Many gaming fans have been anxiously awaiting the official unveiling of the upcoming console from Nintendo, formerly codenamed the NX. Today the wait finally ended when Nintendo uploaded a trailer that revealed the name of the console to officially be the Nintendo Switch. The trailer gives a release date of March 2017 and shows off many features of the new console.
The most standout feature of the Switch is it’s ability to be both a home console and a portable console. When at home it can be plugged into the TV and play games just like any other console. However, during a game session you can undock the system which results in a tablet that is roughly 5.83" x 4.19". The tablet comes with a kickstand that allows it to be easily set up on any surface.
The Switch also comes with a brand new controller, the joy-con, which comes in two piece that can be used in multiple ways. The two pieces of the joy-con can be directly attached to the Switch tablet to offer a mobile gaming experience similar to a PSP. They also work wirelessly allowing them to be detached and used like a more traditional console controller with joy-con grip. It is also possible to share the two pieces between two people, giving each player a small controller that looks like a modern rendition of the SNES controller. Finally, the two pieces can also be used by one person, giving each hand a controller similar to the Wii nunchuck experience. For the more serious gamers, Nintendo will be offering a pro-controller which looks a lot like the Wii-U Pro controller .
Whether you are at home or on the go, your gaming experience will be nearly identical. In both cases the system is powered by an custom NVIDIA Tegra GPU that is accompanied by new software, such as the NVN API, that is specifically designed for lightweight gaming experiences. This combination of hardware and software makes the system perform very well for it’s form factor, as it’s shown playing beautiful AAA games such as Skyrim without a hitch.
In addition to Skyrim, the trailer showed off six other games running on the Switch. The first of which was The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which was already announced for the NX. A Mario Kart game that looks awfully similar to Mario Kart 8 was also shown, but it’s unknown whether there are any changes being made to the game for the Switch. There was also another Mario game that looked similar to Super Mario, but not much information is known about this game. The final Nintendo title shown was some version of Splatoon. Much like the Mario Kart shown in the trailer, it’s unsure how similar it is to the Wii-U release. Lastly, there was some gameplay of a basketball game, which is likely an NBA 2k title. While these were the only six games shown in the trailer, there are many developers backing the Switch so there are likely many titles that will be coming to the new console. All of the games will be available in the form of cartridges similar to SD-cards, and presumably downloaded.
Sources: Wired, ArsTechnica, NVIDIA