The Mini-Games of 1-2-Switch

One of the launch titles for the Nintendo Switch was 1-2-Switch.  It’s a party mini-game collection showing off the capabilities of the new console.  At first I wasn’t sure if I would get it, but after playing it at PAX South, I decided I would get it after all.  And since I like to write about mini-game collections, here is a blog about all the ones found in 1-2-Switch.

Before we get started, I will say that I think this should’ve been a pack-in game with the Switch, kind of like how Wii Sports was on the Wii.  I just don’t think it’s worth full price, especially since Breath of the Wild cost nearly the same amount.  I got the game thinking I could have fun playing it with family and friends, and I have, but I still don’t think I got my money’s worth from it.

Most of the games are for two players, but some are meant to be played with one person, or you can pass the controller around.  There is a mode called Team Battle where 2 to 20 people can compete in a selection of mini-games right in a row.  I’m lucky if I can get one friend to come over and play with me, much less 20!  Anyway, here are the 28 different mini-games you can play in 1-2-Switch


For nine years I worked at a customer service job where we were scored on how many phone calls we took that day.  So I got really good at answering the phone fast!  So I’m pretty good at this game, too.  Two people set their controllers down, and when they hear it ring, whoever picks up the controller the fastest and says “Hello” into it like a phone, wins.  Sometimes they mix it up and have you pick up the phone only for a certain ring tone!

Ball Count

This one really shows off the HD rumble capabilities of the Switch’s Joy-Cons.  You hold the controller like you are holding a little box with marbles inside.  By moving the virtual marbles about, you are tasked to guess how many balls are in the pretend box!  It works very well and is pretty amazing actually.  But it’s really the only time I’ve seen this effectively used on the Switch so far.  Whoever can guess the correct number of balls, wins.


You must hold a Yoga pose as long as you can without shaking.  Whoever shakes the most, loses.  It’s pretty boring and sounds like a leftover game from Wii Fit or aomething.

Treasure Chest

In most games they tell you to look at the other person in the eye, but in this game, it helps to look at the screen instead.  It has a pirate theme and you must move the controller around to unravel chains around a treasure chest.  Whoever unravels their chains completely off and opens the treasure first, wins.  Again, it helps to have this on the big screen so you can easily see what’s going on.


This one is hilarious.  You must hold the controller vertically with one hand and squeeze the buttons and pull down like you are milking a cow’s udder.  Whoever can fill the most glasses of milk by doing this, wins.  You must actually squeeze from the top and move down as you pull to get the most milk.  Some of my little brothers refused to play this with me, saying it made them feel a little uncomfortable.  It helps to look at the screen on this one, too, as it shows how much milk is coming out of the udder you are squeezing.  You know this isn’t the first game where you milked a cow.  I remember seeing a cow milking game in arcades where you had to squeeze the lit udders to get points for tickets.  It was basically a weirder version of Whack-A-Mole!

Safe Crack

Rotate the controller like you’re turning a safe dial.  When you feel it vibrate a little differently, hold it there and you’ll unlock a part of the combination.  Do it three times to open the safe.  Whoever can do this fastest, wins.

Quick Draw

This is the game that everyone has seen a demo of on TV or whatever.  It plays like how you think it would.  Hold the controller down at your side and when the game says “Fire,” point it at the other player and press the trigger button like a gun as fast as you can.  Whoever is the fastest draw, wins.  But it’s not just like some Kirby Quick Draw game, they are a bit more accurate with it.  You can get penalized if you are pointing too low or too high, and it’ll show how fast each person fired and the angle of their shot on the screen.

Samurai Training

One player holds their controller like a sword about to strike down, and the other tries to ‘catch’ it with their controller before it hits their head.  If the catcher succeeds, then you switch sides.  Whoever ‘hits’ the other player first, wins.

Sneaky Dice

Shake the controller like you’re holding a cup of dice and turn it upside down to roll.  The game will secretly tell each player the number that you rolled on the dice by vibrating that many times.  You can try and trick the other player into rolling again, and you can roll again up to three times.  But there’s more to it than that.  If you have doubles, you can still beat the other player even if you have a lesser number than them.  But you won’t be able to tell that just by vibration alone.  It’s a bit of a gamble, but it’s more fun than it actually sounds.

Signal Flags

This one has a nautical theme, and you hold your controller like you’re holding up two signal flags on a boat.  When you hear a female voice telling you which direction to point the flags, follow her exactly.  When you hear a male voice barking orders, do the opposite of what he says, so it can be a bit tricky.  Whoever makes the least mistakes at the end of the drill, wins.  For some reason, this game made me think of Space Channel 5. Up, down, up, down (chu, chu, chu).

Soda Shake

Players take turns passing around one controller, and shaking it like a closed soda bottle.  You can feel the controller rumbling like there’s fizz in it.  I would say that whoever has the soda bottle and shakes it and makes it pop loses, but the screen just says “Celebration” when it does that, so I’m not really sure.  Looks like just another variation of Hot Potato to me.


