Nintendo Switch Has Dropped
It’s finally here. Nintendo has just released the information everyone has been chomping at the bit for: What’s going on with the Switch. During their live stream event specs, features, release date, and price were revealed for the world to see and we can’t get any more hype than we are already. Hitting the stores March 3rd 2017 world wide, that only leaves us seven weeks until we can try to get our hands on their newest console but what do we know about it now?
Some specs had already been released, like that the hand held screen would be a 6.2 inch 1280×720 resolution multi touch capacitive screen, an Nvidia Tegra-based Systom-On-a-Chip (SOC) for its processor as well as a 32GB internal storage which is expandable with microSDXC cards. It’s also going back to the basics with the cartridge based “game cards” that will load into the top of the device. Now we know that we can expect a 2 1/2 – 6 1/2 hour battery live depending on the game and can play while charging.
Knowing what it can do is all well and good, but how did Nintendo get to where they are today with their consoles? Well it’s been a long time coming and they’ve taken some of the best features from the Switch’s predecessors and included them here. Going all the way back to the NES coming with two controllers, SNES adding buttons for greater control, N64 coming with the analog stick for more precise movement, the GameCube’s handle on the console for portability, motion controls for the Wii, and finally the second screen with the Wii U.
Right out of the box you’re ready to start playing with a friend for some good old fashioned couch multiplayer action. Coming with the left and right Joy-Con controllers, you have your player one and two ready to roll. If that’s not enough people to play with though, don’t worry, up to eight systems can be connected for local multiplayer. Online options will also be available with a free trial period at launch and paid service releasing in the fall of 2017. Having the touch screen removable from the base also allows for multiple ways to play as well. Naturally on the base will be in TV mode where you can play with the Joy-Con Grip or Switch pro controller (sold separately), table top mode on it’s back kick stand for either solo or split screen play, or with the Joy-Con attached to to the touch screen in hand held mode.
The Joy-Con implements a new highly immersive motion control that has been revealed as HD rumble. With highly sensitive motion controls and RI scanners each controller can tell the slightest movement to different hand gestures leading to some truly inspired new ways to play games and they’ve taken full advantage with a couple of their first party titles. First up is 1-2-Switch. A motion game that will be taking players off the coach and into face to face competitions with one another. With no need to look to a screen for prompts to the next action, players can watch the subtlety of their opponent`s movements to see who has the faster reflexes. Next up is Arms. A fighting, slightly shooter game pitting you against your friends right next to you in split screen, or the world in online mode.
New IP’s are always important to have in invigorating a new console launch, but we can’t forget the familiar faces either. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe will be released April 28th introducing new tracks, battle modes, and a couple new racers including the Inklings and returning favourites like King Boo, Dry Bones, and Bowser Jr. A sequel to the hot new IP Splatoon will be hitting the scene this summer with Splatoon 2 introducing new squid kids, weapons and maps with events and support to come for a long while. Our favourite carpenter, turned plumber won’t just be racing on the Switch though, Super Mario Odyssey will be joining the roster this holiday season bringing Mario out of the Mushroom Kingdom and into a strange but familiar new open world to explore. That just leaves the most highly anticipated game for the Switch. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will be released at console launch leaving plenty to do before the rest of the library is added.
With 50 different partners working with Nintendo and currently developing an estimated 80 games there is no shortage of things to look forward to. Some things of note to generate some hype are Monolithsoft’s RPG Xenoblade 2, Square Enix’s side scrolling Project Octopath Travelers, Atlus’ untitled Shin Megami Tensei for the series 25th anniversary, and Tecmo Koei’s Fire Emblem Warriors. Not to mention Grasshopper’s own Suda51 hinting at a project involving Travis Touchdown, Sega’s Toshihiro Nagoshi excited about the potential the technology can bring to gaming. Did I mention the idea of taking Bethesda’s Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim where ever you want to play it?
It’s an exciting time to be a gamer, loads of titles from all across the gaming universe from Sony to Microsoft, and with Nintendo joining this generation of console finally it’s only going to get better. The only concern I would like to raise is going to be the supply and demand. Unfortunately with being notorious for under shipping units, there is a really good chance not everyone will be able to get them right away. With an estimated two million units being shipped to retailers world wide, that’s going to leave room for waiting it out. Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima has said if figures look good, more can be shipped before March 31st, but even that might not be enough. With regional Price tags of 29,980 yen, $299.99 USD and $399.99 CND they might not last long.
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