Nintendo revealed a brand new Swap Lite model of its current-generation console right now, which attaches the controllers completely, shrinks the a bit, and provides a contact extra battery life – but it surely additionally takes away the ‘Swap’ a part of the equation, as a result of you may solely use it handheld, as a substitute of hooked up to a TV or as a singular tabletop gaming expertise.
The adjustments largely appear in service of brining the value down, since it would retail for $199 when it goes on sale in September. That’s $100 lower than the unique Swap, which is a giant worth lower and will open up the marketplace for Nintendo to a complete new group of gamers. However it’s additionally a change that appears to remove loads of what made the Swap particular, together with the power to plug it right into a TV for a big-screen expertise, or shortly detach the Pleasure-Con controllers for motion-control gaming with rumble suggestions.
Swap Lite makes some essential adjustments that I believe Nintendo is aware of are reflective of how lots of people really use the Swap, no matter what the aspirational, idealized Swap buyer does in Nintendo’s adverts and promo supplies. As talked about, it ought to bump your battery life throughout precise gameplay – it might add an additional hour when taking part in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, as an illustration. And the dimensions financial savings imply it’s a lot simpler to slide in a bag while you head out on a visit.
The brand new redesigned, completely hooked up controllers additionally embrace a correct D-pad on the left as a substitute of the person circle buttons used on the Pleasure-Pad, and the smaller display nonetheless outputs on the similar decision, which suggests issues will look crisper in play.
For me, and possibly for lots of Swap customers, the trade-offs made right here are literally enhancements that replicate 90 % of my use of the console. I virtually by no means play plugged right into a TV, as an illustration – and will simply do with out, since largely I do this for one-off get together recreation use that isn’t actually all that obligatory. The controller design with a D-pad is far more sensible, and I’ve by no means used movement controls with my Swap for any recreation. Battery life signifies that you most likely don’t have to recharge mid-trip on most brief and medium-length journeys, and the dimensions financial savings signifies that once I’m packing and push involves shove, I’m that rather more prone to take the Swap Lite quite than depart it at residence.
Already, some critics are decrying how this mannequin makes the Swap ‘worse’ in virtually each manner, however really I feel it’s simply the alternative – Nintendo might have traded away a few of its trademark quirk with this model, however the result’s one thing far more akin to how most individuals really wish to use a console more often than not.