Meet the Nintendo Switch: the newest console generation in the Nintendo series. The Switch is a clever hybrid machine which offers console play, handheld play and tablet play in one device. The touchscreen combines with the base unit to become the console itself, or it can be removed for portable gaming, with controls that clip to either side. If you have friends over and want to play together, use the tabletop mode and turn the tablet into a central screen.
There are all sorts of ways to interact with this great new console too – clip in the control panels, connect the wireless controllers or use the touch screen directly. The Switch is ready for console play now, and it won’t be long before virtual reality and augmented reality are part of its range of offerings. After the extraordinary success of the recent Pokemon Go! app game, all eyes are on Nintendo as we wait for the next slice of AR fun – and the Switch might be the key to unlocking it.
- 34.8 cm x 19.8 cm x 9.3 cm; 1.2 kg
- Connect up to 8 consoles
- 6.2 inch handheld console
- TV, Tabletop and Mobile modes
- Includes 2 JoyCon detachable controllers
Recent Nintendo performance
The Nintendo Switch has been on the market for one month now, and we are starting to get some insight into its long term performance and durability. Early reports suggest that there is some room for improvement, but that Nintendo have yet again stumbled onto a new way to play games – one which is sure to get bigger and more exciting from here.
Nintendo have always struggled to pick up the same level of sales that Xbox and PlayStation routinely collect – but when Nintendo does get it right, they blow the competition right out of the water. The Game Boy is a great example – the best-selling handheld console for decades and the must-have toy for several Christmases in a row! The Wii was another astounding success, bringing people into the game console market who would never have thought of themselves as video gamers before. While Microsoft and Sony have focused their console development on power, performance and online capabilities, Nintendo have been cornering the market in at-home social gaming.
Glitches and downsides
Like any new product that brings innovative tech to the market, there are some issues which need to be ironed out before the Nintendo Switch can pick up the full five stars from us. Perhaps most significantly, users are suggesting that there is no Cloud save feature active right now, only the remote save option. This means that should the console break down or suffer some technical error that wipes data, there will be lost saves that cannot be recovered. This is quite a serious issue, and owners are waiting for news from Nintendo on a fix.
Some Reddit users are reporting that the touchscreen can warp and bend when left in the console unit for too long – perhaps due to overheating issues. There have also been some syncing issues with the joypads, and an amusing but annoying sound glitch which can occur after long periods of play. These are the kind of bugs we might have expected to be removed before general release, but often these issues only come to light during the mass field testing an early release brings.
Reasons to buy the Nintendo Switch
The benefits of the console system certainly outweigh the downsides, even in these early days. The price is a very reasonable £299 in most stores, and this gets you two controllers along with the tablet and base unit pieces. The other accessories are sold separately, but a great addition if you want to make the most of the Switch’s capabilities.
The different styles of play will suit everyone in the family. Attach to the big screen with the games unit, and get the full console experience. Remove the tablet and play the same games on the go, or share play with others in the family. The tablet can also be used as a handheld console. Say goodbye to discs – and the scratches and glitches that go with them – as content for the Switch is streamed or downloaded. There is also a nostalgic return for game cartridges, which slot into the back of the screen unit. Games can be accessed in multiple formats, depending on how the console is being operated at the time, and the tablet has Wi-fi and offline functions.
Images used with thanks to Amazon.co.uk