We’ve been so hooked by Mario Golf that we forgot to gather up our most anticipated games for July! So, this may be a little late, but here are 16 games to get excited about!
Mythic Ocean – July 2
This is a calm, quiet conversation-based game. After the end of everything, you find yourself wandering through beautiful undersea worlds where you meet gods, and shape the next world through your conversations with them. I’m actually playing through a copy of this that the publisher provided, and it is a great game for winding down, as long as you don’t mind a lingering sense of existential dread.
Ys IX: Monstrum Nox – July 6
As a big fan of Falcom’s games, I’m excited to get my hands on the next chapter in Adol’s journey with Ys 9! For those unfamiliar with Ys, these are action-RPGs with fast-paced combat and large dungeons to explore; the gameplay feels like a hybrid between Zelda and the Tales series. In this entry in the long-running series, Adol is having an especially bad day, winding up imprisoned and afflicted with a mysterious curse! As much as I enjoyed the lighter, tropical setting of Ys 8, I’m looking forward to 9’s return to the darker and spookier themes of the earlier games in the series. While Ys games’ stories are interconnected, they’re each structured as standalone experiences, so if they sound like your cup of tea, it’s perfectly fine to jump in with 9 or take this opportunity to pick up the excellent Ys 8 – also available on Switch!
Heart of the Woods – July 8
Heart of the Woods may be set in winter, but what’s wrong with a little Christmas in July? Studio Élan has a strong track record of making heartfelt, LGBT-positive visual novels, and the Switch version of this game is a definitive release of one of their greatest titles.
Boomerang X – July 8
This super stylish game focuses on high-speed, first-person boomerang combat. It sounds like a wild premise, but considering it’s coming from Devolver Digital, I’m thinking they’ll pull it off.
Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin – July 9
This is a strange spin-off, because it takes the Monster Hunter setting and strips away the visual fidelity and main gameplay mechanics to make something new. The anime-ish art style looks great, though, and the Rock-Paper-Scissors battle system should be a ton of fun. I bounced off the iOS version of the first game due its save system being poorly optimized for mobile play, so I’m not sure if I’ll dive into the sequel… but it looks great!
Risk System – July 15
The Switch excels at housing indie titles and agile, arcade-y fare, both of which are right in Risk System‘s wheelhouse. In fact, “arcade-y” is so much in its wheelhouse that I first played it at a convention in an arcade cabinet! The hook to this shoot-’em-up is simple: flying close to bullets charges up your Super Meter, so you’re rewarded for “risky”, white-knuckle play. I’m terrible at Risk System, but I still love playing it, so take that as your endorsement!
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD – July 16
I missed the “Skyward Sword is bad” memo back when it was originally released and loved the Wii game. I thought it had a gorgeous art style, interesting mechanics, and a really compelling story. I liked it so much, in fact, that I stopped playing the game right before the final boss, so that the experience wouldn’t end. I’m looking forward to finally finishing this one on the Switch!
Within the Blade – July 16
This game is new to the Switch, but it’s Steam release has been reviewed really well. It’s a stealthy action-platformer with RPG mechanics… think classic Ninja Gaiden where you actually were supposed to sneak like a ninja.
Cris Tales – July 20
This gorgeous indie turn-based RPG is one that I’ve had my eye on for quite some time. Based on my experience with Cris Tale’s demo, the game starts out with a fairly standard fairytale-like story that quickly gets turned on its head when the heroine gains the ability to manipulate the flow of time! Jumping back and forth between the past, present, and future plays an important role in puzzle-solving and combat. I was particularly impressed with a battle in which you can get an enemy’s shield wet and then jump forward in time to cause the shield to corrode, exposing the enemy’s weak point. If you’re a fan of classic turn-based RPGs, definitely give Cris Tales a look.
NEO: The World Ends with You – July 27
The World Ends With You was arguably the biggest sleeper-hit on the original DS, from its creative gameplay to its killer sense of style. After a fourteen-year gap, give or take some breadcrumbs, this Switch sequel is a long time coming. All the same, it preserves the first game’s distinctive art style, amazing soundtrack, and unique gameplay in a new, 3D package. There’s a lot for this title to live up to, and coming off the demo, it seems more than up to the task.
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles – July 27
After a bit of an extended hiatus, everyone’s favorite anime lawyer simulator series, Ace Attorney, returns with The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles. This entry follows the exploits of Phoenix Wright’s ancestor, Ryunosuke Naruhodo, as he investigates a series of murders in Victorian England. Aiding him in his case, is a wholly original character, Herlock Sholmes, and his faithful companion Wilson. This release collects two previously-Japan-only 3DS Great Ace Attorney games that have been remastered for Switch and localized for the first time. If you’re a fan of Phoenix Wright or visual novels in general, this is an easy pickup.
Samurai Warriors 5 – July 27
The Switch already has a slew of solid Warriors titles, from Fire Emblem to Age of Calamity to One Piece. Samurai Warriors 5 rounds things out with a flagship entry in the “musou” genre, and with its more curated roster of characters and focused story, it promises to be a well-polished outing.
Blaster Master Zero 3 – July 29
At this point, Inti Creates has pretty much mastered the “8-bit plus” style of retro-inspired indie game, and Blaster Master Zero 3 looks to be no exception. In this Metroidvania series dating back to the NES era, you explore cavernous alien worlds from the safety and security of a heavily armed (but surprisingly agile) battle tank! Having had a blast with the previous Blaster Master games, I’m looking forward to battling my way through hordes of mutants and aliens while bopping to some catchy 8-bit tunes.
Psst… if you haven’t played the Blaster Master Zero games yet and you have Game Pass… go play them! And then go buy them on Switch! They’re that good!
Eldest Souls – July 29
Eldest Souls, in short, looks gorgeous. We’re huge fans of well-made pixel art at Geek to Geek, and that’s a huge part of what this indie action title is offering. But more crucially, it’s offering a lineup of wall-punchingly difficult bosses, so strap in for a hard fight.
Bustafellows – July 30
Bustafellows is a new IP to the West, and in the not-yet-mainstream Otome genre. Even so, between developer PQube’s strong campaign and a sequel already brewing, Bustafellows has a proven audience already. Besides, who doesn’t love a murder-mystery with such a charming cast?
Pokémon Unite – July (TBD)
We’re in July already, and we still don’t have an exact release date for this Pokémon-fueled entry into the MOBA genre. Still, those two ideas are monstrously popular on their own; it’d be silly not to give their mash-up a mention. More than anything, though, I’m hoping it can put such a diverse cast of characters to creative use on the field!
What games are on your must-play list for July?