Well, maybe you are not a fan of what the Switch offers or does. Or it doesn’t impact you in the same way that it seems to impact others due to your life structure. That’s fine. Maybe it’s not the system for you. Back in February, I was rather meh about it and expected it to be yet another Nintendo box that I’d never use. Even so, I found myself on a Best Buy sidewalk awaiting midnight anyway due to some dumb FOMO or something. Once I had it, I was hooked. I love my Switch like no other console. And I say this as someone that doesn’t like platformers or Nintendo IP generally.
I have a desktop and laptop PC. Both are fairly solid and I consider myself a PC gamer primarily. Or did. Not sure now. I am rebuying all kinds of independent releases on the Switch. I am discovering new ones. And I am waiting for more. The form factor, transportability, ease of TV integration, docked surround sound availability, and the like are just super nice. Yes I COULD go grab the laptop and update some game on Steam then play on the couch as someone else (or me) watched something on the TV, but now…why? I COULD haul out HDMI cables or buy a Steambox to tunnel games onto my TV, but…why? I COULD hunch over a PC to play Doom, Issac, Darkest Dungeon, or Battle Chasers, but…why? Steam sales? Earlier releases? Marginally better graphics that my ‘maybe too old for this technical crap’ attitude needs comparison videos to appreciate the differences? No, not me. I find the gains offered by the hybrid utility of the Switch totally worth it and super refreshing.
Is this akin to the App Store bubble? Again, to me, no way. The App Store stuff was a mix of mostly shovel-ware and a smidge of quality…until it all got infested with FtP design compromise aimed at paywalls. Plus, even in the “bubble” times, there was a vast difference between $1 or even $5 apps and Steam indies.
To me, the Switch eShop is no “bubble”. It’s a better platform for what I previously had to go to Steam to find. And even then, I had to park at a desk or lug around a (gee first world problem incoming) “heavy” laptop. No, the Switch is refreshing. It’s like cutting the cord on a landline phone or cable tv. I love having anything, anywhere in my backpack and with a 1 second resume or pause.
That last point is big too. Just last night, while reclined on the bed, I was tinkering around with a new indie I discovered (Spellspire). As I was racing against the clock to find scrabble like words fast enough to beat this skeleton boss, I suddenly felt the feminine tones of expectant conversation drift through the doorway. Rather than remain focused on the game (which would have been fine with her, I have a great partner), I just tapped the sleep button to resume exactly the millisecond I left off in 10 minutes or 10 days. Over the weekend I was playing quietly on the Switch in a hospital room next to a sleeping loved one in bed. When the nurse popped in with an update, I just tapped the Switch’s sleep mode to resume in seconds whenever time allowed. This is true even if the next slice of time is three minutes somewhere, anywhere else. It’s all rather nice and liberating.
I love my Switch. I didn’t know I wanted or “needed” one, but now that I have one, I do. Of course, your life may be structured differently which mutes the values above. So, YMMV. I know some that also love it while I also have some friends that see them as dust collectors. In general though, it seems the overall reception of gamers at large is a rather positive one that said gamers (like me) didn’t expect to have.