Feature: A month later, our thoughts on the Nintendo Switch
It’s now just been over a month since the Nintendo Switch launched all around the world and we’ve been playing it, a lot.
So after a month what do we all think? What do we think of the console itself, the experience of playing in and outside the house, the games, the software? We’re also going to take a short look to the future, it’s still early days but we can’t help think what’s next.
Let us know in the comments what you think of the Switch one month after release.
From day one, I have been totally enamoured with the Switch. The seamless transitioning between portable and TV play is a fantastic feature I never knew I wanted. I originally thought I would spend most of my time playing the switch while docked, but the reality is that I have spent almost a 50/50 split of my time in both configurations. For a risk-taking piece of hardware such as the Switch to succeed, it is vital that all of its advertised features are equal to one another. It would not be much of an innovation if the Switch was a significantly better experience in one configuration over another. Thankfully, it excels regardless of how you decide to play.
Control-wise, the Pro Controller does feel more comfortable than the Joy-Cons. My thumbs tend to slip off the Joy-Con’s control sticks every now and then, which is an issue I have not encountered while using the Pro Controller. I do like the Joy-Cons, though, and the novelty of sliding them on and off the tablet is a novelty that has not yet worn off. Of course, I went for the neon variety, despite detractors labelling them as “gaudy”, “ugly”, and “an abomination to mankind”. In instances like these, I like to call upon the wisdom of my friend whose words ring truer than ever in this post-truth age, “Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, but they’re wrong.”
Regarding my best experience with the Switch so far, it is nigh impossible to avoid the cliché of playing Breath of the Wild in bed, but the ability to do this is a great feature. My partner suffers from a chronic illness which means she is not physically capable of getting out of bed some days. This makes it difficult for her to play console games which require her to sit in an upright position. With the Switch, I am able to bring the gaming to her. I bring the console to bed and play while she watches on, helping out with puzzles, taking in the gorgeous scenery, and (most importantly) naming horses. Although this may not be a common example, the shared gaming experience the Switch has brought to us has been invaluable. It hasn’t just been my 70+ hour journey through Hyrule, it has been our 70+ hour journey through Hyrule, which has made it all the more special.
It seems like there is something worth getting excited for announced every week. There are a number of indie Aussie titles coming to the Switch, which is fantastic for the industry. I could not possibly neglect to mention Super Mario Odyssey, among the Xenoblade and Fire Emblem titles to come, so there are some brilliant first-party titles to look forward to.
However, I do feel it necessary to mention a couple of things I would like tidied up. The addition of a top-sellers chart to the eShop is nice, but the shop is still a mess to navigate at times. The current format makes it difficult to find games not highlighted by the eShop unless you know specifically what you’re looking for. Also, the whole Rime saga has been nothing short of a debacle. I know this example is not the only one like it, but it so far has epitomised the early issues of the Switch. Whether this is a Nintendo issue or a publisher issue, I don’t know. The reality is that fans and consumers alike don’t care, we just do not want to be treated with contempt. Issues such as delays and pricing discrepancies certainly make it difficult to support some games on the Switch.
These early teething problems aside, the time I have spent with the Switch console has been overwhelmingly positive. I cannot remember the last console I bought that I have enjoyed so using straight out of the box so much. Once the Switch’s game library builds up, it will be an irresistible prospect.
A few days after the Switch came out I did the worst thing I could possibly do. I watched a video collation of issues people had been experiencing with the new hardware. Even though I’m aware that having watched this gave me an over inflated sense of doom as opposed to what the actual failure rate of the console is, I can’t help but worry every time I pick it up.
In having said that my worries may not be founded, something small has happened to keep my concerns alive. You may have seen some people having an issue where the Switch dock is scratching the Switch screen. Maybe you haven’t. Either way, the dock did scratch my screen. At first, I was pretty angry that Nintendo could release a product with such an obvious defect. Then I remembered how the 3DS upper screen gets scratched or marked from the raised bevel around the lower screen just by closing the lid; using the console how it’s designed to be used. Naturally, I went and got a screen protector the next day. Good thing too, because there are more scratches on the screen protector, just finished sliding the machine into its little housing unit, as carefully as possible too.
This mixed with watching that “Nintendo Switch faces of death” video, I think about these things every time I touch it. If I’m using the console in handheld mode I’ll think to myself, “are the Joy-con usually a little wobbly?” Or, “the right stick feels a little loose.” I even think sometimes that the already poor WiFi built into the system seems worse than normal.
Don’t get me wrong, I think the Switch is a decent piece of hardware. It has a bunch of cool tech inside it, some of which I’m yet to experience. I haven’t played 1-2 Switch, so I don’t know what HD Rumble is like or how the IR sensor works is. I’m also sceptical about how most games can make good use of them and not make it feel like a tacked-on gimmick to the gameplay.
My best experience with the Switch so far as far as games are concerned, I’d have to say it was playing the Splatoon 2 Global Testfire. It seemed to work perfectly for me every time. Unlike whenever I play Splatoon on Wii U, where I have trouble connecting to and staying in games.
