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Nintendo’s new system is just a few months away, and we are finally starting to learn what it is capable of.

The publisher launched the first trailer for the Nintendo Switch console today. In the sizzle reel, the company showed how the system can transform into a television console and an on-the-go handheld. Additionally, Nintendo provided a glimpse at a number of the system’s features, and I’ve gathered those all in one place for you to peruse at your leisure.

Here’s a breakdown of the Nintendo Switch:

  • It’s a home console: The Switch can connect to a TV through a docking station.
  • It launches soon: Nintendo reiterated the March 2017 release date.
  • Nvidia tech: Nintendo isn’t working with IBM or AMD for the video processor in the switch. Instead, the company has partnered with Nvidia on a custom Tegra processor. This will ensure the system has decent battery life while also pumping out high-quality visuals.
  • New games: Nintendo has already shown off a new Mario, Mario Kart, and more. Switch is also getting third-party support that includes games like Skyrim and NBA 2K.
  • The Joy-Con controller transforms: You can pull of the edges of the controller and attach them to the side of the portable display to turn the Switch into something that looks more like a PlayStation Vita.
  • It’s a portable: Once you connect the nubs to the Switch, it plays the same exact games you play on your television but in a handheld form-factor.
  • Switch uses cartridges: Like the Nintendo 3DS, the Switch uses cartridge-like game cards instead of Blu-ray discs or DVDs.
  • It has a kickstand: You don’t have to hold the portable display. Instead, you can use a kickstand to set it up as if it were a tiny television wherever you want.
  • It has a 3.5mm headphone jack: Nintendo apparently lacks courage.
  • The Joy-Con doesn’t need its dock: The trailer shows someone on a plane using both sides of the Joy-Con controller like a Wiimote and Nunchuck with one in each hand. This is different than the first image of the Joy-Con that has each side sitting inside a dock that makes it look a lot more like a standard gamepad
  • Switch will have holsters: Nintendo’s trailer shows a quick moment where a group of fellas in an impossibly old van play Mario Kart in the back seat. To ensure everyone can see the screen, they slide it into a holster that attaches to the front passenger seat. Here, watch it in action:
    I may make my wife drive while I sit in the back seat.

    Above: I may make my wife drive while I sit in the back seat.

    Image Credit: Nintendo


  • Each side of the Joy-Con is a gamepad: While one person can use both side of the Switch’s controller at once, they can also work as individual inputs. This enables the system to work as a multiplayer device right out of the box.
  • Supports local wireless multiplayer: The Switch can link up to support in-person multiplayer. In the video, Nintendo shows four players competing in NBA 2K across two separate Switch devices.
  • Switch supports a “Pro” controller: Like the Wii U, gamers can expect the Nintendo Switch to have a Pro controller that’s similar to an Xbox One-style joypad.
    The Switch's Pro-style controller.

It’s likely that Switch is capable of a lot more than all of that, and we’ll find out if that’s the case over the next several months. Obviously, many gamers are wondering whether it has apps, a touchscreen, or virtual console. Oh, and we are waiting to find out the final March release date and a price.

But for now, Nintendo has presented a smart new machine that I can’t wait to try for myself.

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