First Impressions - Nintendo Switch


#1

Nintendo! New console!


Well, it looks like the DS (and potentially the Wii too) will become a thing of the past, unfortunately. It’s been clinging onto life for a while, as it slowly loses users. So Nintendo have gone for it again and made a console that stands out. A game system that works on TV or as a handheld system AND uses side of screen buttons (detachable too) or controllers. It certainly is versatile, they seem to want you to constantly have it with you. Therefore, Nintendo are gonna have the problem of an essential high battery life.

A tricky one to make!

Oh, guess what, IT HAS A STAND! :stuck_out_tongue:

I’m not sure what to expect from it, but if they don’t make any mistakes it could be the rebirth of Nintendo, especially with such a success of Pokémon Go.

What does everybody think so far? I’m intrigued to hear what you all have to say.


#2

The switch looks really interesting! Personally, I think it has an interesting design. This seems like a good move for nintendo!


#3

I’m very curious for it, I’ll admit


#4

From Software and Bethesda are on side for it, so that’s gonna be interesting either way it goes.


#5

I have never owned any Nintendo hardware, my cousin had a borrowed NES for like a few weeks and that’s it, we always were team Commodore64 and then PC. I still have my old IBM386 machine here with me in my room, I’m kind of nostalgic about it, like BrianD with hid old-school gear :smiley:

From one point of view I commend Nintendo for trying out new stuff and innovating hardware-wise, but the modular and mobile aspect of it can mean that they will have to cut corners on the base hardware itself, the processing power. That’s my concern. These current generation consoles are already behind from what is reasonably available in a computer hardware, be it raw processing power, memories, graphics units, etc. And it is part of the other main question, how easy and self-explanatory will the programming and developing will be for the hardware. If it’s too complicated, it slows down the process for the developers (especially the third party ones) as they have to fully comprehend all the nuances. And if it pairs with the constant need of optimizing because the hardware can’t handle what the developers would want and what they could have on a PC, then the final product will suffer, because they will take too much time or compromise some aspects because they took too much time learning and optimizing. Look at Naughty Dog for example. Last of Us for the PS3 was a nightmare to develop because they always had to balance memory usage, which was a resource for them like gold, and making it run 720p 30FPS on the PS3 was costly money and time-wise. Even in Uncharted 4 for the PS4, they had to compromise and work around stuff to even get 30FPS out of the system. Another example is Bioware with Dragon Age: Inquisition. EA gave them the Frostbyte engine from Dice, but it was an engine built for developing FPS style games and multiplayer, so they had to take the time to learn the engine, and re-write it to suit their need for a story oriented singleplayer RPG. And with the emergence of VR headset after VR headset, the programming libraries will get complicated and complicated, I don’t envy the poor soul who has to optimize and debug something for ALL THE SYSTEMS!!! :smiley:

So my conclusion is that it really is a cool concept, and if Nintendo can find a sweet balance of things, it can be hugely successful, no doubt about that. Time will tell :slight_smile:


#6

Just based off the trailer and nothing else, I’m very intrigued. Very clever design. Very cool concept. Definitely the “right direction” for the next step in gaming (especially as technology allows that mobile device to give you the same fidelity as a powerful console/PC).

That said I have two problems with the trailer:

  1. It smells like tech demo BS. Now because it’s Nintendo and because it’s an actual salable product that I expect to see in stores soon, I give them a bit of benefit of the doubt. We’ll see how well it actually works IRL.
  2. HOLY CRAP STOP PLAYING VIDEO GAMES AND HANG OUT WITH YOUR FRIENDS / DOG / FAMILY! JESUS. They make everybody look so utterly game-addicted and anti-social. And this is coming from somebody who has more hours into Rocket League than most people have spent sleeping in the past month.

#7

The cool potential I see is a gaming-side reflection of everything “unifying” (like how most of our accounts like email are available on most devices). While I understand the difference between freebie mobile games and AAA console fare, the handheld middle ground is in an increasingly awkward spot, so tying a console and handheld purchase together in a way that doesn’t force the user to use both functions seems cool.

