Look, I am just as excited about the Nintendo Switch as the rest of the world but I will not be picking one up at launch. Blaspheme, I know, but I have a few reasons.
First, if Nintendo has taught their consumers one thing over the last couple of years it is that they simply will not make enough to meet the demand. Look at the amiibo fad. Look at the NES Mini shortages. Hell, many stores are still reporting diminished supplies of 3DS systems since the 2016 holiday shopping season. So even if I wanted to buy a Switch when it launches on March 3, 2017, I most likely will not be able to find one unless I camp outside a Gamestop and sell one of my kidneys. And since Switch consoles are most likely going to be in short supply, you can bet that JoyCons, Pro Controllers and other accessories will also be in high demand but small supply. Any paying triple to eBay scalpers is just not my thing. Early Switch report has also stated that JoyCons are randomly losing connection and no one seems to know why. Luckily, this sounds like it could be something easily patchable with a firmware update.
Secondly is the launch lineup. Without question, the killer must-have piece of software is The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. To this date, I not only own but have finished every Zelda title (no, I am not counting the stupid CD-i games). Will I be getting Zelda Breath of the Wild on day 1? Absolutely, but on Wii U. Nintendo has confirmed that each version of the game is identical minus some minor graphical differences when playing the Switch version in dock mode. Other than Zelda, Bomberman R looks pretty cool but it seems like it is still Bomberman, the game we have been playing since the NES era but with JoyCon support. Actually, I am excited about Sega’s Puyo Puyo Tetris but this puzzle game will also be available on PS4. Shovel Knight is something to get excited about but it already released on every platform available. Bethesda also promised that Skyrim will be coming to Switch but has not confirmed if it will be the original or HD enhanced edition. But does it even matter? Chances are, if you wanted to play Skyrim, you lined up on launched day back on 11-11-11. Further, my fear is that Bethesda will port Skyrim to Switch but it will sell poorly, keeping the developer away from Nintendo’s new platform. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe will be a great game but I already played the hell out of it on Wii U.
Third is the system itself. Consoles, handhelds and phones are constantly being updated. By the time the Switch contains a library of worthwhile games, perhaps there will be a Switch Slim model that will cost less, perform better, and be bundled with a game. More so, the Switch’s launch internal storage space of 32gb is beyond pathetic. Sure, you can upgrade the storage space with an SD card but storage space is an issue even with Xbox Ones and PS4s. I am sure Nintendo dropped the internal storage to lower the cost of each piece of hardware but users will not be able to do anything with this little storage space, basically requiring the purchase a high capacity card.
Fourth, Nintendo has confirmed there will be a lack of a Virtual Console service on the Switch at launch. The big rumor for the Switch is a Gamecube Virtual Console service. Nintendo says that classic games will eventually be available on Switch but have given no further details – I am guessing because they simply do not know yet. Which brings me to my next point…
Fifth, what is the deal with the Switch’s online features? During the big Switch reveal presentation, Nintendo confirmed that playing online will be a paid service somewhat similar to Xbox Live or Playstation Network. Splatoon 2 will most likely be the flagship game to use this service but the rumor is that it might only cost $20 per year to play Nintendo Switch games online. Nintendo also promised that one classic game will be playable each month but is not a permanent purchase. The month that Urban Champion is the free game will be the longest month for Switch. But if Nintendo does offer a unified online community with paid features, what exactly will all those features be? Nintendo has not released details about their online strategy but will be a key factor in the Switch’s success.
While I will not buy a Switch at launch, yes, I will still most definitely get one. I am guessing around holiday 2017 as that is when Mario Odyssey is scheduled for launch, the first original/exclusive 1st party game other than Splatoon 2. I am just hoping that by the time I am ready to jump into Nintendo’s next platform, either a bundle will be available that packs in a free game or accessories, or offers a higher amount of internal storage space. And most importantly, I just want to be able to walk into any store and just buy one off the shelf. I do not want to camp or fight other rabid buyers when that one Target 28 miles away is rumored to get two in stock on tomorrow’s truck.
Tell me what you think? I am missing the boat? Will you be buying one at launch? Are you also excited about Zelda? Let me know in the comments below.