Beat ’em up games come in all shapes and sizes on the Nintendo Switch and often they are combined with other genres. New games are coming out all the time so it can be hard to know which ones are worth playing. That’s why in this post we’ll cover our picks of the Top 15 Best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em games worth playing!
1. Scott Pilgrim VS The World The Game
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World The Game is a sidescrolling beat ’em-up action RPG. The plot of the game centers around the Manga of the same title and Scott Pilgrim as he fights off the evil ex-boyfriends of his love interest Ramona in hopes of winning her love.
You’ll need to battle your way through waves of enemies as you travel throughout the streets of Toronto taking on these ex-boyfriends and their henchmen. Along the way, you’ll be able to collect coins to purchase upgrades for your characters and level them up as well. This gameplay style really took me back to the classic beat ’em-up RPGs from the NES like River City Ransom.
As a nerd, there is really a lot to appreciate in this game as well and there are a lot of nerd and pop-culture references scattered throughout the game. Another cool aspect of this game is it features local co-op and there are a variety of characters you can level up and play as.
This game first came out on Xbox 360 and PS3 but became delisted until the complete edition came out. If you played the original this complete edition is a great way to play or if you are playing the first time it’s the best version available. Scott Pilgrim VS The World The Game is one of the Best Nintendo Switch Beat ‘Em Up Games worth playing.
2. River City Girls
River City Girls is a new entry in the River City Series that combines beat ’em up action with RPG elements making the gameplay very addicting. This time around you’ll play as two girls from River City High School as they try and rescue their kidnapped boyfriends.
It features an over-the-top anime-style humorous story and fast-paced gameplay. As you defeat enemies you’ll earn money that you can use to buy food to heal your characters, but also gain permanent stat boosts. There are also dojos to find throughout the city that your characters can spend money in to learn new powerful moves.
The game features local co-op as well which is a lot of fun as you punch your way through waves of enemies with a friend. Another cool element of the game is that it has a somewhat open-world feel to it. There are various branching paths to explore, secrets to discover, and several side quests to take part in. This non-linear experience is a lot of fun and a great addition to the beat ’em up genre.
There are also a couple of unlockable characters after you beat the game with a different play style than your original two characters. This adds to the replay value as you’ll likely want to play the game a second time with these new characters.
River City Girls is a must-play Switch game and is also one of the best beat ’em ups on Nintendo Switch.
3. Streets of Rage 4
Streets of Rage 4 is the latest entry in the Streets of Rage series and is another one of the best Nintendo Switch beat ’em up games. This time around you can play from 1-4 players in local co-op or up to two players in online play.
The story of the game takes place 10 years after Mr. X and his crime syndicate have been defeated. Now a new power led by the Y Twins has taken over the city. You’ll play as former detectives and several other vigilantes as they try and stop the new crime bosses and gangs threatening the city.
The game features a cool cartoon-like animation style and a wide variety of enemy types. Each playable character has a really different feel to them and keeps the gameplay fresh and adds to the replay value of the game.
The game can be quite challenging but there are several settings you can adjust to make it more accessible. There are several different modes you can play though including a boss rush mode.
On top of that, there are additional unlockable characters to discover further adding to the replay value of the game. It’s one of the best Nintendo Switch beat ’em up games and is a must-play.
4. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shredder’s Revenge
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shredder’s Revenge is a brand new entry in the long history of Ninja Turtles Beat ‘Em Up games. The Ninja Turtles Beat ‘Em Up games from the NES were the first beat ’em ups I ever played and I’ve been hooked ever since.
Shredder’s Revenge takes everything that was great from the originals and further expands it with a lot of modern quality-of-life enhancements. For starters, you can play from 1-6 players online or in local co-op. This is a great feature to recreate that original arcade beat ’em up experience on the Switch.
On top of playing as the classic Ninja Turtles characters, you can play as several other playable characters such as Splinter and April O’Neal. Also, each character really has a distinct play style and special abilities VS each character playing almost the same. This really increases the replay value of this Nintendo Switch Beat ‘Em Up Game.
