Nintendo NX revealed as Nintendo Switch and it looks pretty awesome

nintendo-switchYesterday, Nintendo finally revealed their mysterious new game-system, previously referred to as Nintendo NX, to be Nintendo Switch. The Switch is a new interesting hybrid of a home and handheld console.

Following a design-principle very close to the Wii and Wii U, the console itself is incredibly  compact, seemingly about the size of the Wii U’s gamepad. The system can be docked during which it shows the game image on the screen. The controller comes apart into three parts, a central hub and two section with analogue sticks and four-buttons on each. These can then be attached to the main unit after which the image switches to the LED screen on the console itself and it essentially turns into a portable machine.

The promo video shows a lot of nifty ways to use the system. The two detachable controller units can also be used a player-1 and player-2 controllers (reminding me very much of the Wiimote) and this option also works while the system is not docked, meaning that people can play multiplayer on the single screen together away from a TV.

My reaction to all of this is pretty positive. Initially, I was afraid Nintendo was indeed going to release a glorified game-phone (as speculated by many sources) but the Switch’s simple design and new innovative features look genuinely kickass. At the same time, I can’t but help to think Nintendo is effectively rolling up their home and handheld game-development into the same device. This would make sense though, considering the Wii U’s rather weak showing on the market-place versus Nintendo’s handhelds which consistently dominate their respective market. If this essentially means Nintendo is ditching having its own unique home-games in favour of just having the same consistency of game-releasing as its handheld devices, I’m all for this.

I personally don’t like portable systems but I love Nintendo’s games and devices, so I think this is a good way for Nintendo to play to its own strengths and again avoid direct competition with Sony and Microsoft (the same thing they’ve basically been doing since the Wii) in order to continue doing their own thing.