Best Niche Video Games (Updated 2022)


The video game industry, ever since the crisis that occurred into 2020, has sustained a success like no other. Further, the old gen consoles are slowly leaving the market as new, better games continue to be developed on the recently-released PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S. New games offer more flexibility, characters, elements, features, and impeccable graphics.

There are numerous ways in which you could classify the best niche video games. Video game fans are always in discussions trying to crown one game as the best. However, one’s dull experience is another’s transcendent awakening, making it hard to narrow down to the best niche video game. Besides, we all have different tastes. You might be looking out for a dreadful and thrilling game, while someone else wants a peaceful game which enhances their creativity.

As such, there is no one-size-fits-all. Therefore, rather than crowning one set of games as the best, we have a comprehensive list of the ten best niche video games, and for a good reason. Under each game is an in-depth review and key features of the game. Hopefully, our list of the best niche video games brings you pleasure. Before diving in, let us briefly discuss factors that make a video game great.

If you have been playing Animal Crossing games, you probably have an idea of what to expect, but not this time. Nintendo Switch has taken time to craft New Horizons, ensuring it meets fans’ expectations. New Horizons is more than a remake. It is an extension of every game that exists, which will hook you.

While the game theme may feel familiar, especially in terms of graphics and the theme, the gentle life sim the game features is better and more engaging. Unlike the famous traditional town setting with Nintendo Switch games, New Horizons is based on a small island, which is previously inhabited. The game begins when you are in the middle, with merely a tent and nick-hacks, So you have to be creative to fit in and thrive. New Horizons suits two play modes- casual mode, and intense sessions.

You get a chance to advance your home with building, hunting, etc. But you can now unlock the power to change the landscape by terraforming, adding longevity to the game. New Horizon plays in actual time, with the actual world-date and time on the lower left of the screen. Time also determines what you hunt, giving the game a realistic touch. Once you handle the simple challenges, more features and controls get handed to you by Tom Nook.

Key Features

  • New reward scheme-Nook Miles
  • Ability to unlock better features as you progress
  • Supports TV. Tabletop and Handheld modes
  • The game has a realistic touch as it plays in real-time
  • Supports up to 8 players

  • Exciting, fun and engaging
  • Significantly improved crafting system
  • Cute cartoony characters
  • Cute cartoony characters Good graphics which make the game more enjoyable

  • There is only one island, which means you have to share
  • Lacks cloud save hence doesn’t back up your progress when switching

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Animal Crossing: New Horizons

The Origami King found a new, better, and intelligent angle to advance Paper Mario. In this game series, Mario is out against a full army of origami adversaries who try with all their might to bring him along to their fold. Paper Mario has refurbished the gameplay. Unlike when the game used single-use stickers/cards, and a regular combat plane, the new game now uses a circular arena.

Another way the game differs from other Paper Mario games is by doing away with individual levels. The game now recognizes one big over the world, giving the game better change and a sense of continuity. The game has self-contained world puzzles, a significant improvement from the initial color splash. Before, you needed thing cards to make progress, and the cards were hidden strategically around the world. Now, you are rewarded based on being logical and observant instead of discovering the right points.

Your progress remains linear and signposted. So, you only have access to one destination at a time. While backtracking isn’t included and limits you to using Toad Town, there are many great destinations that ensure there is a lot left to do. Paper Mario the Origami King is a charm, especially when it comes to exploring the world. It is fun, primarily because of the ever-changing landscape.

Key Features

  • A wide array of puzzles and combats
  • Ring-based battles
  • Player’s arm-extending 1000x foldability
  • Ability to explore the entire world
  • Requires good puzzle-solving skills as well as quick wit

  • FInely tuned grid based battles
  • Hilarious characters
  • Excellent visuals and soundtracks
  • Innovative boss battles
  • A wide array of puzzles and combats

  • Platforming lacks precision
  • Puzzle-centric battle design may feel one-dimensional

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Paper Mario: The Origami King (Nintendo Switch)

The world holds the notion that art is only for talented or gifted. Dreams defies this notion and offers the player a chance to explore and feel artistic- be it in music or art. So, the game starts with a tutorial, which is meant to talking you into believing in your ability. While playing, you have unlimited access to assets- characters and elements you can alter to your liking.

