It’s here everyone! Nintendo’s rumored updated Switch has been announced! And I, personally, think it is terrible. Let me first say that anyone who buys it and enjoys it for what it is, that’s great and I sincerely hope you have lots of fun. BUT, I won’t stand idly by as Nintendo takes all the best parts of the Switch and flushes it down the drain. Let me explain.
First, let’s quickly talk about what the major differences are. The Lite is $199, making it $100 less than the original Switch. It is about 10% smaller in width, height and screen size. The depth is the same but the weight is down by about 30%. The Lite does not have removable joycons, it does not connect to the TV at all. It only has a battery life of about 30 minutes more than the original Switch. The HD rumble system is gone and lastly, only games with “Handheld Mode” can be played on it.
The positives: it is smaller and costs $100 less (which is significant).
The negatives: everything else.
The Nintendo Switch was revolutionary in its utility. Going from single player on a train to multiplayer with the person next to you, to getting home and playing on a 50” TV was one of the best parts! That is gone now, playing with friends will require multiple consoles and couldn’t even be done on a large television. I love portable Super Smash Brothers Ultimate, but once the camera zooms out because one of the players is launched to the other end of the map, then how will you fight at your character becomes the size of a needle head? Maybe you’re a player that only enjoys single player stuff, Nintendo has a vast library of fantastic single player games. But how much better is the ability to play on the go and on a larger screen than being stuck with it in your hands inches from your face.
Here are some other minor complaints. If it is portable, then it should be even more geared toward being a handheld device that is meant to be played anywhere. Have a brighter screen, better glare protection and longer battery life for starters. If it performs like the Switch does now, then a person better keep a battery pack and play in the shade in order to get any good gaming out of it. Also, why keep the joystick and L/R buttons stick out? Design it to lay flatter, make the outside plastic more durable and ready to get rough, maybe some slip guard texture in the back. Now, I know I am ranting, and the Lite was only recently announced. It could have a lot of these features, but they aren’t showcasing any of these things, which means that they probably won’t be there.
So overall, I would have wanted the Nintendo Lite to be even smaller, more compact design and an improved battery at a $150 price point, maybe $200. My biggest beef with the Nintendo Switch Lite is that it seems pointless. It may be significantly cheaper, but it isn’t much more portable because if is still fairly big, it doesn’t have a greatly improved screen or battery life compared to the original while losing everything that made the Switch unique in the first place.
Take my words with a grain of salt, it has only been announced a short time, maybe it will be great and fit a huge demographic that wanted a super handheld console who could care less about multiplayer and playing on a TV. We’ll see in a few months, maybe I’ll eat my words and this will be better than the Switch (it won’t).
The Nintendo Switch Lite will be released on September 20th, 2019 for $199.