Shredder’s Revenge also has some light RPG elements where you can level up your turtles to increase their health bar and learn new abilities. There are several modes to the game as well, like a story mode, arcade mode, a new survival mode with the DLC, and much more.
Whether you grew up playing the original Ninja Turtles beat ’em ups or are new to the series, Shredder’s Revenge is one of the best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up games you need to play.
5. Fight’N Rage
Fight’N Rage is a retro-inspired beat ’em up for Nintendo Switch. This Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up is really a throwback and feels like it came right out of the 90s arcade.
Many of the characters and enemies throughout the game are highly inspired by classic beat ’em up games. It feels like you are playing a game from the Super Nintendo era. On top of that, each playable character has a different feel and general play style, which can increase the replay value of the game.
Also, the game isn’t completely linear and there are several different branching paths you can choose from which can lead to multiple endings. Fight’N Rage also has a lot of different unlockables from several outfits for characters, new playable characters, and a battle arena mode.
This battle arena mode plays similar to a retro fighting game and not only can you use your playable characters, but also defeated enemies you faced during the main story.
You can even play up to three players in local co-op. Plus, if you like that retro feel, there are several filters you can add to the game making it feel like an old-school TV display or a classic arcade look and more.
If you like retro beat ’em ups I’d really recommend Fight’N Rage as another one of the Best Nintendo Switch Beat ‘Em Up Games!
6. Streets of Red
Streets of Red is a very unique mashup of genres and is a combination of beat ’em up with a horror theme, and that features several roguelike elements. The game begins with your cast of characters hanging out at a gaming convention only to have the zombie apocalypse occur.
This leads to a really cool set of gaming gaming-related characters based on the characters they were cosplaying as. So you’ll have a character with weapons and abilities like Link from The Legend of Zelda, a Shovel Knight-like character, a Ninja Turtle, and more. These characters all have their own unique play style as well which increases the replay value.
Not only are there many gaming references and easter eggs there are lots of nods to different horror franchises as well. Many of the bosses are parodies of classic characters like Jason Vorhes and the Xenomorphs from Alien and more.
There are unlockable characters and local co-op for another layer of fun. Another interesting mechanic is the system of healing your characters. If you kill a combo of enough enemies healing items will pop out. This adds a unique element of challenge and can really mean the difference between life and death with your characters.
The roguelike elements really add to the replay value of the game and if you like horror movies, gaming, and beat ’em ups I highly recommend Streets of Red as one of the Best Beat ’em Ups on Nintendo Switch.
7. Castle Crashers Remastered
Castle Crashers Remastered is an over-the-top beat ’em up on Nintendo Switch. You’ll play as a variety of knights with unique powers as you go on a quest to rescue 4 kidnapped princesses.
Some of the aspects that stand out in this game are its quirky art style, its unique level design, and addicting RPG mechanics. First off is the funny character and enemy designs and crazy stages.
You’ll have your standard side-scrolling levels, but also stages where you are floating down a river and jumping from logs to riding a deer while trying to evade a massive evil cat monster.
You’ll also find a wide range of weapons you can equip that give several stat boosts and each has a different feel to their playstyle. Things like hammers, swords, and more.
Another addicting element is that as your characters level up you have skill points that you can allocate any way you choose. You can upgrade your attack, defense, speed, and magic, and lets you customize your character to your liking.
Each type of knight even has their own unique magic power giving you additional replay value as you’ll want to try them all. If you haven’t yet played Castle Crashers Remastered, pick it up today. It’s one of the best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up games available.
8. The Takeover
The Takeover is a classic-inspired arcade-style beat ’em up and is similar to titles like Streets of Rage and Final Fight. The story of the game takes place in a city overrun by gangs that have taken over and kidnapped your adoptive daughter. You’ll need to go on a quest for revenge and take down these gang members to rescue her.
Each playable character you can choose from has slightly different abilities and playstyles. There’s a standard all-around character, one that is faster, and one that is stronger but slow.
You have your standard attacks and jump attacks but also a special attack that you can use in exchange for sacrificing some of your health. There is also a RAGE meter that fills overtime and when used it can make you invincible for a period of time and your attacks are much stronger.