To boost the user’s confidence in their ability, Dream producer, Media Molecule, adds features to the akin campaign. In it is a story of a band bass player who fell out with the band. The story depicts relatable how hard being an artist is. It is a journey clouded with self-doubt and hatred. As an aspiring artist, you will find the story relatable and authentic.

Its genres and mechanics keep changing depending on the level making it more exciting. The story is experimental yet bold as it tells a complicated story. Like any other Media Molecule game, Dream is full of playfulness, which adds joy to the story. It has a lush and ethereal art story, which makes the game appear painted.

Based on art, the game offers you a chance to combine different scenes to form a package. It is versatile enough to

Key Features

  • A beautiful and relatable story which inspires upcoming artists
  • Gives the player customizing ability
  • Allows you to upload elements
  • The story encourages creativity through every turn
  • Well-crafted tutorials which are fun and engaging to watch

  • Limitless creative freedom
  • Comprehensive tutorials
  • Magnificent presentation throughout
  • DreamSurfing is amazing

  • Fiddly controls at times
  • Homespace adds less

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If you would love to play a game that makes you feel like a demigod, DOOM Eternal is the game for you. It turns your fantasy into reality, all while inflating your ego through the Demon from Hell. As the second version of DOOM, the Eternal version takes up everything good from its predecessor. The mid-air Eternal’s addition and innovated multiplayer mode make it more thrilling.

The single-player mode provides the best first-person shooting experience you will get compared to other games. Enjoy the extensive armory of weapons ranging from combat shotgun and Ballista to the destructive rocket launcher. As you continue playing, you learn how to play smarter, faster, and more efficiently. Also, the numerous options at each stage help you fight according to your preferred style.

The multiplayer Battle mode will show you what each playable Demon can do for you. However, the Battle mode’s catch is finding out how best to test each Demon’s skill ability. The game’s full package is professionally crafted in both its technical and design. If you like a challenge, you will enjoy how, when you get closer to victory, the more intense the fight gets. DOOM Eternal brings back the idea of Glory kill and further expands it, leaving you with one way to regain ammo, health, and armor.

Key Features

  • Unbeatable shooting experience
  • Upgraded weapons mod
  • Improved combat system
  • Increased mobility compared to DOOM
  • Environmental puzzles add to the fun

  • Impressive first-shooting experience
  • Rhythmic gameplay at a high pace due to increased player mobility
  • The plot offers a mix of nostalgia and humor
  • Delivers the player’s Doom-slayer fantasy
  • Inclusive of several breathtakingly epic well-designed scenes

  • The early tutorials can be momentum sapping
  • Slightly too long

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DOOM Eternal: Standard Edition- PlayStation 4

Straight from the box, this game will wow you. It is among the most impressive looking games, even from a technical perspective. Ghost of Tsushima is half moody, half idyllic, making it both bloody and serene. The game is based on a fictional tale and has fictional characters. However, it is based on a 1274 event when Engol Empire invaded Japan. Your role will be Tsuji, a Samurai, before realizing he can upgrade to deal with his enemies.

Tsuji wakes up on the battlefield and finds his people were massacred. He is then prompted to seek revenge in an old-fashioned way. The game is set pretty well, as it appears as a surface-level conflict. So, the plot unravels slowly alongside the player. The story unfolds in Japanese or English audio. Ghost of Tsushima boasts excellent graphics as even simple individual details. Its combat is similar to witches brew, yielding magical results. There are light attacks that deal with damage and handle slower strikes.

Extra stunts are what holds the combat system together, maintaining its interest. As a reward for your effort, as you complete more tasks, you unlock new swords that come with unique strengths against a weapon and move sets. The combat is fast, tactical, chaotic, and mimics a real fantasy of being a lone skilled Samurai.

Key Features

  • Four stances which make the game more challenging
  • Can run both on PlayStation 4 and PC with Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Or AMD FX-8320
  • Enemies have clear audio
  • Combat is chaotic, fast and tactical
  • The character gets more robust because of better techniques, making the game satisfying.

