Nintendo Switch Is The Fastest Selling Home Console In US History

The massive doubt that preceded the launch of the Nintendo Switch has been officially stomped into submission as it takes a comfortable seat atop console hardware mountain.

116

Is it a handheld? Is it a home console? These discussions persist, but one thing is now clear: The Nintendo Switch, which earned Best Hardware of the Year from us, is the fastest selling console in US history.  In the ten months since launch, the Switch has sold more than 4.8 million units which is the highest total for the first ten months of any home video game system.

Alongside this monumental hardware sales achievement, which was reported by GoNintendo, the Switch is having an incredible software performance that could end up breaking a handful of records. Nintendo also secured our award for Publisher of the Year.

"Fans across the country have experienced the joy of playing their favorite games at home or on the go," said Reggie Fils-Aime, president and COO for Nintendo of America, in the press release for the news. "Now that many more people have received Nintendo Switch systems for the holidays, we look forward to bringing them fun new surprises in 2018 and beyond."

This generation of gaming is shaping up to be the best ever. Microsoft isn't having the best software performance, but has the most powerful home console on the market. High-quality PC games are arriving in waves and dominating gaming discussions. Sony is cleaning up with hardware and software across the board. The Nintendo Switch is more of a direct competitor than the Wii was in its heyday, but it ultimately serves as the cherry on top. 2017 was the strongest gamers had experienced in years and, hopefully, 2018 will match or exceed it.

Charles Singletary Jr keeps the updates flowing as the News Editor, breaking stories while investigating the biggest topics in gaming and technology. He's pretty active on Twitter, so feel free to reach out to him @The_CSJR. Got a hot tip? Email him at Charles.Singletary@Shacknews.com.

From The Chatty

  • reply
    January 4, 2018 10:20 AM

    Charles Singletary posted a new article, Nintendo Switch Is The Fastest Selling Home Console In US History

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 10:39 AM

      ... and it’s all thanks to Milleh!

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 10:41 AM

        Awwwwww yeaaaa

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 10:58 AM

          "You betcha".

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 11:04 AM

          Got one for Xmas... it’s your fault, and it’s fantastic.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 11:40 AM

            I was going to buy one, but then the battery in my car died and i had to replace it :(

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 2:07 PM

              That blows. Out of warranty, I guess?

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 10:49 AM

      Of all time!!!

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 11:05 AM

      Yup, looks like, comparatively, it underperformed in Europe and the Asia-Pacific belt (save Japan of course). I'm going to blame EA and FIFA on that one primarily, that and people like their sports games pretty so the Switch is never going to be able to compete in quite the same spectrum there. Portability might help if a decent FIFA 2019 version comes out for it.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 11:42 AM

        NA has always been their most important territory. It actually overperformed in regions like France and Sweden that never really took to their machines, same with UK since that’s always been PS territory.

        The thing that interests me more is if they can really expand in China by following through with localizing more of their games, etc. They recently started doing this with their iCue subsidiary, putting their games on Nvidia Shield, etc, but we’ll see. My shares have doubled in value so far but they have a shot at going even higher than my target if they can succeed there.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 12:02 PM

          Agreed, also apparently they really started pushing in Russia, which they've never really had a good presence in (again, via localization, but also special bundles).

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 12:08 PM

        FIFA 18, while not the prettiest thing, is damn fun to play on the go. EA needs to take the time to deliver on 19 for the Switch. Big potential market there.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 12:34 PM

          is it a big potential market though? How many people (in Europe) have a Switch and no other console and really care about FIFA? Like if they spend the money to make a FIFA version for the Switch how many new sales did they generate vs just shifting the mix of their sales from PS3/PS4/etc to Switch?

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 12:43 PM

          Agreed, although you might wonder how many would double dip for that.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 6:41 PM

          I would love to see data titles like Doom, FIFA, WWE, LA Noire and others.

          That we see indies proclaiming the Switch version of Pixel Game #741 sold most on Switch but nothing from publicly owned corps may be telling. Or not.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 7:00 PM

            Ubisoft reported in October that revenue from Switch was within one percentage point of revenue from XBox One. That's only one and I expect it would be the best (certainly better than EA) thanks to Mario XCom and Just Dance. Curious to hear numbers from Bethesda.

            That said, Activision announced that they were throwing their hat in with the Switch this year, one of the few companies that hadn't before. We'll see

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 11:34 AM

      Nintendo should get out of the hardware business and just make software

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 11:47 AM

        the switch is awesome, even though the interior is nvidia I'm not sold they could make the joycons and the whole system in a neat package like nintendo.

      • DM7
        reply
        January 4, 2018 11:52 AM

        Sarcasm alert wooo wooo wooo

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 12:09 PM

        Yeah. Quit with the gimmicks, guys! /s

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 1:32 PM

          The advantage of rapid innovation is you have a collection of experiences, both successes and failures, to inform you what works and what doesn't. This doesn't happen without experimentation that is still made with a clear goal in mind.

          Its why the arguments that Nintendo should stop swinging for the fences with each console release were so stupid.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 1:44 PM

            this is why I appreciate the Wii U. it truly paved the way for making Switch a reality.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 2:39 PM

              The Switch is a Frankenstein monster of nearly everything Nintendo has done in the past.

              The only things missing from old devices are integrated cameras and microphones.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 12:20 PM

        I used to want them to make a 5.5" Drive that sticks into a PC Case so I can play their games on my computer.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 12:26 PM

          i remember sega was planning on making a dreamcast pci card at one point. that wouldv ebeen sick

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 12:29 PM

            I totally would have been down with that!

            Funny growing up my parents didn't like game consoles in the house because they thought it was a distraction and bad influence.

            However my dad was cool with me getting a PC and upgrading it. I got a lot of games for it too with his knowledge. I guess he presumed PC games were smarter or something than console games. Which is true.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 2:03 PM

            I still remember wanting the “3DO Blaster”, a card/drive kit Creative made that would let your PC play 3DO games. The hardware of the 3DO was on the PCI card, if I recall right. Neat idea at least.

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 11:55 AM

      It should be. It is the best console I have ever owned. Definitely the console I have played the most in my entire life and I have owned all of them except for TurboGrafx 16 and Sega Saturn.

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 12:20 PM

      I would pay the cost of a pro controller for a left joycon that was the left side of the pro controller.

      Been trying to play Pulstar on the go and it's...not very enjoyable :(

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 12:23 PM

        I've been meaning to ask you. have you tried out that shmup they released on the eshop called RXN Raijin? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2p6_RpaBz2g

        I've been holding back on buying it only because I haven't read a -single- review for it. It could be trash or it could be good, IDK.

        But yeah with older games like Aero Fighters and Pulstar I'm noticing a lot of input delay and lag, generally with the joycons :(

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 12:35 PM

          Nope, haven't played it :( I don't really have the time or patience to learn a new shmup anymore so the stuff I do play is straight up comfort food classics. I'd be inclined to buy DariusBurst CS at the $40 price point, but that's about it :(

          Also, RXN has been getting slagged on in the shmups forums, it seems. :( Not really a true indicator of quality, but $40 is an awful lot to spend on a game everyone kind of agrees is mediocre at best (unless it's a dope ass physical collector's edition :D )

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 12:32 PM

      would the Vita be considered a home console if it had shipped with a bluetooth controller and an HDMI cable?

