Ever since the Wii, Nintendo has needed to get things right but for whatever reason Nintendo just wasn’t hitting the mark with consumers and their consoles just couldn’t hold up to their competition. For a while there I was afraid that Nintendo would meet the same fate as Sega and Mario or Zelda would just end up on a Playstation or Xbox. Don’t know about you but I have a lot of fond childhood memories that involve Nintendo and they stem back to getting the original Nes on Christmas day. Once I opened the box and had the console setup I just couldn’t put it done. I would not only play countless hours on my own console at home but I would also play with my uncle at his house and I could get enough of Mike Tysons Punch Out!
The Begining of Nintendo’s Saving Grace!
In April of 2016 Nintendo announced their next console which would code names NX and it would be launching March of 2017. Now Nintendo at first didn’t release a whole lot of information and said only that it would be far different from their past two consoles. The NX would be unique and they insured the consumer that they were not building the next Wii U.
It was known early on that the console would have both a home console and mobile element. Nintendo has planned on bringing the best of all its work so far, a hybrid system that brings both the successful home console elements and elements from Nintendo’s always successful handheld systems. There were many leaks as to what the console and controllers looked like. Most suggested a tablet such as the Wii U controller and two handheld controllers that were sort of like the Wii Motions controls. This would mean that Nintendo was learning from their past success but looking past their failures without taking them into consideration why designing their new console.
Nintendo NX Had Finally Got An Official Name…
During most of the development Nintendo was calling their new console the NX but on October 20, 2016, the public finally had an official name and it all made sense at that point. Nintendo’s new console would officially be called the Nintendo Switch and due to what the console was capable of it just fit.
What Is The Nintendo Switch?
The Nintendo Switch is a hybrid console tablet that when placed in its dock is a home console that can be played on an HD television but can be removed from its dock at played portably and if for any reason you need to leave the house the game goes with you! If the Wii U and the DS, well you know! Then they had a baby, the Nintendo Switch be the thing they birth! It was what the Wii U should have been and Nintendo was just slacking.
Nintendo Switch Design, Build Quality & Features
The Nintendo switch is similar to a tablets with two controllers attached to the side, that Nintendo calls joy-cons. The front of the Switch tablet has a shiny black gloss finish with the back of the tablet having a matte black finish and features a 6.2-inch screen. The Joy-cons that come with the basic edition consoles are a matte gray color but do come in a variety of colors and special editions such as Splatoon’s color scheme.
Nintendo Switch Tablet
The tablet itself is made of a pretty sturdy plastic and does have some weight to it but I’m sure that is mostly due to the battery. On the top of the console, you will find the power button, volume rocker, 3.5mm headphone jack and the cartridge slot. On the front of the console as I said is a 6.2-inch capacitive touchscreen with a 1280 by 720 resolution and two speakers on the bottom. On the bottom of the tablet of the tablet is where you will find a USB-C port for charging, on the back you will find a stand which I am afraid to break because it is a little flimsy and under the stand is the micro SD card slot for storage.
The Joy-Cons are pretty unique but Nintendo is no for developing unique controllers for their consoles and the Nintendo Switch is no exception. The Joy-Con for there size have a little weight to them but for the most part are pretty lightweight and are made of a pretty good quality plastic.
There are two different joy-cons that can be used in sync with each other or by themselves to play two player games. Essentially the pair of joy-cons are one controller that splits into two when not attached to the side of the console. The controllers slide into the console on both the left and right sides. They can be used attached to the console or disconnected which for the most part is when the console is connected to the dock.
The left Joy-Con features an L button, ZL button, a – button which acts as the tradition select button, an analog stick, a d-pad similar to the Nintendo 64 C buttons, and a capture button. When the Left Joy-Con is separated from the Switch you will see two extra buttons on the side, the SL, and SR buttons.
The right Joy-Con features an R button, a + button which acts as a start, standard action buttons, a right analog stick and a home button. When the Right Joy-Con is separated from the Switch you will also see two extra buttons on the side, the SL, and SR buttons.
