Dark Souls On The Nintendo Switch: Is It Worth Playing?

Ever since its original release in 2011, the Dark Souls series has earned a reputation for being one of the most challenging yet rewarding action RPG franchises out there. Its precise combat, labyrinthine worlds, and minimal hand-holding have made Dark Souls a favorite among hardcore gamers.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Yes, Dark Souls is absolutely worth playing on the Nintendo Switch. While there are some technical downgrades, the ability to play Dark Souls portably outweighs minor graphical issues.

History of Dark Souls on Nintendo

Original Dark Souls released on Switch in 2018

The original Dark Souls game made its debut on the Nintendo Switch in 2018, marking a significant milestone for the franchise. Bringing this critically acclaimed series to the popular portable console allowed players to experience the challenging and immersive world of Dark Souls on the go.

The game received positive reviews from both fans and critics, praising its faithful adaptation to the Switch platform and the ability to play it anytime, anywhere.

Dark Souls Remastered came in 2019

In 2019, Nintendo Switch players were treated to Dark Souls Remastered, an enhanced version of the original game. This remastered edition brought improved visuals, performance, and additional content to the table, providing an even more refined experience for fans of the series.

With the release of Dark Souls Remastered, Nintendo Switch owners were able to delve into the intricate lore, challenging gameplay, and atmospheric world of Dark Souls in stunning detail.

Critically acclaimed series from developer FromSoftware

Dark Souls is developed by FromSoftware, a renowned Japanese game developer known for their exceptional craftsmanship and attention to detail. The series has garnered a dedicated fan base over the years, with each installment pushing the boundaries of what is possible in terms of challenging combat and immersive storytelling.

FromSoftware’s commitment to creating memorable and atmospheric experiences has solidified Dark Souls as one of the most critically acclaimed series in the gaming industry.

Known for tough but fair combat and world design

One of the defining features of the Dark Souls series is its tough but fair combat and meticulously designed world. Players are thrown into a dark and unforgiving environment, where every enemy encounter and obstacle presents a significant challenge.

However, the game’s mechanics and level design ensure that success is attainable with perseverance and skill. This unique blend of difficulty and fairness has garnered praise from players and critics alike, creating a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction when overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles.

Technical Performance on Switch

When it comes to the technical performance of Dark Souls on the Nintendo Switch, there are a few key aspects to consider. Let’s take a closer look at each of them:

Lower resolution compared to other platforms

One of the noticeable differences between the Switch version of Dark Souls and other platforms is the lower resolution. While the game still looks impressive on the Switch’s handheld mode, it does suffer from a slight downgrade in graphical fidelity when compared to its counterparts on other consoles or PC.

However, it’s important to note that this is a compromise made to ensure smooth gameplay on the Switch’s hardware.

Framerate capped at 30 FPS

Another aspect to consider is the framerate, which is capped at 30 frames per second (FPS) on the Switch. While some players may prefer a higher framerate for a more fluid experience, it’s worth mentioning that Dark Souls’ challenging gameplay doesn’t necessarily require a higher FPS to be enjoyable.

The game still retains its intense combat mechanics and atmospheric exploration, even with the lower framerate.

Long load times between areas

One drawback of playing Dark Souls on the Switch is the longer load times between different areas. This is especially noticeable when compared to the faster loading times on other platforms. However, it’s important to keep in mind that the immersive world of Dark Souls encourages exploration, and these load times provide an opportunity to take a breather and strategize for the challenges ahead.

Portability enables gameplay anywhere

A major advantage of playing Dark Souls on the Nintendo Switch is the portability it offers. Being able to take the game with you anywhere and play it on the go is a fantastic feature for fans of the series.

Whether you’re commuting to work, traveling, or simply lounging at home, having the ability to dive into the world of Dark Souls at any time is a great convenience that the Switch provides.

Gameplay Differences on Switch

Identical challenging combat and level design

One of the biggest reasons why Dark Souls has gained such a dedicated following is its challenging combat and intricate level design. Fortunately, Nintendo Switch players can expect the same intense and satisfying gameplay experience.

Whether you’re facing off against intimidating bosses or exploring the treacherous landscapes, the Switch version stays true to the game’s reputation for being tough but fair.

Local wireless multiplayer for co-op and PvP

One exciting feature that the Nintendo Switch version offers is local wireless multiplayer. This means that you can team up with a friend or challenge them to a PvP (Player vs. Player) duel without the need for an internet connection.

