Nintendo Switch

Just as the modular phone is declared dead Nintendo have now brought out the modular console. I loved the Wii but this thing just seems a bit awkward and gimicky to me. The scenarios don’t seem realistic at all and the people look like they really struggle to hold the baby controllers. Judging by their video it seems like it was made just for people in their mid 20’s. But hey, at least it has a headphone jack lol.

Anyone see something in it I don’t? What’s your thoughts? Anyone going to get one?

On first look I like the idea. however I assume the processors etc are all housed in the tablet type device which asks why the docking station is so large.

I do agree the scenarios look a little forced. Clearly Nintendo want to encourage gaming in different locations/scenarios however I do shudder at how long some gamers likely spend gaming and did think this gives little reason not to do so whatever you’re doing and wherever you are.

I like it, but I know that I’m not the target market. I would have assumed that people that want mobile gaming would just use their phones. Perhaps there is a market for people that want a mobile console gaming experience.

Industrial design is very nice though. Weird that the branding is so huge. Nintendo is usually more subtle.

I enjoy the realism and power of the Playstation 4 and Xbox, but in the end it’s the gaming concept that matters most.
I always felt Nintendo had to drastically improve on render quality, and they have done a decent job. Content promise looks good as well.
The Wii was a revolution in gaming, the Wii U a bit of a gimmick, so it is well timed of Nintendo to come with an original concept.
I like the controllers and how they balance using buttons and gesture-style interfacing though they will have to last long on a charge.
Even better would be if it integrated a phone. I would, for one, find a way to make it wearable.
They could have done better on the industrial design and be inspired for example by fashion to design portable products. This does not remind me of Nintendo nor make for a very good tablet design but I like that it looks a bit more mature.
I think it will have reasonable success just because of the gaming concept.

I’m excited for it, it seems like a lot of lessons learned with the Wii U hardware helped develop the Switch and it’s neat to see the evolution. I think the removable controllers to allow for portable multiplayer is a really awesome idea.

The only reason I can think for why the dock is so huge is if the tablet has a large inductive coil for wireless charging. The larger the coil(s) the faster you can charge. This also may double as a screen shield to protect against flying Wiimotes. :laughing:

it’s definitely a novel concept for sure, though ultimately its success or failure (however relatively defined) will depend on the games…because that was main place where the wii was not competitive

I don’t think it has the magic of the OG Wii. Seems like gaming has slipped back to controllers until full VR becomes practical. What do you guys think?

I think the Switch will be very successful for several reasons.

Learning from Past mistakes
The Wii controllers were awesome, but their amazingness wasn’t fully realized until Nintendo came out with the MotionPlus version with better tracking a few years in. By then it was too late to make those the standard, there were already a trillion original ones. People had already been disappointed by the less than stellar real aiming and swordplay in Red Steel (which was still a great concept), so some ignored the amazing controls of Metroid Prime 3 and others that were almost as responsive as a true mouse/keyboard setup and more immersive.

The WiiU was a good console, but suffered in the market due to some fatal flaws. Fatal flaw number one - confusing marketing hurdles. Okay, a screen controller is cool. What about my TV? What about multiplayer? How many people knew WiiU could use Wii remotes just by looking at the packaging? How can they communicate on the box how the screen controller and Wiimotes relate to each other? Why should I look at my screen when the same info could just be on the TV? There were a few cool applications like Pikmin, but not many.

The WiiU and the Switch
In many ways, you can see that the Switch is what they wanted the WiiU to be all along, but the tech wasn’t ready yet to make it happen. Tablets were still too expensive and portable chipsets not powerful enough yet. But now, look at the iPhone 7, almost double the graphics performance of the last one. The tech is ready. The portable mode Switch controller is almost the identical size as the WiiU with a better screen. Console gaming that can happen independent of the TV is already an expected convenience for WiiU owners.

Why the Switch is a brilliant move for gamers and business strategy
The Switch is basically the ultimate gaming machine. It adapts to every single gaming scenario that exists today: home theater lone wolfs, mobile, online multiplayer, local multiplayer, LAN parties and eSports events. Their marketing video does an amazing job of communicating exactly what it does and why it matters. It already has 20M views in a week, more than any Nintendo vid ever.

Naysayers have been saying for a while that Nintendo should go software only. In reality, the competition has less reason than ever to make walled garden consoles. Sony and Microsoft console differentiation is becoming increasingly nothing more than exclusive software contracts, exclusive DLC, and deceptive timed advertising delays for one or the other system when a game does end up launching on both. They are both turning into PCs. AAA titles are fewer and far between, and many heritage franchises like Gears and Halo have grown stale.

Nintendo has always been at the forefront of hardware innovation. Shoulder buttons, analog thumb sticks, haptic feedback, motion control, etc. Nintendo continues this tradition with the Switch which actually offers a meaningfully unique experience from a PC. Compare this to PS4 and Xbox, where you can play the same game on PC with the console controller.

The Switch is so smart because it shows that Nintendo is in the process of combining their entire organization into a single ecosystem. This allows them to release more Nintendo titles per year for both home and portable gaming. It also gives 3rd party publishers a larger more lucrative ecosystem to develop for.

