It’s been quite a year for Nintendo.
The Japanese video game giant launched its latest console, the Nintendo Switch, in March 2017. It’s the company’s first new console since 2012’s Wii U — primarily known as the worst-selling console in Nintendo history.
Well, Nintendo really turned it around: In that first year, the Switch has become a runaway success. Over 14 million have already been sold, with another 20 million expected to sell in the coming year.
With the Switch, Nintendo has a hit on its hands — and for good reason. It’s an excellent little console that stands out from the competition with its portability and excellent game library.
One year later, we’re revisiting our original review of the Switch to see how far Nintendo has come…and the places it still needs to go.
A quick overview: The Nintendo Switch is a $300 video game console that launched on Friday, March 3, 2017.
The console is a hybrid home console and portable console. The games you play at home are the same when you take them on the go — that’s the whole sell point of the console: “Play games everywhere.”
In this sense, the Switch “console” is just a tablet that can be docked and played on your TV, or taken to play on the go.
This is the Nintendo Switch, the 6.2-inch tablet in the middle. The controllers on either side are modular; they can be slid onto the tablet, thus turning it into a handheld game system.
A kickstand on the back of the tablet enables you to balance it like a tiny display for multiplayer gaming. If you’re attempting as much, you must be very close to the screen. It’s small!
The Switch’s main gimmick — being a home console and a handheld — holds up remarkably well.
What we said in 2017: Switching between TV mode and handheld mode on the Switch works exactly as advertised — it’s simple, intuitive, and brilliant.
The Switch seamlessly moves between home console and portable console. You simply slide the tablet into the dock, and it’s on your TV. Pick it up and it’s ready to go. That’s it!
Being able to pause a game on my TV, snag the Switch out of the Dock, and keep playing is a convenience I didn’t think I needed. Turns out it’s a tremendously nice bonus. I’ve been playing “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” on my morning commute, picking up where I left off on my TV the night before, and it’s a real delight.
Also, if we’re being honest, being able to bring the Switch to the bathroom is something that millions of people are going to embrace. Kinda gross? Maybe. Logical? Certainly.
And now, in 2018? Though I’m far less likely these days to pick up my Switch and take it on-the-go, it’s a delightful convenience when traveling.
I brought the Switch with me during my holiday travel, and enjoyed the ability to play “Super Mario Odyssey” as we traveled from place to place. The Switch came with me last year to Peru as well. It’s genuinely amazing being able to bring a full-on game console wherever you go. That the power cable/plug is relatively slim also helps!