One Thing I Like About the Switch: It’s Gimmick Will Always Improve Games

One Thing I Like About the Switch? Easy. It’s innovation will never grow old.

Me and my Nintendo Switch have been inseparable since it found its way to my home last Friday. Breath of the Wild, Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove, I Am Setsuna, Super Bomberman R and even 1-2 Switch have made my early experience with the console great. And I don’t see that experience being ruined anytime soon. While many Nintendo consoles have brought the hype out of the gate, the Switch is different. Its innovation will always enhance games, rather than detract from them.

The Switch

With the Wii, we had motion controls. For the first couple of months with the system, I enjoyed them. But as time went on I quickly came to feel they were holding back the console. My two of my favorite Wii games, for example, are Kirby’s Return to Dreamland and Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Neither of those games depended on motion controls, and in Brawl’s case not at all. They didn’t take away from my enjoyment of Mario Galaxy or Donkey Kong Country Returns, but what did they really add? Before long I was wishing for games built around the Gamecube controller. 

The Wii U’s gamepad burnt out even more quickly. Only a handful of the Wii U games used the gamepad effectively. More often than not, its best use was as a constant mini-map. I didn’t even enjoy its off-screen capabilities to the fullest because I very rarely needed to move off the TV I played on. With its primary feature being just about a complete waste, the Wii U could play Nintendo games… and that was about it.

The Switch is different. Sure, the HD rumble or motion control elements of the Joy-Cons could wear out their welcome (although HD rumble probably never will), but the Switch doesn’t depend on those features. It depends on its portability alone. This means it won’t be difficult for developers to figure out a way to use the technology to its potential. Every single game that comes out for the Switch will automatically be enhanced by its hybrid-technology.

I don’t expect a game like NBA 2K to be inferior on the Switch, because, even if the graphics aren’t perfect, you can take the game anywhere at anytime. The Switch’s technology is easy to develop for, and its games won’t rely on cheesy gimmicks that quickly grow old. Games on the Switch will have a natural advantage over other platforms, and they’ll play more like the traditional Nintendo games that have been immortalized over the years.

I can’t see myself buying a game like Sonic Mania, Project Sonic 2017, Yooka-Laylee or Shovel Knight on any other console. The Switch’s portability gives it a leg up, and I finally don’t have to worry about playing around a gimmick. This gimmick works, regardless of the game. I hope Nintendo doesn’t lose sight of that by creating games that force players to play one specific way. Its versatility is its greatest strength. For the first time in years, Nintendo’s gimmick will actually improve games rather than serve as a distraction.