Nintendo is known for taking risks with new and innovative console designs. The Wii was the first console to use motion controls. This concept was highly successful due to the simplicity of the controls. The Wii sold over 100 million consoles and is the fifth bestselling console ever. Nintendo’s latest console the Wii U brought us a way to play games without needing a television. The console came with the Wii U GamePad, a tablet style controller with a touch screen. This allows you to still play your games even if a family member is hogging the TV. Nintendo also allowed games to take advantage of the gyroscope in the GamePad to allow for motion control.
However, the GamePad did not live up to what Nintendo intended it to be. Few games utilized its full potential, leaving many players opting to use a normal controller; leaving the GamePad to collect dust. Also, despite Nintendo being known for its amazing exclusive games, few noteworthy games were made for the Wii U. The Wii U was a disaster for Nintendo, only selling 13 million consoles. However, Nintendo recently revealed their newest console, set to release in March of next year: the Nintendo Switch. Similar to past consoles, the Switch has a unique design. The question on everyone’s mind is: Will the Switch be a success like the Wii, or will Nintendo strike out again like the Wii U?
To answer that question, let’s first look at the design. The Switch is a hybrid console, allowing you to plug it into your TV and play at home and also bring it on the go. The Switch is made of the two components: a tablet and a docking station. The docking station isn’t anything special. It charges the tablet and allows you to project your games onto the TV. The tablet is where it gets interesting. Essentially, the tablet is a screen with two detachable controller on either side. You can attach the controllers onto the screen and play it much similar to the GamePad, or you can detach the controllers if you don’t want to hold the tablet in your hands. A good example of where this can be useful is in cramped places such as an airplane.
As shown in the picture, you can prop the screen up, detach the controls, and play that way. You can also play multiplayer games using the two controllers which should be a blast. Another interesting choice by Nintendo is that they are going back to cartridge games like the old consoles. The main reasons for this choice is that cartridge games are much more durable than disks and that the Switch isn’t big enough for a disk reader.
Something Nintendo has lagged behind in past years compared to their competitors is the processing power of their consoles. The Wii and Wii U could not play graphically demanding games that other consoles could. For the first time ever with the Switch, Nintendo is using processors that are able to play graphically demanding games. The announcement video showed people playing Skyrim, a game which requires high end specs to play. The exact specs are not known. However, this is nothing to brag about. With this move, Nintendo is simply catching up to their competitors, not overtaking them.
In my opinion, the Switch is a great concept. The ability to take your console anywhere and play with your friends is amazing. But what does Chaminade students think of the console?
Junior Kamran Winschel said, “People want a traditional console that’s more powerful than its competitors, but Nintendo gives its customers weird gimmicky consoles. I’m cautiously optimistic.”
Junior David Deloso said, “If Nintendo delivers on its promises the Switch will change gaming.”
And Junior Matt Covington said, “Mr. Nintendo really hit it out of the park with this console.”
If you would like to see more information about the Nintendo Switch check out the announcement video which highlights the uses of the Switch. Nintendo will announce more information including the price, game lineup, system specs, and other details during a live streamed presentation on January 12th.
Link to video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5uik5fgIaI