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 12:35 PM

        Thanks, I just made a mess in my pants thinking about it.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 12:36 PM

        The class of games it was capable of running (outside of JRPGs) was below what was on home consoles. A AAA game on Switch is a AAA home console game, full stop

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 12:40 PM

          they made console level versions of God of War that were not meaningfully technically farther behind AAA home console games than Zelda is far behind games like The Witcher 3.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 12:42 PM

            I mean if this was your line in the sand then is my iPad a home console because I can AirPlay a port of a AAA console game to my AppleTV and use a bluetooth controller? Or it's only a home console if Apple sells a bundle with those things included?

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 12:54 PM

              The line in the sand is the difference in horsepower and how that affects the class of game on those respective platforms.

              The issue with iOS is twofold. The A10X in the new Apple TV is actually about twice as powerful as the Tegra X1 in the Switch. It should be a home console! The problem is that there is no gamepad included in the box so there is no universal physical interface for developers to target outside of the included remote control. Its the same situation with smartphones and tablets, no physical interface comes included with every device, thereby limiting the kinds of games that can be played right out of the gate.

              The joycons really are the special sauce of the Switch.

              The other issue is what the both markets have been conditioned to accept as far as what a fair price is, $5 versus $60. I honestly believe this is why Nintendo has such strict guidelines on what the game icon art looks like. Its done to promote a feeling that the game is a full premium product which deserves the full retail price that you paid. A minimalist icon evokes the feeling of a smartphone or tablet app, a dense icon evokes the feeling of a $40-$60 box that you picked up at retail.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 1:02 PM

                I don't think many people would agree the next iPad is a home console if the next version shipped with a Bluetooth controller and HDMI out even if you can pay $60 for Civ 6 on it.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 1:07 PM

                  If Apple marketed an A11X Fusion Apple TV and threw a gamepad in every box, absolutely, they totally have a home console.

                  The iPad is a different story since performance throttling due to heat buildup would be a constant issue. Unless they added active cooling while underclocking its top frequency it just wouldn't be possible, and they ain't adding a fan to an iPad.

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 1:11 PM

                    the comparison is the iPad. It's not super interesting to ask if Apple's device that plugs into a TV and has no screen of its own could be considered a home console. It's trivially obvious the only real difference between it and consoles is the controller (and the effects that has on software).

                    I'm not aware of Civ 6 having some time limit on playtime on iOS to not cause overheating. It looks a lot like a $60 home console game to me.

                    • reply
                      January 4, 2018 1:22 PM

                      Its a well known issue that performance in 3D games degrades over time on tablets and smartphones.

                      This is made most clear when running 3D benchmarks. If you run one continuously then things like framerate are higher at minute one than they are at minute thirty. This is because accumulated heat forces the OS to downclock the SoC in order to stay within safe operating temperature.

                      The Switch overcomes this problem by underclocking the SoC by default and using active cooling. The system never gets to a temperature so that at hour 12 of marathoning Zelda there are graphical glitches, breaking of game logic, etc. The system always runs at the same clock speed at all times. Tablets and smartphones aggressively throttle clock frequency in order to compensate for the fact that there is no active cooling. It also works practically since most intensive applications are used in short bursts rather than marathon couch sessions.

                      Civ6 is not an intensive game from a 3D standpoint. Any impact on performance due to CPU throttling might manifest itself in turns taking longer if the game has been running for a lonh period of time, but that's just a guess since I haven't seen any tests. Either way the iPad wouldn't be a candidate for a home console device by design.

                      • reply
                        January 4, 2018 1:36 PM

                        "are graphical glitches" should say "aren't graphical glitches".

                        It would be incredibly annoying if there was hitching in the same area of a game like Mario Odyssey, or you fell through some random piece of floor because of some broken game logic just because you played the game for an hour.

                      • reply
                        January 4, 2018 1:40 PM

                        so all the iPad needs is a 'game mode' that developers toggle that clocks down the SOC to a level it can sustain for longer time without perf hiccups

                        • reply
                          January 4, 2018 1:49 PM

                          Also game controllers in every box and an audience willing to spend money on games, yes.

                          I'm not disagreeing with it being possible, Apple's mobile hardware is second to none. The issue is that there are so many what-ifs and caveats that I'm not sure are ultimately worth Apple's time. The game console business is such a niche and I feel that the steps Apple would need to take to make it possible would only dilute and complicate things for them, and this is well before we know if the gaming market would accept them.

                          The consumer expectations and executional goals for a 125 year old toy company are very different.

                          • reply
                            January 4, 2018 1:53 PM

                            I'm by no means arguing Apple should do this. It's just an exercise. If the next iPad shipped with a controller and day and date ports of console FIFA/Madden instead of just the current mobile iterations would people agree it's now a home console? I'm skeptical they would.

                            • reply
                              January 4, 2018 2:00 PM

                              Technically, I think they could. But I don't think people would accept it as such because Apple has such a history of abortive Gaming ventures.

                              I don't think people are going to give them the benefit of the doubt the same way they might a Nintendo.

                              • reply
                                January 4, 2018 2:01 PM

                                Eh, there are enough die hard that will sing its praises if it's good I could see adoption being pretty wide spread.

                                • reply
                                  January 4, 2018 2:09 PM

                                  Sure, they're Apple, they might. But by the same token, they're Apple. They've made several attempts at supporting gaming and completely fallen flat every time. Does anyone remember the initial push for gaming on Apple TV? Or, heck, for ancient history, John Carmack's fun with them back around Doom 3.

                                  They're not going to do it. They know they don't want to invest the resources it would take to do it well enough to succeed.

                              • reply
                                January 4, 2018 2:09 PM

                                yeah I mean I don't think people would have a good reason to believe Apple is suddenly serious about gaming (which is why it'll actually never happen in the first), but the point is just that if they did would the iPad be a home console or hybrid home console? Seems iffy.

                                • reply
                                  January 4, 2018 2:10 PM

                                  I don't know if anyone really cares about that distinction. I don't have an opinion on it.

                                  • reply
                                    January 4, 2018 2:13 PM

                                    I'm sure if there was a shacknews article that said 'iPad 7 now the fastest selling home console ever' people would have an opinion on it.

                                    • reply
                                      January 4, 2018 2:18 PM

                                      Heh, well, fair enough there.

                              • reply
                                January 4, 2018 2:38 PM

                                If Apple did this they absolutely should market it as a console. You don't do something and then not market it as such.

                                The biggest problem isn't the hardware, its the will to do it and figuring out how to get their customers to actually spend real money on software.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 12:47 PM

            I had that game and I absolutely disagree with that, same with comparing Uncharted on Vita with its home console counterparts. They were very different classes of game with the compromises that you'd expect from a mobile port, not a full-fat console experience.

