We’re breathing deep after watching the brand new trailer for the Nintendo Switch.

In a three minute trailer Nintendo have shown us the future of gaming, and it is the Nintendo Switch. There are five great reasons why the Nintendo Switch is about to redefine gaming.

Let’s take a look. But first, the essentials:



  1. It merges consoles with handhelds

Ever since Nintendo put the NES out and then followed it with the GambeBoy, consoles and handhelds have been divided.

For the longest time, it was impossible to see how handhelds and consoles could ever merge. Stationary devices are so much more powerful than their portable brethren that any game on the former will not be playable on the latter.

Then Nintendo put out the Wii U. The Wii U let you play games on the TV and then continue them on the gamepad but only from a very small distance away. This, it turned out, was pointless, because it was never truly portable. You could only travel so far before you were unable to continue playing.

But now we’ve learned that the failure of the Wii U was actually a necessary stepping stone for Nintendo. Thanks to the failure of the Wii U, Nintendo have learned how to merge handheld and console properly. And the Nintendo Switch is the answer.

The Nintendo Switch lets you continue your games anywhere. The gamepad itself is the console, and it si light enough to carry with ease. This means that you can plug the Nintendo Switch into the TV to play on the big screen or play on the gamepad anywhere you like.

Once again, Nintendo has provided the solution to a problem the gaming industry has been struggling with for years. Finally, consoles are truly portable. And that, by itself, would make the Nintendo Switch an exciting prospect. But there are so many more great points about the design of Nintendo’s new console.


2) It is bringing together casual gaming and esports

It was going to happen. It had to happen. Esports has been growing astronomically over recent years. The esports industry is projected to achieve revenues of $1.1bn by 2018. Naturally, any new console has to be equipped for esports.

Nintendo, however, will not be key players in the more traditional “hardcore” esports scene. Why? Because their consoles are simply not powerful enough to play the AAA esports games of the future.

Nintendo has always struggled with power issues, kinda like Napoleon. They cannot afford to manufacture devices that are as powerful as Microsoft and Sony’s. That is one of the main reasons why Nintendo has had to be innovative for the past fifteen years.

Nintendo knows it won’t be the home of the AAA, resource-intensive esports games of the future. But they also know they don’t need to be. Less-resrouce-intensive games can work equally well, if not better, in esports.

Nintendo already knew that. Super Smash Bros. is not the most graphically impressive game. But it is the most watching competitive fighting game in the world. Why? Because it’s approachable. Unlike Street Fighter V, Tekken 7, King Of Fighters… you can get into Smash very easily, and Smash is also easy for viewers who do not play the game to understand it.

Accessibility is a big thing in esports. And Nintendo knows that they have a big chance in the esports scene by producing easy-to-play, approachable, esports titles just like Super Smash Bros.

The end of the Nintendo Switch trailer clearly shows that Nintendo is interested in esports. And it’s one area in which they definitely have the potential to win big.


3) Nintendo knows that hardcore gaming will be the smaller market in the future

Nintendo cannot win in terms of hardcore gaming. Their consoles just aren’t powerful enough to do so. But they do not need to win in the hardcore market because the casual market has more potential anyway.

Casual and smartphone games make up for 32 percent of the gaming market. It’s this market the Nintendo Switch is aiming at. And honestly, who can possibly doubt that they will succeed.

Nintendo has already proven themselves in the smartphone gaming market. Miitomo got of to a rip roaring start when it was launched. Sure, it has died down since, but the initial success on their debut smartphone game proves Nintendo has what it takes to compete in this market. Mario Run is also looking promising. And even though Pokemon Go was not made by Nintendo, its success was largely thanks to the strength of the Pokemon brand, proving that Nintendo’s IPs are a good match for smartphone gamers.

Nintendo will continue their excursion into smartphone gaming while working on the Nintendo Switch, and they have both the creative talent and the IPs to create a huge splash in both.

4) Nintendo are throwing down a challenge for Microsoft and Sony

Nintendo likes to put its consoles out first and then watch as Microsoft and Sony manoeuver around them. With the Nintendo Switch, they’ve laid a real power card on the table.

What the Nintendo Switch does is challenge perceptions of gaming. Where Microsoft and Sony are the kings of creating conventional AAA gaming consoles, Nintendo go an alternate route, pulling in customers by offering something they’ve never seen before.

The Nintendo Switch looks like being one of Nintendo’s most innovative consoles to date. The only console that was as innovative as this was the Wii. And we all know how well the Wii sold.

Nintendo’s strategy has long been the same. They tempt customers with a brand new spin on gaming. The Wii did that and sold in droves. Gamers (and even non-gamers) were fascinated by the Wii. And even though it didn’t have the best graphics, it simply demanded to be played because it was so new and so exciting. That meant that gamers bought the Wii first, and many then didn’t bother to buy a second console.

The Nintendo Switch could pull off the same feat. It is clearly a highly innovative console that offers a novel experience. Because of that alone it is certain to sell, and of course it will sell first because the competitors are not ready for market. Casual gamers who are only willing to buy one console will be attracted to the innovative Nintendo Switch and will likely pick one up. And that will mean less market for Sony and Microsoft.

5) It’s the culmination of everything Nintendo has learned to date

The Nintendo Switch looks like the best parts of Nintendo’s consoles all brought together. There’s the controller, which can be split in two like the Wii’s popular controllers. There’s the gamepad that allows you to continue playing console games away from the TV. That promises to fix the biggest problem of the Wii U by letting you play anywhere rather than a few feet from the console. There’s the casual and social aspect that Nintendo has recently been developing with their journey into the mobile space. And then, of course, there’s the gargantuan and irrepressible catalogue of IP that Nintendo has developed over the past thirty years.

Everything about the Nintendo Switch seems to say, “This is what we’ve been working towards this entire time”.

For the past ten years or so it’s felt as though Nintendo were working towards something. With the Wii U it was as though Nintendo had an idea of where they wanted to go but weren’t sure how to get there.

The Nintendo Switch is where Nintendo wanted to go. And finally, they know precisely how to get there.

Take the best parts of Nintendo’s past few consoles and you get the Nintendo Switch. And that can only be a good thing.



Put all of this together and you’ve got a console that has everything it takes to truly redefine gaming. It’s the machine Nintendo has wanted to produce for years. And finally, it’s on its way.








Categories: gaming

Paul Harrison

Paul M Harrison is an entertainment journalist, novelist, and blogger, and a specialist in the theory of storytelling. Paul Harrison can be contacted via his personal website or on Twitter or Facebook.


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