Everything you need to know about the Nintendo Switch
The Nintendo Switch is finally official, and it's on track to launch next year. Here's everything we know about Nintendo's new console, including the Nintendo Switch release date, specs, features, games, price and more.
Nintendo Switch is the all new console from the legendary Japanese company, and it's everything the rumours claimed it would be. This device combines the best elements of handheld and home gaming into an experience that can be played anywhere in the world, so long as the battery holds out, that is.
As we get closer to the Nintendo Switch release date, the rumour pile gets bigger and bigger, and the latest one is a big'un.
According to reports, Pokemon Sun and Moon could be on their way to the console. According to Eurogamer, the game will be called "Pokemon Stars" and will arrive in 2017. Citing several sources, EG states that the game will include features not currently available on 3DS as well as support for Pokemon Bank and other features.
Latest Nintendo Switch News:
When does the Nintendo Switch come out? March 2017
What's new about the Nintendo Switch? Portable; detachable controllers; new games
How much will the Nintendo Switch cost? £199 (rumoured)
What is the Nintendo Switch?
The Nintendo Switch was recently revealed in a three minute trailer showcasing the system’s new tablet controller and various attachments.
Over the past few months the internet has been swamped with rumours claiming the Switch is a console/handheld hybrid, and it turns out it was all true. The debut trailer reveals an intense focus on portability, local multiplayer and impressive, engrossing gameplay.
"Introducing Nintendo Switch! In addition to providing single and multiplayer thrills at home, the Nintendo Switch system also enables gamers to play the same title wherever, whenever and with whomever they choose. The mobility of a handheld is now added to the power of a home gaming system to enable unprecedented new video game play styles," says Nintendo.
According to the latest reports, the Nintendo Switch will sport a USB-C socket as its primary charging port. USB-C is rapidly being adopted in all forms of tech and gadgets, Apple has recently used USB-C for all ports in the latest line of MacBook Pro.
Previously, Nintendo has used proprietary charging sockets for its consoles, but the switch to a more user-friendly USB-C is a welcome one, as players will be able to use any battery pack with USB-C to charge the console. The news is even more welcome after concerns over the console's battery live arose, with reports it could be as brief as three hours.
Eurogamer has reported that Nintendo Switch will sport a 6.2 inch capacitive multi-touch screen with a 720p display. Previous Nintendo touchscreens have only supported resistive displays, relying on a far less accurate use of pressure to input commands.
Nintendo is yet to confirm whether the Switch will include a touchscreen, and it didn't seem to surface in the recent reveal trailer. With any luck, the rumour will be confirmed early next year.
Related: PS4 Pro review
Nintendo Switch release date – When is it coming out?
The NX is set to launch in March 2017. Nintendo is yet to confirm a specific date.
While we still don't have a release date for Nintendo Switch, it's likely to be announced at an event the company is holding on January 12, 2017.
"Today, Nintendo Co., Ltd. president Tatsumi Kimishima announced that major details about our next home gaming system, Nintendo Switch, will be shared in a live presentation streamed worldwide from Tokyo on January 13th 2017."
"During the Nintendo Switch Presentation 2017, we’ll be talking about the exact launch date and showing off the line-up of games currently in development."
We'll be covering the event extensively with plenty of content covering the launch date, games and console itself.
Nintendo Switch price – How much will it cost?
We still have no idea how much the console will cost, but hopefully this will be revealed before the end of 2016. With all the potential attachments and controllers, don't be surprised to see a bunch of different bundles at launch
Recent rumours from Let's Play Video Games suggest the Switch will launch for £199, with more expensive bundles to include additional games and peripherals. This tidbit of info comes from UK retailer GAME, who has alllegedly received information on the console's wholesale price. Time will tell whether this bargain price rings true.
Nintendo Switch Specs – How powerful is it?
Nintendo Switch is powered by Nvidia. More specifically, it contains a custom Tegra Processor with a GPU akin to architecture found in some of the company's top-notch graphics cards. Nintendo isn’t playing around anymore, it seems. At home, the Switch sits in a "Nintendo Switch Dock" which is used to connect to your TV. Once removed from the dock it will automatically transition to portable mode.
Related: Battlefield 1 Review
The reveal trailer also gave us a glimpse at the new and improved gamepad, which will be rechargeable through the console itself and capable of accepting cartridges: Switch’s primary form of physical media when it comes to games. As previously rumoured, the gamepad's screen will render at a native 720p, and can be used to project any and all games to your TV of choice. Battery life for the tablet is a still a mystery, but hopefully it improves upon the Wii U's mediocre offering. Amiibo support is also confirmed, so you won't have to leave your collection of figures out in the cold.
Nintendo Switch will include two detachable controllers known as ‘Joy-Cons’ which can be used as part of the portable tablet or during local multiplayer. Just like the gamepad, these will be charged through the console itself. Each side of the Joy-Con can act as individual controller for each player, making quick and sudden multiplayer sessions a relative breeze. The Gamepad also comes with a handy stand, letting you prop it up on a table or even surface for a better view.
"One player can use a Joy-Con controller in each hand; two players can each take one; or multiple Joy-Con can be employed by numerous people for a variety of gameplay options," Nintendo said in a press release.
In addition to a fancy new controller, Switch will also incorporate more traditional pads that we assume will be sold separately or as part of a bundle at launch. This peripheral can be used once the Switch is in the main dock, letting you play games on the big screen the old fashioned way.
Nintendo has confirmed that Switch will fully support Unreal Engine 4, a fairly demanding graphics engine. This is a small yet important indication of what kind of games we may see on Switch when it launches next year.
Nintendo Switch games – What will we get to play?
Nintendo Switch will launch with exclusive and multiplatform games in March 2017, some of which were shown off in the reveal trailer. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Skyrim, NBA 2K and Mario all featured, so expect them to be available at or near the console's launch.
Some Wii U titles such as Splatoon and Mario Kart 8 made an appearance in a seemingly upgraded form. Both games boasted new content, upgraded visuals and different control schemes. Splatoon relies heavily on motion controls, so it'd have to change things up to work on Switch. We wouldn't be surprised if Nintendo remasters a few of its beloved Wii U titles for launch, bringing over a sizeable fanbase with them.
We didn't see many new games in the Switch reveal besides a Super Mario title nobody can quite put their finger on. It looks very similar to Super Mario 3D World with improved visuals and all new level design. Time will tell whether this ends up being Super Mario Switch or some form of jazzy Wii U port. We really hope its the former.
This means Nintendo Switch may also support some manner of backwards compatibility, most likely in the form of digital purchases or fancy ports. It’s clear Nintendo’s new console is fully capable of powering some fairly demanding titles, meaning it’s likely on par with PS4 and Xbox One in terms of raw power.
Related: PlayStation VR Review
Nintendo has released a confirmed list of developers and publishers supporting Switch including Capcom, Telltale, Activision and Electronic Arts. You can find a more extensive list of partners below.
Watch: Watch The Refresh: The best tech gossip and reviews every week
What do you think of Nintendo Switch? Let us know in the comments.