            There was a very wide difference in performance between the Vita and the PS3/360. The Switch by comparison about about 2-3x as powerful as those machines. It isn't anywhere as fast as a PS4 or XB1 but its well past the tipping point where the majority of games on those platforms can have comparable or identical ports, let alone cross-play with those platforms like you're seeing with the Switch right now.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 12:50 PM

              Zelda is exactly the sort of compromises I’d expect a big open world game to need to make to work on mobile, same as God of War and Uncharted on Vita. The real difference between them is Zelda was done by Nintendo’s A team while the Vita got B team work from Sony’s crews, when even their A teams have a gap in quality vs Nintendo.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 1:04 PM

                Zelda was a port of a Wii U game. Games like that, Mario Odyssey, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, the enhanced edition port of Skyrim that runs better than the vanilla edition ever did on the 360 or PS3. They're an entirely different class of game than what something like Uncharted was on Vita. A Vita also couldn't be expected to play cross-platform versions of games with prior gen consoles while the Switch can crossplay with much a more powerful PC or XBox One.

                I liked my Vita but there was a real divide between that system and other home consoles while that line is much blurrier with the Switch.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 1:19 PM

                  would God of War on Vita just have been a port of the PS2 games if the PS2 had been like half as powerful as it was like the Wii U was relative to its contemporaries?

                  I just don't find the hardware power argument compelling as it very quickly makes the iPad look like a home console if you just give it a controller. Everyone understands what it means to be a mobile device. You design the hardware around the unique capabilities of something on the go. Shouldn't a home console be the same? Something designed around the unique capabilities of something always plugged in?

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 1:29 PM

                    "Shouldn't a home console be the same? Something designed around the unique capabilities of something always plugged in?"

                    Maybe, but this is very limited thinking. Nobody is saying that a hybrid console is as powerful as something that is always plugged in, but when that hybrid is capable enough to do cross-play with those plugged in systems, when that hyrbid system has numerous games that are as good as or better than what those systems have to offer as a couch gaming experience, is it even that important a question?

                    The Switch really is its own category of device. Using "handheld" or "home console" or "tablet" misses the point.

                    As for the iPad, I listed above why it wouldn't currently be a candidate for a game console. It has entirely different priorities for usage, thermal dissipation, and how aggressively it throttles clock speed as heat builds up. It doesn't work when a gaming system has its performance degrade over time.

                    • reply
                      January 4, 2018 1:38 PM

                      It's an important question when you're writing an article explicitly about grouping things by their product category.

                      Likewise it's an important question when you're looking at Nintendo's future and whether it still involves handhelds and home consoles as discreet businesses and how to model their success. The Switch looks like a massive success compared to the Wii U. What if the proper comparison is the 3DS?

                      Generally speaking I also disagree with this hybrid label. The Switch is a handheld with HDMI out. It doesn't really have any special hybrid functionality. It costs the same amount as a launch 3DS with a $50 Bluetooth controller. You don't plug it into the TV and it behaves in a significantly different way from how it does as a handheld (as many speculated it would when rumors were flying around about Nintendo new hybrid console). There are no TV only games. Handheld hardware has just gotten to the point where plugging it into an HDTV isn't gross looking.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 1:00 PM

              Man, Uncharted on Vita was hot garbage. A lot of those spin offs from the major series suffered on the Sony handhelds... Assassin's Creed, Ratchet & Clank, Jak & Daxter, Resistance, Call of Duty, Uncharted....ugh... so much wasted potential. Standouts like God of War, Wipeout, and Hot Shots Golf were definitely the exception and not the rule :(

              even then, Chains of Olympus was dumbed down so far that I'm fairly sure you can beat it by rapidly slapping the controller against your ass for 2 hours...but Ghosts of Sparta was hella legit

              When developers actually redesigned games with the portable system in mind, they came out a hell of a lot better overall (even today when playing them on the VitaTV or via PPSSPP). Crisis Core, Final Fantasy Type 0, the Valkyria Chronicles sequels, Grand Knights Kingdom, Ys 6, Gurumin, Killzone Liberation....those generally worked pretty damn well (although that DLC final episode of Killzone wasn't very fun).

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 1:03 PM

                mainline Uncharted has lived and died on its technical merits so yeah when you take that away and the light is shone on its gameplay...

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 1:12 PM

                All of those AAA wannabe games in your first paragraph were horrible. JRPGs as you mentioned and indies were its real strength. I said over a year ago that Switch was going to swallow those up kinds of games while also doing AAA, and things definitely worked out that way.

                Either way, AAA wannabes were a real problem on the Vita, something that was too far behind other contemporary home consoles. The Switch is obviously weaker than a PS4 or XB1 but at 2-3x more powerful than a PS3 or 360 its more than enough for "real" home console games, the ability to do cross-play multiplayer with other more powerful platforms, etc.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 1:47 PM

                  My Vita was essentially a TxK machine.

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 1:50 PM

                    Mine was ultimately a Persona 4 machine. Worth it!

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 2:07 PM

                Mobile versions of games are always low budget compared to console games, that's what's so nice about the switch. You can finally play big budget blockbusters that weren't designed specifically for mobile, on a handheld.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 2:48 PM

                  Exactly, its not a difficult concept

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 4:13 PM

                    I was not very excited about the switch, but now that I've spent a decent amount of time with mine I find myself wishing that every game came on it.

                    The Mario Rabbid game is entertaining (I'm still plucking away at it), but I would kill to play XCOM or XCOM2 on this thing. I could see myself re-playing those games over and over on handheld.

                    • reply
                      January 4, 2018 4:30 PM

                      If 2K was smart they'd get on ports ASAP. They did Enemy Unknown on iOS and Switch ports would be very successful.

                      • reply
                        January 4, 2018 4:38 PM

                        I wonder if they could make a civ6 port that played well on consoles/handheld without making it suck.

                        • reply
                          January 4, 2018 4:48 PM

                          That seems like a tall order. The Civ6 UI on PC already felt tablet optimized with its massive buttons and icons. Taking it over to iPad seemed very straightforward, and I have to assume that it was because its UI was already tablet optimized to begin with. Completely redoing the interface for gamepads seems like it would take a lot of work with no guarantee that it would feel right.

                          You know what would be cool though? Divinity Original Sin 2. Its gamepad controls are already dialed in. I think it would be terrific to have on Switch.

                          • reply
                            January 4, 2018 5:37 PM

                            Yea, that's a good point. Plus performance is already pretty bad on PC, I don't think it would work at all on the switch. Hopefully a Civ Rev 2 port is in the works, though.

                            Haven't played Divinity 2 yet, I was holding off for the console release but I just bought a new gaming rig so I might give it a whirl on PC via steam link. I played the original a month or two ago and thought it was great.

                            • reply
                              January 4, 2018 6:14 PM

                              Divinity 2 is even better, I think you'll love it.

                              I'd have no problem double dipping if it ended up on the eShop though :)

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 1:45 PM

        That was in fact a thing. https://www.amazon.com/PlayStation-TV-vita/dp/B00KVMHSUM

      • Zek
        reply
        January 4, 2018 3:54 PM

        The Vita renders at 960x544, so no. The Switch can do 1080p.

