
You can do many things in this village, from upgrading your house by paying the mortgage to fishing, remodeling the town, and making new friends.
If you are the type of person that enjoys chill, fun experiences, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is for you. On the contrary, if you seek competition and structured goals toward a defined end, you might prefer other games on this list.
How to Play
At the beginning of the adventure game, you land on a deserted island. But here is some good news for you: Tom Nook, a raccoon, will help you settle and rebuild the village.
Your new mission is to donate fossils and animals like fish or insects to the museum, make sure every neighbor is happy and upgrade your home. Everything happens in real-time, meaning the game town will be dark if it’s nighttime where you live.
You can also visit your real friends’ villages if you have an Internet connection. Help each other or recollect fruit and items from their town. Playing solo is relaxing and amusing, but playing with friends takes things to the next level.
2) Stardew Valley
Although this perfect game is similar to AC: New Horizons, they differ in some aspects. In Stardew Valley, you inherit a large farm from your grandfather, and you take care of it and upgrade the area.
Unlike in AC: New Horizons, you can buy and pet cute animals like chickens, rabbits, pigs, and even tiny dinosaurs! If you take good care of them, they’ll reward you every morning with products you can sell or gift to villagers.
You can befriend the villagers and even date and marry them. There’s no end goal in this game, as its beauty lies in waking up each day and doing your farm chores and quests.
There is, however, a moment in which your grandpa’s spirit comes back to check on you and “how good you’re doing.”
Once you earn money from selling products and items, you can upgrade your home to have more space and rooms. Or you can spend the money on new crops or clothes. It’s really up to you!
If you’re the type of person who enjoys casual and chill games, Stardew Valley is your perfect go-to option. Here’s a brief video guide if you’re curious about the game.
3) Layton’s Mystery Journey
You may be familiar with Professor Layton. These online games consist of a storyline flooded with puzzles and mental challenges. Professor Layton’s videogames cognitive aspects can help seniors keep their mental sharpness!
But what’s this particular about this game?
How to Play
Layton’s Mystery Journey returns to the warm, humble roots of the visual mystery novel genre. The plot takes place in London, and the hero detective is Katrielle. The dialogues are extensive and only broken by a few puzzles here and there.
As the story advances (although there’s not precisely a structured plot), Katrielle meets fun, new characters. The episodic format of Layton’s Mystery Journey makes it perfect for casual gaming.
You don’t have to play all night long, but a few minutes today and half an hour tomorrow, and so on.
As you progress in the game, you also unlock minigames unrelated to the main storyline. It’s a breath of fresh air if you ever get overwhelmed or tired of solving puzzles and reading!
Oh, and if you’re familiar with the British culture, you might grin once or twice due to British and historical references. You can buy the game here.
4) Overcooked! All You Can Eat
Overcooked! All You Can Eat is more suitable for people who enjoy fast-paced games and handle stressful situations well. Why? Because you get to be a cook in this one. It’s one of the most Nintendo Switch active games out there.
It’s a fast-paced, multiplayer game (1-4 players). You run a restaurant and prepare the dishes customers want, but you need to be quick.
If you fail to deliver within the time limit, they’ll leave the restaurant, and you can wave goodbye to the money!
How to Play
As you complete levels and progress, you unlock new scenarios. In the end, you must fight against the Peckening (pun intended), the final boss. It’s a fun game to enjoy with your loved ones. You can play alone, but cooperation is key!
The fun thing is new challenges arise in every scenario. One scenario may have animals that steal your ingredients, while others have moving floors that make tasks harder. Here’s the trailer, so you understand what I mean.
Overcooked! All You Can Eat combines and remasters Overcooked 1 and Overcooked 2, meaning you get 2 games in 1!
ALSO CHECK: Active Indoor Games for Adults
5) Nintendo Switch Sports
There’s nothing like mildly exercising from the comfort of your own home. Do you remember the classics Wii Sports and Wii Sports Resorts? They were great adult games for the entire family to play on a Saturday night.
The Nintendo Switch console now brings the concept back with Nintendo Switch Sports. It can be a very beneficial game for seniors, as it keeps their bodies and minds sharp.
It also boosts their social life by gathering friends and family members together.
So, what’s this new edition about?
How to Play
You can play six different sports: Volleyball, Bowling, Badminton, Soccer, Sword Fighting, and Tennis. You can exercise alone or with friends, either locally or online.
Maybe your family lives in another city – then you can interact with them in this game via Internet!
The beauty of Nintendo Switch Sports lies in gathering everyone around the TV and moving your arms and legs like maniacs.
You can do the bare minimum and barely move your body, but some people will go crazy around the living room. The fun is guaranteed. Here’s a short trailer.
6) Let’s Get Fit Switch
Now, this is a real exercising game! Unlike Nintendo Switch Sports, the main goal of Let’s Get Fit Switch is to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.
It brings the best of both worlds together: The benefits of exercising and the fun of video gaming. The Joy-Con controllers and fitness bands bring precise motion tracking, helping you perform exercises safely and correctly.
Let’s Get Fit Switch includes a wide range of training options. Whether you prefer pre-designed workouts or design your combining exercises, there’s something for you!
The game also adjusts to your individual needs. Does your body need stretching, HIIT exercises, or maybe mild workouts?
