Several weeks back, we as an industry were treated to the release date of the brand new console from Nintendo: the Switch. During this brief period of hype around the brand new console, I quickly found myself getting relatively bogged down by the Switch after seeing the trailer; and I’ve tried my best to put my thoughts and feelings into why.
First and foremost, the main problem I have with the Switch is the fact that it’s coming out in the middle of the current console generation. We’ve got the PS4, Xbox One, and PC markets to acquire the majority of our favourite titles on, but the PS4 and Xbox One specifically have been out for a good couple of years now and considering that the PS4 Pro already exists and the Xbox: Scorpio is set to release some time this year, Nintendo are once again lagging behind with their hardware.
They did something similar with the Wii U, where they released the console a year or two before the new console generation was about to kick off. Instead of waiting and improving the console as best as possible, they decided to release it unto the public to be the very first next generation console to come out. One major problem with this is the Wii U came out under-powered, even in regards to the Xbox 360 and PS3. Now if you can imagine what that means for the console when the PS4 and Xbox One came out; it wasn’t exactly looking good for the Wii U.
Once again, though, it seems Nintendo may have pulled the same mistake, because if you look at the specs of the console – even briefly – you can see that it isn’t quite going to match up with the new and improved PS4 and Xbox One.
As I’m sure you are already aware of, but the Switch has this little mechanic that allows you to turn it into a handheld console so you can continue to play your favourite Nintendo games while on the move. Initially the idea is pretty cool to some degree, but just like with the Wii U, I get the worrying feeling that the reason the price is so high is because of the added gimmicks. When you look at the Nintendo Switch objectively – along with its price – it’s hard to dispute that you’re not paying for the gimmicks that go along with.
If Nintendo would understand that the majority of their hardcore audience doesn’t actually want all these unnecessary extras and simply want a more powerful console that can play Nintendo exclusives as close to perfect as you can get them. But when you’re paying for the extra screen so you can use it as a handheld device, along with the controller that comes with the console that act as 2; rather than just the 1. Yes, I won’t deny that at its core it’s a pretty cool idea, but I would personally much prefer to pay less and be without these silly gimmicks, and I’m sure I’m not the only one.
Part of the reason the Wii U didn’t sell all that well was down to the fact that it wasn’t powerful enough when compared to the new consoles coming out; yet all at the same time it was too expensive for what you were getting out of it. There’s a reason the Wii U is their most poorly sold consoles to-date and I really don’t want to see that happen again, just with the Switch.
You can’t dispute that Nintendo have some great first-party titles and I well and truly want to see them succeed with the Nintendo Switch; but after the Wii U it’s quite clear that Nintendo need to fix some of their previous mistakes, and I’m getting the worrying feeling that they haven’t really done that with the Switch.