I’m just as curious to see the software innovations and improvements Nintendo has in store. Could it be a full-fledged OS? We still don’t know if the screen is touch and if the controllers have motion tracking or not.

i think the wii was really only magical to casual/non-gamers, and even then that magic was short lived…i remember having many conversations at the time about this around the time; i feel like most gamers were much more on the fence…for sure there was a curiosity about it but it never felt like there was a game/experience that really sold it for the majority of gamers or moved past novelty for casual/non-gamers…

isn’t this because many people love their catalog & games, but not so much their current hardware choices? the consoles do seem to be basically turning into pcs, but if you think about it this makes sense and would seem to not be good for an underpowered (in comparison) mobile system like nintendo’s for the simple reason that, as i understand it, the development studios that make the games tend to develop for one platform & port as much as possible to the other(s), which seems to be why everything is coalescing/converging around similar specs; it just makes it easier to make games across platforms. the makers of these games tend to poorly implement each of the console’s novel capabilities (both the sony move & microsoft kinect add-on functionality are not integral to gameplay) or ignore them altogether, which tends to level out unique experiences or at the very least doesn’t always optimize games for the capabilities of the different platforms…

i don’t really find the mobile aspect particularly compelling (as others have noted, some of the scenarios seem completely unrealistic), personally it seems to me that they have decided to opt out of competing with the console & pc platforms on specs and create their own lane but that is the rub, because that seems to be where things have been going for most of the demographic of people that actually play games…i guess if the price is right they could sell a bunch on the front end similar to the wii? though with each new generation, the hold of super mario, zelda, etc. has less influence and less familiar to people who didn’t experience them, like if you’re a kid asking for a console, why are you picking this over the competition? and if the games are not appreciably different or even worse the if nintendo’s game aren’t to the same level as the other platforms, is there a reason to own it alongside one of the other consoles, if you aren’t especially a mario/zelda fan?

I find the mobility to be the interesting part. When I was 18, I loved Gran Turismo for Playstation. I would have paid double the price is I could have taken it anywhere.

For games that just don’t work on a phone, I see it being a big feature. However, that list is getting shorter…

having the games that people want to play is definitely an important piece, the promise of a mobile gran turismo was one of the main reason i bought a psp! it’s (and the subsequent ps vita as well) failure, both of which held the promise of a console type gaming experience on a mobile platform, should be something of an example of how mobility alone is not enough…

Based on everything Nintendo has released after N64 my answer is no, not really. I’ve always viewed Nintendo as the Disney of video games, they’ve done an amazing job of developing their own IP in the form of characters and worlds, and have found ways to cross breed all if it into some fun, but casual gaming titles. I think the Switch is a great option for family, or kid gaming, but the lack of horsepower, MA rated titles, and hardcore competitive multiplayer gaming leaves little more than a system for dedicated Nintendo fanboyism, not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Alternative consoles are becoming more like PC’s, but I think that’s mostly because the console makers are trying to compete against a platform that can be continuously upgraded for fractions of the cost of buying a new console. Console upgrades are mostly limited to external hard drives or screen upgrades to 4K/HDR. To combat PC’s the console makers give you two options, buy the next gen console, or buy an incrementally improved current gen console version (Xbox One to Xbox One S). Nintendo’s Switch is a modular system in the sense that you can convert it to different gaming settings, however I think MS and Sony need to take a fresh approach as well, and consider making their consoles modular from an upgrade standpoint.

The modular Google phone doesn’t appeal to me, but a modular gaming console that enables the user to upgrade easier than a PC, I’d buy that.

i suppose a modular console (though i believe the steam console that was based on a somewhat modular idea, did not do well in its initial iterations) would make up grading easier & maybe be more efficient in use of materials/resources…although that is exactly the benefit of consoles; you don’t have to worry about the hardware, everything just works. it seems as augmented/virtual reality is what seems to be next up as far as bringing the fresh, but i’m super skeptical about those things having broad appeal in near term, especially if GREAT games aren’t made at the major studios from the ground up with those experiences in mind…it’s always been about the games

Some more thoughts:

User Experience Video
The Switch is surprisingly one of the best user experience videos I have ever seen, and from Nintendo no less. Nintendo did a great job not just designing a product that can adapt to every gaming use case, but literally showing the transition between each use case in the video.

Home console
Portable console
Spontaneous portable multiplayer (anyone who has used StreetPass on 3DS or Pokémon Go understands why this is awesome)
Local casual multiplayer - what the Wii really excelled at and what Nintendo has always supported on every console
Online multiplayer - a given
LAN party/E-Sports - this to me is very interesting and the Switch synergizes incredibly well with E-Sports logistics while letting players keep their personal settings and avatars in their own tablets.

The ecosystem debate is an eternal one. Skyrim and NBA 2K are huge additions, and likely aren’t official yet only because Nintendo is legally obligated to wait until after Holiday 2016 to confirm. It is a double-edges sword because Nintendo makes amazing games, so 3rd parties have to compete with them for software dollars. If they get a big install base, more 3rd parties will come. A strong launch seems likely based on response so far.

Recent Resurgences
I’m just happy to see continued hardware and software innovation from Nintendo. Splatoon winning FPS of the year last year proved they still have the magic and talent for new franchises, much like Overwatch did the same for Blizzard this year.

Now that we’ve seen the hardware, I honestly am excited to see how they have improved their software and OS. I was surprised when PS4 and Xbox One launched with clunky UIs. They have now been remedied, but were much more frustrating that the Wii/WiiU minimalist approach. I trust Nintendo to make their new OS a little more potent while still being a breeze to use.