A Beginner’s Experience with the Nintendo Switch

My daughter and my mother recently teamed up to get me a pretty sweet birthday present – a Nintendo Switch. I’ve never really been a Nintendo guy, mind you. Back in the late 1980s, when your choice was either the SEGA Master System or the Nintendo Entertainment System, I went SEGA. At the time, I regretted the decision. A lot.

SEGA had few, if any, licensed games, so I thought I was missing out on familiar titles. Over the years, as consoles came and went, I did get a Nintendo 64, which featured the two greatest WWE games in history – Wrestlemania 2000 and No Mercy. I bought a Wii when I was in my 30s with the idea that it would replace the gym… but it didn’t. Meanwhile, I kept up with my Sony Playstation, which began with the first console in 1997 and that has been updated every iteration since.

However, the truth is The Princess wanted me to have a Nintendo Switch. She’s sweet that way. And I wanted her to be able to use one, as well. I’d rather she play games than get sucked into the YouTube void of Minecraft videos and Blind Bag Unboxings. So on my birthday, it was Nintendo Switch day.

Playing around with the Switch and a bunch of games over the last few weeks, I’m left feeling like the system is genuinely a game changer. This isn’t some new observation, of course. For the most part, the Switch has been getting rave reviews from gamers and critics since its release in 2016. But for a non-Nintendo guy, being able to move from the couch or bedroom with a handheld to playing on a television without a stop is amazing to experience. Suddenly, everything you’ve wanted in a console is here.

The Princess has been playing Super Mario Odyssey and The LEGO Ninjago Movie on the system, and she loves them both. The former is perfectly geared towards her, and she gets a kick out of using the Joy-Cons. The latter impressed me very much; we’d already reviewed the PS4 version of the game, so I was pleased to see that LEGO Ninjago was equally as entertaining on the Nintendo Switch. From a visual standpoint, the game looked nearly as good as its PS4 iteration, even though the Switch is certainly a less powerful machine.

It will be interesting to see the choices we make in our family when it comes to purchasing games that are multi-platform. Do you take what is the visually stronger version on a PS4, or the portability factor of Switch? My gut is the Switch, which is definitely a change of thinking for me.

When the Princess has gone to bed, or tucked herself under some covers to watch Netflix, I’ve played a few of the horror games that are part of the Switch offering. Resident Evil Revelations 1 and 2 are available, so I’ve been making my way through the first. The controls are relatively simple, though I don’t always remember how to access supplies. Again, the graphics look very solid on the system. While not nearly as great or frightening an experience as last year’s Resident Evil 7 (still the scariest game I’ve ever played), it’s nice to have a horror offering from a familiar franchise available.

I’ve also been playing The Coma: Recut, a 2D remastered version of a Korean horror game I’d never heard of before. The game’s Anime-style graphics look good, and if you don’t mind a ton of reading, it actually feels somewhat immersive. You play as the character of Youngho, who is trapped in an alternate version of his high school, where his favourite teacher Ms. Song has become a murderous killer. You have no weapons, so instead you spend your time avoiding getting killed, while exploring the school to discover its backstory. The Coma has a good story, and offers up some strong tension and solid writing, It’s a bonus to have another horror offering on the system, that’s for sure.

This is just the beginning for our Nintendo Switch experience, though. I’m looking forward to trying out new games as they come our way, and I’ll make sure the Princess weighs in as well.

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