Nintendo recently (finally) gave us our first look at the Nintendo Switch, which was previously codenamed the NX. This new console is the first of it's kind, combining both the living room console experience and the handheld/portable experience. The console itself looks a lot like a tablet with a kickstand. When you're looking to sit back on the couch and have a "traditional" gaming experience, you slide the Switch into a dock that is connected to your TV. When you're ready to hit the road, you can slide the Switch out of the dock and take it with you. In the reveal trailer, we see people playing in parks, on rooftops, and sliding the console onto a backseat car mount for gaming on long road trips.
Throughout the reveal trailer, depending on where the actors are playing the console, we see a variety of different controller configurations. In the living room, we see a controller that resembles the Wii Pro controller. When playing on the go, there are two handheld controllers that slide onto either side of the Switch's screen, making it look eerily similar to the Wii U gamepad. At times we see the Switch's kickstand deployed, and those two handheld controllers can then become mini controllers for local multiplayer. It seems like the different controller options are endless. We haven't heard much of anything from Nintendo yet, but it appears as though this will be where the innovation lies with the Switch. Having seemingly ditched the motion controls, which defined a generation of gaming (at least for Nintendo), I'm sure we will see a new focus on new mechanics. In fact, Twitter user @ryansalamanda has already generated some concept art that shows a variety of possibilities.
Controller concept art originally seen on The Verge via Check out this genius Nintendo Switch controller concept
Based on what we have seen for far, all of rumors we saw surrounding the NX were almost entirely true. I will admit, I was very skeptical each time a new rumor was published. Watching the reveal trailer, however, I feel like Nintendo delivered on each of those rumors, such as the portability, the cartridges, and the controller, pretty well. I am still not 100% sold on the concept of this system, but I am definitely looking forward to this more than I was the Wii U when it was announced.
Over the past couple console generations, I have been of the mind that Nintendo should cease hardware manufacturing and license just their software to other platforms, similar to what SEGA did after the downfall of the Dreamcast (RIP). The Switch gives me a renewed sense of excitement surrounding Nintendo, but it also gives me a bit of deja vu with the Wii. When announced, the Wii was revolutionary and a must have for myself. A couple years into the lifespan of the Wii, third party support never came, and the innovative motion controls began to feel more and more gimmicky. This leads to ask with the Nintendo Switch, "Next Big Thing or Next New Gimmick?"
What do you guys think? Is the Nintendo Switch blowing your mind? Are you going to buy one on launch day? Do you think the battery life will last more than a couple hours? Do you think Nintendo is FINALLY going HD? I'm curious what your first impressions are. Let's get a conversation started in the comments below!
Also, be sure to continually check back here at CLETech.net for continued coverage of the Nintendo Switch.