Just a heads up because it took me a little while to realize this, on the back of the Joy-Cons at the top is a little button used to release them from the switch so don’t tug or try to force them out or you will break them and your Nintendo Switch.
The Nintendo Switch Dock
The official Nintendo Switch Dock features two USB b ports on the left side, a tv output led on the front of the dock, a USB on the back, HDMI out and a power adapter port! The Switch Dock has a slit in the middle where the Nintendo Switch slides into and connects to a USB-C port for charging as well as connectivity for output to HD TV.
Nintendo Switch Specs
The Nintendo Switch is powered by a Nvidia Tegra X1 which when I saw this I immediately said to myself isn’t the Nvidia Shield powered by the same hardware and indeed it is. Therefore, sad to say you won’t be seeing Xbox One or PlayStation performance but in my opinion, because it can be enjoyed portable this isn’t too much of a let down for me!
The Switch’s GPU is clocked at 768MHz and when portable the GPU clocks at 307.2MHz which means the Nvidia Shield an Android Tv device is more powerful running at 1GHz. The Nintendo Switch’s screen is Multi-touch capacitive touch 1280 x 720 6.2-inch LCD Screen and can output via HDMI to TV up to 1080p.
I KNOW THIS IS A SWITCH REVIEW BUT IF YOUR LOOKING FOR THE BEST ANDROID TV DEVICE FOR PLAYING ANDROID GAMES OR STREAMING MOVIES TO YOUR HD TV I SUGGEST YOUR CHECK OUT THE NVIDIA SHIELD TV!
The Nintendo Switch is 4 inches high, 9.4 inches long and 0.55 inches deep with the Joy-Cons attached. Now the next question would be how much does the Nintendo Switch Weigh? Great question for a portable system and it weighs about .66lb without the Joy-cons while with the Joy-Cons it comes in at .88lbs which is really lightweight.
The Switch outputs audio is stereo sound and is compatible with 5.1ch Linear PCM via HDMI according to Nintendo and has a 3.5mm Audio Jack. The Nintendo Switch’s sensors consist of Accelerometer, Gyroscope, and brightness sensor.
The internal battery is a 4310mAH Lithium-Ion which can last approximately 2.5 -6.5 hours depending on the game (graphic intensity) and the gamer’s skills.
Nintendo Switch Accessories
There are quite a few official and third-party accessories for the Nintendo Switch. The Joy-cons come in varies colors and there are even translucent housings which makes them stand out even more.
Nintendo Switch Pro Controller Alternatives
There are also options for those of us who like playing with a tradition controller and Nintendo has the Pro Controller which unfortunately isn’t cheap but there are some other third-party options. There are two controllers that I personally own, the Ortz Nintendo Switch controller and J&T wireless Nintendo Switch Controller. Both controllers are a pretty good cheaper alternative to the Pro Controller but I prefer the Ortz controller.
Nintendo Switch Dock Alternatives
Due to the $80 price tag for the Nintendo Switch official dock, some consumers might be looking for a cheaper alternative option and there are a few but in my opinion, you get what you pay for here. There was a huge issue with the Nyko Switch dock bricking Nintendo Switches and others damaging the C-ports on the Switch. In my opinion, if you’re looking for an extra dock for your Nintendo Switch play it safe and stick with the official Nintendo dock.
Must-Have Nintendo Switch Accessories
When getting a Nintendo Switch there are many different accessories you should pick-up that I consider Must-Haves and one is a decent size memory card. The Nintendo Switch console only has 32gb of onboard memory which doesn’t leave much room for downloadable games and in-game add-ons. Your first accessory and probably a must purchase is going to be a bigger sd card for extra storage.
The Nintendo Switch is not cheap and it’s portable so there are many different instances where unfortunately the console can potentially be damaged. There are two really important accessories I think should be purchased in order to protect your investment. The screen can be scratch and who want to see scratches on the screen during gameplay so a good screen protector is a must. Beyond the screen is the rest of the console and you don’t want to just put the Switch in a bag without projecting it so a good carry case. I personally like the Zelda branded case, the outside has a hard leather-like material, inside is enough room for the console, the charger adapter and it even comes with two hard plastic cases that hold 8 game cartridges.
