Switch It Up

As a little kid, video games weren’t really my thing. My parents didn’t buy them for me & I didn’t ask for them. I mainly collected Beanie Babies & Barbies, but I did have two Yu-Gi-Ho battle decks & a handful of Pokemon cards.

When others would ask me to join in a game of Backyard Baseball, I was always down. I had a full roster of Neopets at 11 years old. I played “educational” video games in school, like Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? & The Oregon Trail. & Every grade, until 6th, had it’s own version of a typing proficiency game, some more entertaining than others.

One friend, Nikole, taught me how to play DDR & my other friend Nicole taught me how to play Zelda: Ocarina of Time on N64. DDR was fun to play at sleepovers or birthday parties at Funplex, but I didn’t want to play it alone. Whereas Zelda is a household name for solo campaign games, but I didn’t have my own console. The McDonald’s near my house installed 3 TV monitors hooked up to GameCubes in the middle of the play area. I don’t remember what the two other game options were because I only needed one: Pikmin. I was not only hooked on these campaign / mission games, I was also a dedicated Nintendo nerd.

nintendo consoles

In Middle School, and even into High School, I diligently collection Nintendo consoles & Pokemon games. I even retroactively collected Gameboy Color Pokemon games to (at one point) be able to say I owned every Pokemon video game created. As a junior in high school, I wrote a comparative paper on the Nintnedo Wii, Playstation 3 & Xbox 360. I did everything possible to cast Nintendo in the best light, but it was obvious that Nintendo was slipping.

As I got older, went to college & prioritized my money differently, my fierce love for keeping up with this collection stopped. Though I had the Wii set up in my dorm, we’d always end up watching our friends play COD on Xbox 360 or Skyrim on PS3.

I never upgraded my gaming systems as an undergraduate student because I was more focused on the Microsoft Surface & PC games like, The Sims. But, after graduating with my Bachelor’s, something called upon to me to restart many of the games I lay to waste, carefully packed away in the attic or shed.

I recently restarted Pokemon Emerald, for Gameboy SP, when I was fully derailed by a late & very unexpected Valentine’s Day present: the Nintendo Switch.

I’m no hardcore gamer & I wouldn’t consider this a professional opinion, but everyone in the market for a new kind of gaming experience should Switch.

nintendo controllers

nintendo handhelds

Nintendo Switch

“Play at Home. Play Anywhere. Play Together.”

The Switch is the first of it’s kind by Nintendo. The convertible console to a portable handheld revamped how gamers perceive Nintendo. The sleek, but fun design reminds me of the Wii after I covered it with a sticker skin, so it wasn’t so white. The black console is classic video game, while the colored Joy-Cons are classic Nintendo. Nintendo is first & foremost a family friendly company. You’re not going to see Call of Duty or PUBG in the eShop…ever. What you are going to find is a treasure chest of nostalgia. Nintendo has exclusive rights to many classic video games with cult-like followings, such as:

Other legendary games with (or getting) versions for the Switch include:

  • Fornite
  • Final Fantasy
  • Ultimate Street Fighter
  • Resident Evil
  • Assassin’s Creed
  • Sonic the Hedgehog
  • Crash Bandicoot
  • Settlers of Catan (yes, the board game)
  • Hellblade
  • Diablo
  • Lego
  • FIFA
  • Fallout

My current game roster includes:

  • Stardew Valley – The game similar is to Harvest Moon, but better imo because there are more starting options & there’s more to do within the game. Being a Harvest Mooner myself, learning this game was very easy. The game does present challenges along the way that keep game play interesting. I prefer to play this game solo on the handheld. I have never played with others co-op, but hope to soon. $$
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate – The newest in the Super Smash Saga, this game does not disappoint. My boyfriend & I unlocked all the fighters in Classic Mode, which also unlocks them for Brawl Mode, but not for Adventure Mode. We’ve Uncovered the entire map in World of Light, but haven’t beaten everything there, or anything else. We’re going to beat adventure on easy. Then do the whole thing on medium, then hard. I bought a USB GabeCube controller so we can play multi player, but without spending 80$ on another set of Joy-Cons. $$$
  • Fallout Shelter – The freemium version in the line of Fallout games, I play as a complete newb to it all. This is a user friendly version of the Xbox One game my boyfriend loves. I play this game solo on the handheld, but always ask his input on the game, as it’s still very similar to other Fallout games in certain regards. I’ll be honest, my first vault was a total failure, so I started a new new one & spent under 11$ buying lunchboxes, which hold a range of rewards from dwellers to items to caps. I open a few every time I play, but it dramatically improved play & sped up progress to where the game is fun. $*
  • Pokemon Quest – Before I got my Switch, a friend got hers & her first game was Pokemon Go: Eevee. We played the two-player version & TBH it was stupid easy. She even said every one told her not to play the entire game that way because it wouldn’t be worth it. I knew a better game would come, so I found a free one while I waited for Sword & Shield to be announced & released. Pokemon Quest is a minecraft-y version of Pokemon Dungeon. But, there is a human with a Pokedex invovled, the battles are all on open ground, the Pokemon can’t talk & your team can have as many Pokemon as your island has space. You get Pokemon as you log in everyday & make poke-food. Pokemon level up by going on expeditions or by sacrificing Pokemon in training. My Pokemon know either 1-2 moves max. Gameplay is pretty easy, but sometimes the game forces you to wait. It’s the freemium gam I wouldn’t spend money on, but do play for a bit everyday for fun.
  • Undertale – I started this game & didn’t even make it all the way through the intro because I can’t figure out what to do. Undertale is supposedly a great game, so I’m interested to see what the game is really like. I will have to look up how to get through where I’m stuck at one day, but for now, I’ll just play the other games.

I love my Switch. It has a kickstand. That’s like a dress with pockets to me. Off Amazon, I bought a highly rated hard case & carrying case for the handheld and accessories for under 50$. I need to buy a nice case for transporting the whole system because though it is compact, it is still fragile. More to come from this, I’m sure, so stay tuned.

It was teased last year that new models were coming out & now it’s been confirmed we’re getting two – possibly before the end of the year.

The possibility of two new models is an interesting one. I think most people polled after the first report would have guessed that a new Switch would be either a cheaper replacement for the 3DS or a souped-up console for fanboys. Getting both would be wild (source).

I’m usually the person who finally gets new technology (computers, tablets, phones, consoles), just in time for a new model to come out. Usually it’s kind of a downer, but I always let it remind me: I have good taste, but bad timing.

This time, however, I’m not bummed at all (yet). I wouldn’t want the lesser economical version & I don’t need the enhanced gamer version. Having the original is good for me as I want the full feature experience without the extra costs of gamer specific features.

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