  • Unlike other games, you don’t need to grind sidequests
  • The game’s challenges are always fair
  • The combat is more tactical and less chaotic
  • Expanding abilities of Samurai offer more weapons other than swords

  • The Japanese audio doesn’t coordinate with the characters expression
  • Samurai’s stealth tools are rudimentary

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Having completed your mission, the Remake version will have you walk along the streets witnessing the aftermath. You get to see the dreadful consequences of your attacks- lost human life, crumbled building, and children’s cries. As you walk, a somber violin plays in the background. The sight will leave you questioning whether or not you are doing the right thing.

While the game is simply a first one in a yet unfolding chapter, its intent is point on. Final Fantasy VII aims to uncover hidden depths. Compared to its predecessor, it features better details that were previously unavailable. The game boldly tells a new story with confidence and a whole new fresh perspective. Its story has meaning and is essential, making it hard to imagine the story would be told in any other way.

Fantasy VII Remake has new features, and the pictures are more detailed as they are painted in colorful broad strokes. Unlike most games that the player needs to be a fan of the existing series, it is also enjoyable for new players. Both the narrative and characterization are put in a modern yet classical way. Thus, the gameplay model feels like a culmination of Franchise evolutions, but with new ideas that make it fresh, yet relatable.

The Remake allows your characters to choose actions you can take, such as casting spells. Featuring a hybrid style, you can easily slide between characters in a simple touch of a button.

Key Features

  • Unique gameplay model which combines modern and classical setting
  • Ability to slide between characters by merely touching a button
  • Single player
  • Hybrid gameplay system that blends real-time action with strategic, command-based combat
  • Ability to unleash limit breaks

  • Satisfying combat
  • Thrilling boss battles
  • Stunning performance and visuals
  • Over 40 hours campain

  • Red XIII is not playable
  • Normal isn’t challenging enough

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At the top of our list is a game that demands conflicted feelings. It boasts brilliant graphics, solid gameplay, and compelling acting. However, the story will give you second thoughts. The game will drain your emotional labor, and cause stress nightmares as you have to make extreme killings. You will have to kill dogs and women, making it emotionally burdening yet so powerful.

Protagonists Joel and Ellie appear real in a world where a brain infection wiped out most of the population-leaving zombies. Ellie is immune to the virus and seeks to develop a vaccine that later kills her. Forcing Joel to murder everyone in his way as he tries to save Ellie. The extreme extent that you, as Joel go to save Ellie, will leave you questioning your morals. Did you have to do all that? The Last of Us II follows up the perfect ending in part I.

It begins as a revenge story that ends after 24 hours of gameplay. It is burdening as you have to play as the stranger who killed your hero for 12 hours. These narrative choices yield the games brilliant results. The games bigger picture will draw you in the more you focus on it. The second game has new weapons, guns, characters, and enemies. Last of us, part II commits to a perpetual cycle of violence, leaving the player nauseated by the violence he or she commits.

Key Features

  • Tells a complex emotional story
  • Based on revenge with challenging character roles to play
  • Extreme violence which makes you question your morals
  • Built on survival gameplay
  • 1.02 requires approximately 81 GB of free space on the console’s hard drive
  • The box version of the game comes with 2 Blu-ray discs
  • You don’t need PS+ subscription to play the game
  • No, PC version

  • Impressive graphics
  • Proper mechanics and game environment
  • Great voice acting
  • Great voice acting

  • The characters appear to lose depth as the story unfolds
  • There isn’t much change in the gameplay

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You will be assuming the role of Itsuki, a young kid in modern-day Tokyo. Like any other kid, you will get along with a few friends and later get involved in a strange struggle. Itsuki fights mirages, hostile beings attacking Tokyo. The game takes you through different battles as you walk through dangerous spaces. Its uniqueness lies in the pop music theme playing in the background that relates to the events.

Exploiting the mirage’s weaknesses is the only way to have the upper hand in the game. By identifying and exploiting their vulnerability, your teammates can back you up with different attacks, turning it into a session. Through the mechanic, your teammates can stage multiple hits, strengthening the team’s friendship. Each character has a different class, which determines their ability and weapons they can use. However, the better you play, the stronger you get, and the more power you get to unlock special attacks.

The Mirage #FE expands its original game by adding new leveling dungeons, which help you raise skills and experience faster than before. There are also new costumes and aspiration dungeons for various characters. This Tokyo Mirage game is colorful and extremely anime with an outstanding aesthetic, making it similar to a persona game. It features a strong style with dungeon areas and battles loading faster.

