Let’s not sugarcoat it: 2020 has been bombarding us with bad news left and right. Which is why, we can’t help but turn to our Nintendo Switch for a dose of alternate virtual reality where life is mostly about tending to our farms, dressing up our characters in cute ‘fits, making friends with the villagers, and decorating our imaginary islands. Ah, life is good—at least virtually!
Need your own sweet escape? Below, we list down some fun, adorable games that will make you want to buy a Nintendo Switch ASAP (if you don’t already own one yet). These might just get your through this quarantine with a smile on your face!
1. Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Let’s start with the obvious! Animal Crossing: New Horizons was released in March 2020 and has sold five million digital copies in its first month alone, which is a record-breaking number in the history of Nintendo Switch. That itself is enough proof of just how addicting the game is. In a nutshell, you start off by moving to a deserted island, which you’re tasked to transform into a nice home for you and your 10 other villagers—you will do so by gathering materials, crafting, fishing, terraforming, and even catching bugs! Oh, and don’t forget to stay in style while you’re at it. The game is also famous among fashion girls for a reason.
2. Dragon Quest Builders 2
If you’re an RPG fan who’s into decorating your island and slaying enemies at the same time, Dragon Quest Builders 2 might just be your cup of tea. Similar to Animal Crossing, your adventure starts off with you being washed up on a remote island. As a “builder,” you’re able to survive and thrive by crafting items and going on adventures in order to bring back new villagers and resources that will make your island a livelier place compared to when you first started.
3. Stardew Valley
Described as an “open-ended country-life RPG,” there’s more to Stardew Valley than tending to farm life—although it’s a huge part of it as it’s admittedly heavily inspired by Harvest Moon, the original farming sim game that started it all. There’s also something quite charming about its pixelated SNES-style graphics. In this game, you are to restore Pelican Town back to its former glory. Turn your grandfather’s neglected plot of land into a thriving farm, raise livestock and grow crops, make friends with the villagers, and even build a family of your own—or, you know, get divorced if things don’t work out.
4. Rune Factory 4 Special
The game was originally released in 2012 for Nintendo 3DS, but given its cult following, it was relaunched and “remastered” for the Nintendo Switch platform in February 2020. If you’re into adventure RPGs and farming sims, you can have the best of both worlds with Rune Factory 4. Grow crops, raise monsters, go fishing, cook dishes, and craft powerful equipment to beat high-level bosses. There are also adorable bachelors/bachelorettes to choose from if you want to date around and get married while you’re at it! (No divorce option here though, sorry.)
5. Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town
This list wouldn’t be complete without Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town, the much-awaited remake of the OG Harvest Moon game beloved by farming sim fans. The English version is finally set to drop this July 2020 (the Japanese version was already released in October 2019)—and frankly, it’s a good enough reason to buy a Nintendo Switch if you haven’t yet. In this game, you’re transported to Mineral Town, a charming village that’s home to equally charming neighbors that you can befriend and—yup, you guessed it!—date. You know the drill: Tend to your farm and harvest fruits and veggies, raise livestock, go fishing, collect recipes and cook meals for yourself and the villagers, and live your best farmer life!
6. Doraemon: Story of Seasons
Are you a fan of the Japanese manga series Doraemon and the Story of Seasons franchise? Well, you're in luck because you can hit two birds with one stone by playing this cute farming sim game featuring Nobita Nobi and the whole gang. Here, you play the role of Noby and get sucked into a magic portal along with your friends to the town of Natura, where you have to get accustomed to farm life and prove yourself worthy as a valued citizen.