Want a great story, complex characters, and a mystery to solve? Check out some of the best visual novels available on the Switch.
Getting lost in a great visual novel usually means the story is unique and the characters are interesting. There are plenty of great visual novels to choose from on the Switch, with many of them being exclusives. If you’re curious where to start with the genre, check out some of these offerings. There are many more visual novels, but each of these excels and stands above the crowd.
Disco Elysium is hands down one of the most satisfying visual novels you can play on the Nintendo Switch. You wake up alone in a room with only hazy memories of your past self. Can you piece together who you were and what was going on?
The writing is second to none and if clever writing and characters are important to you, you should start your visual novel journey with Disco Elysium on the Switch. The port is great and it has so many paths that you may find yourself inclined to play again and again.
Citizen Sleeper is an interesting visual novel that sees you awaken on a space station as a freeloader, an awakened cryogenically frozen citizen found on an empty derelict. You represent another mouth to feed and competition among the workers, so your arrival is not well received. Most of the interactions in the early game are you dealing with barely surviving in a world that actively dislikes you.
AI: The Somnium Files & Nirvana Initiative
AI: The Somnium Files
Become a detective in the near-future Tokyo who is investigating a series of brutal murders. Investigate crime scenes and find hidden clues that could reveal the serial killer terrorizing his victims. Enter dreams to solve puzzles and learn more about the killer’s motives.
AI: The Somnium Files: Nirvana Initiative
Six years ago, the right half of a corpse was discovered. The left half was never found…until six years later, completely fresh with no signs of decay. Now, Special Agents Mizuki and Ryuki, along with their AI partners Aiba and Tama, are tasked to solve the bizarre Half Body serial killings while unveiling the mysterious plot known only as the Nirvana Initiative.
Famicom Detective Club Series
FDC: The Missing Heir
The Famicom Detective Club series was localized into English for the first time on the Nintendo Switch. The series is exclusive to the Switch, as Nintendo serves as the publisher of the game. The series is a two-part seres in which The Missing Heir was the first game released, but The Girl Who Stands Behind is a prequel. You should play them in that order for the original experience. These two visual novels are some of the best available as Switch exclusives.
FDC: The Girl Who Stands Behind
Vampire the Masquerade Series
Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York is a visual novel style game set in the World of Darkness universe. Players take on the role of three fledgling vampires of different clans, each with different vampiric abilities. Players must interact with the different characters in their coteries as the story unveils the struggle between two vampiric factions. The direction the story takes will depend on your choices, taking some inspiration from Telltale Games.
A second standalone expansion called Shadows of New York is also available on Switch. A physical collector’s edition featuring both Coteries and Shadows is also available.
Opus – Echo of Starsong
Echo of Starsong is a visual novel style adventure game. Eda, a girl who can hear mysterious sound waves known as starsong, crosses paths with a young man in search of their source. Together, they venture out to the heart of space to unravel an ancient myth.
Murder By Numbers
Murder by Numbers is a visual novel that puts players in the shoes of a TV actress turned detective. Honor Mizrahi and her robot companion SCOUT must investigate several murder cases similar to the Ace Attorney series, questioning witnesses and finding hidden clues.
Doki Doki Literature Club Plus!
Doki Doki Literature Club Plus! is the Switch visual novel of this classic freeware game on PC. The story is told from the perspective of a high school student who reluctantly joins a literature club. The game features a unique plot structure with multiple endings and unlockable cutscenes with each of the main characters.
The game starts out as a light-hearted dating simulator, but it quickly progresses into a psychological horror game.
Winds of Change
Winds of Change is a furry-style visual novel about leading a rebellion to bring peace back to the land. Players take on the role of the last Seer, chosen of the spirits, who must ensure harmony and peace prevails. On your travels, you’ll be aided by friends and comrades from all walks of life. You’ll encounter difficult decisions as you work to restore the land of Alestia that has been under the cruel yoke of tyranny for far too long.
Gnosia is a visual novel role-playing game about discovering who is on board a Gnosia. It’s an alien-like creatore that will kill all of the regular humans on board. The player works with the NPCs to suss out and nominate the potential Gnosia suspects to put them into cryo-sleep. If the player themselves is also Gnosia, they can work with other NPCs to try and eliminate humans.
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