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Happy Brain with Dopamine Games on Nintendo Switch

You can aid the happiness of your brain by taking on activities that generate key experiences and chemicals:

  • Dopamine for motivation, learning and pleasure.
  • Oxytocin for trust and building relationships.
  • Serotonin for significance and importance.
  • Endorphins for euphoria and elation.

Without dopamine you can be subject to procrastination, low self-esteem, inability to focus and feelings of hopelessness. It's the chemical that can give you determination to accomplish goals, desires and needs.

Along with getting outside for exercise, eating well and nurturing conversations, video games can also help. Games that generate dopamine are those where you can complete repeating tasks, like Fortnite or Rocket League, which have a lot of chances to win or excel. Other games, like Animal Crossing or Adopt Me, offer the the feeling of a job well done. This is increased in games where you are doing this not only for yourself but for the group you are a part of, like playing in a team in Sea of Thieves, Apex Legends or Sky Children of Light, where new players also need help and kindness.

This list includes 27 games from the last 24 years, with 1,006 likes. They come from a range of different genres and play-styles and are all good games if you want to generate dopamine.

DetailsPlatform Details

PEGI Ratings: PEGI 3 to PEGI 16
ESRB Ratings: ESRB EVERYONE to ESRB TEEN
Australian Ratings: G to MA 15+
Genres: Action, Adventure, Brain Game, Collecting, Communication, Creative, Fighting, Narrative, Platform, Puzzle, Race, Rhythm, Role-Play, Sequencing, Shooting, Simulation, Sports, Stealth, Strategy and Traversal
Era: 1999 - 2022
Total Games: 27
Total Likes: 1,006
 

 

Rocket League

Release Date: 28/08/2018

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Drive futuristic cars to score goals with an oversized football. It’s another game that sounds ridiculous but is actually a huge amount of fun to play and requires a lot of expertise. What’s not obvious from the start is the level of control that...

Animal Crossing (Series)

Release Date: 14/12/2001, updated in 2020

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: Day and Night, Open World and Weather

You live on a small island teeming with life. Insects, fish, trees, vegetation and fossils are represented with cute cartoon visuals. Rather than the scale or grandeur of other game worlds, it’s the interconnected drama of the world and characters...

Towerfall

Release Date: 25/06/2013, updated in 2017

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS Vita, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

In Towerfall each player selects a pixelated knight and fights to eliminate opponents by shooting them with arrows or jumping on their heads. The arena is a single shared screen. What makes it so competitive is the limited resource of arrows and the...

Just Shapes & Beats

Release Date: 21/06/2018

Platforms: PC, PS4, Stadia and Switch

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Just Shapes & Beats is a two player rhythm game where you dodge bullets in time with the music. As well as this unusual premise, play extends the novelty as you have to both avoid the various shapes and move to the Beats. It’s a new spin on the shoot...

Fortnite

Release Date: 25/07/2017, updated in 2018

Platforms: Android, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: Open World

Fortnite (sometimes misspelled Fortnight) rose to popularity via its Battle Royale mode where 100 players fight against each other in online battles to the death. While they play, using shooting, evasion and building skills to survive, a storm is...

Overwatch

Release Date: 24/05/2016, updated in 2022

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Overwatch is a shooting game but with the focus on teamwork and skill rather than violence. Along with games like Rocket League it has professional e-sports competitions where players compete for prizes.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Series)

Release Date: 21/01/1999, updated in 2018

Platforms: DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii U

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Super Smash Bros. in its various versions offers real-time brawling battles. The tens of characters are drawn from other video games and each has bespoke moves to learn and perfect.

Splatoon 3 (Series)

Release Date: 21/07/2017, updated in 2022

Platforms: Switch and Wii U

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Splatoon on the Wii U, Splatoon 2 and Splatoon 3 on the Switch are games where you shoot ink rather than bullets in this deeply skilled combat game. As well as taking out opponents, teams work together to cover the arena with their colour of ink. This...

Sky Children of the Light

Release Date: 18/07/2019

Platforms: Android, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: Open World

Sky Children of the Light (Sky Children of Light) is a huge open-world online game designed to create altruism between players. From the developer of Flower and Journey, it takes you on a social adventure in an ever-expanding world with up to 8 other...

Apex Legends

Release Date: 04/02/2019

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Components: Open World

Apex Legends is a shooting game where you work with two other players landing on an island and searching for weapons and supplies. You mission is to defeat the other 50 players to be the last team standing.

