My Nintendo Switch Year in Review 2021

Before we go over my Nintendo Switch habits for 2021, let’s first go back to 2020. We were in the height of the pandemic. There was nothing else to do but to stay indoors and play video games. My girlfriend and I spent many hours beating Overcooked 1 & 2, we raced against strangers all over the globe online in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, and we played tons of Splatoon 2. I also spent about 300 hours building my island in Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

This year’s Nintendo gaming stats were not as intense. In 2020, I was leaving my PlayStation 4 Pro back home while using my Switch on weekends at my girlfriend’s apartment — I later started bringing my PS4 with me on most weekends. In 2020, we spent many weekends indoors playing games, watching baking shows and baking our own sweet treats. In March of 2021, I picked up my PlayStation 5, and that has lived at my girlfriend’s apartment ever since. So, many of my nightly gaming hours in 2021 were spent on my PlayStation 5.

I still did manage to put a solid amount of time into the Switch this year:

Hours played, games played & top game hours

In 2021, I spent a total of 323 hours playing Nintendo Switch. That’s less than half of my 2020 total time (834 hours). According to my 2020 stats, I had put 300 hours into Animal Crossing: New Horizons alone — which is only about one full day less than my total count in 2021.

I did manage to play more games overall this year. Last year, I had played a total of 58 games, but with reviews, previews and more specific game articles to write for myVGBC.com I ended up playing 82 games this year on the Nintendo Switch. Can I get to 100 games next year?

Most played game(s) this year and last

Animal Crossing: New Horizons was still my top game, but only at 56 total hours. I played a bunch in the beginning of the year, then dropped off and came back towards the end of the year with the new updates. I did manage to play way less hours than last year, but in 2020 I built my whole island and completed the main game. 2021 was more of a maintenance and updates to my island (The Isle of Ferdington).

Most active day

The other two games I put the most time into in 2021 were Ori and the Will of the Wisps (27 hours) and KEMONO FRIENDS PICROSS (18 hours). Two games I beat in 2021. I played the original Ori and the Blind Forest on PC, because I didn’t know if it would ever come to Switch or PlayStation, but after it did come to Switch I decided to wait for the sequel.

I have spent many time beating the PICROSS series of games over the past two or three years. There are still one or two which I haven’t purchased yet, but I like to hold out so there’s always at least one game in case I get that PICROSS craving.

Hours played, by month

This year, my Switch gaming wasn’t very consistent by month. There were a few bigger months, January (42) and May (39). I managed to break 30 hours in half of the months of the year, with my two lowest months being September at 8 total hours and December at 10 — December was not fully accounted for though, since this email was sent to me about two weeks ago.

Although I had less hours overall and low hours in certain months, I still managed to play my Nintendo Switch most days. Even though that wasn’t a stat they gave us, “How many days did you play your Switch?” I would say I definitely played or turned on my Nintendo Switch more than 350 days in 2021. I pretty much turn on my Switch and play at least a few minutes of something in bed every single night, even when traveling.

Handheld vs Docked mode

The past two years I have “preferred” to play my Nintendo Switch in handheld mode. They call it tabletop/handheld mode, but I have rarely ever played in Tabletop mode with the kickstand. Playing in Handheld mode usually means I’m playing on the couch while watching something or I’m in bed playing before I fall asleep.

I did manage to get a good amount of hours on docked mode — my true preferred mode. While handheld mode works great, there is a significant difference when playing docked with a Pro controller. It just feels better to have larger buttons and better joysticks. Handheld mode does work great but there are certain games that you just can’t play in handheld mode (games like Olli Olli 1 & 2 and others that rely on the joysticks).


I love that Nintendo and other companies are sending us these yearly wrap-ups now. It would be neat if they were more customizable. They have so much more of our gaming data that they aren’t sharing with us. It would be cool to find out specific stats for specific games or compare yourself to friends.

We’ll be back with a PlayStation Year in Review 2021 post when they send their email over.
What was your year with your Nintendo Switch like? Did anyone beat their 2020 stats?

2 thoughts on “My Nintendo Switch Year in Review 2021

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