After a long wait, the Nintendo NX has finally been revealed to be the Nintendo Switch. So far so good right? Well…Truth be told, the console looks like it’s gunning for the mobile market rather than the console market. As Nintendo is delivering a portable device that can be hooked up to a TV or taken on the go, and the reveal trailer showed groups of people looking all jolly using their Switch on a plane, train or in the park. Well…I don´t know about you, but after watching the initial reveal trailer it pains me to say, I can’t see the Switch console being a contender in the console field which is being dominated by Xbox and PlayStation.
“Nintendo Switch allows gamers the freedom to play however they like,” “It gives game developers new abilities to bring their creative visions to life by opening up the concept of gaming without boundaries.” – Reggie Fils-Aime, President and COO, Nintendo of America
And I have you know that Nintendo has always been a platform that I’ve been familiar with. I mean, It’s a house hold name, and we’ve seen some incredible consoles over the years (consoles such as the NES, SNES, N64 and the Gamecube). Furthermore, the Wii sold 100 million units providing brilliant experiences all round. However, even though the Member Berries are strong with this brand. It’s not quite been the go to brand for next-gen gaming, and after the disappointing release of the Wii U, Nintendo hasn’t been leading the way like they used to. As for today, now we have the Switch, but is it something that’s taking us into the future or just a bunch of ideas from the past?
So, what about the visuals of the console then? Well, the Switch looks like a fiddly fugly mess…To be exact, it´s a gaming tablet with detachable sides, but it looks like an idea from the past rather than the future. The controller looks as if someone cut out the screen from a Wii U and just glued them together. The Tablet doesn’t look as sleek as something by Samsung or Apple, it’s certainly an improvement over the bulky mess of the Wii U though. So let’s hope the battery life holds up, Nintendo state you’ll get 8 to 10 hours out of the device while on the go. In other words, we´re going to have to hold our fingers and toes that the Switch can stay cool under extreme use and not explode like the Note 7.
As for storage mediums, discs are now a thing of the past and Nintendo have jumped back into the future opting to using cartridges instead, so don’t expect to be watching any of your Blu-ray collection…And for those looking forward to downloading their games on the Switch console, you’ll be horrified to find out that the device is touted to have a pathetic 32GB hard drive…And with games like Battlefield 1 (or Call of Duty) taking 40 to 50GB of install space it looks like these games will never see the light of day on Nintendo’s device. Other than that, the Switch is running a Nvidia powered chip with (reportedly) 4Gb of Ram. However, there is still no information on what resolution the Switch will be whether it’s hooked up to TV or on the go and whether it will affect the visuals when disconnected from the dock (it´s speculated that the Switch will offer a 720P resolution on the go, and a 1080P resolution when docked).
My first thought in seeing the device in motion was how fiddly the Nintendo Switch is. As the sides snap off, snap on and snap together…And as if that wasn´t corny enough as it already is, there are also various controllers that you could use if you don’t like the snap controllers. My point would be that I’m a nightmare for miss-placing my Dualshock 4 controller. So if you lose one of these things, then you´re in for a nightmare ride with no doubt (unless each device has some kind of a GPS tracking feature), and I´ll have you know that the Nintendo Switch controllers are pretty dainty little things (I bet that they have a battery life of their own too!). So you’re most definitely going to miss place one of the controllers sooner or later.
The Switch trailer also tries to push the social aspect of the device. As the trailer shows players using multiple Switch’s to play against each other, much like the 3DS. Well, if here’s an opportunity for the Switch to bridge the gap, if it can also hook up to the New 3DS etc. So “if” you can play against other players on different Nintendo Platforms, that could be a pretty interesting feature with no doubt.
However, this isn’t something completely new. As the “playing console games on a mobile device” feature has already been done in the past (we’ve seen the PlayStation Vita do this on a stable Internet connection, where you can simply stream your PS4 games direct to your handheld device). The Nvidia shield also springs to mind in which you could simply stream games from the cloud. It all comes down to power on whether the experience will be something truly mind-blowing, but in terms of playing games on the go, the Switch console isn´t really doing anything new.
The launch lineup doesn’t look all that great either (with the exception of Zelda). Because in my opinion, the launch lineup consist more of a Wii U greatest hits list (a “port list”, if you so will) than anything else (you know, games being made a bit better consisting of Mario Kart and Splatoon?). However, Skyrim was also seen in the trailer (in which the anti-GG personality Moviebob Chipman confused for Dark souls) but images didn’t look as stunning as what we’re seeing on the Remaster for PS4 and Xbox, none the less Nintendo fans will finally get to play one of the best Elder Scrolls games for the first time!
As for the release date, the console will be release in March next year. The launch price is yet to be known though, and that part is going to either make or break the Switch console for sure. Nevertheless, people should keep in mind that the PS4 Pro is launching on the 10th of November this year, and Xbox Scorpio will launch during the holiday season next year. So Nintendo will have a lot of hard competition ahead of themselves. So it´s really important for Nintendo to convince the common consumer and hard-core gamer alike that they need this device in their home.
