Have you heard about cozy gaming? It is the state of disconnecting yourself from the world and immersing yourself in the game world of calmness. Nintendo Switch takes cozy gaming to the next level, as you can play it in hand-held mode anywhere you want. All you need to do is fully charge the Switch, lay on your sofa, bed, or bean bag, and fire up the best cozy games on Switch.
But wait? What are your options? In this post, we’ll list the best cozy games you can play on your Nintendo Switch.
Let’s get started.
What Defines a Cozy Game?
A cozy game is the one that helps you relax. These games don’t rush you into the game world but invite you to feel it with fundamental interactions and allow you to explore.
And one of the most prominent factors that defines a cozy game is non-violence. You’re here to relax, do farming, or prepare a town so everyone lives happily. These games mostly have cute characters, such as child-like humans.
So, a cozy game must allow you to self-express by offering nurturing and generosity to the game’s NPC. It starts with socialization, where you interact with characters, and they agree with you in the friendliest way. It also allows you to escape from the real world and find comfort in the game’s virtual environment.
Nintendo Switch’s library is full of cozy games, with the best example being Animal Crossing: New Horizons. This game redefines the cozy game definition as it makes you feel “relaxed” (more on it later).
According to the Gameindusty.biz article, a cozy game focuses more on how you feel when playing it. The mechanics and looks might not have a considerable impact compared to other AAA games.
The game developers understand coziness and how it relates to social human beings. A cozy game provides a thriving ground for interaction without stressing you out.
However, no hard and fast rules exist to avoid violence in cozy games. You can take Nintendo’s top game, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which offers combat. But it also gives players a sense of coziness through its beautiful world and the ability to explore and interact with game elements in your own way.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
If you ask me to pick one that cozy game I can play for years, then it is Animal Crossing: New Horizons. The game invites you to create your personalized island where you can do many things at your own pace and pleasure.
For example, you can collect bugs, enjoy the sunset, or decorate your surroundings to your heart’s content. You also get access to many tools as you create your path. And the best part is that you can invite your friends by sharing it. You can also join a friend’s island and see their creativity through your eyes.
Also, if you’re looking for a Nintendo Switch game for kids, Animal Crossing: New Horizons fits the bill perfectly!
So, pick up Animal Crossing: New Horizons if you want a stress-free gaming session with high doses of coziness.
- Developer: Nintendo
- Estimated time to complete: 61 – 384 hours for the single player and 20 hours for co-op
- Release Date: March 20, 2020
Bear & Breakfast
Another excellent game for cozy gamers is Bear & Breakfast. Here, you play a bear named Hank, a charming and funny character. He is also an intelligent bear who can build his bed and breakfast … and do more.
The game offers an addictive loop where you try to increase profits and complete quests. The key elements that make the game a cozy game are its easy difficulty, cute visuals, and ability to engross the player so he can spend hours without feeling bored or stressed.
|Bear and Breakfast | Standard – Nintendo Switch [Digital Code]||17 Reviews||$19.99||Buy on Amazon|
This makes Bear & Breakfast an excellent laid-back, cozy management sim where you complete tasks, explore new places, and complete challenges to bring humans to the forest.
- Developer: Gummy Cat
- Estimated time to complete: 16 – 23 hours for the main story and 35 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: Sep 15, 2022
Cozy Grove takes you to the haunted island where you play as a Spirit Scout. The hand-drawn dynamic landscapes are excellently designed and come alive as you progress through the game.
As a Spirit Scout, you explore the dynamic island that changes every day and help the spirits. The game characters are well-crafted and created with care as you connect with them. Also, as you explore, you learn about different spirits through their story.
|Cozy Grove Standard – Nintendo Switch [Digital Code]||108 Reviews||$14.99||Buy on Amazon|
Just like other cozy games, the game pace is slow. However, you can get the hang of it in a few hours as you complete the story and do other fun activities such as catching critters and cooking. The background music also matches the game’s atmosphere as you forget about the real world.
- Developer: Spry Fox
- Estimated time to complete: 68 hours for the main story and 116 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: March 19, 2021
Disney Dreamlight Valley
Are you a Disney and Pixar fan who wants to spend free time with your favorite heroes and villains? If so, you must try Disney Dreamlight Valley, a hybrid game that brings together life-sim and adventure.
The idyllic island is at peace but soon gets disrupted due to the Forgetting event. This led to island-wide changes in the landscape, including the growth of Night Thorns and the destruction of wonderful memories.
|Disney Dreamlight Valley — Deluxe Edition- Nintendo Switch [Digital Code]||221 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
Your job is to remove the corruption while befriending your favorite characters. You start slowly as you explore the well-knitted story and the island full of surprises, such as the WALL-E and Moana theme parks. As it is a life-sim, you also get to partake in relaxing tasks such as fishing, gardening, and cooking.
