It feels as though we’ve been waiting forever to hear about the Switch 2, but now it seems that it’s finally happening next year! Recent years have seen the original Switch start to creak at the seams as game designs have become more extravagant, open and complicated, leading to various titles – from Pokémon Scarlet through to Bayonetta 3 – performing in a less-than-desirable way. That’s partly because of Nintendo’s consistent and canny use of slightly older technology in their consoles, but also because we never got the ‘Pro’ version of the original Switch (though the OLED version almost feels like a Pro version). It’s fair to say then that we’re excited for the prospect of the Switch 2, and while Nintendo can be resolutely certain to do things their own way, that doesn’t stop us from having a series of unreasonable demands for the new hybrid console it’s touted to be.
Can the Switch 2 have 4K capability?
Given that even the PS5 and the Xbox Series X only have a passing interest in pumping out true 4K resolutions, it seems unlikely that Nintendo will find a way to push them out of a glorified handheld. However, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.
Improvements are coming all the time, and we’re seeing upscaling tech come on by leaps and bounds, using machine learning (often branded as AI) on GPUs to fill in the blanks and even create entirely new frames out of nothing but computer guesswork, improving frame rates and resolutions along the way.
Could we see a Switch 2 pumping out 4K Tears of the Kingdom or Metroid Prime 4? My brain says no, but my heart says yes please!
(Almost) the same processing power as the PS5 and Xbox Series X
Following on from those 4K expectations, we know it’s unreasonable to want the same processing power as the big two, but that doesn’t stop us wanting it. I mean, the only real sign is that both Sony and Microsoft’s consoles are big enough to house a family of four, and my ill-informed takeaway is that this means things have to be physically big to have lots of power.
That rules the whole handheld hybrid thing out, but it doesn’t rule out having a dock that’s actually got some processing power in it. Look at ROG’s external graphics card solutions for some of their laptops and you can see how it could work.
The other counterpoint is Apple and the CPUs they’ve been shoving in their iPhones, iPads and Macs over the last few years. If Nintendo are sticking with ARM over x86, they could definitely pull off something similar and have a CPU worthy of some cutting edge games.
That said, Nintendo like to aim for a more accessible price point than Apple, and have never really cared about being the best and most powerful stuff before, but this could be one way to play to both their casual market and the hardcore gamerz with a ‘z’.
Let’s have cameras again!
What’s the thing you’ve missed the most from the Wii U? Was it the ability to use it for Nintendo’s own Skype-like offering where you could chat with other Wii U users? If it was, then we’re with you! The Switch 2 should have at the very least a front-facing camera, and not necessarily just for chat, but other sensible things like live streaming. A rear-facing camera would mean you could take shots while you’re out and about, or be used for some 3DS-style AR shenanigans. That was fun, right?
How about… a working social system?
LOL. This is probably in our reasonable choices as well, but let’s face it, it’s thoroughly unreasonable to expect Nintendo to do anything that’s remotely like what the other console makers produce, particularly when it comes to linking up with and chatting to your friends. There’s more chance that they’ll create Pikmin-styled head caps that you have to wear while playing the Switch 2, and the flower on the end has a transmitter that fires your innermost thoughts to the nearest Switch 2 user. Like Streetpass, but telepathic. Yep, way more likely.
Tip and tap with a stylus again
This one isn’t that unreasonable at all, actually, given that Samsung’s flagship mobile phone is bundled with one. Nintendo were once the masters of the stylus. and there are games and experiences that really benefit from being able to use one. Bringing in some additional tablet-like uses in a family friendly way could be a great inclusion for burgeoning artists, and being able to hand-draw details for games like Mario Maker is a perfect fit.
A 1080p OLED screen
Look, I said this was an unreasonable list, didn’t I, and it is unreasonable to want a 1080p OLED screen and keep the price under £400, but we still want one don’t we? The jump in visual quality, and screen real estate from the original Switch to the OLED model was so vast that the idea of going back to LCD fills us with dread. And won’t someone think of the game journalists? This isn’t just about screen quality and resolutions though, as it has knock on effects for power consumption and processing too, but, we can still dream, right?
Sadly, it’s almost certain that none of this will really happen, but that doesn’t make us any less excited to see what Nintendo is cooking up for the Nintendo Switch 2. Will they just play it super safe? Well, keep an eye out for what we actually expect the Switch 2 to be like later on today.