Nintendo Switch: A Comprehensive Overview

Nintendo has finally thrown back the curtain on their newest hybrid console, the Nintendo Switch. In this article we’re going to talk about the hardware specifications of the unit, games that have been confirmed for the platform, launch bundles, and much more.

Nintendo Switch

On Thursday night (1/12/2017) Nintendo held an official reveal presentation to show off the Nintendo Switch. In this presentation the company gave us a better look at the console itself, the games that would be available for the device, and a quick preview of hardware configurations.

Nintendo Switch

Below, we go over every aspect of the console based on the details that have now been provided by Nintendo and its associates.

Nintendo Switch Release Date

Yes – we FINALLY have an actual launch date for Nintendo’s new console.

The Nintendo Switch will be available in-stores beginning on Friday, March 3rd of 2017. It is currently available for pre-order, but only in Japan. Pre-order dates for NA and EU have yet to be announced, but we expect they’ll open the doors to it very soon.

Nintendo Switch Price

While analysts have predicted anything from $350 to $400 or more being the sticker price on Nintendo’s innovative new platform, the company revealed on Thursday that the official starting price will be $299.

For that price consumers will be getting the Nintendo Switch console with 32GB of on-board memory, two controllers (left and right Joy-Con controllers), wrist straps for the Joy-Cons, the docking station for the console, a Joy-Con grip, (1) HDMI cable, and (1) A/C adapter.

Nintendo Switch Specs

We now know exactly what the Nintendo Switch offers in terms of display and processing power.

  • 6.2″ Multi-Touch Capacitive Touch Screen (1280 x 720 resolution)
  • 32GB Internal Memory (expandable with microSDXC cards)
  • 2.5 to 6 Hours of Battery Life

The portable display measures 6.2 inches in size and is capable of 720p output. The Switch will offer 1080p full HD when connected to the dock and being played on a 1080p-capable television.

Nintendo Switch Specs

This means that the Switch only slightly edges out other portable gaming systems such as the PS Vita when it comes to display capabilities. The PS Vita, for example, has a 5 inch, 960 x 544 display. That portable device was released nearly 6 years ago in 2011.

While the on-board memory is nowhere near as impressive as that of the 500GB and 1TB capacities of platforms such as the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, it can be expanded upon via the use of microSDXC cards.

It’s also worth noting that the Nintendo Switch utilizes cartridges for games which are referred to as “game cards”. Supposedly, these cartridges can house up to 16GB of data each.

The biggest drawback of the Switch is the battery life. Nintendo has stated that the longevity of the battery will depend heavily on the usage of the portable. The company claims that the unit lasts for about 3 hours when playing a game such as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

Nintendo Switch Games

Now it’s time to talk about the real meat of the platform – the games that will be available for it.

Nintendo stated in their reveal presentation that there are currently over 80 games in development for the Switch. They only confirmed the existence and names of a handful, though.

Games that are now confirmed as coming to the Nintendo Switch include:

  • Super Mario Odyssey
  • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the WildNintendo Switch Games
  • 1-2 Switch
  • ARMS
  • Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
  • Splatoon 2
  • Fire Emblem Warriors
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2
  • Sonic Mania
  • Super Bomberman R
  • Puyo Puyo Tetris
  • Steep
  • Just Dance 2017
  • Rayman Legends
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
  • FIFA
  • Skylanders Imaginators
  • Project Octopath Traveler
  • Minecraft

Other titles will likely be announced both by Nintendo and 3rd-party developers in the coming months.

Online Service

As with the Wii and WiiU – the Nintendo Switch will have an online service available which allows players to connect with friends, family, and even outsiders for multiplayer gameplay.

The biggest news here, however, is that Nintendo now plans to charge for access to the network.

Nintendo has stated, though, that players will be granted a free trial of the online service from launch until the fall of 2017. After that, some features will only be available to those that actually subscribe to the online service.

Nintendo Switch Online Service

The graphic above shows the difference between a paid account and a non-subscriber account. Online multiplayer is exclusive to subscribers, as is voice chat, online lobbies, a free monthly game download, and undetermined exclusive deals.

Nintendo hasn’t yet announced what the pricing will be for their online service for the Switch. We will update this page with those details once they are released.

Nintendo Switch Bundles

Finally, let’s talk about the different bundles that Nintendo announced will be available for the Switch.

Currently, there are only two different configurations. The only difference between the two are the colors of the Joy-Con controllers. On bundle includes a matte grey finish, while the other features one neon-blue and one neon-red Joy-Con controller.

Nintendo Switch Bundles

Aside from that, both bundles are identical. Each comes with the Nintendo Switch portable, the dock station, two Joy-Con controllers, wrist straps, a grip for the standard controller configuration, and the necessary cables for display and power.

We expect that Nintendo will eventually announce other Nintendo Switch bundles that actually come with games or additional accessories in the near future.

It’s practically inevitable that we’ll at least see a Mario-themed Switch bundle, a Legend of Zelda bundle, and perhaps even a bundle based around Splatoon.

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