After months of anticipation following its official reveal in October, details on the Nintendo Switch console are finally hitting at a giant-sized event. The Switch is set to be the successor to Nintendo's Wii U, which has struggled to compete against Sony's PS4 and Microsoft's Xbox One. It will be the first console/handheld hybrid on the market, blurring the line between Nintendo's popular brands. The cartridge-based system is set to function as a tablet, with a port that streams video to a television. When players are on the go, attachable "Joy-Con" controller handles allow it comfortably follow.
Despite its nifty concept, eager gamers were left with plenty of questions - among them the computational power of the system, and its all-important price point. Thankfully, at least some of those questions have now been answered.
A number of details and features were outlined at the Nintendo Switch Event including the following:
- The system will hit stores on March 3, at a price point of $299 in the U.S. and and $399.99 in Canada (¥29890 in Japan).
- It will feature an online service which supports multiplayer functions, live chat, and connection to smart devices. This service (and all other Nintendo online services) will require a paid subscription, starting in Fall of 2017.
- Nintendo Switch will be region free.
- The "Joy-Con" controllers will be available in multiple colors (black, blue, and red). They have NFC read/write functionality to interact with Amiibos and include gyros and accelerometers and a more precise "HD rumble" feedback. Each detachable piece functions as its own mini-controller, useful for splitting up during multiplayer games. The Right controller also features a motion IR camera, that can sense gestures.
- Battery Life for the system is expected to last 2.5-6 hours depending on the game.
While official specs for the console haven't been revealed, a number of games have been announced that showcase its level of graphical fidelity. These include Super Mario Odyssey, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Xenoblade 2, and more. They also confirmed that the previously announced The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will be a launch title.
So were the rumors true? It appears that the rumor of the March 3rd release date was accurate, though unfortunately the $250 price point was not. The Switch's $299 starting price matches the PS4 Slim's current rate and sets the vanilla Xbox One as a less expensive alternative. Considering Nintendo won't be able to compete with either of those systems graphically, they better hope that the console's handheld appeal helps it find a wide audience.
What do you think of the details on the Nintendo Switch so far? Are you ready to take the plunge? Let us know in the comments section, and stay tuned to Screen Rant for updates on Nintendo's new platform.
Nintendo Switch hits stores on March 3, 2017 and is now available for pre-order.