Key Features

  • Option to trigger a chain reaction of attacks
  • Two play modes- television and portable mode
  • Engaging combat for wargames enthusiasts
  • Offers modern Japan fantasy
  • Emphasizes the power of friendship

  • Colourful and gorgeous visuals
  • Lovable characters
  • Challenging yet accessible story system
  • Engaging turn-based combat
  • All OG DLC included

  • Light story
  • Long dungeons

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Tokyo Mirage Session #FE (Nintendo Switch)

Street of Rage 4 has no similarities to its predecessors, which is a bold change. Instead of sharing the same atmosphere as the other Streets of Rage games, it has a new modern style. The Brawling of the game will meet your expectation, As you march to the right while pummeling anything standing on your way, you’ll find yourself in the 90s.

As for the characters, Axel returns, with a gnarly beard looking bulkier. Adam Hunter is also back fighting alongside Cherry, his daughter. The plot remains the same, fighting shady police and crime syndicates. There isn’t much change when it comes to the gameplay. You can now recover your health using a special, provided your interim isn’t hit. There is also a combo counter which encourages you to maintain your streak.

The characters feel distinct and are fun to use, making the game satisfying to play. Each character is endowed with basic attack skills and two special moves, one which drains your health, while the other needs rare stars to unlock.

Streets of Rage 4 feels more dynamic majorly because of the characters. They now have different play styles, each style suiting different players. Its encounter design is charming; the game is simple, yet exciting and captivating. Besides, you can also customize your gaming experience to more exquisite detail.

Key Features

  • 2 players online co-op, and up to 4 players locally
  • Beautiful graphics fully hand-drawn animated
  • 5 main playable characters
  • many unlockable retro characters
  • Setting mimics the 90s aesthetic
  • Strikes a balance between being colorful and gritty

  • Excellent soundtrack
  • Allows customization
  • Characters have new play styles
  • A new storyline which makes it easy for new players to the game

  • Limited defense options
  • There are spots where your opponents can get to weapons or areas that are limited to you

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Rather than feeling like a new game, Resident Evil 3 feels like an extension of Resident Evil 2, making it ideal for the predecessors’ fans. The mechanics and graphics of the game haven’t changed much, except for the characters. The Remake also uses over the shoulder third-person cameras.

It also features stronger undead ghoulies, and it also hands you weapons which, when struck, demand ammo, which is quite challenging to come by. So, it shares the same strengths as the two games before it. However, the center of the game’s interest comes when making scary jumps. The game best shows the terrifying creature designs, which get better as the mutated behemoths begin showing.

The fear the game instills is remarkable. The scenes and creatures are well executed. The giant brute is also well placed as he sends a sudden panic-stricken bolt through the spine as you play. If you are looking for a thrilling game with a little horror, you might find Resident Evil 3 hair-rising. There are numerous instances of abstract terror which you will find intriguing.

The game’s action is quite bloody and chaotic. There is a wet gruesome addition to the game. It boasts an urban though apocalyptic ride through hell, thus offering a better fleeting experience compared to Resident Evil 2.

Key Features

  • Comes with three character stickers
  • Well executed scenes
  • Offers the player ultimate thrill and fear
  • It tweaks the original game story
  • Fresh, highly-tactical distinctive gameplay

  • Publisher: Ubisoft
  • Genre: Action
  • Mode: Single player
  • Platform: PC and PlayStation 4
  • Rating: Mature

  • It is fun, scary and atmospheric
  • Impressive gameplay and graphics
  • Well-thought-out scenes
  • Flexible control system

  • Little puzzle elements
  • No longevity

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It’s hard to think of Grand Theft Auto as a niche title. And no doubt, at the times of their releases, they were not. However, with the release of Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy, it would surprisingly be considered a solid niche video game.

Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy, by concept, includes three remastered Grand Theft Auto titles, including Grand Theft Auto III, Vice City, and San Andreas. And this is really where it becomes niche. Not every gamer appreciates remasters, which leaves it up to those who do to pay great attention to this title, which includes three classic games, remastered to protection, for the price of one.

