Are Publishers Using Lower Capacity Switch Cartridges?

When Nintendo announced Switch would use cartridges instead of discs, some expressed concerns over how the format would store larger AAA games, such as the latest entries in the Call of Duty or Destiny franchises that typically fill most of a Blu-ray disc. So far, the answer has been that a lot of those games simply won’t come to the platform, perhaps for unrelated reasons. Now it looks like even multi-platform heavyweights that do reach Switch could be limited by the more expensive storage medium.

In a press release, Nintendo announced a partnership with Western Digital to create licensed Nintendo Switch SanDisk memory cards. That announcement included a note that “a microSD card will be needed for certain Nintendo Switch games that contain an especially large amount of content and require additional storage for players to enjoy the full experience.”

Nintendo Switch game cartridges are available in capacities as great as 32GB, according to Eurogamer, which is room enough for a lot of content. That space comes at a price, however, and some publishers are opting to release games on smaller cartridges and let consumers to download the rest to their microSD cards if they want the full experience.

“A PR representative told us that NBA 2K18 is 25GB on the Nintendo Switch,” notes Tweaktown. “That means it will consume more than the Switch’s available built-in 25GB of free memory… So instead of using the 32GB capacity that would hold the full 25GB game, it appears 2K Games has selected the 16GB GameCard, thus forcing users to download up to 9GB of data to their microSD cards.”

We reached out to 2K Sports to see if they could confirm the above information, and to ask if there were plans for additional game updates that might require still more space on a microSD card, but hadn’t heard back by publish time. We will keep you notified if something changes, but in the meantime, it sounds like you should start saving up for one of those fancy new SanDisk memory cards if you want to enjoy some of the biggest games scheduled to hit the Switch hardware.

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