The Games Industry Reacts: Your stance on Switch
Got something to say? We're looking for your opinions on today's Nintendo Switch reveal and its launch plans
Since the platform holder first uttered the codename 'NX' almost two years ago, speculation has been rife about the new console that would eventually be known as Nintendo Switch. Now, following a teasing reveal trailer in October, we know all the details about Nintendo's next device.
You can catch up on all the details in our previous story, but here are the highlights: Console-handheld hybrid, with motion-sensitive controllers and touchscreen. Worldwide launch will be March 3rd, and all games will be region-free. A paid online service will be required from Autumn 2017 to play online. Confirmed games include Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, Splatoon 2, new IP Arms, social oddity 1, 2, Switch, and third-party titles Skyrim, FIFA, NBA, Rayman, Minecraft, Rime and a bunch of JRPGS.
As the dust settles, the GamesIndustry.biz team is forming its own opinions but there's one very important perspective we want to know: yours. For our first Games Industry Reacts round-up, we asked readers and industry members to answer the following:
How has today's reveal impacted your opinion of the Nintendo Switch?
We received a great response, and a big thanks to all who shared their thoughts. Here's what you had to say:
"It's great to see a global approach from Nintendo in terms of launch date and flexibility in region restrictions"Debbie Bestwick, Team17
Debbie Bestwick, Team17
"Team17 welcomes the arrival of Nintendo Switch. The concept of a new platform that can bridge the void between the home and handheld markets is fantastic and it's great to see a global approach from Nintendo in terms of launch date and flexibility in region restrictions. I'm excited about more focus on introducing a network services model, for which we hope may bring more opportunities for independent developers and traditional publishers alike as the service evolves. We would see the hardware pricing as a signal that the early adopters will largely be composed of Nintendo fans rather than the more casual/broader audiences, but this is no bad thing in the early stages. We are excited about working with Nintendo and the possibility to bring games to the new platform."
Giles Armstrong, Talespinners
"The Nintendo Switch looks amazing. It's everything I wanted the Wii U to be, namely, a console where I can play all the greatest Nintendo hits of the past and present either on my TV or on the move, all while supporting the devs and companies I admire through not needing to resort to emulation.
"That said, it's understandable that a degree of backlash has begun, given the number of glowing question-marked blocks floating around this morning's reveal, and it's too early to blast Nintendo's decisions on things when the actual result of those isn't yet clear.
"A lot of my friends and peers are turned off by the price, but the key thing is, like EVERYTHING videogame related, the earliest purchase will always be the most expensive and the least 'complete' version of something. To be first carries that premium - and that is literally ALL such a premium gets you. It's how the industry has worked for years, and shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone. For example: console revisions, or Game of the Year editions.
"In my opinion, and with only the industry's pattern to go by, I believe that around Christmas this year, the Switch will be vastly more desirable in light of (let's face it) probable price cuts and better bundles for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
"In my view, Nintendo are releasing the Switch in March, at the highest price they can, so their 2016/17 financial year ends with a nice uptick, and so they have the year to continue producing enough units to supply demand at Crimbo (see supply/demand on the NES Classic for why). They're not afraid of annoying their most loyal supporters, because being a Nintendo faithful seems pretty evergreen, and because there's always a new wave of younger fans to entice.
"To reiterate: the Switch is what I hoped the Wii U would be -- somewhere I can gather and play a superb collection of Nintendo's past and present, pretty much anywhere, and while supporting the devs and companies that make the games. Its launch, with such little info, looks a little lacklustre in the hours following the morning's reveals, but I genuinely believe that Christmas 2017 is when it'll come into its own; prices for consoles and accessories will be better, the biggest unknowns will be known and in their best state, and that's when it'll be far closer to what people want of it.
"I want one. But not on day one."
"Its launch looks a little lacklustre, but I genuinely believe that Christmas 2017 is when it'll come into its own"Giles Armstrong, Talespinners
Stefano Petrullo, Renaissance PR
"I am really excited to see the new Nintendo Switch arriving on the market this year. Nintendo has always been different in their approach in console design and offer proposition. It is safe to say it was always and almost unique and I do not believe this time is different. What Nintendo is trying to achieve is very challenging and I always support innovation and new market solutions that wide the offer to the consumer as well as give more way to developer to express their creativity"
Luke Botham, Imaginarium Studios
"Nintendo have always been quite inventive with their controllers and input methods which is what sets them apart from the competition. The Joy-Cons seem great in terms of offering different experiences but I do worry how some of their functionality may not be suitable for people suffering from disabilities. I can't help but feel that the object/hand sensing capabilities of the Joy-Cons is only going to be suited to games made solely for that use and its application elsewhere could be seen as gimmicky."