- Developer: Gameloft
- Estimated time to complete: 27 hours for the main story and 89 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: Sep 6, 2022
New Pokemon Snap
I’m a big Pokemon fan, and I always found Pokemon games relaxing. That’s why I suggest you recommend New Pokemon Snap, a new game based on the popular Nintendo 64 game Pokemon Snap.
This cozy game takes you to the Lental region, where you spend your time building your own Pokemon Photodex by taking photographs. You start with an island and then move to a new one once you explore the existing one.
The game takes you back in time and nails the requirements for a cozy game. It captures the fun of discovering new Pokemon, along with photography. Moreover, you can interact with the Pokemon in new, fun ways, such as throwing apples.
- Developer: Bandai Namco Studios
- Estimated time to complete: 11 hours for the main story and 62 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: April 30, 2021
What’s the truth about life? Its death. Spiritfarer takes you on the journey to the end in an expressive, color-filled world. Here, you build your boat, build items, do farming, and hug your pets. You play the game as a new Spirtfarer, Stella, and Daffodil, a companion cat.
The color-full enchanted world is completely explorable, with mystifying elements across the map as you explore islands to free stuck spirits. As you grow, live, and learn about spirits, you must also learn to say “goodbye” to them. The coziness fills you through as you listen to the amazing background music that fits the theme.
Spiritfarer is one of my favorite games, as it captures the essence of joy and sadness.
- Developer: Bandai Namco Studios
- Estimated time to complete: 25 hours for the main story and 42 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: Aug 18, 2020
It would be a crime if I didn’t mention Stardew Valley in our list of best cozy games on Nintendo Switch. The game is at the top of life-sim and cozy gameplay.
Your story starts with the cubicle lifestyle, which you don’t like. Soon, you move to Stardew Valley and find that you have inherited your grandfather’s old farm plot. With a few tools and coins, you start your journey of coziness!
Stardew Valley lets you do plenty of things, including farming, crafting items, raising animals, and becoming part of an amazing local community of over 30 residents. You also get to find the love of your life as you can date 12 townsfolk.
The Stardew Valley area is vast and explorable. Once you think you’re strong, you can explore the mysterious caves.
This game is a gem and will keep you invested for hundreds of hours! The game also offers excellent replayability.
- Developer: ConcernedApe
- Estimated time to complete: 53 hours for the main story and 158 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: Oct 5, 2017
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a highly acclaimed Nintendo Switch game that gives you the platform to explore, build, and do adventure the way you want. This sandbox game includes fighting but also gives you the best cozy feeling, helping you escape the harsh real world.
Here, you play as Link as you set your targets to fight Ganon. The adventure takes place in Hyrule, a vast open world of various landscape types, including mountains, forests, and open fields.
During your journey, you consistently earn new skills, giving you a sense of power and accomplishment as you fight harder mobs. However, the fights are rare, as most of the time you spend exploring the world. No wonder this is one of the best open world games on the Nintendo Switch!
|The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo Switch) (European Version)||17,772 Reviews||$52.89||Buy on Amazon|
- Developer: Nintendo EPD
- Estimated time to complete: 50 hours for the main story and 189 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: March 3, 2017
Want to relax in the best possible way? Then, Unpacking is for you. It takes you to new houses with many boxes to unpack. The game feels zen-like as you slowly unpack the boxes and move them around the house.
The game is stress-free as there is no timer or score. You’re free to play the game at your own pace. The game is small, and you can complete it in just sitting.
But this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try it! It has replayability and provides a sense of calmness as you play the game. This is a Nintendo Switch indie game that you can’t afford to miss out on!
- Developer: Humble Games
- Estimated time to complete: 4 hours for the main story and 5 hours for the completionist.
- Release Date: Nov 2, 2021
Cozy Gamers for the Win!
The games keep us in the best possible mindset of happiness and joy, with the real world becoming harsh and brutal. The cozy games are crafted with care for players. They give players a platform to explore and not rush them to do things they don’t want.
My favorite among all the best cozy games on Nintendo Switch are Spiritfarer, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and Stardew Valley. If you ask me, start with these, then try the other games on the list.
Also, if you’re a massive Nintendo fan, you need to take a look at the best Nintendo Switch exclusives for your next virtual adventure!
For the past 20 years, Nitish has been an avid gamer. His primary focus is on PC games, but he also enjoys exploring the worlds of Nintendo, XBOX, and PlayStation. Nitish is always looking for new games to try out and is particularly fascinated… read more