That’s exactly it for me. Games I don’t really want to sit at the computer to play but don’t require/greatly benefit from mouse and keyboard, that aren’t suited to iOS for lack of physical controls, are PERFECT for Switch.
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.
My initial few days with the Switch mirror some of what you’re saying, Chaplin. Every console I’ve owned since the original Xbox tend to get some limited use at first, then does nothing but gather dust. I skipped the 360/PS3 generation, tried a PS4, with similar results. The bottom line is, whenever I play a game on a console, I’m always asking myself why I’m not just playing it on my PC. I prefer M&K, my PC looks/performs orders of magnitude better, and the Steam Link gives me the “on the couch” experience if I need.
The Switch changes that up, though, because there’s easy answers to “Why am I not just playing this on my PC?”: because I’m at a location where I have no access to my PC. I’m in bed, I’m on a park bench, etc. It’s the kind of thing I was wanting good mobile games for for years, but all of those games I’ve tried have either been way too shallow/simple or too limited due to the lack of controls. They’re games you play for 5 minutes while you’re on the crapper, not “real” games like I was looking for.
A good example for me is Steamworld Dig 2. I love Terraria and Starbound, and was tempted to get Steamwork Dig 2 on PC, but the lack of multiplayer put me off. Once again, though, the Switch changes that up because I’m playing games where I wouldn’t traditionally be playing multiplayer on my PC anyway. I’m really enjoying the hell out of that game, far more than I would have if I had it on my PC.
The amount of time I’ve spent with the Switch this year is pretty insane for a device I expected to be nothing more than a Zelda and Mario machine when I bought it.
Here’s roughly how much time I’ve used it for:
- Zelda: 120 hours (and many more to come once the DLC comes out in December)
- Mario Kart 8: 15+ hours (and many more to come in local multiplayer over the holidays)
- Splatoon 2: 30+ hours (fantastic campaign + multiplayer)
- Steamworld Dig 2: 15 hours
- Golf Story: 15-20 hours
- Binding of Isaac: 10+ hours (and this is a regular go-to when I’m done with other games)
- Mario Odyssey: 20+ hours (and I’m nowhere near done with this)
- Picross S: 20+ hours
- TumbleSeed: ~10 hours
- Graceful Explosion Machine: 2-3 hours
- Stardew Valley: 10 hours so far, many more to come once I’m done with Mario
Every single one of those games has been a great experience so far. And I haven’t even bought Mario + Rabbids yet, which I really really want to play eventually.
How is Mario + Rabbids? I don’t know anything about it, other than what the Nintendo store tells me. I can tell it’s a tactics game and that sounds just like what I’m looking for, but what is the game structure? Do you just play through campaign levels and you’re done, or is there skirmish mode type stuff? Is there any continuity between the maps, or are they all isolated from each other (by that I mean customization, progression, etc in terms of loadout, abilities, or anything like that).
Lots of good info. Limited spoilers. There are a few here that think it’s the Game of the Year. It’s up there with Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey for me but I think Zelda is my pick right now.
I’m such a dork, I don’t know how I didn’t find that thread. Thanks, Dave!
EDIT: Fire teams, skill trees, etc. SOLD. Buying it when I get home.
This thread holds most of the relevant Switch games discussion, but there are game specific threads for a few…
This thread is a good one for discussion of cases to carry it around in…
You are the patron saint of Nintendo!
Question regarding physical games: can you “install” them onto internal storage like you can the downloaded games? Or do you always need to have the physical games on hand to swap as needed? I’m assuming the latter, but figured I’d ask.
Physical games must be in the device. They do get patched but patches seem small. DOOM is the first game that doesn’t have everything on the cart though. It will have you download the online multiplayer portion of the game.
It’s a perfect comparison. I just got a Switch and was setting it up for my son (two system updates, plus ~1GB of updates for “cartridge” games). As a part of that I wanted to buy some games from the online shop to make sure everything was working.
I then proceeded to SCROLL THROUGH LITERALLY EVERY SINGLE GAME AVAILABLE IN THE NINTENDO STORE until I reached the end. That’s, uh … quite something. Good luck doing that for the next few years, or really ever on any smartphone game app store.
So yeah, the Switch game store is the app store tiny catalog gold rush all over again. Get in while you can.
(I decided on Wonder Boy, Beat Sports from Harmonix, and Snipperclips with its add-on since the reviews said it was way too short originally.)
Money, mostly. Games are about 1/4th the cost in Steam sales. And then the really big screen at “real” resolutions like 4k and 1080p. It’s also very easy to get a cheap laptop or ali express mini-pc capable of playing these indie games, then throw a wireless xbox 360 controller on it. But for portability + control integrity as @DaveLong noted, absolutely, Switch makes sense.
You carry your Switch with you wherever you go outside the house? It’s kinda bulky. And it stays in your bedroom to charge perhaps?
I carry it with me when I believe there may be a situation where I want to use it, same as I would anything else. It comes to my bedroom when I feel like playing it in my bedroom.
I… what? Is this how you shop on Steam, XBL, or PSN? Why would you do this? Also, indie devs who released on Vita consistently said how well their titles did on the platform despite its install base. So… we’ll see.
Well, I found the online store catalog kind of underwhelming, so I was expecting more stuff to show up as I kept scrolling.
Then I reached the end of the list. It was not a particularly long list.
Control integrity is huge with this device. No matter where you play it, it’s the same thing, and it’s got physical controls that are not limiting in any way. The most awesome thing about it is probably that the experience of playing any game on it is so completely consistent no matter when or where you play, and it doesn’t hurt that the games themselves are great.
The eShop is likely to get an overhaul. I’m always fine with minimalistic interfaces like that though. Search works. There’s a listing of top sellers. You can easily find out what’s new.
That said, you can shop on their website too, which is pretty nice.
I’m very confused as your argument seems to have shifted from “The eShop is going to be a hellish thunderdome race to the bottom” to “The eShop has no games”.
I’m not particularly interested in the indie wave on Switch since it doesn’t fit my gaming usage but realize it does benefit me indirectly by added support for what I do want. So hey, bring on the ports.
Try reading a bit closer:
At first, a gold rush. Because you can browse literally everything on the store in about 3 minutes of scrolling. Then saturation to the point of nobody finding anything and racing to the bottom comes a bit later. So arguing “oh my, the Switch is a total game-changer for indies!” is a very bad historical bet based on the data we have.
I don’t think anybody said the Switch is a game changer for indies. We’re discussing the point you made about the Switch not being worthwhile as an indie platform because the games are already available on other platforms.