Keith Andrew, freelance journalist
"Everybody knows Zelda, Mario et al will all be top class. Software isn't the problem. What I can't get beyond with Switch is that Nintendo thinks people want to play console-sized games on the go.
"They don't. Some core Nintendo fans will, but on the whole, the mass-market - the less committed games buying public - really don't. It's not something they've been calling out for, and if you take that away from Switch, all it is is another Nintendo console, as Wii U was. That doesn't bode well.
"Mobile has spent the last decade proving that games able to be played in far smaller chunks - maybe even as short as 30 seconds - are what people reach for when out of the house. Nintendo is going to find that out over the course of the next few years, too."
"What I can't get beyond with Switch is that Nintendo thinks people want to play console-sized games on the go. They don't."Keith Andrew, freelance journalist
David Heslop, freelance producer/director
"I remain cautiously optimistic about the Switch. I think the central 'gimmick' of taking your home console games on the move is more enticing than the confused message of the Wii U, and as a piece of hardware it's certainly desirable. I can see the appeal especially to parents of young kids, who could buy one system, with its two controllers, and theoretically please everyone in one fell swoop.
"However, Nintendo being Nintendo, they've made several odd or unfortunate decisions that will likely impact the Switch's reception. The price is higher than we thought, which perhaps is beyond Nintendo's control; but at the risk of second guessing them, is there really a need for it to do quite so many different tasks? Rumble, motion controls, image sensing... perhaps if they'd picked one area and stuck to it, they could have kept the price down? And that's before we get onto the under-explained and potentially confusing online setup.
"I think it risks falling between two stools of being under-supported and over-expensive for the mainstream or casual audience, and being too underpowered to really please the hardcore, meaning it'll lean on Nintendo's dedicated die-hard fanbase... who only really have a Zelda to satisfy them at launch.
"Don't get me wrong, I think it looks great, and it probably will be; I'd like to play Zelda, Mario, and Mario Kart. Perhaps if my kids (both very young) were a couple of years older I'd consider getting one next Christmas. I hope it's a big success for Nintendo. But they could really have done with a slam-dunk this morning, and I don't think they delivered."
Klaus Preisinger, freelance writer
"A €300+ mobile device, which, outside of gaming, is no competition to your other mobile digital lifestyle devices whatsoever, is not the strongest product to begin with. Everybody can see avid fans of Nintendo games going for that, but beyond this core audience the question-mark could not be bigger. Is the way to outperform the WiiU adding a wee bit mobility? Is lack of performance the only thing limiting greater New3DS success?
"Wanting to appeal to parents by promising them a smart phone solution to avoid being an actual parent and just stepping in there when necessary is probably the most shocking. Has there ever been a Nintendo video before, which advertised a Nintendo product/feature by showing a sad child, or did I miss all the others? Has there ever been a Nintendo product targeted at the fears of parents? This is some dark PR right there.
"Offering timed access to 20-30 year old games you did not want to play when you decided to fork over subscription money for the multiplayer part of the latest game you actually wanted to play, is straight up comedy. Nobody should play that narrative for anything but a silly joke, yet this very business model was presented once more in all sincerity."
Paul Jace, merchandiser
"Going into this presentation I didn't think anything they said or showed would get me interested in picking up a Switch at launch and boy was I right. I think there's potential because of the hybrid of the games playing as both console and handheld but even that won't matter if they won't be making games that interest me.
"I already have a lot of time and money invested in my Xbox One and 3DS and based on this reveal I have to give this system a pass. I just can't see myself making the 'Switch'."
Dr Chee Ming Wong, Opus Artz
"Currently ambivalent. I'm adopting a cautious watch and wait strategy (having previously paid expensively for 3DS) - perhaps it will be a rip-roaring success."
Aleksi Ranta, product manager
"All Nintendo had to do was to showcase games yet they ended up hyping ice cubes in a glass and really showing only a handful of games + arms (cringe). Launch lineup is poor excluding Zelda. I worry."
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