Nintendo Switch Conference Recap
Finally, after what seemed like eons of waiting, Nintendo has officially unveiled the Nintendo Switch, their newest console. Lots of information to get through, so let’s start with the main console specific aspects.
Launch Date/ Cost
The Nintendo Switch will launch on: Friday, March 3, 2017.
It will cost: $299.99 USD (29,000 YEN)
The basic package comes with (1) Nintendo Switch Console, (2) Joy-Con L+R Controller, (3) Nintendo Switch Dock, (4) Joy-Con Dock, (5) Joy-Con Wrist Straps, (6) AC Adapter and (7) HDMI Cord.
Early March is a nice surprise as there were a few worries that the console would slip from its promised launch month. As for price the price, 299.99 is probably the highest Nintendo can charge and still succeed, and it’s unfortunate that this price point doesn’t seem to include a pack in game.
The online features for the Switch will not be free, but all users will have a free online trial from launch until Fall 2017. Also the Nintendo Switch will not be region locked. As for connecting with friends while gaming, Nintendo stated that some sort of interconnectivity will exist with smartphones, but didn’t reveal any more.
Nintendo mentioned that the Switch is the culmination of every Nintendo console that came before it and that it holds aspects of all of them.
The switch has three different modes in which you can play it:
(1) TV Mode, in which it acts like a regular game console.
(2) Tabletop Mode, in which you take out the Joy Cons and use them as controllers while using the tablet as the screen.
(3) Handheld Mode, where you attach the joy cons to the tablet, creating a console that you can take anywhere with you to play.
While they didn’t mention which modes support which form of local multiplayer, though Nintendo did mention that up to eight players can compete locally using their own Nintendo Switch Consoles which is exciting.
Battery Life (This one gets its own heading)
The Battery on the Nintendo Switch will range from 2.5 – 6 hours.
A wide range makes this information kinda hazy, but if in actuality the time is in between the two ranges then that will be a welcome surprise.
The Games!! (In Order of Appearance)
1-2 Switch! (March 3rd)
A very Nintendo reveal for what looks like a very Nintendo game. 1-2 Switch! is a series of mini games in which players holding a joy-con controller and face off against one another in duels. The trailer was over the top and hokey, but in a charming way. Seeing two cowboys face off in a shootout, armed with joy-cons, was a treat. The trailer also showed off the HD rumble features of the joy-cons and they seem to be the most refined motion capture controllers Nintendo has made thus far. 1-2 Switch! looks like a quirky party game that promises player interaction over focusing on screens which is a fun new wrinkle. Consider me excited!
Arms (Spring 2017)
Speaking of quirky Nintendo games the reveal of arms was over the top and a little eyebrow raising. Described as a mix between a fighting game and a shooter, Arms features arena style duels between two player. It utilizes 4D motion and once again the Joy-Cons and their fancy motion capture were featured prominently. Above all Arms looks whimsical and really out there and I’m not quite sure what to make of it. That being said, I’m typing this article with help from my arms so I guess that I have to at least give this game a chance.
Splatoon 2 (Summer 2017)
Splatoon was one of the best games on Wii U, and the first new Nintendo IP in a while. It was fun, frantic and proved that shooters don’t have to be all about killing, and that Nintendo could make a great shooter. The trailer for Splatoon 2 showed off some new maps, guns and hairstyles, but gameplay wise didn’t show anything that looks like a drastic change to the Splatoon formula. There is the argument that there’s no reason to fix what isn’t broken, but it would be nice to have seen something to set this game apart other than a few cosmetic and stage related changes. That being said, the most exciting part of the Splatoon reveal was local multiplayer with multiple Switch consoles. They didn’t specify how many people but having four on four local matches would be a dream come true.
(I will say that my biggest gripe with the trailer was that the game isn’t called Spla2n, but you can’t win ’em all)
Super Mario Odyssey (Holiday)
Mario is in New York City. But also in a South American town. But also underwater. But also in a tree. But also doing parkour. But also trying to stop Bowser and Peach’s Wedding. But also throwing his hat with eyes on it…
Super Mario Odyssey looks stunning and it is an open sandbox Mario game, one that looks like it’s taken cues from Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine while also carving its own way. This game looks insane in a great way. This is Nintendo’s big Holiday game for a reason.
Fire Emblem only showed the bottom half of Marth and a shot of the famous shield from the series but it was enough to get the hype train rolling. Fire Emblem coming to the switch is exciting, as the franchise is consistently amazing and getting a chance to dive back into that world is a welcome one. Also the fact that you can take the Switch with you lends itself well to the portable play style of many previous Fire Emblem games.
Shin Megami Tensai looked creepy and intriguing but not much was shown.
Xenoblade 2 came off as lackluster visually and didn’t show a whole lot story wise, but it’s nice to see the series coming to the Switch in the future nonetheless.
Project Octopath Traveler is a new RPG by Square Enix that has a classic RPG look, but with updated visuals. (If anything Project Octopath Traveler has the best name of any of the games shown at the conference)
3rd Party Games
Skyrim (No Date)
Bethesda’s first game ever on a Nintendo console will be Skyrim, and while the date has not been revealed this is hopefully the start of an exciting partnership between the two companies. The footage looked good, but there was no word on whether the Switch version will be the recently released remastered version or a straight port of the original. Either way, the prospect of Skyrim on the go is an exciting one.
The largest sports game in the world is coming to the Switch, although it hasn’t been said whether or not it will be FIFA 18 or 17, or perhaps something else. During the presentation EA said that the game was being specialized for the Switch and that sounds both promising and terrifying. After all the Wii U had a FIFA game when it launched and it lacked almost all of the features that FIFA on Sony and Microsoft’s consoles had. Here’s hoping it’s not a repeat of 2012.
Grasshopper Manufacture Game (???)
The most cringeworthy part of the presentation involved what seemed like a translation error and led to the information about two games – maybe they weren’t even games – being mistranslated. What we got from the confusion is that Grasshopper Manufacture (Lollipop Chainsaw, No More Heroes) is bringing at least one game to the Nintendo Switch and it may have something to do with a Wrestler named Travis Touchdown? Or maybe it’s a football game? We shall see.
Nintendo Showed off a Sizzle real of games coming to the Switch and some of the most notable ones include:
Street Fighter (Classic)
They also announced that 59 Gaming Companies are working on Switch Games.
And that there are more than 80 games currently in development for the Switch.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild (March 3rd)
The most stunning trailer of the night. The most anticipated game of the last couple years. Finally on the cusp of release. Years after it was announced at E3 The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild finally has a release date and it is on the Switch Launch day, March 3rd. It’s so close I can practically smell the Moblins. The trailer is the most in depth look yet at the game as it showed off different wildlife, enemies, friends, but most importantly Zelda and Link together. Fighting against the forces of evil. This game looks to be the very definition of a system seller and it looks to have voice acting! Not only voice acting, but voice acting done right. I for one cannot wait to explore the ruins of Hyrule. It’s fitting that this game takes place one-hundred years after a large event, because that’s how long ago it feels that this game was announced.