I’m also interested in how the cartridge format will work out; there’s a lot of practical benefits given the system’s focus on allowing portability (and durability), but I’m curious what technical shortcomings that may instill, and also whether manufacturing costs will be considerably higher. Back when Nintendo did the N64, it was a completely different world where they favored cartridges over CDs for faster loading times, and those games were pretty tiny in data size. Nowadays (I have a 3DS) I’m used to seeing load screens even on cartridge games, and we’re in the times of high-capacity card storage, so who knows. I’m curious if data limits and/or hardware spec limits will repeat the problem of “second-class ports” that plagued the Wii on a lot of AAA titles.

Also - this system looks absolutely rad for younger kids. Maybe that makes me old thinking of it that way, but I can imagine all on the weekend being like, “hey son, you have to save and quit that console game so we can go on the road and go to your whatever-class,” but now it’s just like, “yank that thing and let’s ROCK dude!” - I like the flexibility since it’s not actually mandatory to use the system in all its forms (the clunky gimmicky multi-functionality some Wii U titles had), and hopefully just makes the experience fluid and simple in a cool, new way for a lot of users.

I don’t understand the details of how their system-to-system on-the-go multiplayer is supposed to work, but if the office Wii U has proven anything, it’s that face-to-face gaming is still king. I love playing certain games online, but doing a round of Smash Bros or Mario Kart against opponents in the same room takes me back to being a child again. A giant, belligerent, cursing child. If this feature is quick and painless, the joint home/mobile console aspect might make it easier than ever to throw down with your friends. No more “toss the whole system in a bag and hope you don’t forget the power adapter.”

We’ll see what the games are like. If it’s a more affordable, flexible alternative to Sony and Microsoft’s systems with a comparable library, and Nintendo cranks out a few more first party titles than they have been as of late, I’m down to Switch back to Nintendo.


#8

What if you’re only way to hang out with your friends and family is online? :smiley: If you can find more meaningful friendships/relationships online, I actually find that more satisfying than hanging out with classmates just because they are physically close to you. School really is a lottery, I had the good fortune growing up that my closest friends lived only a few houses away and went to the same class as I, and I still play football and tennis with them, but when my cousin moved far out, the only way to reasonably hang out with him was through Skype and video games. I used to watch him play Gothic 2 through Skype waaaaaay before live-streaming became a thing :smiley:

It really depends on the situation. I became good friends with my first girlfriend a year before I first met her as she lived in the other side of the country :smiley:

It’s so interesting how different childhood experiences can shape your preferences. We never really had face-to-face multiplayer growing up, face-to-face gaming usually meant one of us playing while the other watched and vice versa as none of our families were rich enough to have consoles, enough controllers, and most of the games at the same time :smiley: When the good internet came, Lan-parties almost stopped completely too, at least in my community.

I agree that affordability will be a Huge factor, that’s where what I’ve written comes into play. They have to find a good balance so that the hardware can be affordable while the developing process still takes reasonable time and budget compared to the other systems. And yes, I would have killed for a system like this as a kid too, not that I’m complaining about what I had, I will never have a problem making a cutsom-built PC because of my past :smiley:


#9

Right, presumably the system will have online like basically everything else as well! While I haven’t done much online on Nintendo’s consoles, I do hope they’ve abandoned the Friend Code thing, or whatever they had in place that made it a pain to do online stuff.

We had a lot of video game arcades around my area growing up, so that’s also an experience I miss. I always try to swing by one or two when I’m in Japan (since they’re still common there) and play a round or two of the newest Tekken or whatever, just to feel the energy of live competition and screen-watching other players again. I think the Switch has the opportunity to emulate modern arcades (at least like in Japan, and I’d assume South Korea), where games are both online and local multiplayer at the same time. While that’s not unheard of on current home consoles, the mobility factor may be a cool plus - and if it’s easy to connect, you could end up competing with strangers on-the-go, which could be fun, at least in theory. I think some of the “carry your expensive device in public” is really influenced by how safe your local area is; a lot of the cool mobile features in Japanese titles I wouldn’t be comfortable doing in the US out of fear of getting robbed, honestly. Like, I travel with my 3DS openly in Japan, but I rarely take it outdoors in LA. Part of that’s my silly paranoia (my phone is worth more and I use that constantly), but I don’t think it invalidates it as a concern about the Switch’s features :stuck_out_tongue:


