The Next Generation Of Nintendo Consoles Switches Things Up
The reveal last Thursday from Nintendo left many gamers excited, some say they even passed out from sheer joy. A new console from Nintendo after the Wii U left a sour taste in most fan’s mouths, we could only see the gaming giant going up from there. The display of new games, the interesting mechanic of going from home console to handheld, and two sliding controllers on an improved Wii U tablet, is enough to justify a large outcry of “Just Take My Money!!”
However, once the confetti finally settles, and a the spotlights start to turn off, is when the real questions come out to play. Several people have analyzed the video, picking it apart for any clue of information since Nintendo is not so forthcoming. Sure we loved the idea of a new Mario/Mario Kart, new Legend of Zelda, NBA 2K17, and the biggest surprise Skyrim on the new console, but many have found the footage was not truly being played in the trailer. I’m sure plenty of trailers use prop controllers so this isn’t so surprising, but it does make me wonder: Will it truly look this good when playing on the actual console or should we expect a downgrade?
Quality is a huge deal to consumers, especially this day and age, and Nintendo has never been on the cutting edge. They never rivaled the current gen consoles in graphical prowess but they have soldiered on and proved they have fighting merit. Sales for the Wii alone on release, the demand for the console knowing the graphics weren’t on the level. They have proven themselves as more than just an aesthetically pleasing creature, yet with consoles and TVs hitting 40K output, can Nintendo stand to just reach the bar before the current. The choice to use Nvidia Tegra chip proves that the Switch will not be able to keep up with the PS4 and Xbox One, so I wonder if staying a step behind graphically will be Nintendo’s staple to the very end.
But Do We Really KNOW What The Switch Is?
It was flashy, but did the reveal have any real substance? The most we learned is they are stepped up the graphics they may have been able to use years ago, the new games and third party support is going to be awesome, they once again play on innovation in the form of controller types, they are going back to the classic cartridge games, and they are merging both the 3DS and Wii U markets. So what’s left for us to know?
Pretty much everything else. We got a peak at the big list of 3rd party developers, and it’s amazing to see the support in Nintendo’s corner for both 1st and 3rd party support. We see how the console looks and how it will potentially act, but we didn’t get a peak at the power level of this machine. We don’t know a price point, which is a very big deal for those, myself included, who can’t afford the latest toys that they really want. The number of questions grows and the trailer brings in even more when you look at it.
One scene depicts Splatoon being played as an eSport contender, but does that mean streaming, like Twitch plays of Splatoon matches, or are they trying to branch out and create actual leagues of the game? Both have their own merits but one implies that the numerous bans on Twitch players and Youtubers maybe becoming lighter than they currently are, but the other means they are expanding their reach to bigger ponds. That can bring more exposure to the Nintendo line, straying away from the loyal Nintendo fans and casual family gamers. All of this is speculation and it makes it seem like Nintendo is finally listening to what people have been saying for years, to strap on their big kid pants and throw their hat into the ring for all gamers not just a select market.
The specs for the systems were obviously absent from the presentation and when you think about it, it’s a mystery box situation. You’re enticed by what may or may not be inside the box. It could be anything, it could even be a Wii U. Is this joke hitting home with anyone? The biggest thing is we’re being held in suspense until the very last minute before the release on March 2017 and many people will sit here and back them, hoping for the return of the monolith Nintendo once was. While I hope they surprise us and bring back some of that magic that they once had, I loved the idea of what I saw in the reveal.
However, I haven’t had much love for the Nintendo home console in the past few iterations. I was in line with for hours after waiting months for the Wii and at first I was in heaven, but as time went on the support for the console wavered and I watched as my Wii collected dust. I enjoyed my time with the bigger hit titles but there wasn’t enough for me to believe the console had hope. Watching the Wii U, as I never had the funds to buy my own, I realized I didn’t have much desire to buy one the second I could. I would be happy to play some of the games on the current console but I don’t think I’d buy a Wii U just to play the few. If only Blockbuster still existed for their rent a console deal, I’d be all over that. Aaand now I feel old.
In the end, I’m not overly hyped for the Nintendo Switch, interested, but any blind excitement for the console doesn’t exist. I fear they might stick to one gimmick, as they are prone to do, and it will make the console fizzle out not long after release. Too many questions, too many missed opportunities since the GameCube and early Wii era, are keeping me on the fence.
Let me know your thoughts on Nintendo’s Switch, am I just being cynical is it caution?