The Nintendo Switch announcement wasn´t the ground-breaking news that I expected to hear from Nintendo (the good old days of “Now you’re playing with power” are long gone). Sure, this console tablet hybrid seems like an interesting spin. Even so, I don’t see it being as successful as the PlayStation or Xbox One, which are offering experiences such as 4K gaming and Virtual reality. Of course true success rests on the software and while you can expect countless sequels featuring Mario and his ilk, will we see a strong support from 3rd party studios or will it dwindle off just like the Wii U did. I still remember when Crysis 3 was touted to run on the Wii U but was never to see the light of day, eventually that console just ended up being an exclusive machine.
The Switch console can most certainly meet with the same fate as its predecessor (the Wii U); as it all comes down to how we will perceive the Switch and how it’s marketed to us. As a home console, I can’t see it breaking any records, but as a mobile platform success is likely to happen as Nintendo has already proven their worth with the DS platform. So it all comes down to the focus, where will the best experience lie? Is it on the sofa or a park bench?
Well, time will tell. Nevertheless, I think it´s important to point out that Nintendo´s shares dropped by 6% the very same day that Nintendo announced the Switch console:
“Update 3:Reuters reports that Nintendo’s shares fell by 6% early this morning following yesterday’s reveal of its new Switch console. The stock fell as low as ¥25,300 at 0101 GMT, which is the lowest point since September 7th.
Technically this is only a 3% decline compared to earlier in the week as Pocket Gamer reports Nintendo’s shares rose by 3.7% to ¥26,950 in the hours before the reveal, later tumbling by 6.55%. A minor drop, but perhaps one that shows scepticism about Nintendo Switch’s chances of success.” – Gamesindustry.biz
Furthermore, there are quite a few things that worries me concerning the Nintendo Switch console:
– The screen is too tiny for any real detail in gaming
– The tiny controls will be a big trouble for people with anything but tiny hands
– Nintendo Switch is pretty much a slightly improved Vita TV (do not expect PS4 or Xbox One quality graphics)
– 4K resolution? Most likely not
– Blu-Ray support? Nope
– I haven´t seen such a ridiculous design since the launch of the N-Gage…
– Why do I have a feeling that the Switch console will get very few big AAA titles during its life time? (please prove me wrong Nintendo)
– Touchscreen? Yes or no Nintendo?
And with that said, what´s your take on the Nintendo Switch console so far? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section down below!
Confirmed Nintendo Switch games:
The Legend of Zelda: The Breath of the Wild
Dragon Quest XI
Dragon Quest X
Project Sonic 2017
Just Dance 2017
A new Mario Kart game?
A new 3D-Mario game?
The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim
Nintendo Switch specs:
The console is powered by a custom Tegra Processor by Nvidia, which was also found in the Nvidia Shield. So that would mean a 720p screen resolution for sure, but I truly hope that Nintendo will aim for a 1080p resolution. As for more detailed Switch specs, arstechnica.co.uk wrote a good post on the matter.
Nintendo Switch release date:
Nintendo Switch Price:
There is no official price for the Nintendo Switch console just yet, but A recent product listing on Tesco’s online store priced the product at £349.99 (it´s most likely a place holder price though). However, business world thinks that the console could launch at a price between $300 and $350.
Nintendo Switch partners:
• 505 Games
• Activision Publishing, Inc.
• ARC SYSTEM WORKS Co., Ltd.
• ATLUS CO., LTD.
• Audiokinetic Inc.
• Autodesk, Inc.
• BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc.
• CAPCOM CO., LTD.
• CRI Middleware Co., Ltd.
• DeNA Co., Ltd.
• Electronic Arts
• Epic Games Inc.
• Firelight Technologies
• FromSoftware, Inc.
• GRASSHOPPER MANUFACTURE INC．
• Gungho Online Entertainment, Inc.
• HAMSTER Corporation
• INTI CREATES CO., LTD.
• KOEI TECMO GAMES CO., LTD.
• Konami Digital Entertainment Co., Ltd.
• LEVEL-5 Inc.
• Marvelous Inc.
• Maximum Games, LLC
• Nippon Ichi Software, Inc.
• Parity Bit Inc.
• PlatinumGames Inc.
• RAD Game Tools, Inc.
• RecoChoku Co., Ltd.
• SEGA Games Co., Ltd.
• Silicon Studio Corporation
• Spike Chunsoft Co., Ltd.
• SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD.
• Starbreeze Studios
• Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc.
• Telltale Games
• THQ Nordic
• Tokyo RPG Factory Co., Ltd.
• TT Games
• Ubitus Inc.
• Unity Technologies, Inc.
• Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
• Web Technology Corp
Robin Ek – Editor and Co-writer
The Gaming Ground
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