Bomberman (Series)

Release Date: 15/03/2018

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Android, DS, Mac, PC, PS2, PS3, PS4, Stadia, Switch, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Bomberman is the spiritual ancestor to last-player-standing battles like Fortnite and Apex Legends, but here you all play on the same screen and have the same bomb weapon. There are lots of versions, but in all of them you battle with up to eight...

Tetris 99 (Series)

Release Date: 20/09/2019

Platforms: Switch

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Tetris is a longstanding puzzle game where you make horizontal lines by placing different shaped tiles in a well. It's simple and fun, but as the pieces speed up it gets increasingly difficult.

Please, Touch The Artwork

Release Date: 26/01/2022

Platforms: Android, Mac, PC, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Please, Touch The Artwork is a puzzle game that tells a story with real abstract paintings. Unconventionally it asks, what would happen if we did touch the artwork in museums? The answer is revealed over three stories each focusing on a different...

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl

Release Date: 05/10/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl is a fighting game similar to Super Smash Bros. The novelty comes not only from its roster of Nickelodeon characters, but also from its fast-paced and intense rounds, rewarding skill...

Stick Fight: The Game

Release Date: 28/09/2017, updated in 2021

Platforms: Android, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Stick Fight is a vicious fighting game depicted with stick men. You play by controlling small coloured stick men, who mimic real world physics and bodily movement. To win you need to use the physics-based movement to land punches, kicks and use weapons...

Rain World: Downpour

Release Date: 28/03/2017

Platforms: PC, PS4 and Switch

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Components: Day and Night, Open World and Weather

Rain World, and the expansion Downpour, are traversal and survival games where you play a half cat, half slug in a living breathing world. You must venture out and brave the other predatory creatures to find food before the rain comes and you have to...

Splitter Critters

Release Date: 15/05/2018, updated in 2021

Platforms: Android, PC, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Splitter Critters is a puzzle game where you cut up the world to connect platforms and get to the exit. You split and rearrange each level so you can avoid deadly lasers and create floating swimming pools to guide alien critters back to their spaceship.

Rock Boshers

Release Date: 10/12/2014, updated in 2018

Platforms: PC, PS Vita, PS4 and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Rock Boshers is a retro action adventure inspired by Spectrum and NES games, where you help young Queen Victoria fight her way to escape from Mars. You play by moving around the blocky Martian world, shooting enemies to clear a path for the Queen.

Arcade Archives

Release Date: 19/06/2015, updated in 2022

Platforms: Android, PS4, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Arcade Archives is a series of games that faithfully recreates classic Arcade games from their original software. Along with the play modes of the original games you can adjust settings like the difficulty dip-switches, like arcade owners could.

Astro Aqua Kitty

Release Date: 04/06/2021, updated in 2022

Platforms: PC, PS Vita, PS4, PS5, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Astro Aqua Kitty is a space adventure where an intrepid crew of cats launch into space to harvest milk from far off planets.

Crown Trick

Release Date: 16/10/2020

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Crown Trick is a fighting adventure game in a dungeon where monsters only move when you do. You play as a girl with a magical crown that grants mysterious powers over a maze-like dungeon, giving you complete control of the speed of the battles as you...

Paper Animal RPG

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Paper Animal RPG is a simple adventure game in a colourful world. You create a band of animal heroes to fight enemies and collect equipment and power-ups.

Soundfall

Release Date: 11/05/2022

Platforms: PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Soundfall is a dungeon exploration, collection and brawling game where you use rhythm and timing with the music to land the perfect attacks. You are a Guardian of Harmony and must battle the forces of discord with up to four friends to restore harmony...

Warpips

Release Date: 21/04/2022

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Warpips is a quick-to-learn strategy war game where you deploy units to beat enemies in a surprisingly deep tug-of-war battle. You work to pick the right mix of soldiers, tanks, helicopters and planes to beat the enemy forces. Unlike other war games...

Crawl

Release Date: 11/04/2017, updated in 2017

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Crawl is a dungeon fighting game where your friends control the monsters and traps. The hero player moves around, break boxes and attack enemies while the ghost players try and stop him. Once the hero dies they become another ghost and the next player...

Duck Game

Release Date: 05/06/2015, updated in 2019

Platforms: PC, PS4 and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Duck Game is an action shooting game with a fast and frantic multiplayer mode. You go head to head against other players in arena battles where you rush to find a weapon and then figure out how to best use it to dispatch of the other ducks before they...

Pro Gymnast Simulator

Release Date: 04/09/2020

Platforms: Mac, PC and Switch

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Pro Gymnast Simulator is a game about gymnastics, parkour, and obstacle courses. You control a gymnast who can achieve amazing feats, however you have to pull them off by controlling your limbs and body directly. The result is a game that's unusual to...

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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