Diving Deeper Into The Nintendo Switch Trailer

Nintendo just dropped a massive shock wave throughout the gaming and tech world with the unveiling of its newest console, the Nintendo Switch. Formerly known under the codename “NX”, the Switch features some original speculations — dual home/mobile device, kick-stand, widescreen interface — with some out-of-the-blue design quirks that encroach on today’s status quo in gaming. If you’re at work, itching to watch the trailer when your boss isn’t around, wait no further, because here is your breakdown of what we saw in this early trailer (in written form, of course).

Our first scene features a man quietly playing the upcoming game Zelda: Breath of the Wild in his house.  His controller? A smaller-yet-wide device that shades closer to a traditional controller design, something many Nintendo adversaries have longed for the company to adopt. There’s a joystick situated on the right side, with standard A, B, X, and Y buttons lodged hovering right above it. Another analog stick is located on the left side, with four arrow buttons below that ring back to the c buttons of the Nintendo 64. Also surveyed on the controller: a plus and minus sign, a home button, shoulder handles, and possibly a pair of triggers clinging to the back of the model.

Where things then go Bermuda Triangle is when the man in the trailer slides off both sides of the controller and places them on the sides of a nearby widescreen. Wait, what?!? Our friend then takes his dog for a walk, controller in-hand, and resumes his game of Zelda on a park bench. It’s worthy noting that, though the set-up resembles the Wii U remote screen, it does look a notch smaller.

Our next scene uncovers more of the console’s versatility. A different man at a bustling airport meets a woman sitting on the ground, both with the widescreen handheld. The guy is seen popping in a chip that resembles a 3DS cartridge. While it has yet to be confirmed, this could very well be the way games are loaded onto the console. It also opens the door to potentially running 3DS games on a larger screen. The man in the video then takes a seat on his flight, swings out a kick-stand behind the controller, and removes the shoulders of the screen. He then proceeds to play The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim, wielding both shoulders analogous to the Wii-mote and nunchuck duo used to play the original Wii (minus the cord). Both shoulders fit into his hands with ease, and nothing seems particularly awkward or unnatural.

After his trip, the man comes home, docks the whole device inside a holster of sorts, then picks up yet another controller. This one, though mirrors an Xbox One or Playstation 4 controller the most. Gone is the center divide and c buttons of the first controller. Replacing those is a very normal looking button outline, including a D-Pad at the bottom right of the device.  He then sits down and plays the same game from the plane on a huge screen at home. My gut tells me that the controller will be sold separately, seeing that the first scene seems to highlight the console’s primary at-home layout.

We then watch as two new characters file into a van for a trip to enjoy some go-karting. On the way, they play Mario Kart 8, battling against each other using both detachable shoulders. This quick scene reveals an important possibility for the console: the prospect of backwards compatibility. The ability to play Wii U games on the Switch would make the transition much easier for Wii U owners hesitant on upgrading.

Immediately following this scene, we find four friends at a park playing basketball. As they take a break from the action, they prop up two Switch systems and play NBA 2k17. At the park. Against each other. 2 vs. 2. The co-op capabilities of the switch are certainly attractive, but the ability to interact with consoles around you in space provides endless chances to duke it out with your friends in competitive games.

But wait, there’s more! This scene, a woman is diving into a platforming Mario game we haven’t seen before. On an aside, seeing Mario chase mushrooms in a new 3D world is another step in the right direction for Nintendo’s prospects, considering how popular and well-received past Mario platforming games have been. As she’s called to hangout with her friends outside, she carries the console in widescreen form and duels her friend at the party with the shoulders again. Another interesting tidbit to note is that there were a few Amiibos slyly juxtaposed next to the console, foreshadowing Amiibo support with the Switch.

Our final clip comes from a competitive gaming arena. Backstage, two teams use Switch widescreens along with the Xbox-esque controller that the Skyrim player used. As both teams march out to the stadium floor, they all individually snap their widescreen handhelds in place before engaging in a teams game of Splatoon against each other. This scene is particularly interesting because it aims at the ever-growing eSports audience. Nintendo wants to make it clear that the unwieldy gimmicks are out the window and that the Switch is viable for simple multiplayer action.

Our first look at the Nintendo Switch looks as promising and multi-faceted as ever. Whether you’re playing an intensive one-player story mode adventure or digging into a laid-back multiplayer game, whether you’re stuck at home in the middle of a rainstorm or out with friends waiting for food at a busy restaurant, the Switch seems to cater to each experience specifically in terms of controls and screen options. There truly are less excuses than ever to stay apart from your Nintendo console. With promising teases such as 3DS functionality and backwards compatibility, the Switch could shape up to be Nintendo’s biggest release in years. As long as the game match the hype, America and the world will be fast in line to buy their own console coming March 2017.

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