Another cool part of the game is there are occasional levels that are not in the beat ’em up format. You’ll have some car chase levels, a level taking out zombie-like creatures with machine guns, and more.
This is a challenging game, but definitely one of the best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up Games for the price!
9. Phantom Breaker: Battle Grounds Overdrive
Phantom Breaker: Battle Grounds Overdrive is a unique side-scrolling beat ’em up on Nintendo Switch. This game’s characters and plot are based on the Phantom Breaker fighting game series.
While I do enjoy fighting games, the anime schoolgirl art style isn’t usually the kind of games I’m into, so I was a little bit skeptical of it. The good news is that while the art style may not be ideal, the overall gameplay is where this game really shines. You’ll play as 4 girls as they try and rescue their kidnapped friend from the evil phantom.
In this beat ’em up game, you’ll play on two planes which your character can switch back and forth between. This play style is quite unique and took a bit to get used to, but once you get the hang of it, it becomes quite fun!
It can start off feeling a bit like a button masher, but as you master the move sets and timing, you can really showcase your skills. Your characters all have the same set of base moves, but each one operates slightly differently. Think how characters work in Super Smash Bros.
The game also features some RPG mechanics, where characters can unlock new moves and abilities through a skill tree. You can mix and match how you utilize this tree and switch point allocations as much as you want to fit your current play style.
It features local co-op and a battleground mode which is more like a traditional fighting game. If you haven’t played this Switch Beat ’em Up yet, I recommend trying it out!
10. Lost Castle
Lost Castle is more of a hidden gem, but also one of the best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up games, that plays like a roguelike dungeon crawler with beat ’em up style combat. The pot is pretty generic, but you play as treasure hunters who are exploring a castle that has been overrun by demons.
You will start your run in a prison and will need to fight your way to the castle in hopes of killing the demons and finding valuable treasure. As you begin your run you’ll have a variety of starting weapons and a few items you can pick up like potions to help you on your run.
Your characters can equip different weapons, and armor, and collect a variety of healing items, damage items, and potions to aid you on your quest. The potions are unique in that you don’t ever actually know what they do.
They come in a variety of colors that can give you potential hints on what they do, but you won’t know for sure until you use them. Sometimes they are beneficial but other times you end up causing negative effects to your character.
After each run, you can spend souls that you earn to power up your character stats for your next run. These can be in the form of increased health, strength, defense, speed, and other powers that benefit your character.
This game also features both online co-op and local co-op for up to 4 players, which is a blast. If you haven’t yet played this hidden gem beat ’em up for Nintendo Switch, I recommend it!
11. Cowabunga Collection
The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Cowabunga Collection is a collection of the best beat ’em ups from the Ninja Turtles series. Not only do you get access to several of the best classic Ninja Turtles beat ’em up games but there are a lot of extras and quality-of-life improvements to those games as well.
For starters, you’ll get access to Turtles 2 the arcade game for both the NES and the Arcade version. This game really gave me my love for the beat ’em up genre. You’ll also get access to Turtles 3 the Manhatten Project which is still one of my favorite titles on the NES as a whole.
This collection also includes Turtles in Time, both the SNES and Arcade versions. You also get The Hyperstone Heist which was originally released on the Sega Genesis.
Beyond several of the best beat ’em up games from the Ninja Turtles series, you also get several other classic titles from the Game Boy, NES, and Tournament Fighters games as well. Several also have online functionality where you can play with others across the world!
There are even more quality-of-life enhancements like removing screen flickering, saving anytime, rewinding, artwork, and much more. With all these enhancements and access to the best versions of these classic beat ’em up games, the Cowabunga Collection is definitely one of the best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up Games available right now.
12. Double Dragon Gaiden
Double Dragon Gaiden, is one of the latest entries in the long-running Double Dragon series. This time it takes the classic beat ’em up action and combines it with some roguelike elements for a unique experience.
There are a variety of heroes to choose from each with their own play style and abilities as you take on evil gangs trying to take over the city. You’ll play as two heroes at once and can tag team between them.
Another change to the series is that you don’t play through a linear campaign, but you’ll have a stage-select option. After each level, you’ll choose another stage and each stage gets progressively more challenging.
