What is Nintendo Switch? Everything you need to know



Nintendo is back with its first new console since the Wii U – and people are pretty excited. Here’s what we know…

People can’t wait to get their hands on the Nintendo Switch. Pre-orders have sold out in both the UK and the US ahead of the console’s launch on March 3rdLots of positive comments came out of recent launch events which were held simultaneously across the globe, with many experts saying the new console is the real deal.

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What is Nintendo Switch?

It’s a hybrid that combines a handheld gaming device (à la Game Boy or 3DS) and a home console that plugs into your TV. You can easily switch between console and handheld modes - hence the name Switch – to play at home or on the go. 

 

How does it work?

The main Switch device looks like a tablet computer which then adapts:

  • Handheld mode: Joy-Con controllers slide onto the sides of the Switch gamepad so you can play in your palm 
  • Console: Switch slots into a dock and hooks up to your TV to play like a regular console

NINTENDO SWITCH

The Switch gamepad itself has a 6.2 inch screen that is both bright and crisp. And it has 2.5 to 6.5 hours of battery life for playing on the go. Like your phone or iPad, the screen is touch-enabled – no more having to use a stylus like with the Nintendo DS. 

When playing at home, the clever dock switches to TV mode as soon as you slot the Switch into it. Heading out? As soon as you lift the console from the dock it switches to handheld mode, so you can take your game with you.

 

More about the Joy-Con controllers

The Joy-Con controllers are at the heart of Nintendo Switch. You get 2 bundled with your console – one for the left, the other for the right. When playing handheld, you slot them down the respective sides of the Switch to form full controls. When playing through your TV, connect the left and right Joy-Cons together using a special grip to create 1 traditional controller.

Cool Joy-Con features: 

  • Play like Wii Remote with motion sensors built in for cool multiplayer games
  • Capture gameplay footage to share on social media 
  • Feel individual items rumble (i.e. ice cubes in a glass) with HD Rumble

 

What about multi-player?

When playing in console mode with friends, you can each use a single Joy-Con – i.e. either the left or right section.

 

What games can you play?

Zelda is the headline game at launch. The Nintendo icon has been a big hit across the decades, and Zelda: Breath of the Wild is one of the most anticipated games of recent years.Nintendo Switch

Mario, another Nintendo hero, is also soon to make an appearance with Super Mario Odyssey coming later this year, plus Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

Nintendo aside, cross-platform games like FIFA 17, and Skyrim are among other titles coming. 

Whether you’re playing handheld or console, you only need 1 version of the game, which is a great money-saver. Interestingly, the games are on cartridges rather than discs, adding a nice retro touch.

 

What are people saying?

Launch events were held around the world this January and a lot of good things have been said about the Nintendo Switch.

The new console was first revealed in October 2016, but this month was the first time anyone had been able to see it in the flesh - and more importantly, get to play it.

Reviewers at several major tech sites and daily newspapers have been quite complementary about the Switch. We can’t wait to get our hands on one…

 

What’s in the box?

 Everything you need: the Switch console, dock, 2 Joy-Con controllers (left and right), wrist straps, Joy-Con Grip, AC Adapter and even an HDMI cable to connect to your TV.

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