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Games that need a performance patch on Switch 2

Posted on June 9, 2024 by in Features, Switch, Switch 2

Switch performance patch

Today, we’re looking at a bunch of high-profile Switch games and which ones would most benefit from a performance patch on the next console.

A little while back, a new rumor emerged that claimed a port of Breath of the Wild for Nintendo’s next console is in development. Though we aren’t sure of the specifics, the main reason to port this game would be to up the performance to 60 frames per second with even higher visual quality. This got us thinking: if games are getting performance patches on Switch 2, which of Nintendo’s first-party Switch games could use a boost? 

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Animal Crossing New Horizons performance patch

This one might seem confusing at first. Animal Crossing technically isn’t a game that requires 60 frames per second to feel smooth to play – 30 frames per second is fine, at least in theory. Unfortunately, its performance disappoints unless your island is barely decorated. The more furniture items and decorations you place around the island, the slower the frame rate. Some tightly-packed islands run at less than 10 frames per second, which makes the experience feel choppy and barely playable. Of course, this is arguably better than imposing an item limit on players’ islands, but it’d still be nice to play the game at full speed even if your island is packed with decorations. The original Animal Crossing on GameCube runs at 60 frames per second, so if you play that game and then switch to New Horizons, you will immediately notice a big reduction in performance.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 performance patch

This is perhaps the game that needs a performance patch most. Have you ever played Xenoblade Chronicles 2 in handheld mode? It’s rough, to say the least. The resolution is incredibly low, and the entire game looks blurry. It’s possible to get used to the blurry graphics, but switching between handheld Xenoblade 2 and say, Xenoblade 3 (which looks fine in handheld) will be a little jarring. There are occasional frame drops here and there, but nothing too major. Still, we’d love to play Xenoblade Chronicles 2 at a higher resolution in handheld mode. Maybe up it to 60 frames per second if it isn’t too much trouble?

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet aren’t bad games, but they’d be a whole lot better if they looked better and ran better. Each title targets 30 frames per second, but there are often frame drops that take the performance even lower. There were rumors of a graphics patch for Nintendo’s next console over a year ago, but those seem to have since died down. We think it’s more likely that a new Pokemon game releases on Switch 2 that runs better from the get-go, but Scarlet and Violet would absolutely benefit from a higher frame rate performance patch (and fewer glitches).

Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Tears of the Kingdom

Breath of the Wild performance patch

The biggest Zelda games on Switch run fine enough – but “fine enough” in this instance means 30 frames per second with occasional dips. As mentioned, there was previous a rumor indicating a development build of Breath of the Wild running at 60 frames per second on Switch 2, which is what encouraged us to write about performance patches in the first place. Even though Breath of the Wild released over eight years ago in 2017, playing it with a smooth frame rate would help it feel even more modern. The same goes for Tears of the Kingdom – this game really pushes the Switch to its limit, so there are occasionally frame drops specifically when using Ultrahand. We’d definitely love to see a performance patch for both of these games.

Kirby Star Allies

Kirby Star Allies performance patch

Of all the Kirby games on Switch, this is the one we think could most use a performance patch. The game targets 30 frames per second, and it’s actually the only modern Kirby side-scroller that doesn’t run at a full 60 frames per second. Some of the latter bosses also drop the frame rate even further – one boss in particular can reach 15 frames per second during certain attacks. Star Allies would feel a lot smoother to play with a performance boost, though we don’t this game will be a high priority if Nintendo does decide to issue performance patches for some of its best-selling titles. Kirby and the Forgotten Land would work great at 60 frames per second, though that game’s 30 frames per second are at least consistent.

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity

Hyrule Warriors Age of Calamity

If you’ve ever tried playing Age of Calamity in handheld mode with a second player, then you can definitely agree that this game is in need of a performance patch. It’s a little confusing since Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition generally holds its frame rate relatively well, but then this one has near-constant frame drops and targets 30 frames per second. Each character’s special move also tanks the frame rate even further in this game, especially if you’re playing in handheld mode or with a second player as we mentioned earlier. We think Age of Calamity would be much more fun to play with a performance boost.

What games do you think are in need of a performance patch on Switch 2? We don’t have official confirmation that this is a real thing, but some harmless speculation during an otherwise quiet time for Nintendo can’t hurt. If there are any games you think we missed here, feel free to let us know in the comments down below.

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