The gaming world is buzzing with anticipation for Nintendo’s upcoming Switch 2. Information about the next-gen console has been leaking from various sources, including not just large companies like Microsoft, but also from Nintendo themselves. Here’s everything we know so far, from the release date to performance upgrades, games, backwards compatibility, and new features.
According to a Chinese investment firm called MoneyDJ, the next-gen Switch will be launching in the first quarter of 2024. You might be wondering about the credibility of MoneyDJ. Well, they were the first ones to release details about the original Switch’s production, codenamed the NX, back in 2016, a year before the Switch actually came out. So, they’re definitely one of the most credible Nintendo sources.
There are many more sources pointing towards Nintendo’s NextGen console. For example, leaker Nash Weedle, who accurately leaked Metroid Dread before it was released, now claims that a Spanish game studio is in possession of the Switch 2 development kit. It is very likely that the studio is Mercury Stream, the same studio that made Metroid Dread.
Dev kits are usually sent to developers way ahead of time to ensure they have enough time to optimize their games for the new system. If we consider a similar timeline to the PS5, where the first actual Dev kit leak was in October of 2019 and the console came out 13 months later, then the Switch 2 would indeed come out in 2024, maybe not quite Q1, but definitely in the first half of the year.
One of the big changes in the Switch 2 would be in terms of performance. The current Switch is quite underpowered for today’s standards. Even when it came out in 2017, it was already using the Tegra X1, a chip originally released in 2015 for the Nvidia Shield. However, Nintendo and third-party developers managed to optimize their games to an outstanding level, allowing titles like The Witcher 3, No Man’s Sky, Fortnite, and Doom Eternal to run on the platform.
So, how powerful would the Switch 2 really be? According to Bobby Kotick’s emails that got published in the Microsoft vs FTC hearing, the Switch 2 would have a similar level of performance to the PS4. Bobby, being the CEO of Activision Blizzard, definitely has a good deal of insight given that he was literally talking to Nintendo’s president Shuntaro Furukawa in those emails.
Performance doesn’t really mean much if you don’t have some great games to take advantage of it. With the current Switch, many players have been asking for AAA multiplayer titles such as Call of Duty, FIFA, Destiny, F1, but these games are just not available on the Switch at all, mostly due to its fairly weak hardware.
The good news is that some AAA titles would be coming to the Switch 2. In one of the leaked Microsoft vs FTC Port documents, Microsoft referred to their commitment on bringing Call of Duty to the next-gen Switch. And when Bobby Kotick referred to that PS4 level performance for the Switch 2, the reason why he said it was because that would allow them to bring CoD to the Switch as current versions of Call of Duty are still supported on the last-gen consoles.
If buying a Switch 2 means that you’ll lose all of your Switch 1 games, then most people might not even bother. Therefore, backwards compatibility will be crucial here. The good news is that it is pretty much confirmed at this point. According to Nintendo’s president Shuntaro Furukawa, Nintendo is planning on making a smooth transition for consumers from the current Switch to their next-gen console by using the Nintendo account to migrate all data.
So far, this screams like Switch Pro rather than the Switch 2. So, will there be anything to make it the Switch 2? Well, Miyamoto himself did say that Nintendo’s strength is in creating new games when new hardware is released. We would like to propose unique games that cannot be realized on existing hardware, which suggests that the Switch 2 wouldn’t necessarily be a Switch. It could, in fact, be something completely different.
However, by not releasing the Switch 2 and instead going with a standard dock console like the PS5 and the Xbox, they would just be shooting themselves in the foot as the main reason why so many people bought the Switch was because it was a Switch. But luckily, everything tells us that this will indeed be a Switch 2.
The Nintendo Switch 2 is shaping up to be a significant upgrade from its predecessor. With four times better performance, backwards compatibility, and AAA titles, it’s looking very positive so far. We’re excited to see what other improvements Nintendo has in store for us, and we’ll be sure to keep you updated as more information becomes available.