Recently Nintendo unveiled their “NX” platform as the Nintendo Switch, which they are planning to be the successor to the Wii U. The system is being touted as a home gaming system that can be also used on the go. However, there seems to be something that people are ignoring with the launch of this console: that Nintendo has just left the console box style of gaming platform behind for the first time since they entered the home gaming arena.
Pictured above is the switch controller, and the switch system in its home use mode. Look familiar? What you are looking at is a tablet with a bluetooth controller and a docking station that allows it to charge and connects it to your television: the same thing you can have with a standard Android tablet, but with Nintendo IPs and games. Make no mistake, the Nintendo Switch is nothing more than Nintendo switching gears. They are releasing a branded tablet that has a proprietary Nintendo OS and is meant to play their games. This is nothing revolutionary; we have had the ability to game on tablets with built in controllers for a while now.
The system features a snap-apart controller that can then be mounted to the tablet for on the go gaming. Nintendo is attempting to say that this means you can take your home gaming on the go. While this is the case, I question why one would wish to do this in the first place when you can accomplish the same thing using an Android tablet and bluetooth controller, or a tablet with controls built in such as the one pictured below.
Taking a closer look at the above tablet at this link, it looks similar in size to the Switch, but with its controller permanently mounted. It also features HDMI support for hooking up to your home television, and look: is that Mario 64 in the picture? Yes, using emulators, this tablet can play any Nintendo game up through the N64 era, along with non-nintendo properties such as Atari, Sega, Sony Playstation, and Arcade, without having to re-purchase games in Nintendos marketplace. Also, this is only one of a multitude of android gaming tablets available, so you can pick one to suit your needs.
Nintendo is still playing catch-up in the gaming world, and their vision of the Switch simply confirms that they are still struggling to find that innovative spark to compel the consumers to purchase their product. Releasing a product similar to what savvy consumers have already had for the past five years is something which in my opinion lacks to put Nintendo back to the forefront of the gaming industry.
The jury is still out, since the Switch has not yet released, but so far it looks as if Nintendo has a hard road ahead of them in their goal to reclaim the gaming throne.