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 1:16 PM

      I did my part! Do you want to know more?

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 1:34 PM

      My hopes and dreams for a Nintendo console that's on par with current gen console graphics will never be realized. All I wanted was 4K Mario & Zelder, fellas. Obviously graphics don't maketh a good game but it would've been neat to see. BOTW on CEMU at 4K on PC looks pretty breathtaking.

      Besides all that, even if I bought this thing tomorrow, it would never leave the dock. It would collect dust sitting in that thing because consoles are and always will be a TV experience for me. It's one of the main reasons why I bought an HDTV in the first place back in the day when the 360 came out.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 1:38 PM

        That's not Nintendo, though. Nintendo would say, "what does 4K do to better the gameplay experience of our games?" Nothing, so they're not going to invest in expensive hardware and cooling solutions and other r&d to further that cause.

        The Switch operates perfectly as a TV console. If you never want to undock it you never have to and you'll get a great, full home experience with it.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 1:42 PM

          This idea that hardware power doesn't impact gameplay is obvious nonsense and it's why we're only just now getting GTA/Assassin's Creed style open world games from Nintendo. Power can be used in all sorts of ways from physics to AI to draw distance.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 1:43 PM

            Of course it impacts gameplay, but they have the fastest selling home console ever, so why should they even care about additional power at this point? Also jingle explicitly mentioned resolution not pure horsepower.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 1:52 PM

              well choosing to skimp on power didn't work so well for them last time around. Maybe the problem was just that they failed to launch with Zelda and Mario that time. Maybe the problem was indeed a power differential vs the competition that they've closed somewhat this generation.

              Personally I'd rather Nintendo had more power to work with since they're largely not doing much in their core franchises with the hardware innovations they chose to do instead.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 2:01 PM

                You don’t think they’re “doing much” with core franchises? Have you followed coverage of Zelda BOTW and Mario Odyssey? Both games have been running circles around software running on higher-end engines built for higher-end platforms. What more do you want other than better graphical fidelity? And what would that add to the experience those two games offer other than glossier costs of paint?

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 2:07 PM

                  I said I don't think they're doing much with the core franchises with their specific hardware innovation. The core Mario/Zelda/etc experiences on the Wii largely eschewed motion controls. Likewise the Wii U largely failed to deliver interesting gameplay in those core games using the gamepad (Mario Maker being the main tentpole that used it well). On the Switch the same is true, with BOTW and Odyssey's primary innovations coming from the increased processing power they've been afforded, not any unique hardware innovations as a mobile console (ie touchscreens, gyros, etc). Splatoon is arguably a counterexample but the best you can say there is that the gyro aiming is better than using sticks, not that it enabled some new gameplay that any normally controlled dual stick first/third person shooter couldn't have done. Their biggest and best games continually look like things that could just as easily exist on other hardware. What differentiates them is the software design teams' chops, not the hardware.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 2:11 PM

                You have to realize the importance of the portable market. The handheld console market is significant, its franchises are huge (the top selling holiday game of 2016 by a very wide margin was Pokemon Sun/Moon), and the Switch is positioned to take all of that.

                The launch year titles were obviously important (arguably the best console launch ever) but this goes beyond that when you see that third party developers are exceeding lifetime sales on Steam or PS4 after only a few days on the eShop. This isn't an underpowered device that people use to play a few key games and then stick in the corner. The eShop is dominated by third party games and its a gold rush to get on the platform right now.

                The utility of a hybrid device is a major plus, that hardware innovation is specifically why the Switch is a success. You can't just focus on power while ignoring the practical utility of the hardware (instant on, a seamless continuum of your experience no matter where you play). Its a huge reason why so many PC elitists here are double dipping on games they already have on Steam or are waiting on a Switch port.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 2:23 PM

                  yes Nintendo made another successful handheld that finally courted 3rd party developers, goldrush ensues. Their track record on handhelds is quite unlike their recent track record in home consoles. There would've been tons of good indie games on the DS and 3DS too if Nintendo understood the value of platforms then and gave them the proper treatment given their enormous install bases. Sony experienced a similar effect with the PS4 when they finally realized what making a successful platform really means. This is the critique I made of Nintendo repeatedly in years past as far as whether they should continue doing hardware or not. The point was if they want to do hardware then they should actually make a platform for more than their own software to make that hardware worthwhile (to themselves and to consumers). The Switch has finally done that (it's not as if the 3DS didn't have a sufficient install base to be attractive).

                  Obviously having Zelda on the go is valuable and differentiates it. But insofar as people like to make the argument that Nintendo games require Nintendo hardware to be as great as they are, I really don't see it. Zelda is better for being able to play in handheld mode just like every game is. But there's nothing in Zelda that requires Nintendo hardware or close collaboration with the hardware unit to be as good as it is.

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 3:24 PM

                    Slight tangent but 3DS and Wii U were very good platforms for indies. The Switch is a continuation of that. A lot of indies like Yacht Club had their biggest success on Nintendo platforms, not Steam or Playstation. I reckon its why Shovel Knight ended up being a launch title alongside Zelda.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 1:45 PM

        Bro, you don’t have heat. Who cares if your handheld Nintendo console supports 4K!? Priorities.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 1:46 PM

          I can't talk about imaginary Nintendo 4K consoles because I don't have heat?

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 1:47 PM

            What in the ever loving fuck are you talking about

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 1:48 PM

            It is just silly. 4K Nintendo? That requires 4KTV and it would be even more expensive. Seems like a silly wish and I don’t want you to freeze to death.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 1:49 PM

              Well I can wish for heat but it ain't gonna come here, I have no money for space heaters, I can't afford to move, so I'll live vicariously through people on here and talk about video games. If you're gonna start threadshitting on my posts like a few other bullies around here, just let me know now.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 1:54 PM

                Settle down. It was love. Not hate.
                http://chattypics.com/files/iPhoneUpload_zwllcgz0x9.jpg

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 2:09 PM

                  No, I'm not gonna settle down. You're calling me out from other threads which is exactly against these codified chatty rules the mods have made up and are enforcing in other threads. I sent a request to Duke Nuked to nuke my other post. Please nuke it.

                  I just had to deal with this unprovoked shit last night from some other person being a total asshole to me for no other reason than to insult or make me feel bad about something because I'm trying to have a conversation about something completely unrelated to personal issues I'm having.

                  Way to reinforce the dickhead bully troll squad you got going on here, brosef. What a way to lead by example.

                  I'll eat my ban or whatever the fuck it is you're going to do. Have a good one.

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 5:23 PM

                    Whoa, simmer

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 11:49 PM

                    Gonna echo these replies. Gotta learn to distinguish between the awful people/trolls and people just poking fun at a ridiculous statement. Don't let that other stuff stick with you. It's just not worth it.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 1:51 PM

              the heat from the 4k tv + 4k console will warm up JT's place!