I never thought I’d hear the words “Shaving Contest” in a video game, or ever.  In this one you move the controller around your face like it’s an electric razor.  The controller will vibrate more when you are shaving hair, so you use that to tell where you have left to shave on your face.  Whoever can shave all the hair off first, wins.  Or if the time runs out, whoever shaves the most, wins.  I must have a weird shaped head or something because I had to move the controller up to my eyeball to shave.  I imagine this game would be kind of weird to play if you are a lady, too.

Joy-Con Rotation

Both players set their controllers on its side, then take turns carefully picking them up and rotating them.  You can put the controller down at any time to earn points, but you must be careful because if your movements become too shaky, you’ll lose the points earned from the rotation!  Do this a few times and whoever gets the high score, wins.

Table Tennis

You swing the controllers like you’re playing a game of table tennis.  But here’s the catch.  You can’t see what’s happening on the screen.  You must use your ears and guess the rhythm of how the ball is bouncing on the table to know when to swing.  I had a hard time with this one.  I can’t even play table tennis well even when I can see what’s going on!


It’s a single player game, and one of the few where you must attach the controllers to the screen.  A picture of a baby is on the screen and you must cradle the Switch and rock it like a baby until it stops crying.  And then you gently set it down for it to go to sleep.  Definitely one of the weirdest games on here.  It reminds me of Babysitting Mama, a game on the Wii.  That game came with a plush baby doll and you stuffed the Wii remote inside it and rocked the baby in the game while the speaker on the Wii remote made baby sounds.  It was definitely one of the strangest games in the Cooking Mama series and also one of the weirdest games on the Wii, too!

Fake Draw

It’s just like Quick Draw except they’ll try to trick you by saying words like “Flowers,” or “Fly Paper.”  You must only fire your gun when you hear the word “Fire.”


One player pitches and the other swings in a couple of innings of baseball.  The pitcher can push buttons to throw curveballs and fastballs and such, and the batter must listen and feel as the ball wizzes by to know when to swing.

Eating Contest

You know how when they first presented the Switch, they said that one of the controllers has a camera that can read basic shapes and such?  Well I think this game uses that capability.  It’s another single player game, and you hold the controller near your mouth with it open (don’t eat the controller).  Then when the game starts, flap your mouth like you’re eating as fast as you can, and the game will read that as bites of sandwiches.  Try to eat as many sandwiches as you can this way.  Definitely one of the weirder games on this collection.

Beach Flag

First you must wave your controller like you’re running really fast.  Once the game tells you you’re at the flag, make a pulling up motion with the controller to pull up the flag first and win!


All you Harry Potter fans can make your wizard battling fantasies come true!  Each player waves their controller around like a lasso to charge up energy, then thrusts it forward like a magic wand to release a magical blast.  You can thrust forward even more to push back the other player’s energy, but they can also counterattack.  Whoever ends up zapping the other player, wins.

Sword Fight

Swing your sword around to land hits on the other player, and you can block hits, too.  Whoever lands the most hits at the end of the round, wins.

Boxing Gym

A boxing coach tells you certain punches to make, like jabs, uppercuts, and hooks, and you must hit a punching bag with the correct punch before the other player.  This is definitely one game that you want to stay as far apart from the other player so you don’t hit them!  The neat thing is that after you do this, the game will show you what it would look like if it were a real boxing match, and whoever lands the most correct hits fastest, wins.

Plate Spin

In this circus themed game, hold the controller like you’re spinning a plate on a stick.  Try to keep your plate spinning longer than the other player, taking care that it doesn’t fall off!

Copy Dance

Players take turns dancing while the other copies their movements.  The game rates you on your rhythm and performance.  One of the reasons why I’m not a big fan of motion controls is that it’s hard to know how the game judges your performance this way.  But whoever gets the higher score, wins.


Walk across the room like you’re on stage at a fashion show.  Put your hands (and controller) on your hips and strut from one side of the room to another as you pass your opponent doing the same thing.  Then you meet in the middle again and do poses.  The game rates your movements like in the dance game to declare a winner.

Air Guitar

Wave your controller like you’re strumming a guitar at a rock concert, and the game will rate you on how well you strummed to the rhythm and your showmanship.  Whoever has the highest score is a rock god!

Dance Off

This one is similar to Copy Dance except you’re not copying each other’s moves.  It’s more about moving to the beat of the rhythm of the music.


Hold your controller and beat your chest to the rhythm of the music to win the favor of a female gorilla.  It’s a bit creepy in its presentation of that.

And those are all the games in 1-2-Switch.  Let me know what you think?  Is the game worth it?  Any favorite mini-games?  Let me know in the comments section!  Later!  –Cary

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