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Darkest Nintendo Switch Games, Ranked

May 28, 2023

These are the darkest Nintendo games of all time.

Nintendo has a long-standing reputation for being strict about the content in their games, often censoring or toning down sensitive material to maintain their family-friendly image. Before the flop of the Wii U, they were pretty strict about letting third-party developers release games on their platforms, as they feared losing control over the content. However, after the massive financial blow of the Wii, Nintendo realized that it needed to relax its restrictions and entice more developers to release their titles on the Switch. This has opened up a new market for edgier and more mature games on a Nintendo console in what is a first for the company, broadening the appeal of the console.

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As a result, there are many games on the Nintendo Switch that can be quite disturbing at times. Nintendo's willingness to embrace these types of games on the Switch has been a welcome surprise to many gamers who had previously associated the console with more family-friendly fare. As a result, the Switch has become a more versatile platform, catering to a wider range of audiences.

Outlast is a first-person survival horror game that blew up upon launch. The game uses found footage taken by an investigative journalist called Miles Upshur who decides to explore a remote psychiatric hospital and uncover the sinister truth of the events that take place in it.

Armed only with a camera, his wits, and a good strong pair of legs, Miles must navigate through the dark and twisted halls of this desolate building. There are many nightmarish enemies that hunt the player down, with puzzles breaking up the flow of the gameplay.

Layers of Fear: Legacy is the definitive version of a first-person psychological horror game that puts players in the shoes of a painter who is slowly losing his mind as he strives to paint his magnum opus. As players explore the painter's mansion, they are confronted with twisted visions and hallucinations that blur the line between reality and madness.

The eerie atmosphere, haunting soundtrack, and clever use of visual storytelling establish Layers of Fear as one of the best titles in its genre. The Legacy edition is the definitive way to play this game, optimizing it for the Switch while adding the Inheritance DLC as well!

The Amnesia games are one of the most popular titles around, released during the time when Let's Plays were booming. While these games can be easily written off as being a jumpscare fest, the truth is that the game's great atmosphere and nerve-wracking atmosphere make them great displays of what the horror genre can produce.

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Both The Dark Descent and A Machine for Pigs are great games where players must use stealth to avoid spine-chilling abominations while solving puzzles to uncover the dark and twisted story. Only the bravest and most determined players will be able to power through this scary game, uncovering a captivating story along the way.

Little Nightmares 2 is a great sequel to the first game, building up on that indie game's breakout success. It's a creepy and atmospheric platformer where players take on the role of a young boy named Mono as he journeys through a dark and twisted world filled with grotesque creatures and eerie landscapes.

The game is a masterclass in visual storytelling, using haunting imagery and sound design to create a sense of unease in players. Little Nightmares 2 is a truly unforgettable experience, with a plot twist that will mess with anyone invested in the events of the first game.

Carrion is a unique metroidvania title that, in a subversion of video game tropes, allows players to control the monster for once. This reverse horror approach lets players hunt down humans, devouring them one by one as they clear rooms and gain more strength.

The retro-inspired graphics make its gore look almost stylistic at times. The game is far from easy, and a single misstep can lead to the monster getting gunned down in a flash, which is why hit-and-run tactics are encouraged for the majority of combat encounters in the game.

Darkest Dungeon is a turn-based RPG that puts players in charge of a team of adventurers as they explore dangerous dungeons and battle deadly monsters. The game is known for its punishing difficulty, as well as its unique stress mechanic, with players having to maintain both the health and mind of their party members as they explore nightmarish areas filled with torrid monstrosities.

With its gothic art style and Lovecraftian themes, Darkest Dungeon is a dark and challenging game that will test even the most skilled players. The game is certainly not for players who despise a brutal experience, especially if they get attached to their party members.

Blasphemous is a game absolutely dripping in atmosphere, with the horrific nature of the game's imagery being the most striking part of the experience. This 2D action-platformer game is set in a twisted world inspired by religious themes and motifs.

Players control a figure called The Penitent One as he battles hordes of grotesque enemies and disgusting bosses, with the game eliciting the gameplay feel of Soulslikes in this regard. The title is a ton of fun... when players aren't falling into insta-kill spike traps, that is.

Limbo is a side-scrolling game made by Playdead, the same developers who went on to make Inside. Just like this game Limbo also features a young boy as a playable character in a tense title that makes the most of its black-and-white aesthetic.

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Players of Inside shouldn't be surprised that death can be pretty brutal in this game too, actively discouraging the player from letting any harm come to the boy they control. The game's minimalist style, creepy atmosphere, and engaging puzzles make it a great example of what indie games are capable of.

Alien: Isolation is an amazing title that combines the best of survival horror and immersive sim design. Players step into the shoes of Amanda Ripley, daughter of the iconic Ellen Ripley, in an adventure set 15 years after the events of the first film in the series. The game first-person viewpoint immerses players in a setting that perfectly captures the dread and tension of the series.

Players must use stealth and cunning to evade a single, unstoppable Xenomorph as they make their way through the dark and claustrophobic corridors of the Sevastopol space station. With a terrifying AI-driven enemy, tense atmosphere, and stunning visuals, Alien: Isolation is a must-play for horror fans.

Inside is considered by many to be one of the greatest video games of all time, with this puzzle-platformer game adopting a show-don't-tell approach for its haunting and mysterious story. Players take control of a young boy as he journeys through a dark and dystopian world where violent and brutal deaths await him at every corner.

The game's muted visuals and eerie sound design create a sense of unease that sticks with players long after the game is over. With its thought-provoking narrative and unique gameplay, Inside is a game that players should definitely check, especially for its mind-blowing ending that will take most players by surprise.

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