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 1:55 PM

                I'm not allowed to talk about anything else except what's on some kind of special fucking list that's been made up around this motherfucker apparently so I'll politely leave this thread and only post about job hunting, court, and my heaters from now on. I apologize. I will not step out of line again.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 2:04 PM

                  People pulling your leg jingle, I know you're stressed but don't worry about the naggers.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 1:46 PM

        A good portion of shackers that bought the Switch had similar sentiments about never playing it in docked mode, yet found themselves using it quite often out of convenience. Myself included.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 1:58 PM

          Nintendo's own user data shows the same: https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_asset/file/9574697/Screen_Shot_2017_10_31_at_9.05.36_AM.png

          30% of users spends 80%+ of the time primarily in handheld mode, 53% spends it in mixed mode, and only 17% of players spend more than 80% of the time in docked mode.

          They would have been absolutely buried if they tried to go head to head with the PS4. Its like Apple with the iPhone, they didn't succeed by competing directly with PCs by making faster Macs, they succeeded by elevating smartphones. The Switch is the same thing, they did an end run around the market by creating a new product category, a hybrid that is neither strictly handheld nor strictly home console which plays full quality console games.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 2:26 PM

            Nintendo essentially killed their home console division and made another successful handheld. And you're pretending like they iPhone'd the home console market. There was nothing like the Mac vs PC ecosystem stopping Nintendo from competing with MS/Sony head to head in home consoles (ie network effects). They just didn't have the desire, risk tolerance, and/or ability.

            They used to have multiple successful hardware platforms. Now they have one because they got beaten so thoroughly at one that they retreated to the other where they've been largely unchallenged and extremely successful for decades.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 2:35 PM

              They didn't kill their home console division. What are Mario, Zelda, Splatoon 2, Mario Kart 8, or Xenoblade Chronicles 2 but home console games? What are DOOM or Skyrim or Wolfenstein 2 or Rocket League but home console games? The only difference is now you can play games of that class anywhere.

              Nintendo didn't kill their home console division, technology finally caught up to a place where they could consolidate home console games on a hybrid device.

              "And you're pretending like they iPhone'd the home console market."

              They absolutely iPhone'd the console market. They created a new product category and in the process will likely end up outselling them.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 2:40 PM

                What is consolidation of product lines if not killing one? They had 2 product lines. Now they have 1. Handheld tech has gotten to the point it can do more, but there's no reason they couldn't have had a massively more powerful home console like in generations past, but they've given up on that strategy. Same as Sony gave up on their handheld console strategy to focus on much more powerful home console hardware.

                Their handhelds have basically always outsold the home consoles.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 2:46 PM

                  This consolidated division isn't falling back to making handheld level games, they are cranking out among the best home console games out there. It is running home console games from other publishers. The important takeaway is that this is going to elevate prior handheld games to console quality level.

                  People have wanted Pokemon on a home console for decades. They'll finally be getting a home console quality Pokemon game on a hybrid system. This is not a difficult concept to understand unless you straight up reject the idea of a third product category.

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 2:53 PM

                    what is a handheld level game? It's just a game that targets mobile hardware instead of home console hardware. Between the natural evolution of mobile hardware and Nintendo being willing to target a higher end pricepoint ($300 vs the overpriced 3DS at $250) the high end mobile hardware is now good enough that it looks much close to home console games of the recent past but is still meaningfully different from actual home console games. Zelda is still a handheld level game. The Witcher 3 is a console level game (and not even one that targets the latest home console hardware). The handheld level one is now just good enough that you can actually play an open world game of some caliber at all, unlike last generation where the GTA experience was relegated to 2D.

                    • reply
                      January 4, 2018 3:05 PM

                      Is Wolfenstein 2 The New Colossus a handheld game now?

                      A massive open world game like BOTW is absolutely a living room experience, just as Mario Odyssey or Mario Kart are even though there is now the option to take them anywhere. This is a one-dimensional distinction you're trying to make. Budget, resources, and design scope are factors that can't be ignored.

                      • reply
                        January 4, 2018 3:12 PM

                        Mario Kart is a more interesting example given how little it's really ever been different on home consoles vs handhelds. The DS and 3DS had plenty of games designed for you to sit down and deeply engage with for hours just like a home console designed for. 2D Mario was once our definition of living room experience. Now it's closer to our definition of handheld experience.

                        • reply
                          January 4, 2018 3:15 PM

                          I thought about Mario Kart as I was typing that. Everything else on that list still stands.

                          • reply
                            January 4, 2018 3:24 PM

                            I don't think it should be skipped. It seems like a perfect lens through which to ask what's the difference. Was Mario Kart a handheld game that had a home console version or vice versa? What would it mean for the answer to be one vs the other? Would it be considered a handheld game with a home console version if the home console version had no real difference besides graphics and tracks (that could've been done on the handheld version)? Or if it's basically identical on each then what is it? Would it be considered a home console game with a handheld port if the handheld version had to be stripped of meaningful features/modes in order to hit the handheld hardware?

                            Was it a home console game if it lended itself to 6 hour sessions rather than quick pick up and play sessions on the bus? But there were DS/3DS games that did that too (afterall a big use case for those devices was things like a cross country flight where you wanted to get immersed for hours and forget about the world around you).

                            • reply
                              January 4, 2018 3:41 PM

                              That's sort of the point I'm making, that the distinction between home and handheld is irrelevant, especially now that the performance delta between the two has never been smaller. The Vita doesn't work as an example because its performance difference was always too wide between anything else on the market.

                              By comparison the Switch is faster than prior gen systems by 2-3x while being fast enough to run ports from current gen systems and play games in the same multiplayer space as them.

                              Its why the "this is really a handheld" argument doesn't work for me when the line has gotten so blurred. Hybrid functionality and getting this level of fidelity and polish in such a device is completely new.

                              • reply
                                January 4, 2018 3:52 PM

                                It's a handheld to me because it makes a bunch of concessions around the home console experience in order to work as a portable and makes essentially no concessions as a handheld to work in home console mode. The processing power and ergonomics are all compromised to meet the needs of a handheld. I have to spend $70 to get a functional controller for home console mode. Like I mentioned above i'm not calling my iPad a home console if I buy a $50 Bluetooth controller and start playing Civ AirPlay'd on my TV.

                                Say the Switch was instead slightly less powerful than a 360/PS3 but otherwise identical. Then it's just a handheld even though it's still powerful enough to play downscaled Skyrim? And then when the Switch vNext comes out in 4-5 years and it's powerful enough to run downscaled Fallout 5 and NuDoom 2 it's a hybrid?

                                What would happen if the others' home console strategy hadn't changed irrespective of Nintendo and the PS4 Pro and XB1X weren't compatible iterations but instead allowed to have exclusives? Would we still be talking about the Switch as a hybrid even though it can't run ports of PS4 Pro/XB1X exclusives?

                                • reply
                                  January 4, 2018 4:08 PM

                                  "it makes a bunch of concessions around the home console experience"

                                  Absolutely disagree. What concessions are there outside of no 4K? There certainly aren't concessions from a gameplay or game design standpoint.

                                  Microsoft only focused on horsepower this holiday and they are going to end up a distant third this generation with very little in their library to show for it. As a gamer I can't think of a more compromised platform than that.

