When the pandemic started in March, so many people are stuck in their apartments and overwhelmed by boredness and anxiety. I was always a hardcore gamer, so it was really just a perfect time to discover some new games to kill my free time.
That was also the time when Animal Crossing: New Horizon released and went viral within a week. The virtual world-building is indeed addictive, and the virtual community is a perfect way for friends to communicate during the pandemic. According to Nintendo's official website, Animal Crossing is the second best-selling game on the platform, with a sale record of almost 23 million copies. Almost everyone I know, no matter people who never play games or those who play games 24/7, was playing the game at that time. Nintendo Switch was out of stock everywhere in Los Angeles in March.
I had so many friends asking me the same question - is it worth buying Switch just for Animal Crossing? Does Switch have other good games? Of course, $299 seems really tempting to buy a gaming console. Here is a detailed list of pros and cons for you to consider before you buy.
(Photo from Nintendo.com)
- Great for parties.
Nintendo Switch is known for the unique design of its controllers - Joy-Cons. You can either attach them to the console or detach them to be 2 separate controllers. If you are a party goer and beer pong is too boring for you, Switch is definitely the way to go for party games. There are many great party game choices in the online store, and unlike those games with complicated controls on PlayStations, they are definitely not hard to learn.
(Still from "1-2-Switch")
The game, "1-2-Switch", is probably what Switch is known for. It is one of those simple and easy games you can play at a party without any prior knowledge of properly using a game controller. The game came with tutorials, and you will quickly have a clear sense of the rule before you play. All you need to do? Swinging the controller like a sword or picking it up like a phone - just as simple as you think.
Well, it does not seem possible to hold any parties because of the pandemic at the moment - maybe it is a perfect bonding time for you and your roommates. A Mario Kart race will end your day perfectly.
(Photo from Nintendo.com)
- Great way to work out in a fun way at home
Do you find working out boring? Are you anxious that you cannot go to the gym regularly as before because of the pandemic? You should definitely explore the games on Nintendo Switch and keep yourself healthy while having fun every day.
A lot of Switch games provide fitness mode. For example, Just Dance's fitness mode will let you dance 30 minutes straight non-stop, and you can even keep track of the number of calories burnt. You can dance with your friends and compete with your scores. It is much tiring than you think, I promise.
Well, if you are very serious about working out and think Just Dance is too funny for you, Ring Fit Adventure is a great game for you. Utilizing the unique design of Joy-Con, Ring Fit Adventure will let you work out and have fun playing a video game at the same time. You will need a special fitness ring designed for this game to put the Joy-Con on. The game has more than 40 modes of exercises for you to choose from and many other mini-games. What's more interesting is that those games can really target your different body parts and satisfy your needs. I hate working out more than anyone else, but man, those games are entertaining to play.
- Flexible Game Modes
If you are tired of multi-player games on a big screen, you can also take the console out from the game stand, attach the Joy-Con back on and play it on your own. You are free to take the Switch anywhere you go.
Nintendo Switch Lite is a great option for those who are only interested in single-player games. The lite version does not have detachable Joy-Cons or HDMI input, but it is much cheaper and lighter. It could play most of the games you could play on a Pro version except for games that need the Joy-Cons to be detached. But it doesn't mean that you cannot play with your friends - the lite version also supports local game mode, and you can still connect with other Switch Lite players.
(Photo by Zul Ahadi on Unsplash)
- Games are expensive
The console is an affordable price, but the games on the Switch platform do not have a friendly price. You will discover that most Nintendo-owned games like the Mario series and Pokemon series are unlikely to fall under 40$. The reason why? Because they are Nintendo. I suggest that you play the demo first or watch the gameplay by streamers on YouTube before purchasing a 60$ game and then regretting afterward. There is no refund after the digital purchase, and you will sometimes find yourself not playing the game for more than four hours.
You could also look into buying physical game cards, which then you could return or resell if you are not satisfied with the game. A third-party game will likely be much cheaper on Xbox or PC.
- Limited game library
If you are into big, cinematic games with tons of quests and open worlds, Switch might not be a great option for you. A lot of the games on the Switch platform are family-friendly and cute. There are many indie games, but many of them are low-quality and hard to see a decent preview before you buy. I will write a detailed separate report on the Switch indie games, so stay tuned before you dive into the endless hole.
- Joy-Con Sticks are hard to use horizontally.
Mario Kart Players will probably know what I am talking about. You want to play the 2-player race, and you have to split the Joy-Cons in 2. It is SUPER HARD to hold down the ZL/ ZR button because they are so small, and I always find my hands sore after playing one round. I would suggest you get a wireless Switch Pro controller for around 70$ for a better experience. Play comfortably, win smoothly.
I hope this helps - overall, I would not suggest you get a Switch if you are a hardcore gamer because the library might disappoint you and if you are not ready for the prices. But if you love playing simple games with friends, this is definitely your choice. I am personally a big fan of Nintendo Switch just because I enjoy bullying my friends in Overcooked.
Stay tuned to more goose content!