Nintendo Switch is Nintendo's long-awaited next console, but it's not here just yet. Though Nintendo officially unveiled the machine recently in a 3-minute trailer (which you can watch below), it didn't provide any real specifics that fans are craving for.
Nintendo doesn't appear ready to talk about those specifics yet either.
That means fans are left with some big questions as to what the Nintendo Switch will, and will not, be able to do. While there's no doubt Nintendo will provide plenty more details in the months ahead of the console's launch in March, here are some of the major questions we have upon watching the Nintendo Switch reveal trailer that we wish we had answers for right now.
So much of the Nintendo Switch's appeal is that it is both a home and handheld game console. Much of the trailer emphasized how players can take their Switch on the go, whether it be down the street or onto an airplane. That's great in theory, but mobile gaming comes with one major caveat not seen in home consoles: battery life. Just how long will the Nintendo Switch's handheld screen last without needing to be recharged? Will it be a few hours, like the Wii U tablet? Or will it be more along the lines the Nintendo 3DS, which features far better battery life? It's a major question that could potentially help or hurt Nintendo's new machine once we have an answer.
Any new game console, regardless of how impressive it looks, needs a stellar lineup of games for the machine at launch in order to be a hit. The Nintendo Switch's launch games, however, are still a mystery, though we can make a few guesses. As seen in the reveal trailer, a brand new Mario game appears to be either coming to the Nintendo Switch at launch or sometime afterward. Also seen was the NBA 2K franchise, Mario Kart and what appeared to be The Elder Scrolls Skyrim: Special Edition.
Bethesda has gone on to say that just because Skyrim appeared in the video doesn't mean 100 percent that the game is confirmed for the console, but having the remastered version of Skyrim at launch for the travel-friendly gaming console would be a huge win for Nintendo.
Also expected to be a launch title for the Switch is Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which will also be releasing on the Wii U. The game is one of the mostly highly anticipated Nintendo games in recent memory, and could play a big role in persuading fans to pay up for Nintendo's new machine at launch. Rumors have swirled around potential games for the Switch for months, but it seems we will have to wait a little longer for an official list of titles that will be available for the console come March.
With the question of launch lineup inevitably comes talks of backward compatibility, in that will Wii U games be playable on the Switch? Nintendo's last three consoles, after all, have been backward compatible, so it seems reasonable to assume it may happen again. However, at first glance the answer appears to be no, as the Switch uses cartridges rather than discs.
It's possible the machine also sports a disc drive that hasn't been discussed, but nothing we've seen so far seems to indicate the functionality. Adding to the confusion is that the Switch reveal trailer clearly shows Wii U games like Splatoon being played. Are these games simply Wii U ports coming to the Switch, or will owners of the Wii U versions of the games be able to play them on the Switch come launch day? It's a major question that we still don't have an answer to.
While one might assume the Switch's mobile gaming screen to support touch functionality, it isn't yet confirmed. Touch functions play a key role on the Wii U and Nintendo 3DS, so it would make perfect sense for Nintendo's next major console to do the same. That being said, the Switch's reveal trailer didn't show players using the touch screen in any way, so it remains a mystery for now.
This is the big one. Anytime a new console is on the horizon, price is always the number one question, a question that will likely go unanswered for some time still. But that doesn't mean we can't speculate. Given that the Wii U is currently $250 and the new Nintendo 3DS XL sells for $200, it seems like a given that the Switch will be at least $300. After all, the basic version of the Wii U retailed for as much at launch, with the deluxe version selling for $350. The price of the Switch could be comparable to deluxe version of the Wii U at launch, though it certainly seems possible the price could go up to the $400 range. Anything beyond that and customers may be turned off by the high price tag, but $300-$400 will likely be the sweet spot Nintendo shoots for.
What questions do you have about the Nintendo Switch? Are you impressed by what you've seen so far? Let us know in the comments below.