On top of that after each level, you’ll be able to spend money on powerups for your character. This really adds to the replay value as each time through you can take on a different path.
You’ll also gather coins that you can spend on unlockables like new characters, soundtracks, and much more. The game features local co-op as well and is a ton of fun. If you like classic beat ’em ups with some modern enhancements, you’ll enjoy Double Dragon Gaiden. It certainly makes the list for one of the best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up Games.
13. Full Metal Furies
Full Metal Furies is an action RPG meets beat ’em up and is another one of the Best Nintendo Switch Beat ‘Em Up Games. The game has an over-the-top sense of humor to it and you’ll play as 4 female warriors known as the Furies. You’ll be on a quest to take out the evil Titans that are terrorizing the land in a sort of World War 2 like world.
What is especially interesting in this Switch Beat ‘Em Up is that your characters actually play quite differently than each other. One character is a sniper, another wields a big hammer, another has a huge shield that smashes into enemies, and another has rapid-fire guns and special tech to damage enemies.
On top of that, there is a huge map to explore with many stages and hidden secrets to discover within many of the stages. You can play as a single player controlling two of the Furies, or up to 4 in multiplayer each controlling different characters.
Combat is a typical beat ’em up but sometimes enemies have shields of a color that matches one of your characters. This means to hurt them you need to attack them with that specific character. This adds an extra layer of challenge to the combat to keep you on your toes.
There is also an addicting RPG element to the game. Your characters can unlock a skill tree with gold you acquire from defeating enemies in stages. This gives you access to power up your character’s stats. You can improve things like HP and Strength but also unlocks character-specific abilities. If you are looking for another super fun Switch Beat ‘Em Up game this is one of the best!
14. River City Girls 2
The sequel to River City Girls is yet again another amazing beat ’em up and definitely ranks as one of the Best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up Games. This game takes place immediately after the events of the first game where you will play as Kyoko and Misako and their boyfriends. You’ll go on a quest to stop Yakuza gangs from taking over the city.
You’ll fight your way through waves of enemies and challenging boss fights in this beat ’em up meets RPG. Your characters will level up and get more powerful, but you can also buy lots of food and items that increase your base stats.
It’s fun trying to discover all the shops hidden around the city and learning how each item increases your abilities. Dojos also make an appearance, where you will be able to learn new moves and combos for your characters. Each character also has a slightly different play style and move set, which adds to the replay value when you try and beat the game as them all.
The game also has somewhat of an open-world feel to it. You don’t have to go on a straight linear path in each zone and there are plenty of side quests and secrets to discover along the way.
River City Grils 2 takes all of the great aspects of the original and expands upon it. It is by far one of the best Switch Beat ’em Ups to date!
15. River City Saga: Three Kingdoms
River City Saga: Three Kingdoms is an interesting game that combines classic beat ’em up action with some RPG elements and melds that with the ancient story of Romance of The Three Kingdoms. You’ll play as different generals as they lead their armies against each other in an all-out war.
You’ll explore a vast countryside visiting many villages and taking on enemies like the Yellow Turban army and more. This game has a variety of shops where you can buy new abilities and armor.
On top of that, the game has a very robust level-up system where you can allocate your stat improvements into several areas. This gives you a great degree of customization on how you want to build your character to fit your playstyle.
There’s a pretty lengthy main storyline, but also many side quests you can find throughout your journey. It feels like an early title in the River City series like River City Ransom, but in a new setting and with many quality-of-life improvements.
If you like classic beat ’em ups and action RPGs this game is one of the best beat ’em ups on Nintendo Switch.
Conclusion – The Best Nintendo Switch Beat ‘Em Up Games
Overall, the Nintendo Switch is a great system for beat ’em up games. A lot of classics like Double Dragon, Ninja Turtles, and the River City Series make their return with new entries.
Today’s beat ’em up games have come a long way featuring online play, roguelike elements, RPG elements, and more. Some are a throwback to classics from the 80’s and 90’s while others really modernize the gameplay.
The Nintendo Switch has a lot of beat ’em up games to choose from and hopefully, you enjoyed our list of the best Nintendo Switch Beat ’em Up Games. Let us know if we missed any games that should be on our list!