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Why Nintendo’s Conference Made Me Not Want to Buy a Switch

| January 16, 2017

Why Nintendo's Conference Made Me Not Want to Buy a Switch Articles Nintendo  Nintendo Switch

When the Nintendo Switch was first announced back in October, I was pleasantly surprised to find myself actually interested in the console. Now I haven’t owned (nor wanted) a Nintendo console since the SNES, so this was quite the revelation for me. I was excited at the possibility of getting some of Nintendo’s most popular handheld franchises like Pokémon or Fire Emblem in HD and with much more powerful hardware than the 3DS.

But then the Switch conference happened and I remembered why I haven’t owned a Nintendo console since the 90’s. For a company that always seeks innovation, Nintendo seems to be a few steps behind when it comes to everything else.

Case in point, they formally announced that the Switch won’t have region locking. That’s great, but this is something that Sony and Microsoft have implemented a long time ago and Nintendo is only now getting into the swing of things.

For a company that seeks innovation, Nintendo always seems to be a few steps behind.

Speaking of following the footsteps of the Sony and Microsoft, the Nintendo Switch will also have a paid online service. Now I’m mainly a PC player, so the idea of a paid online service has always been something that irked me, but at the same time I understand why it’s necessary for consoles.

The problem here is that Nintendo is following the formula of Xbox Live and PlayStation Plus but somehow making it so much worse. Not only are Nintendo’s monthly free games basically rentals from the NES and SNES era but their implementation of online voice chat is to use a smartphone app. If I wanted to use my phone to talk to my friends I’d rather call them up normally than use an app.

Let’s not forget that Nintendo has a poor history when it comes to implementing online in their systems in the first place, so having to pay for something like that just continues to be less and less appealing.

In my opinion this just shows how out of touch Nintendo seems to be with both their audience and the video game community as a whole.

Why Nintendo's Conference Made Me Not Want to Buy a Switch Articles Nintendo  Nintendo Switch

Speaking of being out of touch, let’s talk about how much Nintendo seemed to focus on their new controllers, the Joy-Cons. Nintendo spent a lot of time focusing on these new controllers and they have a lot of features like motion controls, sensors, and the new HD Rumble. They even showed off two games that took full advantage of the controller’s features: 1-2-Switch and ARMS.

But while watching this segment of the presentation, I can’t help but be reminded of the Wii U tablet. That too was an interesting controller scheme that hadn’t been done in the past, but because it was so different and unique very few developers actually fully utilized it.

The Joy-Cons are interesting and different, but so was the Wii U tablet.

I have no doubts that there will be some titles that will use the Joy-Con to its full potential (the WarioWare franchise comes to mind) but for the most part, this sort of thing just feels like a gimmick. Most third-party developers will aim for multi-platform releases to maximize their profits, and when one of those platforms has control features that aren’t available on the others you end up not utilizing those extra features at all.

And that leads to my final disappointment with the Switch conference — the games.

Why Nintendo's Conference Made Me Not Want to Buy a Switch Articles Nintendo  Nintendo Switch

The above image showcases the lineup of games for the Switch that Nintendo of America tweeted out. While this isn’t a comprehensive list and the Twitter account does promise more on the way this year, I can’t help but be disappointed and underwhelmed by it.

I suppose the biggest disappointment are the games available at launch. You really only have one big name coming out on March 3 and that’s Breath of the Wild while all the others just fall flat in comparison, especially if you’re looking for a single-player experience.

Even then the rest of the year just seems so weak, with the only real standouts being  Super Mario OdysseySplatoon 2, and Xenoblade Chronicles 2. Everything else are either new IP that don’t really generate much excitement or remasters and ports of older games like Skyrim which turns six this year.

I realize I might be in the minority and this will likely be drowned out by all the hype surrounding the Switch but I feel like there’s no justifying a purchase of the Switch in its current state. Who knows, maybe the next few months will change my mind as more games get announced and Nintendo gives out more details on their online service. But if I base my purchase on their conference alone, then they definitely failed to sell me on the Switch.

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  • Steven Hiller

    Yup, that pretty much sums it up. Out of touch. I was out on the switch but only because I thought Nintendo was going to do exactly what they did. Being different to be better is cool, being different just be be different is so dumb. The sad thing is I really liked that Mario demo, but at this point its best just to forget about it. im not paying $300 and waiting 10 months just to play the new Mario.

    • Fan of Sonic Generations

      im just waiting for the new mario to get it

      • Steven Hiller

        Yeah, if Mario is good when it comes out and they have a better lineup I could get it, but not right now.

        • efnet

          I too was only going to get it for my kids but now i want one, don’t really know why, but i jist want it …..soooo day one buy for me lol

          • Steven Hiller

            There’s always hope.

        • Fan of Sonic Generations

          dude, that mario looks the fucken best

          • Steven Hiller

            Yup, hopefully ill still be excited by the end of the year for it.

