Nintendo just wrapped its press conference unveiling new and exciting information about the upcoming console. Nintendo wasted no time announcing both release date and price so neither will I.
The Nintendo Switch will see a worldwide launch on March 3rd of this year with a suggested retail price of $299.99.
The Switch will come with the following: console, switch dock, left and right joy-cons, joy-con grip, joy-con straps, AC adapter, and a HDMI cable. The Joy-con Pro will sell separately.
In addition to this there will be two versions of the #Nintendo Switch being sold, both for the same price. The difference will be in the colors of the Joy-con controllers. One will be sold with two gray Joy-cons, the other with one neon blue and one neon red.
Further details on Nintendo's website state that the system will have an internal memory of 32gb part of which will be allocated for system software data. Memory can be expanded by the purchase of additional memory cards.
Also, the console will have touch screen functionality, display images in 720p, and have a headphone jack, perfect for players on the go!
Switchable Play Styles
What makes the Nintendo Switch so unique is the freedom of allowing players to play how they want. Nintendo gave more detail on this by explaining the three styles of play the new #console will offer.
TV Mode which could also be dubbed "console mode" will be the traditional mode of play. Here players will leave the console in the Switch Dock which will connect to the console to a TV to play games.
Tabletop mode is when players remove the console from the Switch Dock while leaving it on the built-in kickstand.
Handheld mode is what Nintendo is calling play where the Joy-cons remain attached to the console.
While not connected to an AC Adaptor the Switch has an estimated battery life of two and a half to six and a half hours which varies based on the amount of power the game being played requires.
To continue with player freedom the Switch will be Nintendo's first modern console to not be region locked! (Finally!) This means any gamer with a Nintendo Switch can play any game on the system bought from any where around the world. Want to play some unannounced Japanese only game? No problem, now you can!
The Joy Of The Joy-con
For those who don't know, the Joy-con is the name of the Switch's controller, a two part remote control-like device. In a way it's similar to the #Wii remote but at the same time it's like a traditional controller.
When both pieces are attached to the #Joycon grip the set-up feels like that of a traditional controller. However, once the left and right Joy-cons are removed that traditional feel goes away. While separate the "L" and "R" buttons that you couldn't access while the joy-cons were attached to the grip become usable. Players can use both Joy-cons or give one to a friend to play a two-player game on one device.
Minor differences between the left and right joy-con are their buttons and functionality. The right joy-con has the face buttons A/B/X/Y and a HOME button and can read #Amiibo data while the left has the d-pad and features a "share button" similar to what #PS4 owners are used to.
Both joy-cons feature IR cameras which can not only tell the difference between the joy-con and an object but can also sense the object. The example used on stage was that the joy-cons can tell the difference between rock, paper, and scissors.
The joy-cons also have gyro motion control and a new feature Nintendo has called "HD Rumble." With this the joy-con can provide players with the sense and feel of an imaginary object. The demonstration of this feature displayed an image of a glass of water, in it the glass had one ice cube and later two more were added. As imaginary ice cubes were added, the joy-con changed the feel of the vibration to the player. How exactly this feature works seems like something best tried out for oneself than explained but sounds interesting nonetheless.
The Nintendo Switch will feature new online services. These services will be free during the trial period which will last through Fall 2017. These services include online multiplayer, lobby & voice chat, inviting friends to play and making play appointments, a dedicated smart device app, and a share feature.
Subscribing to Nintendo's online services will also grant users special offers and even a monthly free game from either the #NES or #SNES library. According to the site these game's will have new online functionality.
Unlike other online gaming services such as #PlayStation Plus where any monthly free games downloaded remain free providing subscription renewal, Nintendo will do the opposite: games downloaded will only be free for the respective month.
Local multiplayer will also be possible and will support up to eight connected Nintendo Switch Devices.
Plenty Of Games!
Perhaps the lengthiest and most important part of the entire presentation were the games announced to be coming to the system.
1-2-Switch will be a two-player relying heavily on the Joy-con's HD Rumble feature and IR cameras. From the trailer it features a series of two-player mini games where the players will not have to look at the screen but each other, encouraging face to face interaction. In the trailer the game was played with the Switch in tabletop mode with one joy-con per player. The game will release on March 3rd alongside the Switch.
ARMS is yet another two player game, however both players will need their own set of joy-cons. The game will sense the motion of the players such as tilting both joy-cons to the left or right to move and twisting one joy-con to curve a punch. The game can be played split-screen or with multiple Switch consoles via local and online play. Arms will release in Spring 2017.
Splatoon 2 was announced at the event and will feature new stages and weapons not in the previous game. The title will feature online play and have new weapons and stages along with events all added to the game post-launch. #Splatoon 2 has a planned launch window of Summer 2017 and will be fully compatible with the Joy-con Pro.
Super Mario Odyssey blew me away! This #Mario game will be a fully 3D sandbox adventure with a theme of taking Mario to new worlds, away from the Mushroom Kingdom. One such world is New York City! Super Mario Odyssey has a release window set for Holiday 2017 and will surely ship plenty of consoles. If you haven't yet to do so definitely be sure check out the trailer below!
And of course Nintendo finally gave the release date for #TheLegendOfZelda: Breath of the Wild and its release will be the same day as the console! Now might be a great time to invest in Nintendo stock.
Other games officially coming to the system are:
- Super Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Nintendo)
- Xenoblade 2 (Nintendo-owned developer Monolith Soft)
- Fire Emblem Warriors (Tecmo Koei)
- Dragon Quest X, XI, Heroes 1&2 (Square-Enix, currently only announced for Japan)
- Octopath Traveler (Square-Enix, likely by Tokyo RPG Factory)
- Sonic Mania (Sega)
- Puyo Puyo Tetris (Sega)
- Untitled Shin Megami Tensei game (Atlus using Unreal Engine 4)
- Super Bomberman R (Konami)
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Bethesda)
- Untited Travis Touchdown Game (Suda51 x Grasshopper)
- FIFA (EA)
Nintendo went on to state that there are over fifty companies working on over eighty games for the system. This statement preceded a video montage showcasing even more games such as Minecraft, NBA 2K, a new Dragon Ball game, and what appeared to be F-Zero among others.
The console is already available for pre-order in North America. Are you excited for the Nintendo Switch?