Gaming On The Switch
Now to the most important part is, well the gaming and in my opinion, it is amazing! Now your obviously not going to get the Xbox One or PlayStation 4 experience but for the most part you can’t tell the difference. The console was made to play on a big screen as well as portable so sacrifices had to be made. But there are a lot of portables that not only looks amazing on the Nintendo Switch but the gameplay experience is just as good. There is a developer called Panic Button that has ported games such as Doom, Rocket League, and Wolfenstein II. Everything they bring to the Nintendo Switch is Gold and they continue to impress.
Let’s not forget the many ports that Nintendo is bringing over to the Nintendo Switch from the Wii U because no one really had a Wii U and now those gamers can experience what they missed. Now Zelda Breathe of the Wild was one of those games and it’s a shame I didn’t get to play that game before. Zelda Breathe of the Wild was a runner-up for best Nintendo Switch game in 2017 and there is a reason for that! I love the art style of the game, the combat system keeps you engage and can add an extra challenge to the game.
There have been some exclusive new games to the system like Mario Oddysee which sadly I have had since lunch but haven’t had the time to play. Now I heard that Mario Oddysee was amazing and it was even the number one game in 2017. It is an open world, Mario game which has plenty to do and a unique hat sidekick called Cappy!
Another exclusive game to the switch and probably the one game that I was anticipating the most was Kurby Star Allies. Now the reason I was anticipating this game the most was, well, because it brings me back to my childhood and the Nintendo Entertainment System. Kurby Star Allies is a traditional 2D platformer and it is everything I remember from the original Kirby on the Nes. The game brings multiplayer to the mix, there are up to three other players on the screen beside Kurby which can be anyone of your friends or the AI. The Ai is very intelligent but I think a little too intelligent and sometimes I was going to defeat an enemy but the Ai got there first which stole all the glory from me! Also, I found the game to be a little too easy, there was even a boss fight where I had no weapons and was trying to shoot back what the boss was throwing at me with little success but still one because of AI Allies. It can also be a little hard sometimes to see where you are on the screen because there is so much happening at one time and the AI is all over the place. Either way still a really fun game and enjoyed playing it but I’m not sure it was worth the $60 price tag.
There are also plenty of good games on the Digital Marketplace worth downloading and playing. Just a few to mention that I believe are worth play is Fast RMX which is a Wipeout clone, SteamWorld dig which is a 2d platform where you control a little steam robot around a mine while trying to avoid obstacles, enemies and solves puzzles. Another good game is Sonic Mania which was programmed by Christian Whitehead and it takes the best of all the sonic games but mostly inspired by Sonic CD. The Stages are longer, there are plenty of power-ups and the bosses are more creative. For now, it is a digital download but there has been an announcement that it will be released physically in the near summer, yes!
So The Question Still Remains…
So with all this said, Why Don’t You Have A Nintendo Switch Yet? There are plenty of good games that have already been released, physically and digitally. All the most popular games you didn’t get to play because you didn’t have a Wii U and all the great digital downloads on the eShop. Future games on the horizon such as Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze, Hyrule Warriors, Metroid Prime 4 and even hopefully a new Super Smash Bros should be reason enough. The Nintendo Switch might not be able to stand-up against the big consoles but I don’t think it needs to and I don’t think it wants to. It is in its own class! A console you can play at home, then continue your gaming on the move that is what makes it so unique and desirable. Trust me when I say you won’t be disappointed if you pick-up a switch and after playing it for just a short period of time you will for in love with Nintendo Wii U DS hybrid system!
WHEN YOU PICK-UP YOUR SWITCH I HIGHLY SUGGEST GETTING AMAZON PRIME, I PRE-ORDER ALL MY GAME THROUGH AMAZON PRIME AND GET A REALLY GOOD DISCOUND SOMETIMES ADDING UP TO ALMOST $10 OFF WITH FREE TWO DAY SHIPPING (YOU GET NEW RELEASE GAMES ON THE DAY THEY RELEASE). WELL WORTH IT!