#10

Oh yes, arcades… The thing you have to know is that Hungary had almost none of those things until the Iron Curtain collapsed, so in the 90s it was like a huge boiling pot of the past and current decades, most things came just a bit later, or how can I phrase it better, they were available, but around their original prices, and the average salary was (and unfortunately still is) Miles behind, so only the rich kids could afford a PS1 with two controllers and with both Fifa and Tekken :smiley: My family chose the PC as a tech platform as they could also use it for work stuff while entertaining us with games like Prince of Persia, Stunts, Lion King, Dune2, etc. So when the current gen stuff became last gen in your country and the prices dropped, that’s when it started to filter into the middle class here :smiley: And arcades were even worse. I was like you now, I spent lots of time as a kid admiring the view, the different games, the excitement, (and searching for spare change :smiley: ), but I can count on my two hands the amount of times I actually got to play in an arcade during my childhood. I did not have the experience playing them so I sucked and it was over before I could count the money my parents had spent on me :smiley: When you can buy 5 cones of Ice-cream for the price of a half-minute arcade playing session (we usually got 2 cones), then it’s a big nah for the parents :smiley:

I agree about the dangerous aspects of it, I wouldn’t travel with it openly in Budapest (or with my phone for that matter :D), especially at night, one of my friend has had his phone stolen from his hand on the tram while he was using it, but the robber’s misfortune was that my friend practices Jiu-jitsu and was in great shape, so he ran after him, caught up to him, and simply took back his phone :smiley:


#11

We digitalized most of our family photos not long ago. Please don’t laugh :smiley:


#12

I think that might be what they’re counting on for it to be successful. They’ve visualised in the trailer that Switch owners will take it with them wherever (and showing that you can do exactly that is a good point for Nintendo), and wherever they do go the other people present are eager to join them. Therefore, Nintendo could be saying that with the Switch, it’s an easier, and less anti-social way to be addicted to gaming.

I’ve also wondered whether playing together on the Switch (in public etc) will be a valued feature. I mean, when you want to play a game with someone, you’d be more likely to play it on an Xbox, PlayStation or similar. Of course you could play with the Switch’s TV function, but would you play on the smaller screen elsewhere? Handheld gaming devices have mostly been an experience for one person, so would people want to give that up?

We’re also going to find out soon how the TV function will work. I’d like to know whether the attachment to the TV (that box thing he takes the Switch out of) is also easy to take with you (any cables to unplug?) if you wanted to play on a TV elsewhere.

These are all things the future will tell us, maybe including the sales as well :grin:


#13

Rad Dads of the future


#14

It really is shooting in the dark at the moment, we will have to see.

What was Nintendo’s policy regarding warrantee stuff? These new smaller controller bits are screaming to me that they will get lost :smiley: I was thinking to install small ICs into easily lostable things like key-chains, contact lense cases, etc. that broadcasts some signal which you can detect with some other device or phone. Something like this could be helpful on a device with modular design like the Switch.


#15

I’m not gonna get too hyped over it, but it is to be excited over. I just hope with it releasing so soon, It won’t be a hype bomb.


#16

I hope I wasn’t unclear. The fact that you can do all of this is awesome and obviously where the tech needs to go. I just wish it wasn’t presented as such a junkie fix.

Forget the friends example. Take the dog example. Dogs are living creatures. They need attention and care. Put down your @#$%ing console for two seconds and take care of your living, breathing, “family member”…you know what I mean? Taking your dog off leash to an open park and playing video games while it gets up to god knows what is, well, just negligent, you know?

Whatever, it’s an ad and I shouldn’t overthink it…but as a dog owner and parent it just rubbed me the wrong way. NBD

It’s less about how you choose to socialize or not socialize (which is a totally individual thing) vs. whether or not you ever detach. It’s what I was getting at with the dog above. Again, it’s just a vibe from the ad that rubbed me the wrong way. Definitely not worth getting into.


#17

Ok, I know what you mean and actually agree with you about this (even as a cat person :smiley: )


#18

Ahem.


#19

Who else has got their hands on one or plan to? Any thoughts so far?


#20

Ssssshhhhh no calling people out and holding them accountable to their statements :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Really slick. Well-designed from a hardware standpoint and I love the “switch” concept. Haven’t played with it much yet, but the one thing I will say is that it was not designed for large hands. I’m sure I’ll get used to it eventually but for now it’s a struggle.