Looking for games like Animal Crossing with that small town feel? There are a variety of life simulation games on Switch that focus on a survival, farming, and relationships. Check out these recommendations for some of the best games like Animal Crossing on Switch.

10. Circadian City

Circadian City Switch Release

Circadian City puts players in control of every aspect of their character’s life, similar to The Sims. The game is in Early Access right now for PC users, but it has been announced for Switch. Publisher Way Down Deep and developer Nowhere Studios will bring the game to Switch in Q4 2020.

Players start life from scratch with a real job in Circadian city. You can customize your look with a variety of outfits and plan your day before heading into the open world. Relationships in the game require care and attention to grow. Shared interests like gardening, music, movies, and games bring friends closer.

Explore a procedurally generated dream world full of fantastic creatures and wild adventures reflecting the day’s activities. Build a farm and craft items with the power to shape the subconscious. Explore the wilderness and challenge creatures to mini-games and collect the crystals crucial to opening up new missions, solidifying one of 16 personality types, and uncovering a life goal to pursue.

Circadian City announcement press release

9. Garden Paws

Garden Paws on Switch

Garden Paws is currently in Early Access on Steam, but the developers do have plans to release it on Switch. This adorable life simulation game started as a successful Kickstarter project back in 2018. There’s no official Switch release date yet other than “it’s coming.”

The game feels like an homage to Harvest Moon – players inherit their farm from their grandparents. There are a variety of characters in town to help players turn the farm around. Players can also run a shop selling items directly to the villagers.

8. Castaway Paradise

Castaway Paradise on Switch

Castaway Paradise released in 2014 as a Facebook game before being ported to iOS and Android. In 2018, the game made its way to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. There is some hope that Castaway Paradise on Switch will be announced.

Don’t get your hopes up, though. The developer discussed bringing this game to Wii U back when that console was relevant. It’s a great game like Animal Crossing if it ever makes its way to Switch.

7. Rune Factory 4

Rune Factory 4 is best described as a mixture between Stardew Valley and the Persona games. You move to a small village with a farm in disrepair. The townsfolk all have personalities and their favorite gifts, with questlines for each of them.

Rune Factory 4 also has more to its combat and dungeon crawling than Stardew Valley. You’ll delve into multiple dungeons to collect monster loot and complete quests for the villagers. Overall this relaxing little game is great if you want to cozy up with a farm and make friends along the way.

6. Little Dragons Cafe

Little Dragon Cafe on Switch

Little Dragons Cafe gives players the choice between playing one of two siblings, Ren or Rin. The gameplay is story-driven, with the twins running a cafe that serves customers and manages staff.

Players can spend time exploring the world to discover new secrets and dangers. All while caring for and raising your very own dragon as he grows from a young drake into a full-grown dragon. The cafe management is a unique spin on the laid-back farming and village genre.

5. Stranded Sails – Explorers of the Cursed Islands

Stranded Sails

Stranded Sails is a relaxing, family-friendly single player game with plenty of farming. Players are trapped on a deserted island and must survive. The story follows a linear path that unlocks as you build your base on the island.

Farm your own food to supply enough food for expeditions to explore the archipelago. Expeditions can be conducted on foot or on boat and are a central part of exploration in Stranded Sails. Harvesting crops and discovering recipes helps prepare rations for future expeditions.

Players will need to make sure they pack enough rations so the whole crew has enough energy. The game never punishes the player for fainting – but it is a setback.

4. Dragon Quest Builders 1 & 2

Dragon Quest Builders 2 has a free demo on the Nintendo eShop. You can try it out to see if you like the game and your progress will carry over from the demo. The demo is pretty big and allows players to explore the Isle of Awakening and sail to Furrowfield to help the villagers rebuild.

The game combines the building of Minecraft with the story-telling of the Dragon Quest series. NPCs do their jobs based on the buildings that you’ve rebuilt – which means you influence town growth. There’s no voice acting in the game and some of the dialogue prompts are slow, but there is a great game here.

3. Yonder: Cloud Catcher Chronicles

If farming and exploring a massive world is appealing, then Yonder: The Cloud Catcher Chronicles a perfect fit. The game features absolutely no combat elements, making it perfect for younger gamers. Explore the island and learn new skills, talk to new villagers, and help solve the mystery of Cloud Catcher island.

2. My Time at Portia

If the charming 2D pixel style of Stardew Valley isn’t your thing – try My Time at Portia. The developers were inspired by the animated works of Studio Ghibli and wanted to bring that to life. Players turn a derelict workshop into one of the best in the town of Portia by gathering resources and helping the local community.

Players can run their own farm and decorate their homes to suit their style. Ancient ruins and dungeons beneath Portia provide a challenge and money with a relic scanner. Regular in-game festivals feature many mini-games to master in a relaxing family-friendly experience. This is one of the games like Animal Crossing that is just plain relaxing to play.

1. Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley is the crown jewel of games like Animal Crossing. While it tends to get compared to Harvest Moon, there is a whole cast of villagers with their own personalities. Managing your farm often means meeting requests of the local townsfolk – and helping Pam get her life back on track.

Each season in the game features unique events and contests to enjoy. The museum and collection features are definitely Animal Crossing inspired, with massive collections to find. If you pick up one game to satisfy your itch for Animal Crossing, make it Stardew Valley.

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