                                  • reply
                                    January 4, 2018 4:12 PM

                                    It has less hardware power than a console designed to be primarily a home console. The controllers are ergonomically bad. These are reasonable trade offs to make to enable portability but they're trade offs nonetheless.

                                    I don't know why you think the XB1X is some refutation of this. The XB1 strategy has been riddled with mistakes for years now.

                                    • reply
                                      January 4, 2018 4:24 PM

                                      "It has less hardware power than a console designed to be primarily a home console."

                                      It has enough hardware to primarily be a home console, I think its where you're missing the point. Where it gains value is that its a home console that you can take anywhere, a completely new thing that not even my PC can do.

                                      "The controllers are ergonomically bad."

                                      Split joycons are great, but agree to disagree. Your point stands that it was a decision made to accommodate hybrid functionality though, that is true. Had it been a home console only then it would have come with a pro controller.

                                      It would have also been DOA.

                                      "I don't know why you think the XB1X is some refutation of this. The XB1 strategy has been riddled with mistakes for years now."

                                      Because fastest hardware is historically not the main predictor of success. The most popular consoles of all time, the PS2, the Wii, the Gameboy, and the DS, were all the slowest consoles of their generation. Every single one of them had faster counterparts. This is notable with the PS2 since it was absolutely clobbered by the Gamecube. Games and secondary utility as a DVD player, same as with the Switch being a hybrid console, was why the PS2 was a success.

                                      The fastest console being the "winner" is such an exception to the rule that its only happened once, and the PS4's performance was absolutely secondary. What mattered far more was its price relative to the XBox One. It really isn't relevant from a gameplay perspective, the market reflects that.

                                      • reply
                                        January 4, 2018 4:32 PM

                                        No one suggested it need be the fastest console or that the fastest console wins. It simply compromised on hardware power it could've had had it actually been a home console, instead it chose hardware power suitable for a portable. It so happens that that power level today enables a lot of new experiences that (Nintendo) handhelds previously couldn't do. The gameplay in things like Zelda clearly shows what Nintendo is able to do with more power, it's not just used for more pixels.

                                        • reply
                                          January 4, 2018 4:45 PM

                                          In the end a lot of the "I wish this was a home console" arguments miss the point when a hybrid was clearly the right play. Utility and differentiation matters as much as or more than performance when it comes to hardware.

                                          Having full home console games that you can take anywhere is a very easy value proposition. The fact that its flying off the shelves even when it is $50-$100 more expensive than "real" current gen consoles speaks to that.

                                          • reply
                                            January 4, 2018 4:51 PM

                                            I don't wish it was a home console. I just consider it a handheld more than anything else. It does have a good value proposition but I think the success (compared to the Wii U) owes just as much to Nintendo finally getting their shit together with their software lineup. Their repeated inability to get core Mario and Zelda lined up with hardware launches was inexcusable. Wii Sports saved them from that being a complete embarrassment in consecutive generations. If the Wii U had launched with a Mario and Zelda game within 6 months that were this quality the console's life would've surely been very different. Nintendo's home console hardware strategy for like 15-20 years now has been 'come for the Nintendo games' so you sure as shit better have the games ready if that's your whole strategy. They finally did this time and it's paying off (although in the case of something like BotW it was less successful software estimation and more the 'luck' of the Wii U's accelerated demise coinciding with their next software release).

                                            • reply
                                              January 4, 2018 5:33 PM

                                              Yeah, all the stuff with launch software is totally correct. Its also why consolidating all of their teams under one platform made so much sense. I called the possibility of a hybrid platform back in 2014 based on the fact that they restructured all of their development teams under one organization, plus the fact that Smash for Wii U and 3DS were essentially the same game, the same game directors developed 3D Mario and Mario Kart games on both platforms, all of that pointed to convergence. The old pattern of release droughts alternating between portable and living room platforms are alleviated by the fact that they're now the same thing.

                                              As for the handheld/home console distinction, I think its ultimately meaningless. As of October you had 70% of users using it partly or primarily in docked mode, playing full-fat home console quality games in their living rooms. Its a home console you can take anywhere or a portable which can play home console games on the go, either way the line between the two is blurred based on horsepower being good enough and the extremely high software quality.

                    • reply
                      January 4, 2018 3:11 PM

                      Lol at Zelda being a handheld level game.

                      • reply
                        January 4, 2018 3:13 PM

                        it currently plays on a handheld so the problem seems to be more with your past expectations of handhelds than what a handheld is currently capable of. Handhelds have always eventually been capable of playing what was once a living room experience on a home console.

                        • reply
                          January 4, 2018 3:19 PM

                          The gap has never been this close, its why a hybrid can exist. Forget Wolfenstein 2, Doom, or Skyrim, a port of GTAV feels inevitable. The hardware is more than capable of running it given how much more powerful the Switch is than the consoles that game launched on, its just a matter of if they're willing to put the resources into doing it (they'd sell millions, so we'll see).

                          If it happened suppose GTAV would be a handheld game then.

                          • reply
                            January 4, 2018 3:26 PM

                            GTA2 was a home console game (lumping PC and home consoles together). The 3DS got an exclusive GTA game that was basically GTA2 in style. Do people still think of top down GTA2 as primarily a home console experience rather than a handheld experience? I think the latter but maybe I'm wrong.

                        • reply
                          January 4, 2018 3:26 PM

                          So if a Witcher 3 port came out it's clearly a handheld game then? Zelda runs on the Wii U as well. Just seems silly to subjectively define games as such unless it fits your agenda.

                          • reply
                            January 4, 2018 3:34 PM

                            what defined handheld game previously besides 'runs on a handheld'? Every time handhelds got more powerful the definition of handheld game expanded slightly. This is the first handheld that can run large 3D open world games and FPS. Mobile games were largely defined by their input method (touch vs controller). Handheld games seem to have merely been defined by what runs on what handhelds exist (which by and large has been only Nintendo setting the bar).

                            • reply
                              January 4, 2018 3:40 PM

                              I agree the term is kind of losing it's meaning.

                              Zelda was designed and targeted a home console first and foremost. The fact that it can play in portable mode on the Switch doesn't somehow mean it's a handheld game. The same could be said of the various other steam to switch ports.

                              Maybe we can redefine as handheld exclusives or something.

                              • reply
                                January 4, 2018 3:46 PM

                                "doesn't somehow mean it's a handheld game."

                                but that's the point, what is a handheld game then in order to say that? It seems like you're defining it in terms of gameplay more than anything else. Like a 3D open world game isn't a handheld game, an FPS isn't a handheld game, etc because these things have been solely console games for nearly 20 years (or is it because of the type of gameplay sessions they expect?). But that was true of previous things too. 2D Zelda was once only a home console game. Now it's a handheld game and no one balks at that. But we're used to that because it made the transition to handheld game ages ago.

                                • reply
                                  January 4, 2018 3:53 PM

                                  Like I said, using exclusivity to a handheld platform is likely the most accurate?. I just want to make sure we aren't basing it off some subjective hardware requirement or genre or something.