It’s a great way to experience Dark Souls with friends, whether you’re working together to overcome tough enemies or engaging in intense battles for supremacy.

Motion controls for aiming bows and catalysts

The Nintendo Switch’s unique Joy-Con controllers also bring a new element to Dark Souls gameplay with their motion controls. Using the motion controls, players can aim their bows or catalysts by physically moving the controller.

This adds a level of immersion and precision to the gameplay, making it feel more interactive and engaging.

amiibo support unlocks special headgear

For those who enjoy collecting and using amiibo figures, the Nintendo Switch version of Dark Souls offers amiibo support. By scanning compatible amiibo, players can unlock special headgear to customize their character’s appearance.

This adds a fun and collectible aspect to the game, allowing players to show off their unique style in their journey through the challenging world of Dark Souls.

Is Dark Souls Playable on Switch?

Dark Souls, the critically acclaimed action role-playing game known for its challenging gameplay and immersive world, has made its way onto the Nintendo Switch. Many fans were skeptical about how the game would translate to the portable console, but overall, the experience has been surprisingly positive.

Definitive Dark Souls experience preserved

Despite being played on a handheld device, the Nintendo Switch version of Dark Souls manages to retain the same core experience as its counterparts on other platforms. The challenging combat, intricate level design, and atmospheric storytelling are all present and accounted for.

Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or a newcomer to the series, you’ll find the same depth and satisfaction that fans have come to expect from Dark Souls.

Technical compromises don’t detract much

Of course, there are some technical compromises that had to be made to bring Dark Souls to the Switch. The graphics have been slightly scaled back, and the game runs at a lower resolution compared to other platforms.

However, these compromises are hardly noticeable when you’re engrossed in the intense gameplay. The art direction and attention to detail still shine through, making for a visually impressive experience even on the smaller screen of the Switch.

Portability makes up for limitations

One of the biggest advantages of playing Dark Souls on the Switch is its portability. Being able to take the game on the go and play it anytime, anywhere adds a new level of convenience and flexibility to the experience.

Whether you’re on a long commute or simply lounging in bed, you can dive into the world of Dark Souls whenever the mood strikes. This portability factor alone makes it worth considering for fans of the series.

Good option for newcomers and veterans

Whether you’re a die-hard Dark Souls fan or someone who’s never played the game before, the Nintendo Switch version is a great option. For newcomers, the game offers a chance to experience the legendary difficulty and rewarding gameplay for the first time.

For veterans, it provides an opportunity to revisit the beloved world of Lordran in a new and portable way.

The Verdict: Absolutely Worth Playing

Dark Souls on the Nintendo Switch is a game that is definitely worth playing. Despite some minor graphical downgrades compared to other versions, the overall experience remains intact and immersive.

Minor graphical downgrades don’t ruin the experience

While it’s true that Dark Souls on the Nintendo Switch may not look as visually stunning as its counterparts on more powerful consoles, the game’s atmospheric design and intricate level layouts still shine through.

The minor graphical downgrades do not significantly impact the overall gameplay or enjoyment of the game.

Challenging and precise combat shines through

The heart and soul of Dark Souls lies in its challenging and precise combat mechanics, and these elements are preserved flawlessly on the Nintendo Switch. Whether you’re facing off against powerful bosses or engaging in intense PvP battles, the gameplay remains as satisfying and demanding as ever.

Having Dark Souls truly portable is game-changing

One of the biggest advantages of playing Dark Souls on the Nintendo Switch is the ability to take the game with you wherever you go. The console’s portability allows you to delve into the dark and unforgiving world of Lordran anytime and anywhere, making the experience even more immersive and addictive.

Ideal way to play for first-timers and returning fans

Whether you’re a newcomer to the series or a seasoned Dark Souls veteran, the Nintendo Switch version offers an ideal way to experience the game. For first-timers, the portable nature of the console allows for shorter play sessions, making it easier to grasp the game’s mechanics and overcome challenges at a steady pace.

Returning fans, on the other hand, can relive the adventure on the go and discover new secrets and strategies.


In conclusion, Dark Souls is absolutely worth playing on the Nintendo Switch, even with some graphical compromises. The distinctive Dark Souls gameplay remains intact, and being able to take the game anywhere thanks to the Switch’s portability is a huge benefit.

As long as you don’t mind some technical downgrades in exchange for untethered gameplay, Dark Souls on Switch is a must-play title.

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