Changes from the original game
This section will highlight differences between Yo-kai Watch and Yo-kai Watch 1 for Nintendo Switch.
- The textures have either been upscaled or redrawn and graphics now have higher poly-count and smoother anti-aliasing, to take advantage of the Switch's capabilities.
- The screen is now slightly more zoomed out, allowing for a bigger view of the area to be displayed on-screen, especially in docked mode.
- The game now runs in a smooth 60fps, compared to 30fps.
- The Yo-kai Cam is not available in this port, due to the Nintendo Switch lacking a camera function.
- The map at the bottom-right corner can be resized just like Yo-kai Watch 4, with the zR button.
- Dialogue boxes for characters now have voices just like in Yo-kai Watch 3 and Yo-kai Watch Blasters.
- An outline of the player character is now present when they go under objects, such as the pipes in the Springdale Underground Waterway.
- The Touch Screen controls for the Yo-kai Lens and some of the Yo-kai purification features during battle have been changed to the Left Stick when the game is played in docked mode.
- The player now has infinite stamina, just like in Yo-kai Watch 4. However, it is still present during Terror Time.
- That makes using the Staminum give player a faster speed rather than giving temporary infinite stamina.
- The Main Menu has been reorganised, as some of the features were moved to the main part.
- Loading times for battles and entering locations have been shortened.
- The function to scan QR Codes for special items have been replaced by scanning Yo-kai Arks and Y Medals like in Yo-kai Watch 4, due to the Nintendo Switch not supporting a camera.
- Unlike the original game, multiple items are now given rather than just Coins.
- This now makes the Jewelyans harder to obtain, as their required Arks are needed to be scanned to get the items.
- Jibanyan now shouts out "Paws of Fury!" when doing his Soultimate move, which the original Japanese version of Yo-kai Watch didn't have.
- The player now has the ability to battle with others online.
- The Crank-a-kai received some changes:
- The game now saves automatically when using the Crank-a-kai just like in Yo-kai Watch 3.
- The player can now use the Crank-a-kai more than three times a day, with the number of cranks being randomized just like in Yo-kai Watch 2.
- As the Nintendo Switch doesn't have Play Coins, the ability to use that was replaced with something else.
- The StreetPass feature for Wayfarer Manor was changed; adding friends for playing with other friends who have a copy of Yo-kai Watch 1 for Nintendo Switch will automatically add their information to it.
- Yo-kai Medal icons for Rare Yo-kai in the Medallium have been changed from a gold frame to a regular silver frame with a "R" on the Medal and Legendary Yo-kai medals have the gold frame instead, like in Yo-kai Watch 3.
A Nintendo Switch port of the original Yo-kai Watch video game was teased by Japanese virtual YouTuber Reto-chan on a stream on July 12, 2019 saying that would will come out in conjunction with the Nintendo Switch Lite's release on September 20, 2019.
Yo-kai Watch 1 for Nintendo Switch was announced on Twitter by the official Yo-kai Watch video game Twitter account at midday on July 29, 2019 in Japan. The tweet gave a release date for the port, and it also left the link to the official website for Yo-kai Watch 1 for Nintendo Switch. 
The video game was playable at the Tokyo Game Show 2019, where attendees got a free drawstring tote bag with a design of Jibanyan.
The video game sold a total of 9,426 copies during it's first week, making it at number 3 on the charts.
By pre-ordering a copy of Yo-kai Watch 1 for Nintendo Switch, the game came with a keychain that has a varying design based on where the game was ordered. The Amazon pre-order bonus has a keychain of the game's boxart, while the 7net pre-order bonus comes with a design of Jibanyan with the game's logo on the bottom of it.
- Yo-kai Watch 1 for Nintendo Switch is the first HD port of an existing game in the Yo-kai Watch franchise.
- Yo-kai Watch 1 for Nintendo Switch is the the second Yo-kai Watch game to be released on the Nintendo Switch. The first is Yo-kai Watch 4.