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access_time December 24, 2019 at 11:00 PM in Features by David Poole

PSA: Got a Switch Lite for Christmas? Check Your Game Compatibility!

It’s Christmas Eve, and while many are likely getting new Switch consoles this year, many are also probably getting the Switch Lite. With that being said, many people know about the handheld only model, but not everyone knows about the game compatibility. If you got a Switch Lite for Christmas and also received some games, make sure to know the compatibility before opening the game. Below is a list of games that are listed as incompatible with the Switch Lite. While they are listed as such, that doesn’t mean they aren’t playable, it’s just that they simply aren’t ideal.

Not Physically Compatible:

Nintendo Labo

Nintendo Labo is an awesome achievement for DIY projects for Nintendo Switch owners. The cardboard is surprisingly resilient, and it’s pretty fun crafting the various Toy-Cons. That being said, it was designed for the original Nintendo Switch. The Switch Lite is simply too small to fit in the cardboard set. An argument could be made that it would be playable with custom fitting and a separate set of Joy-Cons, but it really isn’t worth it.

Games without Handheld Mode:

Super Mario Party

Perhaps one of the more popular Switch titles, Super Mario Party is a blast with friends. That being said, the game will not work without using separate joy-cons. The game does have a few modes that allow multiplayer with multiple Switch consoles, but the main bulk of the game, the Party Mode, uses only one Switch. While it’s possible by getting up to two pairs of Joy-Cons, it’s not ideal playing on a 5.5″ screen.

Just Dance (2017-2021)

Another popular series, Just Dance has a release every year. It’s always fun to get up and dance to popular music, but you obviously can’t do this in handheld mode. You can buy separate Joy-Cons, but having to watch your dance moves on the small screen will likely mean you’ll miss most details. It’s likely much worse with six players.

Ring Fit Adventure

Like Just Dance, Ring Fit Adventure has players get active and moving. Using exercise to adventure off and fight monsters, this is a fun little fitness game. Also like Just Dance, it’s not a suitable game for playing on a 5.5″ screen. It’s probably safe to say though that if you bought a Switch Lite, you’re most likely not playing this.

Fitness Boxing (1 & 2)

Just like Ring Fit Adventure and Just Dance, Fitness Boxing needs separate Joy-Cons and involves watching the screen for movement instructions. Guess it’s really just safe to say that fitness titles are not ideal for the Switch Lite.

1-2 Switch

1-2 Switch is a pretty unorthodox game. It’s really not much interaction with looking at the screen. Pretty much all the games are going to involve looking at your opponent. It’s actually a game that you can ONLY play with multiplayer. While it can use separate Joy-Cons, this one comes down to the screen being too small. It’s also very possible that the mini-game, Baby, doesn’t work at all.

Games with Local Multiplayer on a Single Switch:

This is a list of games that can be played on the Switch Lite, but can only play multiplayer on the same Switch console. No need for any other explanations here. The only one worth mentioning is Super Mario Odyssey, as the multiplayer in that one is unconventional. One person plays as Mario and the other plays as Cappy to help Mario. It’s not the shining moment of the game, but it’s great for weening younger kids into gaming. All the other games on this list have great multiplayer gameplay.

New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe

Kirby: Star Allies

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

Snipperclips (Plus): Cut It Out, Together!

Fire Emblem Warriors

Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition

Super Mario Odyssey

Yoshi’s Crafted World

Rayman Legends: Definitive Edition


Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle

Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Let’s Go, Eevee!

Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Let’s Go, Eevee! are another special case. While these games do have multiplayer with more than one Switch console, they have a special co-op mode that is only playable on one. Battles and trading can definitely be fun with another player and their Switch, but if you want someone to join you on your adventure, then a Switch Lite may not be the best option.

There are definitely other titles that would qualify for this list, but these were some of the stronger ones. We’ll consider adding to the list if it proves useful to Switch Lite owners. We hope it helps new adopters before they open a game and void the return policy.


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