  • Allen

    Sorry but that is a weak ass launch line up. I’m pretty happy with my WiiU. I don’t think I’ll be upgrading anytime soon.

    • Wsensor

      I was looking forward to the new nintendo console too. I skipped out on the wii u did not get any newer consoles at all so still ps2/wii only as my newest consoles.

      Reason I skipped out on the wii u. Price never dropped. Severe lack of games I would want to play.
      Really would only play smash bros and mario kart. (Possibly mario party if family is around as otherwise I would never touch it.) So whats the point in switching to a newer console? I was thinking about getting a 3ds but backed off since the only games I would have played on it were pokemon smash bros and mario kart. I have a problem playing games with first person views (I get sick from them) so that kills the newer zelda/metroid and all fps games for me since they use that view. Also other games that have bad 3rd person camera angles make me sick too. (Several games that are not fps but are not quite 3rd person make me sick on all consoles/pc T_T.)

      Now the older games you can buy from the nintendo shop are fun and I do have several of those on my wii but than again I also have an older snes/sega that are hooked up and I can play my favorite older games on those.

      I mostly just play games on the pc now.

      • Allen

        The WiiU is actually way better than I thought it would be. I’ve got all the virtual games from my Wii on my WiiU so all those NES/SNES/Genesis/Arcade stuff + Wii games & WiiU.

        Nintendoland alone on WiiU is worth it IMO. My family and I get so much out of that game, specifically the Mario Chase, Animal Crossing & Luigi’s Mansion 5 player games. Plus games like Mario Party, Yoshi’s Whooly World, Mario Kart, Smash Bros, Super Mario 3D World, Mario Maker ect. I really love it. Also the tablet is used constantly by my kids to watch YouTube or Netflix or to game while I’m stealing the TV.

        I just don’t see a reason to upgrade to Switch other than playing better games on mobile and I just don’t really care about that right now. It’s a great price though so someday but certainly no hurry.

        • Guest

          For me, the WiiU was the perfect 2nd console if you already own a PS4.
          They have so many major exclusives and actually has “proper” BC.

          PC/PS4/WiiU is a great combination. Looking forward I think it makes more sense for a PC/PS4 owner to get a switch over a XB1 or XB scorpio.

          • Allen

            Absolutely. you can play every single game with PC/PS4/WiiU and/or soon to be PC/PS4/Switch.

          • Guest

            There was XB1 with Gears UE + 3 months of gold for about € 135. I was thinking about it, but then I said what’s the point? I can play whatever XB1 games I want to play on my PC or PS4.

      • Brad Marcus Kirchhoff

        That sucks. U missed A LOT of good games during the ps3 era. One of the best eras for gaming in history. Might want to go back and check that out. This is coming from a 30 yr old.

  • Darrin Wright

    Eh, I’m still getting it at launch and with Zelda, which should keep me busy until Mario Kart. Likely to pick up Snipperclips and Arms as well.

  • Travis Touchdown

    People are desperately reaching to find something wrong with the Switch.

    Your article basically sums up as ‘It’s different so it’s bad.”

    • Fan of Sonic Generations

      i do agree that the article is flawed in that way, but i really dont feel that people have to try that hard to find flaws. there is only one good game at launch, but only if you are a zelda fan.

  • The Glorious Master Race

    By the looks of this thing the target audience should be males 12-17 and females. Seventeen might be pushing it, I think I lost interest in Nintendo around the time my dad bought me my first computer in 8th grade.

    • Guest

      Because of the lack of exclusives after 2013 on X360, MS help build and market COD like crazy. That help creat a huge COD fanbase who just buys these yearly released games with all the DLC and microtransactions that comes with it.

      The problem for Nintendo is that I think most of that COD crowd come from that 12-20 males they are trying to target with the switch. I think they are losing a battle. Most of the people looking forward to it are die hard Nintendo fans, others don’t have a lot of postitive to say about it.

  • Tlopuse Strike back

    I will buy it, but no day one. Maybe in summer for my birthday, or November for black Friday. Sorry Nintendo you are no going to fool me twice.

  • luke cooper

    what really bothers me with nintendo is how simple things seem to be to complex for them. such as voice chatting with Friends you require a separate device and a application and the reasoning for this is that headsets can be bulky :S ……”okay what about the ones i will use with your app and my phone, why can i not just plug them into my switch”

    nintendo make really stupid decision with things like this, it makes no sense to do things in such a strange way when there competition have minor issues

    i want to love the switch but nintedo are really making it a hard day one purchase for me

    1. only 5 launch games only one worth purchase

    2. no real online services outside the us at launch

    3. much use a separate device to manage said services alos voice chat

    4. price
    £279 switch 32gb
    £229 xbox one 500gb ( with game)
    £249 ps4 500gb (with game)

    5. underpowerd compared to ps4/xb1 3 years on the market

    i really want the switch to be successful as more competition means better things for the consumer, i should be excited but im concerned.

    massive Nintendo fan just viewing things rationally

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