Students have mixed reactions to new Nintendo Console

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Nintendo design

Cameron Hoover

Nintendo fans at Kent State and around the country will finally get what they’ve been waiting for on March 3 when the highly-anticipated Nintendo Switch gaming console is released.

Announced during a unique, hour-long presentation on Jan. 12 in Tokyo, the new console doubles as both a home console and a portable gaming device. The reaction to the new upcoming console release has been largely divided.

During the presentation, Nintendo announced that the Switch would debut in stores with a $300 price tag. Most fans rejoiced because of the early release date and low price, which is lower than the cost of both Sony’s PlayStation 4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One.

Along with the release of the Nintendo Switch, the long-awaited fan-favorite game series “Legend of Zelda” will be releasing “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.” After a delayed development cycle, some Zelda fans were ecstatic to see that they could play the new game the same day that they got their Nintendo Switch.

“I’m a huge Zelda fan, so obviously I’m excited for Breath of the Wild,” said Brettney Lamp, a senior biology major and employee of The Exchange in Kent. “But I have high hopes that they’ll put out more games for (the Switch) in the future.”

However, some Kent State Zelda fans saw the low amount of launch titles as a misstep.

“I think that there needed to be more games in the launch lineup,” said Eric Hoover, a junior digital media production major and member of Kent State’s Super Smash Bros. club. “I’m sure a lot of people will buy it just to play ‘Breath of the Wild,’ but I wish there would have been more games.”

Other games for the console have been announced but will be released after the console itself comes out. Games to be released include: “Super Mario Odyssey,” “Mario Kart 8 Deluxe,” “Xenoblade Chronicles 2” and a new “Shin Megami Tensei” game (2017) from Atlus, among others.

Andrew Bartholomew, a junior digital media production major, sees the future games as a reason not to be concerned about the Switch’s short launch lineup.

“I figure their strategy is going to include a quiet first half of the year, then add a lot of games in the summer. So by the holiday season, they will have a very wide lineup of games,” said Bartholomew, a member of The Cast of Us, a show on Black Squirrel Radio that discusses video games. “No, I don’t think it will sell great at launch, but they don’t need it to. They need it to sell great during the holidays.”

On the other hand, Chris Charek — a junior digital media production major and host of “The Cast of Us” — disagreed.

“Zelda and Mario are usually two of Nintendo’s highest-sellers, but they have a long gap between them,” Charek said. “I think a title like Zelda will help the Switch a lot, but not as much as if Super Mario Odyssey had been a launch title instead.”

Nintendo announced that the Switch would not have any games bundled with it at launch. The company said this was necessary in order for the console to launch at $300.

Another controversial topic with the Nintendo Switch is its short expected battery life as a portable gaming system. It was announced the battery could last between two and a half to six hours before needing recharged. This is on par with Nintendo’s most recent handheld device, the Nintendo 3DS. However, the Switch is going to have more technically demanding games than the 3DS. Some see the Switch’s short battery life as a potentially catastrophic issue for the console going forward.

“I think the battery life is absolutely ridiculous,” said Zachary Blanner, a freshman journalism major. “The battery life is just a total failure, in my eyes.”

Where it may seem like fans aren’t particularly happy with the battery life, there are others who don’t seem to think it will be a massive problem for the console’s success.

“I feel like they should have gone for four hours as a minimum,” Charek said. “We’ll see which games have longer battery lives for others, but I don’t think I can play Zelda for two hours at a time.”

Despite the mixed opinions, the Nintendo Switch sold out its pre-orders at local GameStops quickly.

Cameron Hoover is a general assignment reporter, contact him at [email protected]