After more than a year from when it was first announced, Nintendo finally revealed its new console. Previously codenamed "NX," Nintendo today revealed it is called Switch and as has been speculated based on patent filings, it is a home console and mobile device hybrid.
As the reveal trailer today shows, players will be able to play games at home on their TVs with a traditional, Xbox-like controller, then detach the Switch—which looks like a small tablet—from a dock and play the same games on the go by adding two input devices to its sides. Basically, it looks like any number of attachments for smartphones that exist today, or a smaller version of the Wii U controller.
The reveal trailer showed The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild footage, which we already knew was going to be a launch title, as well as glimpses of a few other games.
We saw that the Switch will be able to run the hugely popular roleplaying game Skyrim, as well as the Wii U paint shooter Splatoon, an NBA game, and what appeared to be an entirely new Mario game in the vein of Super Mario 64.
My first impression is that this looks like a very slick device, and a smart business decision for Nintendo. For too many years the creative powerhouse has been spread thin across two platforms: mobile, and home console. Having all of Nintendo's games, which is the main reason to buy any Nintendo device, concentrated on one platform is an appealing offer.
We also knew prior to today's announcement that the Switch is slated for a March 2017 launch, but we still don't know what it will cost. This is a crucial point. Xbox One and PlayStation 4 already have models available at the $300 price point, and Nintendo consoles have been cheaper than the competition in recent years. If Nintendo is able to offer the Switch at, say, $250, will make it far more appealing to the more casual audience it has been targeting in recent years.