Although Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy was criticized at first for some glitchy elements, it is now a very complete package. Including the aforementioned games, Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy refines the great gameplay of the classic games and adds a fresh coat of paint to each of the games. Oddly, it gets stuck between that of a modern game and maintaining its visual style from the 2000s. However, there is consistency between the three in presentation.

Some may find it difficult to appreciate Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy, which is why it becomes a great niche game. For those with great nostalgia and much respect for remasters, Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy will undoubtedly act as one of the best niche games in recent memory.

Key Features

  • Includes GTA: Vice City, San Andreas, and III
  • Developed by Rockstar Games
  • Remasters each game
  • Preceded GTA V

  • ESRB: M
  • Platforms: Xbox One, PS4, Xbox Series S/X, PS5
  • Publishers: Rockstar

  • Gameplay remains fun as ever
  • Chaos is always entertaining
  • Graphics and presentation are much improved
  • Wraps three great games in one package

  • Remaster lacks identity in some ways

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Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy

Video games can be enticing and an excellent way to help you grow, but how do you identify a great niche video game?

Surprising Ways To Spot A Great Video Game

A good game should offer you the chance to keep trying even after failed attempts. A ticking clock isn’t dreary when you know you have a second chance at it. The willingness to try after defeat will unknowingly build your character. Most games have a media creation option.

When a game gives you a chance to make changes, improvements, or develop a new thing within the game gives you confidence in your skills. If you plan on buying a video game for your kid, as they grow old, they need to socialize and work together. A social element of a game enhances the child to be a team player and an excellent communicator. Both skills are relevant in the real world.

Having a game with a clear and exciting storyline will require concentration. It will enhance your imagination and present more exciting challenges, drawing you out of your comfort zone. Most children consider video games as an escape from reality, especially school. Most of them can comfortably sit for hours playing video games, but can barely concentrate in class. As such, a video game whose material, format and plot feels real and relevant is great for them. The game should not only be a way to pass time but also teach essential life skills.

Choice, Design, and Variety

A great game is one that offers a range of options. The availability of choices will leave you feeling powerful. With several features or elements to choose from, you become responsible for your fate when the game ends. Thus, motivating you and giving you ownership over the experience.

While the story, plot, and setting of a game are the most important aspects, a great video game should be beyond average design. The design makes the game more appealing and further draws players to concentrate on the game’s world. Playing the game in one mode, character, and unchangeable elements is boring. The best video game has a mix of action, adventure, strategy, building, and role-playing.

Some games are well suited for adults, as are some for children. Therefore, depending on age, you need to choose a great video game. For instance, some games are less challenging, and older kids may then lose interest in them. Others are quite difficult, and the kid may thus get frustrated when playing. Therefore, depending on who you are getting the game for, it is important to consider age.


Q: What makes a video game “niche”?

“Niche” video games are slightly self-explanatory in nature. However, it’s still hard to identify what video games are exactly niche. In any case, a niche video game is one that appeals to a specific group of gamers. It’s not that it’s otherwise bad or lacks in quality. It’s just that it doesn’t quite have the wide appeal that games with higher production values do.

Q: Are niche video games always retro?

Not at all. While retro games often appeal to niche gamers who don’t take as much of a liking to modern games, it’s not that niche gamers can’t find a space with modern games. For instance, Undertale has maintained a niche quality due to its focused appeal to gamers who appreciate quirkier dialogue and less common gameplay concepts.

Q: What are some games not considered niche?

To start off here, niche games don’t always make for great ones. Further, games that aren’t niche aren’t by any means bad. In fact, most widely popular game series would never be considered niche. For example, Nintendo’s most popular series, including Super Mario, Pokemon, and Legend of Zelda are hardly niche. Each have gameplay that have a very wide appeal and, further, each have sold tons of units.

Q: How much do niche games cost?

Niche games aren’t necessarily always indie games. As indie games are often at the low end of things price-wise, niche games can range in price. They can go anywhere from as low as $10, as an indie to game, to as high as $60, the standard price of any high production value video game.

Q: What console has the most niche video games?

This question is hard to answer, as this would largely be discovered by how many video games there were total on any given system. The PlayStation 2 has the most games in total, with nearly 4,000 in its catalogue. So, it is tempting to say that it is the PlayStation 2 with the most niche video games. However, it is entirely possible that any newer or older console, compared to the PS2, has more niche games.


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