                                  This whole argument is kinda dumb.

                            • reply
                              January 4, 2018 3:43 PM

                              I mean in terms of the jump in hardware power you have to factor in how much higher spec Nintendo targeted this time than last. The 3DS launched at $250 but consumers valued it closer to $170 given the power it had on display (the 2 displays and 3D display surely chewed up a bunch of the COGS instead of processing power). The Switch put all that cost directly into hardware power and aimed at a pricepoint that matched expectations of the hardware power. So it's a far greater leap than you'd normally expect in a single generation in some sense. Like imagine the delta between the Wii and Wii U compared to the delta between the GC and Wii if the Wii U had decided to be a PS4 competitor and launch at $500.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 3:25 PM

                  Well, except for the fact that they're still launching new games on the 3DS, launching new hardware revisions like the 2DS XL, and apparently not giving up on that console yet.

                  I mean yeah if I had to bet I'd say that the 3DS gets wrapped up pretty soon and they put all their focus on the Switch because the 3DS' purpose - a portable system - they have covered with the Switch in spades. They'll lose the 3D screen and the touch screen game abilities (unless they start putting out games that require the touch screen and won't work docked) but they're selling metric tons of systems and games so they likely won't care.

                  Their extra energies might be put behind things like the SNES Classic and whatever else they can supplement the main console line with. Back in the N64 era they were taking a bath on console stuff but the Game Boy of all things got a second wind thanks to Pokemon and the Game Boy Color. I guess that might be the one argument for there actually being a successor to the 3DS other than the Switch - they've frequently used one product line succeeding to help where the other one is failing. If they forego that and just have the one product line they have all their eggs in one basket.

                  • reply
                    January 4, 2018 4:29 PM

                    The 3DS roadmap is there because 70+ million users cannot be ignored. There is still money to be had even selling to new people since the library is so deep at this point.

                    Most of all, it was a safety net in case the Switch didn't pan out. 3DS is clearly on its last legs though, Metroid Samus Returns and Pokemon Sun/Moon Ultra feel like its swan song. Pokemon on the Switch should represent the official baton pass.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 2:36 PM

              It's also worth noting this a majorly underreported shift in the console industry as far as things now look with the PS4 Pro and XB1X. Every generation of consoles previously companies basically threw away the entire advantage they'd spent 5-7 years building with their software and services ecosystem, providing their competition a perfect entry point to recover from a disastrous previous effort. It was insane. No matter how badly you fucked up you knew every generation offered you a fresh start where your competition no longer had an enormous ecosystem of games, better developer tools, a social graph of friends playing together, etc. That's why Nintendo always had the option to compete with Sony and MS if they wanted, because everyone got a fresh slate to work from. Apple never had this opportunity with PCs post like 1995. Now it looks like Sony and MS are realizing they should've been treating consoles like PCs such that they generate continual network effects in the software and social ecosystems. How MS missed this given the PC is a mystery. But it means Sony's current lead with the PS4 will be harder to break than previous generation winners.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 2:42 PM

                PS4's lead is absolutely unbreakable. It is so unbreakable that their worst enemy is their own install base. They are going to run into major growth issues in the next year or so. Their next growth step will be to make a bigger push into subscription services with Vue and Now.

                • reply
                  January 4, 2018 2:44 PM

                  the PS2's lead was unbreakable, but you could count on the PS3 coming along to give you an opportunity to made significant in roads to that lead (which is essentially all the original Xbox was doing, setting up an opportunity for next generation). That opportunity likely won't present itself again as a result of significant changes to console hardware design/business strategy.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 2:10 PM

        I'm less worried about it competing with XBO/PS4 and more concerned that the hardware is clearly being pushed to the limit already, in the first year.

        Performance and graphics on say, Xenoblade 2 are at times just abysmal. Thankfully, the game is gorgeous in terms of world design/style, so it's easier to handle than it would be otherwise, but man does that game chug at times.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 2:27 PM

          I think they flat out screwed up with XC2. The sharpening filter they use in handheld mode makes zero sense, it straight up looks horrible. It was also developed without target hardware until very late. Skyrim by comparison looks excellent in both modes from a technical standpoint, and that was a port that was started well after XC2's technical framework was set.

          100% internal games like Splatoon 2 threw away the old engine that was used on Wii U and runs on a new one built for the Switch. ARMS was also built from the ground up for Switch. BOTW by comparison was a late port from Wii U.

          This is fairly common with first run console games so time will tell. The difference between a first run PS2 or PS3 game is huge compared to what we got at the end. We'll see if future games like Metroid Prime 4 have any major issues or compromises. You could be right but console growing pains are so common. We'll know for certain since we'll be getting more and more games like Splatoon 2 or ARMS that are built from the ground up for it, plus developers will have an even better grasp of the system. We'll see

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 3:20 PM

            I heard some talk that XC2 uses the same engine as X did on the Wii U, so maybe that's part of it.

            I hope like hell whatever their next game is makes better use of the hardware. Of course, I still put 150 hours into it, so I guess it wasn't that bad.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 3:26 PM

              That's what happened, it wasn't ground up like the other games I mentioned. I was really surprised when I saw that Splatoon 2 was a ground up effort for the Switch, but when you compare it with the original and think of what a port would have looked like then it makes a lot of sense.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 6:48 PM

          This is my main concern as well. It reminds me of the Wii. Mario Galaxy, Zelda and all that were great but you could tell even then it was a step behind even in the good days. By the mid-to end of the life everyone was soured on it.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 2:13 PM

        it would never leave the dock.

        You say that, until you decide one night to finish that Zelda dungeon while you're in bed for the night.

        It's glorious.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 3:18 PM

        My hopes and dreams for a Nintendo console that's on par with current gen console graphics will never be realized.

        This is correct because Nintendo has discovered that they have more success when they do not focus on having the best graphics and instead focus on control mechanisms and price.

        The GameCube was arguably more powerful than the Xbox (original) and definitely stronger than the PS2. It did well enough to not pull the ripcord early but it finished 3 out of 3.

        The Wii was effectively GameCubeX2 in terms of power which put it badly below the PS3 and 360 but it had the innovative controller (and Wii Sports) and outsold the two of them combined for years and still had more sales than either of them at the end of generation. The PS3 and 360 handled HD resolutions but Nintendo said that the market didn't need that yet. Nintendo was evidently right.

        The Wii U added HD graphics and a tablet as a controller. It was a misfire due to timing and misestimation of the gimmick.

        The Switch is underpowered compared to the competition, and does not do 4K, likely for the same reasons that the Wii didn't do HD, and employs a more refined version of the gimmick with the Wii U (docking tablet, versatile controllers). Nintendo has been rewarded with the being the fastest American console.

        I predict the Switch 2 or whatever they call it will add 4K graphics which still puts it at years behind the competition and it won't matter at all.

        Being a Nintendo fan means you accept poorer graphics resolution in exchange for things like Super Mario Odyssey.

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 3:49 PM

          Fortunately, fun doesn't require bleeding edge graphics.