Last but not least, the game also includes challenges, an online leaderboard, and an in-game calendar to track progress to stay motivated. There are four different trainers, 100 different fitness moves, and varying training intensities.
7) Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics
Yes, you read that right. This compilation brings together over 50 classic games. Buy one, enjoy fifty-one? That sounds good.
Although it’s not the original idea, each game is presented with care and dedication. It includes cards, board games, and even pools and darts.
Seniors are probably familiar with most of (if not all) these games, making the compilation a perfect comforting
gift for the next special occasion. It’s one of the best Nintendo Switch games for seniors.
But there are also new games you may never have heard of, like the ancient strategy game mancala. It’s an excellent opportunity to dive into new cultures and traditions.
Don’t worry about not knowing where to start, as most of these minigames come with their tutorials, guides, and menus to soothe your experience.
Most are focused on helping new players get the hang of them. And a machine will always be patient, no matter how often you get the strategies and bases wrong.
Of course, the experience will not be the same as actually playing with the boards and materials (especially darts), but it can be quite an accurate representation of a console.
You can use a wide variety of controller styles thanks to the Nintendo Switch configuration, so pick the one that fits your needs best.
Oh, and no cheating is allowed since the AI runs the board. Forget about moving your opponent’s chess pieces while they’re in the bathroom!
8) Mario Party Superstars
For those Nintendo veterans, Mario Party Superstars return to the beginnings of the Mario Party saga. The game style is old-school, including the visuals.
Mario kart games  are great for every family member, including seniors. They’re kids and seniors-friendly, and there’s so much action and fun that everyone enjoys themselves. Yes, some friendships may end due to competitiveness, but that’s another story.
Select a character (Yoshi, Super Mario, Princess Peach, Luigi…), and you’re ready to play. Choose between a proper Mario Party match (players versus players or the AI) or Mount Mini-Games.
The latter consists of playing the minigames separately just for fun and tracking who wins more times. What minigames are included?
This Nintendo Switch edition includes every classic mini-game from up to Mario Party 10. But maybe you want to limit the ones you encounter throughout the match.
Perhaps you and your friends don’t particularly enjoy jumping around – don’t worry, you can customize to a decent extent what games to include.
If you have a Wi-Fi connection, you can join other players online and compete against each other.
9) Yoshi’s Crafted World
Are you a fan of platform games and beautiful, cute characters? Do you enjoy fast-paced, exciting games with gorgeous visuals? Then Yoshi’s Crafted World is the perfect choice for you.
Yoshi’s Crafted World is a platform adventure that doesn’t aim to be more, meaning that it’s straight and delightful in its way. As you can see in this video, the design is casual, and so is the gameplay.
With over 40 stages, you won’t get bored. Although completing the levels is relatively easy, there’s more to the game than that.
You can collect items throughout the stages, hunt for hidden secrets, and master the art of throwing eggs at enemies and places.
Another great thing is that each level presents itself with new mechanics. It doesn’t consist of repeating the same actions over and over until you decide to put the console down.
Last but not least, at some point, as you progress, you get access to Crafted World’s Flip-Side levels. This mode allows you to play most levels backward, and you’ll find new things and secrets you never noticed in the first traditional run.
10) Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
Most people agree that Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker is better on this console than the Wii-U. It’s a puzzle-action game starring Toad and Toadette. The goal is to hunt for treasures, and each level is primarily dioramas you must explore to unlock the secrets.
The main objective is to get a star gold, but you can do other things like searching for hidden gems, making the game more flexible. Many of these items are buried in tricky and sometimes illogical places, so you better be patient and have the spirit of an adventurer.
The game is not about action but rather a deliberation, moving the camera and playing with the angles to discover new secrets. It’s one of those recommended games for seniors to play alone.
Here’s a brief review, so you can decide whether to buy it. If you like to rack your brains and explore, this game is for you.
You can buy the game here.
11) Brain Training
This one is a classic. Dr. Kawashima comes back with brain-teasing puzzles. Maybe Brain Training is more suitable for a dual-screen portable console like the classic Nintendo DS. With nowhere on the Switch to store your stylus, you might as well lose it without noticing.
But besides that, the minigames will keep your brain active, and you will feel accomplished every time your “brain age” goes from a higher number to a lower one.
The exercises go from short-memory tests to more complicated ones like solving anagrams, math problems, or sudokus. It’s one of the few video games that actually feel real-life productive as if you just got smarter in minutes.
The Bottom Line
Nintendo Switch games for seniors are great for entertaining them and have tons of emotional benefits . I have gathered a list of the 10 best and links to buy the products.
From classic games to Mario Party and even sports, there’s something for you to find.
Do you know any more Nintendo games that the elderly can try? Suggest some down in the comment below!
- 1. Some video games are good for older adults’ brains. ScienceDaily. Accessed May 18, 2022. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/12/171206141648.htm#:~:text=Playing%203D%2Dplatform%20video%20games
- 2. Zelinski EM, Reyes R. Cognitive benefits of computer games for older adults. Gerontechnology. 2009;8(4). doi:10.4017/gt.2009.08.04.004.00
- 3. After AIs mastered Go and Super Mario, scientists have taught them how to “play” experiments. ScienceDaily. Accessed May 18, 2022. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/03/210325150039.htm