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Nintendo Switch details, price finally revealed, launching March 3

Jason Clement

Tonight was a long-awaited moment for many Nintendo fans as the company finally and officially pulled back the curtain on details surrounding the upcoming Switch console and when we can expect to buy one.





The Price


Rumors were swirling beforehand that we might see a $250 price tag, but Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima revealed the price will in fact be $300 in North America.


Considering the Wii U basic model was priced the same, this really wasn't a big surprise, but Nintendo did seem to hit the appropriate mark without coming off as too expensive for most consumers.





Device Breakdowns



Nintendo Switch Dock, front and back (below)



Nintendo Switch Tablet, front and back (below)




Joy-Con front, back, and side (below)







Joy-Con Functionality


The Switch's controllers, known as Joy-Con, were previously revealed in the Switch tease announcement video that went viral last Fall, but Shinya Takahashi revealed quite a bit more about them during the presentation.

Each Switch package will come with two Joy-Con, and -- as many fans have guessed -- both Joy-Con are equipped with motion control functionality and can be used independently in each hand or together as one controller. Additionally, each Joy-Con also has a full set of buttons and can be used as their own controller for 2-player games.


The left Joy-Con contains a share button that will allow players to take screenshots and share them over social media. As for the right Joy-Con, it has NFC functionality embedded that will allow interaction with amiibo, and an IR motion camera that can detect distance, motion, and shape of nearby objects in specially designed games. One example given is that it can detect how far away a player's hand is, and if it is forming a rock, paper, or scissors shape.


Also, detailed was a new functionality called "HD Rumble." In this instance, you can feel subtle vibrations and could even feel the sensation of ice cubes colliding in a glass while shaking the Joy-Con -- even sensing the amount of ice cubes in that glass.





Multiplayer, Online Functionality, and a new Subscription Service


Nintendo confirmed that up to eight Switch systems can connect together for local wireless play (such as with one of the new multiplayer games that was announced: 1, 2, Switch). Switch will also support online multiplayer over Wi-Fi like the Wii and Wii U did.


Interestingly enough, Nintendo also confirmed that -- like PlayStation and Xbox -- the Switch will now require a subscription to a new, online service for multiplayer. It will begin with a free trial at launch and then roll out as a fully-featured paid service in Fall 2017 that will let users invite friends to play online, set play appointments, and chat with each other across compatible games.


Also of note - subscribers will get to download and play an NES or SNES game (with newly added online play) for free every month. The wording to this makes it uncertain as to if you'll be able to download and keep the game in your library as long as you subscribe (like Sony's PS Plus or Microsoft's Games With Gold) or if you only get to play the game for that month (sounds like the latter). Subscribers will also get special discounts on games throughout the year.





What are the launch titles?


At the moment, there are two first-party Nintendo games officially confirmed for release on launch, which are The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and a new multiplayer game called 1, 2, Switch.


However, expect to hear more about the full launch lineup today and leading up to the console's release as more games are confirmed.




When does it release?


Perhaps the most surprising part of the presentation, the release date was announced to be March 3.


Rumors as recent as this week pegged the release date as March 17, so this was a very welcome surprise to hear.


For more information on other games that were announced, we'll have another article detailing that information.


What are your thoughts on the Nintendo Switch and its presentation?

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