I was one excited gamer last week as I got to attend the Nintendo Event in London, and play the Nintendo Switch hands on. It was an incredible experience to go to so, I thought it best to let you gamers out there share it with me.
I saw and played the Nintendo Switch, including a number of the upcoming games and was left highly impressed. This console offers much promise and I for one will be getting one this March.
Follow my journey to collect as many “Nintendo stamps” as possible in the blog below. I’ll be talking about the console and the games I managed to play along the way, bringing my thoughts on the event and machine. Any questions or if you want to just talk Nintendo, drop me a Discus Comment at the end of the article.
Face To Face With The Nintendo Switch
Arriving at the event at around 9 AM, I had to wait outside for a good 20-25 minutes before they started letting people in. In the entrance, I had to queue up to receive my lanyard and go inside. Here I was given a stamp card which I would gradually fill up by playing more games… and so my quest began!
Once inside, I had to walk through a hallway that had the history of Nintendo consoles all on display with the year that they were released. Very nostalgic! I then made it into the main hall where I got a close up look at the Switch itself.
The dock was a lot smaller than I expected, a little bigger than a closed 3DSXL. The red and blue Joy-Cons were so striking that it almost made me regret my decision to preorder the grey version. They do look a lot better in person than on the pre-order pictures.
My Nintendo Switch adventure truly began in a cinema-like setup, where we all sat down to watch the trailer for Super Mario Odyssey. This got me my first stamp, it felt good!
Hands On With The Nintendo Switch Games
I had a good walk around the floor to see what games were available to play. After noticing the huge queue for The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild, I decided to play some 1, 2 Switch! games, starting with Safe Crack.
1, 2, Switch
The aim of Safe Crack is to, well, crack a safe before your opponent. You have to slowly turn the Joy-Con until you feel a distinct vibration. Hold it still, then press the shoulder button to unlock a pin. There are 3 pins you have to unlock to win, under a time limit (or before your opponent). Unfortunately, I didn’t win against my opponent, but it was still fun and tense. I got my second stamp for this. Yay!
Next up, I tried Samurai Training. For this game, one person holds the Joy-Con above their head as if they were holding a sword. The other readies their hands to try and ‘catch’ said sword. The game randomly chooses first who will catch and who will slice, and then ‘switches’ after every turn. This was a great game to mess with your opponent by flinching to get them to clap too early. Again, I lost, but had a lot of fun with this one. Boom, stamp.
My 3rd and last 1, 2, Switch! game was Copy Dance, which I was very reluctant to play as I don’t posses any sort of dancing talent. But I was soon convinced to play it since you don’t need actual dance skills. You simply strike a pose with your Joy-Con when the game tells you to, and your opponent must copy your pose when the game tells them to in rhythm. It’s quite a fast game and forces you to think on your feet. I had no idea what poses to do, therefore I was too slow and… lost again.
But I got a stamp, so all is well.
Overall 1, 2, Switch! will be a great game for parties and family get-togethers (and maybe drunken ones, too). It reminded me of Wario-ware which was great fun on the Wii. There were more 1, 2, Switch! games to try. But there were a lot of other games I had yet to get around to, so I’ll sample the rest when I buy the game for myself.
Seeing a lot of people having a blast on Arms, I decided to try it for myself. After reading a bunch of negativity about this game after the Nintendo Switch presentation, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect.
But it was super fun.
You hold both Joy-Cons in each hand, and tilt them left or right to dodge and move. Punching with either hand would make your character punch, and punching with both would result in a strong grapple attack. Filling your on-screen meter and then pressing the shoulder buttons would allow you to have stronger attacks.
For some reason I had a hidden talent for playing this game and I won easy. My first win, go me. Stamp get!
This game is very much similar to Wipeout. We were given the normal Switch controller for this, the one affectionately known as “the dog controller”. This was surprisingly comfortable, and it felt right holding it in my hands.
The analogue sticks and buttons were easy to reach and didn’t feel out of place or weird. With this game pretty much being a Wipeout clone, you’ll know already whether you will like it or not. Me, having never played a Wipeout game, really enjoyed it. I came first against a human opponent and other AI controlled vehicles. So, another win, and another stamp for me!
Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers
I was told by the Nintendo representative for this game that there is an option to play with the old 16-bit graphics or the HD graphics. They gave us the pro controller for this one, which basically feels like an Xbox 360 controller and the familiarity was very welcome.
I’ve played a few fighting games like Soul Calibur and Tekken, but I’ve never touched a Street Fighter game (I know, I’m despicable). I button mashed my way to victory as Cammy, and even managed to pull off some special moves somehow. My opponent was no stranger to Street Fighter so I really have no idea how I won. Another stamp in the bag.
After grabbing some free fish and chips and a nice cold cup of orange juice, it was time for another game, and that game was…
Super Bomberman R.
They had this game set up in tabletop mode (no TV, with the Switch on it’s inbuilt stand) with a Joy-Con for each player. The screen was surprisingly clear at 720p but for a game like this it was quite hard to see what was going on due to the size of the screen.
Holding the Joy-Con horizontally felt unusual, but not bad, and it was easy to use. The game was classic Bomberman, fun as always, not much else to add to this other than I achieved another victory, and another stamp.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Edition
After having so much fun on Mario Kart 8 on the Wii U, I couldn’t resist the urge to try out the Deluxe Edition. For this, they gave us a Switch steering wheel controller, which was a lot smaller than the old Wii steering wheel.
I chose Isabelle as she is my lucky character, and we were thrust onto the ‘Wario’s Gold Mine’ map. Overall, I came out second but still defeated my human opponent. I lost my concentration at one point when I realized that we were actually being filmed by Nintendo UK and they cost me my first place. How dare.
I got a stamp though, so I’ll let them off… this time.
Let’s have a quick look at what I was playing on before I move on to the parts I unfortunately missed out on. And my final thoughts.
I could almost hear Splatoon 2 calling my name, but once I got there the queue had been cut off due to too many people and lack of time. The same happened with Zelda and Snipperclips, but all 3 were offering out stamps to people who had wanted to play. Stamp x3. Victory!
Even though I didn’t get to play every game at this event, it was an excellent experience. For collecting all of the stamps I was given a Nintendo Switch pin badge that you could only have gotten from the event that gave you +11 nerdiness. Epic loots! I was already sold on the switch, but this cemented my excitement and I am confident that this will be an awesome console when it is released.
If you’re wondering whether you should pick up a Switch at launch, you have to ask yourself what you’d be buying a Switch for. If you’re more of a Super Mario person, then waiting would probably be a good idea as there probably won’t be enough to tide you over until the end of 2017.
However, if you don’t think you could wait until the end of 2017 to play Zelda and Mario Kart (which has an April release date), and you like the look of Arms and 1, 2, Switch!, then you should definitely look into picking up this console.