Nintendo did not quite beat the bar that was set in 2017, but it was a very tall bar.
2017 was a difficult act to follow for Nintendo. The release of the switch last year was accompanied by some of the best Mario and Zelda games each of their respective series has seen, in addition to the amazing Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. So it's not surprising that Nintendo had trouble meeting that bar in 201
In the special episode of NVC at the top of the page, we broke down the peaks and Lows of Nintendo's 2018 and you can continue reading to see some of the biggest highlights of the year.
Nintendo's biggest 2018 exclusive
Switch's first party series took a while to get started this year, with Kirby Star Allies being Nintendo's only remarkable new release in the first half. Games like Mario Tennis Aces and Super Mario Party did not arrive until 2018 was half finished and was nice enough, but just not at the same level as most 2017 exclusive.
But when the end of the year came, Nintendo got done strong with Pokemon Let's go and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The return of Smash was an exciting pleasure, and let's go well loved, despite being a simplified semi-spinoff from the usual Pokemon games.
Nintendo also launched cartons Labo toy set this year. They did not make a huge splash, but still gave a glimpse of an exciting different way to play Switch, which could be explored more in the future.
Outside first-rate titles, Octopath travelers gave fans a new and expansive JRPG on the switch earlier this year. Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate also gave Switch fans their own Monster Hunter games, the other consoles will play Monster Hunter World.
A Tide of Third Party Support
Other Developer's Tale, 2018, set the switch as the system of choice for indie games. Older classics like Darkest Dungeon, Wonder, Firewatch and an unimaginable amount of more were ported over, with many newer indies like Celeste, Into The Breach and Dead Cells coming closer to their global launches. The library is still growing and insanely impressive.
Larger developers come aboard with more Switch ports as well. Civilization 6 went over to Exchange this year, along with Diablo 3, Dark Souls Remastered and Fortnite – the last apparently being downloaded to half of all sold Switch systems.
Looking forward, it was even revealed that Mortal Kombat 11 will trade in 2019.
Nintendo Online Service Launches
After one and a half years of waiting, Switchen finally got its official online service, but it's not as strong as people were hoping. It includes a fairly limited and slow-growing library of NES games to play, but it's only a price tag of something that was previously free.
Certain games such as Warframe and Fortnite have also shown in 2018 that it is possible to ignore Nintendo's mobile speech app, and it is encouraging that people might not be forced to use it for every single online game that comes to Switch in the future.
After the release of the online service, IGN made an updated review of Switch in 2018. It's coming this year, although features like a Netflix app, a browser and the ability to customize the home screen are still missing.
Much more happened to Nintendo than this, so please watch the video at the top of the page to hear our longer thoughts. You can also always talk about Switch on Nintendo Voice Chat, our weekly Nintendo show, which flies Thursday at 3:00 AM. PT.
Tom Marks is IGN's PC Editor and Pie Maker. You can follow him on Twitter .