It was a very tough call for me, with work starting at 8am, did I rearrange my sleep around being awake for the 4am (GMT) Nintendo Switch presentation? Ultimately, being a lame grown up, I did the sensible thing and had a normal night’s sleep and watched it first thing this morning.
Many people did stay up, and many people are excitedly searching the interwebs for the latest Nintendo News. Pretty much all of it can be found in the video below:
If you don’t have time to watch the 70 odd minutes of Nintendo brilliance (discounting the “starting soon” half hour at the start of the video) then here is a quick breakdown, as well as some of my initial thoughts.
Release Date: March 3rd 2017 – We knew it would be march, but early march is even better!
RRP: £279.99 here in the UK and $299.99 in the US – a bit more than the rumoured ~£200 price point, but still very good for a brand new console!
Will have online services (similar to PS+ and XB:Gold) which will be free at launch until the autumn, when they will become paid subscription services like the other consoles. There will also be a smart device app linked to it, can chat to friends, invite to parties and all that jazz from the ease of your phone. This move to a subscription service makes sense, seeing as everyone else is doing it, and the app sounds great as long as they pull it off as described.
The Switch will not be region locked like the 3DS family is, you can play Japanese or US games on your European console etc. More freedom is always good, especially good for JRPG fans, as quite a few of those can be Japan exclusive and can now be imported.
Features of the new console were brought from the “DNA” of all previous Nintendo platforms.
Many previously explained Switch features were shown off again.
Battery Life will vary by game, from 2.5-6.5 hours, can play while charging etc. This seems a little low, but that’s the cost of creating a portable console so small and powerful, but in an age where smart phone’s don’t last the whole day and you have to charge at work it’s not that much different, and as it is charged by a USB Type C cable, most planes have USB ports in the seats, so can ensure it’ll last the flight!
Switch consoles can link wirelessly for more powerful multiplayer action. Up to 8 consoles can be used in one “party”, this could mean games like Mario Kart don’t need to be played split screen etc.
The controller system is based around the removable “Joy Con”, which can be used attached to the switch console itself, on their own or linked to the “Joy Grip”, but I was surprised at some of the features:
- NFC Reader
- Capture Button (similar to the PS Share Button on PS4)
- Motion Control
- Each side has its own L & R buttons
- Different colour options will be available (Red and Blue shown)
- Comes with slot in wrist straps
- Has motion detecting Infra Red Cameras built-in! Example showed it reading a game of “rock, paper, scissors”
- New HD Rumble feature – much more expressive than the simple “shaking” we’re used to
Then game the games!
- 1, 2, Switch B
- Basic hardware demonstration game, similar to what Wii Sports and Nintendoland were.
- Release title, not mentioned if it is included or not?
- Similar to Wii Boxing, but very updated and much more responsive
- Seems to fully use the features of the Joy Con controllers
- Splatoon 2
- Summer 2017 Release
- Makes use of Multiple Consoles for offline multiplayer
- Lots of new weapons and features
- Super Mario Odyssey
- Looks incredible
- Has a new mechanic where you can throw you hat and use it as a jump platform
- Looks like the “overworld” is set in an actual city, we see Mario running around the knees of “Real” people
- Xenoblade Chronicles 2
- Fire Emblem Warriors
- Dragon Quest 10 & 11 (possibly Japan exclusive)
- Dragon Quest Heroes 1 & 2
- Shin Magame Tensei
- Octopath Traveller
- Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
- Ultra Street Fighter 2: The Final Challengers
There were also snippets of games not specifically listed, such as Minecraft, Bomberman and Blazblue.
And then finally, the moment we’d all been looking forward to… (And yes, this gets its own video because of how awesome it is!)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild!
We knew it was coming, but we didn’t know when. And not only did they tell us it will be a March 3rd Launch Title for the Switch. But they did so by dropping, in my opinion, one of the best game trailers I have ever seen. I was incredibly excited for this title anyway, but this trailer pushed that off the scales!
All in all it was an excellent presentation, so much information was dropped, and the internet is buzzing because of it. I’m still not 100% sold on the whole portable console thing, but I will be getting hands on with it this weekend in London.
And with a “Master’s Edition” of Breath of the Wild coming, March is going to be VERY expensive for me!