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 1:59 PM

      That's surprising given how badly the Wii was outpacing it in the figured released a few months ago (when they also released docked vs portable numbers).

      The Christmas season must've really helped it whereas the Wii didn't get hot until after Christmas if I remember.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 2:02 PM

        This is also US Sales. Not global.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 3:32 PM

        When the Wii came out it became impossible to find for months and months. It was close to a year before you could just spot them in any store, and even then they were still a little thin on the ground.

        Here's a Penny Arcade poking fun at how the Wii was impossible to find in a store months into the year after it launched

        https://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2007/02/12

        Nintendo years later said that their plan was what they usually did - launch right before Christmas, and then use the slow spring and summer months to build up inventory and then have lots on hand for the following Christmas. Problem was the summer wasn't slow so they could never really get ahead of demand and the nature of manufacturing meant it was problematic to try and beef that up.

        I think this is part of the reason they stopped making the NES Classic so quickly. Once they realized they had a hit on their hands with the Switch they put the pause button on most other things. And it makes sense they'll do more in 2018 now that they've begun to catch up with Switch demand. This is all me spitballing, I really have no idea.

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 2:21 PM

      I've never been so glad to have been so wrong. I wrote this thing off as the final nail in Nintendo's gimmicky coffin, and the success of it surprised me immensely.

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 2:38 PM

      Anyone got link to reveal thread so we can eat crow?

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 2:51 PM

      I was pretty hatery, like who needed another company to release another gaming tablet.

      One of the main things about it though, is that the hardware FEELS up to date. The WIIU seemed a little behind the times when it came out, mostly cause of the touchscreen, but something ineffable about the weight and the hand feel of it (super wishy washy i know)
      The switch feels cold heavy and serious to me, and the design of it kinda gets out of the way of the games. It seems more like a platform where the wiiu controller thingy seemed like a gadget...

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 4:00 PM

      In this subthread we wax on about the little things we like about the hardware. I'll start:

      • I like how goddamn quiet this thing is in portable mode. Even in Zelda during intense (graphical) moments, the fans barely spin up. It's so quiet it reminds me of the Gamecube for noise profile.

      • I like how god damn fast the thing boots up and resumes a game from sleep. Compared to the base PS4, it's lightning fast. About as fast as you could want it to be.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 4:16 PM

        I thought the PS4 patched in fast resume ages ago? Resuming a well behaved XB1 game on launch was just as fast as resuming a Switch game on my TV (where they both suffer for having to wait an inordinate amount of time for my 10 year old TV to power on). Of course a bunch of XB1 game devs decided it was more important to keep me always connected to 13 different EA service endpoints than make fast resume work. But I would pick up and play The Witcher 3 in the middle of the world with no loading the same way I do Zelda on the Switch (and thank god for that since The Witcher 3 load times were not exactly fast).

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 5:47 PM

          People who make these comments aren’t using a home theater system or they are talking about portable mode. On the latter, it’s absurdly faster than the dog slow New 3DS and a little faster than the Vita.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 5:50 PM

            yeah like obviously in portable mode it’s great (same speed as iOS except too many iOS games require network connections to stay alive) but as a home console it’s doing what the XB1 and PS4 both do (except again some games decide the break that functionality but the consoles support it)

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 6:08 PM

              Ya it never stood out to me bcs I expected it. Like any modern apple laptop, tablet, or phone.

              That said, it does have the best CEC implementation. Can’t speak to X1S/X, but launch model had nothing. I asked about it here and I think it was a casualty of Kinect.

              PS4 is good, but you have to be at the main menu when you turn off your TV. If you are in game the console will stay on.

              The Switch goes to sleep no matter what once I push the TV’s power button on my remote. Or iPhone. And turns on, of course. It’s also has a nifty surround sound test that comes in handy more often than I would have expected.

          • reply
            January 4, 2018 6:13 PM

            The 3DS is hands down the fastest since its as quick as opening up the lid. There's no pushing buttons three times to unlock the Switch or pressing the power button and then swiping the screen with the Vita. Open system and game wakes, same as with the DS.

            As for home theater systems, waiting for the receiver or processor to change/accept signals generally takes almost as long as any console to wake. That said, if I'm not switching inputs the Switch is instant on/off while a PS4 Pro still takes a few seconds to both wake and sleep. I just checked and going to sleep in Persona 5 took about ten seconds, as in it took about ten seconds for the front light to go from from blue to amber. I don't remember it ever taking that long, but I suppose I'd never notice since I walk away from the couch as soon as I put it to rest.

            In any case the 3DS is instant and the Switch isn't too far behind.

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 6:23 PM

              Turning off/going into sleep seems to be the least important speed test - if relevant at all. As for the length + amber, I think it might have to do with it auto-uploading your saves, but I’m far from certain. A feature that, if true, I would gladly take on a console of any kind after losing 125 hours of BOTW and 40 in MK8DX. But enough about that.

              Time to on and ready to play would be the relevant test. I’ll try on my system in a few just out of curiosity. Certainly nothing seems head and shoulders above the others.

              As for the 3DS, at first I thought one of us was losing our minds (lol) but I recall now that my problem was that my general practice was to close a game and then, of course, sleep. So at any point in the main menu. And that thing is dog slow. Like old computer wait 3-4 seconds before you’re d-pad did anything slow. I had a n3ds xl which I now cannot test bcs I gave it away to a little youngster family friend. But I do also recall that not being an issue sleeping in game. For some reason I didn’t do it very often on the 3DS. I think it ate battery faster than I expected for non-charging sleep. At least compared to my OLED Vita.

              • reply
                January 4, 2018 6:57 PM

                Time to wake on the PS4 is shorter than time to sleep but not by very much.

                Also, don't turn off your 3DS, its not made to do that :)

            • reply
              January 4, 2018 6:37 PM

              My super scientific test which just made my pseudo gf question my sanity came in at Switch 14.47 and PS4 Pro at 19.87.

              In portable mode the Switch was very fast and I am still waiting for the PS4 Pro. Maybe something is wrong.

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 6:26 PM

        likes:

        -weight. feels heavy enough to be premium, but light enough for extended handheld sessions

        -button feel. they've got a good deadzone and play.

        -sleep mode is the best of any console out, period.

        dislikes:

        - joycons are too small, for real. another quarter inch thickness and some grips would help tremendously.

        - joycon dpad kind of sucks compared to the pro controller

        - kickstand is a piece of shit

        - you NEED a glass screen protector, which is bullshit

        - it's easy to put the joycons on the wrong side, but super-hard to remove them

        - the catch that keeps the joycons from sliding off the tablet is cheap and plastic and should be metal and more sturdy

        • reply
          January 4, 2018 6:31 PM

          Oh god that second to last one. I did that once, went to war, and swore to never make that mistake again.

    • reply
      January 4, 2018 4:03 PM

      I'm a buying a Switch on Monday. I am excited about it!

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 5:24 PM

        I am also excited for your switch purchase

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 6:30 PM

        feek yeah

      • reply
        January 4, 2018 6:31 PM

        Add me. My username is 47383936383928363929263830226533792297.