For TMN, I am Tim Abrams.
Nintendo previewed their new console: Nintendo Switch today, and I have to say, I am impressed. But did you notice everything they gave away in the video? On top of proving some rumors true, they actually showed more than you think. Let’s quickly break down the video and analyze what we can from the 3-minute video.
DISCLAIMER: I do not own the rights to this video, I will overlay the URL as well as put Nintendo’s name on the video. A link will be provided in the description. Also, most of my information is pulled from previous rumors, leaks, popular gaming sources like IGN and Gamespot and the visuals in this video. All the information is due to change at any time, especially during a live Nintendo press conference or press release.
Let’s start with the first shot of the “home dock” portion of the console. From this image we see two additional HDMI ports on side of the dock. This could just be a video thing – it made the dock look better to have fewer cords shooting out of it, or the Switch has the opportunity to be a multi-screen device. Or, maybe you can add other devices to it via HDMI. HDMI has come a long way since its debut, so maybe you can hook up the WII U or a new controller type to the console, like a guitar controller or a Dance pad. It could also mean that Nintendo found a way to connect video wirelessly to a TV.
Next, we get a look at what the home controller looks like without the actual screen. You can see the back part of the controller that almost resembles a Xbox or Android Controller. This is great, seeing as one of the main problems people had with the Wii U and Wii is that playing FPS on the remote and pad was very difficult. You can also see that the controller middle looks a little hefty, which means you are less likely to fling it into the TV… Well… less likely is the key phrase there.
So here is our first up and close look at the buttons on the controller. You can see a traditional control scheme, 4 core buttons, two analog sticks. But the D-pad has been phased out – replaced with four regular directional buttons. It is suspected that these buttons are going to work similar to the D-pad on other Nintendo devices, especially since they have directional arrows on the buttons. We also get another look at the front of the controller, where a “+” and “-” sign can be seen. This may be a way for the user to know where the ports plug in, in relation to the screen, but could also mean that there could be different side “links” that the user could buy. Of course, that is speculation, but it does seem weird that left and right connectors need to be labeled, especially when they only fit in a certain direction.
Up next we see a rumor come to life. It was rumored that the Switch would use some kind of cartridge, and now we know. Learning from the very popular DS and 3DS, and seeing the trouble the Sony PSP had with mini-discs, it looks like Nintendo decided that instead of going to straight digital downloads they have chosen the path has proven to work. The physical cartridge looks similar to a DS SD card which may mean that DS and 3DS games could work with the Switch. But,without the second screen… it’s doubtablethey will play as smooth as one would think. Also, they have included the elusive 3mm headphone jack and some exhaust holes. So yes, the Nintendo Switch is headphone compatible.
This next shot is crucial – it shows the back of the Switch. As you can see, it is flat, and has both shoulder buttons and triggers. As well as a button on top of the controller. So, we have discovered where either the start button is, or where the power button is located. You can also see that the controller is flat, making it easier to store and carry.
Let’s skip ahead a little bit just to cover more material. First, there is a kickstand built into the device. This is not necessarily a new concept, but it’s a nice touch. Lets also add a confirmed 3 mm jack, as well as confirming that the controllers are detachable without exiting a game or app. On Top of that, there is no wire frame to keep the controllers in place. Oh and yea, Skyrim remastered for the Switch.
Up next is something hardcore gamers will enjoy – a dedicated, traditional controller. It includes a D-pad, start, select and two additional buttons, one of them being square. This also shows that the Switch uses some kind of wireless controls similar to the Wii U and the Wii. Let’s skip ahead again, just for the sake of time and to avoid redundancy.
Here we see a new accessory, a stand for playing in a car. This is new and was never even thought to be a thing, but now that we see it, it makes perfect sense. We also see that local splitscreen is still alive in the Switch, as well as sideways controllers. This could be why Nintendo decided to put the Plus and Minus signs on each controller, making it so you know which controller is which and which way the controller should face.
Back to multiplayer functionality, it seems the Switch is running a similar close range multiplayer connection service similar to the DS and 3DS via Bluetooth. To add a little cherry to the top of that golden nugget, it looks like local multiplayer is also available while on that same connection.
Another look at the home docking station and the controller station actually says something about the hardware. This is speculation, but the green dots on the controller could mean that you can charge the controllers with the home dock. This would make sense since the controllers are wireless and it could mean they run on the Switches AC power when docked to the screen, but run on battery when disconnected.
Wireless controllers ahoy! This particular part of the video shows that the wireless traditional controller actually connects to the Switch, rather than the home dock. That is essential when it comes to gaming on the go, especially when playing something more controller heavy like Call of Duty or Battlefield.
Here is something that most people might ignore. This little green light on the bottom of the controller might mean that it is successfully connected to the Switch. But, it could also mean battery life or even tell which player the controller belongs to (Player 1, 2, 3, or 4). It is confirmed that all accessories will run on Bluetooth. This section also shows that Nintendo is expecting for the Switch to become a Esports and competitive gaming platform.
On top of the actual use of the console in the video, Nintendo has released a few details so consumers can get an understanding of what is inside the new console. The biggest asset is that it is powered by a Nvidia Tegra chip, which is similar to the chip that powers Nvidia’s portable gaming device Nvidia Shield. Nintendo also has released new footage for the game Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Finally, the video shows a cartridge being put into the device, but Nintendo has confirmed that there will be a digital market for games as well as physical cartridges.
Well that’s a quick in depth look at the new Nintendo Switch and its promotional video. Although I broke a lot of information, none of this is concrete until Nintendo does a official press release or press conference to showcase the console and its hardware. Do you think I missed something? Leave me a comment below telling me what I missed and what you think of the Nintendo Switch.
Nintendo’s official video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5uik5fgIaI
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