March is officially here and we are only days away from the launch of Nintendo Switch on March 3! It’s been a long time coming ever since the console was revealed last year, with further details released to the public on the Nintendo Switch Presentation. Though most fans have already pre-ordered it, there are people who are still sceptical on whether the hybrid console is a worthy investment. Don’t worry as we got you covered with a list of important details about Nintendo’s latest gaming system. Here are the 5 essential things that you need to know before getting the Nintendo Switch:
1) The Switch will retail for $299.99, but it’ll cost you at least RM2, 000 in Malaysia
One of the highly anticipated details from the Nintendo Switch Presentation was the suggested retail price, which turned out to be $299.99. It’s slightly higher than what most would have thought, but it’s still affordable even if you convert it to MYR (1, 3000++). But of course, a direct conversion can’t be applied here since there’ll be tax and transportation costs being factored in, but it’s still a huge shocker when local retailers are actually selling the Switch for at least RM2, 000. The vast difference is due to the console being listed as a bundle with launch titles The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and 1-2-Switch, as opposed to our Western brethren that can opt to get the console alone. With that said, local console launches were known to be exceptionally pricey, so maybe you can wait till the price drops before getting the Switch.
2) Be prepared to spend a fortune on Switch accessories
Console gaming used to be much simpler in the past, with having one or two controllers being sufficed to last you through a console’s life cycle. Things change and here we are with tonnes of optional accessories that can amount to the price of a new console or more if you decide to get all of them! It’s no different with the Switch and here’s a list of its accessories and their suggested retail prices:
And of course, there are plenty of other accessories you can get, which we wouldn’t list here or else we risk scaring you off with all the price figures. Just make sure you check what you'll get with the console before you buy them!
3) The Switch has at least 10 launch titles, and the promise of better third-party support than Wii U
You can skip out on all of the accessories if you want, but buying games is a definite must and it’s important for a console to have some of the best titles to sustain a long life cycle. The Wii U failed in this department, and Nintendo is confident that the Switch won’t repeat the same mistake. There are currently at least 10 launch titles for the Switch, including the highly anticipated The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Future game releases seemed promising as well, with a new Splatoon coming up, along with a brand new open world Super Mario title. Even though we might not be able to get some of the games that are seemingly perfect for the Switch, you can play all of these launch titles when the console drops on March 3:
4) You’ll have to pay for Nintendo Switch Online Service, but it’s free from launch till late 2017
Yes, you’ll have to pay a subscription fee if you want to use Nintendo Switch Online Service. The service will cost around $17.20/RM80 - $26.50/RM120 annually, allowing users to download a monthly NES or SNES game for free, besides the standard features that allow players to organize multiplayer sessions. A dedicated smartphone app will also launch with the online service, which connects to the Switch and gives its users another option to create online play sessions. It sucks having to pay, but this highlights Nintendo’s commitment to providing a stable and quality online platform. And besides, you can enjoy it for free till late 2017 via the extended trial period.
5) The Switch boasts a battery life of 2.5 to 6.5 hours in portable mode
One of the major concerns that a potential portable system buyer will have is the battery life. Nintendo claims that the Switch can run for 2.5 hours to 6.5 hours on-the-go, which doesn’t sound like a lot, but how well it fares in the real world? It seems that the answer is fairly positive, with countless of tests being done to test the system’s battery life. You can expect to play Breath of the Wild for approximately 3 hours before the Switch runs out of juice, and to compare it with other systems, the battery life is better than the 3DS, PlayStation Vita and even several iPad models. With that said, you can definitely prolong the battery life if you tweak some of the user settings such as brightness and turning off the Wi-Fi, or you can always play a less graphically demanding game.