It has been a banner year for Nintendo and its Switch console. Nintendo has dominated the charts in 2020, finishing the year as easily the best-selling console. Like a championship team or an unbelievable, the Switch’s success is due to the sum of its parts, not one single thing.
Great games, a hybrid design, appealing to gamers of all ages. Nintendo did not hedge their success on one gimmick or franchise, and in 2020 their bets are paying dividends. Here are some of the reasons behind the success of the Nintendo Switch.
Best Launch Title in Video Game History
Nintendo’s previous system – the Wii U – was a considerable disappointment for the company, so to ensure the success of their next console, they needed to make sure there was something worth playing when it launched (back in Winter 2017).
They did just that when the system launched with a Breath of the Wild – a brand new Zelda game set in an open world. The game received unanimous praise from critics and fans alike. It showcased the potential behind Nintendo’s latest machine while also showing Nintendo’s willingness to adapt their most popular franchises – to keep them fresh, fun, and modern. The game remains a top-seller for the Switch – as recently as December 2020 topping the digital charts – and is one of the reasons to buy the console.
Animal Crossing Becomes a Global Phenomenon
One of the biggest reasons behind Nintendo’s success in 2020 was the release of Animal Crossing: New Horizons. The game shipped over 22 million copies between its release in March and the end of July. The game’s gameplay offers a relaxing and lengthy experience – providing many people with a release and escape during the last nine months. Of course, Animal Crossings is not the only reason the Switch continues to lead all consoles in sales in 2020.
Fun with Family and Friends
Nintendo offers a great selection of games for the entire family to enjoy. Franchise hits such as Super Smash Bros, Mario Party, and Mario Kart are all available on the Switch. The system also offers party games such as Jack Box party packs and 1-2 Switch. These games are great fun and offer plenty of replay value – which is huge when you are stuck at home with the same people all the time.
Nostalgia Brings in Older Gamer
Nintendo appeals to many generations of gamers due to its quality first-title franchises and the nostalgia they bring to many. Nintendo released a remastered pack of Mario games this year (Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine, and Super Mario Galaxy) along with Super Mario Bros. 35 to celebrate 35 years of Mario. Nintendo also offers – through their online subscription service – dozens of NES and SNES games.
Perfect for One TV Households
The Switch is perfect for people and families who share one television. The ability to remove the console for its docking station and play it makes it great for long gaming sessions without hogging the only screen in the house.
Portability of the Console
The hybrid portable/stationary aspect of the console and its size makes it great for gaming on the go. It also has a decent battery life – improved on the portable-only Switch lite – lasting on average three hours (with shorter or battery life depending on your settings and what you are playing). It is also easy to charge outside of the dock – with a USB-3 cord.
Nintendo shied away from offering many M-rated games on their previous consoles, but that is not the case with the Switch. Gamers can find some of the most popular M-rated games – such as The Witcher 3, Doom Eternal, and Skyrim – on the system. While many may opt to play those games on a different console, the fact they are available is definitely a bonus and helps Nintendo shake some of its “for kids” imagine.
The cherry on top for the Switch right now is its price. The Switch is the cheapest of the three main consoles out right now – with the normal Switch model costing $299.99 and the Switch Lite costing only $199.99. Nintendo is also offering more deals on their first party titles – a rarity in Nintendo’s history.