Sunshine Shuffle is an indie poker game out now, but not on Switch yet [UPDATED]

An apparent misunderstanding with Nintendo led to developer Strange Scaffold having to clarify that the game is not promoting gambling to children and has no microtransactions.


Updated (5/25/2023 @ 12:29 p.m. PT): It seems Strange Scaffold has been able to clear up its misunderstanding with Nintendo regarding Sunshine Shuffle. The game now has a North American release date on Nintendo Switch of May 31, 2023. It was already in Europe, New Zealand, and Australia, and on PC in the United States, but now Switch will join in hosting the game on its eShop in North America.

Strange Scaffold has come up with some pretty good ideas for indie games over the last few years, but its latest has left it at odds with Nintendo for what should have been a release on Switch this week. Sunshine Shuffle is a game in which you play poker on a boat with animal folks that just happened to be thieves and criminals tied together by an old heist, and it was supposed to be out on PC and Switch this week. Unfortunately, the marketing convinced Nintendo the game promotes gambling to children and it will be delayed as Strange Scaffold appeals the matter.

Sunshine Shuffle got its launch trailer and some extra explanation from the devs to go with it this week. After all, the game came out on PC via Steam. Unfortunately, the Nintendo Switch page has been blocked and delayed for the time being. Xalavier Nelson Jr., the lead of developer Strange Scaffold, went on to share that the problem was spurred out of TikTok advertising for the game.

In particular, Nelson revealed to Digital Trends that TikTok posts saying Sunshine Shuffle definitely doesn’t teach children how to gamble drew Nintendo’s attention. The Big N delayed the game’s Switch launch and Strange Scaffold now has to convince them it truly doesn’t promote gambling to kids and the game has no loot boxes or microtransactions.

“I have goofed too close to the sun this time,” Nelson explained in a further post.

Sunshine Shuffle doesn’t appear in any way to be as malicious as Nintendo might think. It’s a game about former thieves getting together to play cards on a boat. You legitimately play poker with them, but you also learn the story of a decade-old robbery and open up the emotions and feelings of the interesting animal folk involved. You also get to decorate the boat, but there doesn’t seem to be any microtransactions or inappropriate content in the game that would suggest it could manipulate kids into gambling.

Unfortunately, Switch players will have to wait on this game. We’ve had plenty of fun with Xalavier Nelson Jr.’s games on Indie-licious, including Witch Strandings and An Airport For Aliens Currently Run By Dogs. Sunshine Shuffle is out now on PC, but hopefully the misunderstanding with Nintendo will be cleared up soon and we can enjoy the game on PC and Switch as intended soon.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

From The Chatty
Hello, Meet Lola