It’s been a while since I last posted anything and quite a lot has changed; most notably, I bought a Switch. Sadly, I didn’t buy it in time for my long-haul flight, but nonetheless, this has been an enjoyable weekend venturing back into my love-hate affair with Nintendo.
The Switch is still careering through life at a cool £279.99 and personally, I find its games to be eye-wateringly expensive – I paid £30 for Skyrim on the PC back in the day and even less for the PS4 remaster. Still, I shelled out £140 for Mario Odyssey, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and fan favourite Breath of the Wild, and a sturdy case to parade my new console around in. I’ve also got a game of Football Manager 2018 on the go but football is definitely not coming home, at least not anywhere near where I am.
I’ve also downloaded a few free games, most notably the Octopath Traveler 3-hour demo (that’s for another time) and Pokémon Quest, where my old friends are more cuboidal and definitely more cute than normal. As a preemptive move, I opted to start the game with an Eevee so I could test run it as a starter Pokémon to help me decide whether I want to go with Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! or Eevee! in November. The game is fun, fast-paced and pretty addictive, as far as free games go.
I’ve actually found the Switch quite difficult to hold for any length of time; probably because I have ridiculously small hands that struggle to hold a pint glass. Portability is king here, as I sit on the train, gazing smugly at those around me who only have a simple smartphone with which to amuse themselves on this fifteen-minute journey. It is quite liberating to be playing what would ordinarily be PC or consoles games on the move, sharing your gaming experience with the person sat next to you or behind you, and who is definitely looking over your shoulder as you play. It takes an arguably private activity and makes it public without an ounce of shame.
The screen definition is much better than I expected and the UI less invasive and less visually noisy than its XBOX counterpart. The sound quality, both with and without headphones, is far superior to any of its predecessors, as you’d obviously expect, and it feels like Nintendo have finally made a console fit for its maturing fan base. There’s no pointless clutter or confusing menus or overwhelming, childish colour palate; no achievements or trophy tables to compare against; the Switch makes you want to play with other players, to race against them or battle them. It breeds inclusivity and above all the idea that games are to be enjoyed and shared.
Am I fuck paying £49.99 for Skyrim, though.