With only five months to go before it launches a new console in March 2017, Nintendo today finally started to share details about the highly anticipated system. Nintendo published a three-minute video that offered an overview of what people can expect from the platform, which will be called Nintendo Switch. As rumored, it is a console/handheld hybrid that uses cartridges.
In the home, the Nintendo Switch sits in a "Nintendo Switch Dock" that connects it to a TV. You can then lift the system out of the dock and it will "instantly" transition into a portable mode. The detachable controllers that sit on either side of the Nintendo Switch are called "Joy-Con" controllers.
You can attach the Joy-Con controllers onto the system itself or a "Grip" accessory, "mirroring a more traditional controller," Nintendo said. Alternatively, they can be used wirelessly.
"One player can use a Joy-Con controller in each hand; two players can each take one; or multiple Joy-Con can be employed by numerous people for a variety of gameplay options," Nintendo said in a press release.
Additionally, Nintendo will sell an optional Switch Pro Controller to use instead of the Joy-Con controllers. Nintendo added that it's possible to bring Switch systems together for local multiplayer.
Nintendo Switch allows gamers the freedom to play however they like," Nintendo president Reggie Fils-Aime said in a statement. "It gives game developers new abilities to bring their creative visions to life by opening up the concept of gaming without boundaries."
The announcement video shows off how the Nintendo Switch can be played in the home and on the go. This included a look at some of the games, such as what appears to be a version of Skyrim and NBA 2K, as well as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and a Mario Kart. Intriguingly, what looks like a new 3D Mario game is also seen.
You can see all of this in the video above. Keep in mind that the games shown are "representative gameplay to demonstrate the liberating nature of the Nintendo Switch home gaming system." Nintendo will show off full game demonstrations and announce launch window titles, a price point, and other specifics about the console before its March launch.
Nintendo also shared a list of some of the publishers, developers, and middleware partners that are working with Nintendo on the Switch, including some of the biggest players in gaming like Activision, Bethesda, Bandai Namco, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, Take-Two, Konami, and Warner Bros. You can see a full list of the initially announced partners here.
The full specs--or a battery life estimate--for the Nintendo Switch have not been announced. However, Nvidia confirmed in its own blog post today that the console uses a custom Tegra processor. "The high-efficiency scalable processor includes an Nvidia GPU based on the same architecture as the world's top-performing GeForce gaming graphics cards," the company said.
"The Nintendo Switch's gaming experience is also supported by fully custom software, including a revamped physics engine, new libraries, advanced game tools, and libraries," Nvidia added.
Additionally, Nvidia said it created new gaming APIs to "fully harness this performance," including NVN, which the company claimed is "specifically to bring lightweight, fast gaming to the masses."
"Gameplay is further enhanced by hardware-accelerated video playback and custom software for audio effects and rendering," Nvidia went on to say.
Yesterday, Nintendo announced that it would release a three-minute trailer for what was known at the time as the NX. While we've known about the NX for quite a while, Nintendo has been stoic on any specific details. Back in 2015, the device was rumored to be a console/handheld hybrid, and speculation suggested the device would use cartridges. Although cartridges are traditionally synonymous with Nintendo's portable gaming platforms, the company's own website had described the NX as its next "home" gaming system.