Even though the controls are a little different, especially considering it’s only on one screen now, I find the little intuitive inclusions that help it along are great. For example, at first when I wanted to Super Jump elsewhere on the map, I’d have to press the corresponding directional button (I was using Joy-con in the Joy-con grip, and the display on the TV shows the icon as a directional pad like on the pro Controller, just to make it more complicated to think about while worrying about losing) and then confirm. It wasn’t until a few matches in I realised I could use the motion controls to point an on-screen cursor to the player of which I wanted to gracefully fly through the air as a colourful invertebrate.
As the Switch matures and ages there are a few things I look forward to. In the immediate future, it’s certainly towards game releases. You know, stuff to play. As for the long-term, I’d like to see how the online interactions play out. Miiverse is cool and all, but I don’t think anything that in-depth is required. Realistically, I want to be able to talk to and message my friends, share content with them locally as opposed to being on social media platforms. I want to see the Switch become a device that doesn’t feel like it’s only for personal experiences.
I’ve been overseas since the Switch launched. Playing it on the plane wasn’t as cool as the trailer (at least not as roomy) but I did get around 5 hours of saving Hyrule which made an otherwise dull experience quite amazing. Even if I did look like an idiot swinging around the controller for the motion control puzzles.
Having a complete console that I can carry around in my backpack and once at the hotel, find a spare HDMI port and get back up and running like I would at home has honestly been mind-blowing. Missing the Testfire due to the hotel internet not being compatible was very upsetting but I’ve been able to push hours and hours into Zelda while abroad with no compromises.
Why it might not seem like a big deal, I mean that’s what they advertised from the get-go, it’s amazing that it actually is viable. I easily could have packed my 3DS and played that instead, but laying down in bed and kicking Ganon’s ass is a whole other experience. I can only see this getting better and better as the library expands.
While I may not be travelling for a while, it’s safe to say the Switch is coming with me wherever I go.
The Switch has been a bit of a rollercoaster! Being able to play docked or handheld has been magical. Honestly, I just want to play everything on the darn thing now. I’m really devastated that I won’t be able to play Persona 5 on the go. The Switch has spoiled me. However, issues like the Joy-Cons de-syncing and my Switch flat-out freezing every now and then hasn’t been to fun to deal with. My standard for Ninty’s hardware is usually pretty high, so that wound up being a bit of a bummer.
My Switch highlight so far. Alright, so I’m willing to bet that nobody else chose this game. Nope. This is totally original and I’m certain nobody else felt the same way. Are you ready?
…It was Zelda. Big shocker, right? I’ve never enjoyed open world games before. Breath of the Wild has been the only one I’ve liked – no – loved this much. The fact that I’m even tempted to 100% this game says so much. I’ve never had the opportunity to buy a system on day one, but I feel incredibly grateful that I managed to this time around because honestly – Breath of the Wild made it all worth it.
Ultimately, I think indie titles are the releases that I’m most keen on for the Switch. I’m sure the big budget releases are going to be really fantastic (Splatoon 2!) but hearing about how easy the Switch is to program for and how cheap those development kits are has filled me with so much excitement. The fact that we already have a wonderful platter of smaller games announced just a single month past launch is mind-blowing. It can only go up from here and I’m so, so ready. Bring on the indies.
Wow, has it really been an entire month since the Switch was released? Where has the time gone, apart from into Breath of the Wild? Since the release of the Switch, there have been a few games that got my attention for a number of reasons, and while I am sure, like most people Zelda was all that they needed, it was these other games that help cement the system.
When you think about one month into the Wii U’s release, I can’t think that I was as sold on that platform as I am with Switch. Turning the Switch on and jumping into a level in Snake Pass or completing the next course in Fast RMX, before turning it off and heading back to work, it is those moments that are really rewarding.
Now that I have had a lot of time playing with the hardware itself, I find things to be a mix of great and not so great. First up, the form factor and quite simply, I like it. Although playing in handheld mode for a few hours can become tiresome, it is still a solid way to play, the downside to that though, is that some of my fingers rest against the back of the unit, which in turn causes them to get hot; I wish there something I could do about that.
The future though, it is a little hazy right now, while there are a number of games, both first-party and third-party that I am excited to play, the concern is Nintendo have still not detailed anything about their online plans. Sure, we had the Global Testfire for Splatoon 2, or open beta if you like, but we still have no details about the online service, the fees for it, the virtual console, the one platform or anything else we have to know about.
With the first month down, Switch has gotten off to a strong start, Nintendo have to make mention of their plans before E3 though, because right now, the ship is full steam ahead and we have no idea where it is even pointed.
Where are the games Nintendo?
Where were the games when the Playstation 4 launched? Be grateful for what you have.
Nah this is a shit perspective. Just because things could be worse doesn’t make it ok. The Switch was rushed out to release to kill off the Wii U as quickly as possible and it shows in every aspect. The library is sparse if not threadbare, the hardware is underdeveloped and riddled with problems, and the biggest drawcards for system right now are a couple of Wii U games. There really is no reason to own one.
Make no mistake, I’m not your classic Nintendo hater spouting crap about them in comment sections. They’re all I buy and play. But they’ve just about gone full retard here, and they deserve to be called out on it.