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So of course, we've heard the news that Nintendo is and has been contemplating a new handheld device. And originally, I simply was not for it. However, after thinking about it, I think there's a way to do this so that Nintendo can still have a dedicated handheld device and the Switch and support both at the same time.

So, Nintendo wants to keep a lower price option open for families, I understand that. And that's why they're trying to keep this handheld door open. So I'm playing my 3DS, and it hit me...Nintendo has been porting Wii U games to 3DS for some time now. And they could very well do the same for the Switch Mini.

Now, I'm no tech guru, but to my understanding the Tegra X1 is the evolution of the Tegra K1 chip. So architecture should be similar enough to downgrade a normal Switch game to a Switch Mini with a Tegra K1 chip with maybe 2GB of RAM...or essentially a Wii U. The Wii U takes advantage of capabilities the 3DS can not do, and yet games like Yoshi's Wooly World are on 3DS, with some pretty amazing results.

And Nintendo has been flirting with this HD to SD conversion, or console to Handheld conversion for some time now. Starting with Wii to 3DS ports like Xenoblade Chronicles 3D and Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D. 

I think that this could be a nice and elegant way to allow younger kids to play downgraded versions of Switch games, on a cheper device. Use cheaper plastic, non detachable Joycons without HD rumble, and make it smaller. And I know what you're going to say, "Why would Nintendo make a smaller Switch that doesn't adhere to the message of the Switch being play on TV or handheld" Well, I offer this rebuttal...this is the same company that made a 2DS. The defining feature of the 3DS, stripped out of the main hardware it's selling now. Case and point.

I mean, Nintendo's games scale down pretty well, based off the games I've shown and I think a Mario Odyssey on Switch Mini would be a great catalyst for the platform to act as a more dedicated handheld for a younger audience. Nintendo sees that their 3DS market is still very profitable, so I don't think they want to give something like that up, and the thing is, they don't have to give it up. 

Here's an Unreal Engine 4 Demo running on the Tegra K1 Chip

And hell, Nintendo might not even need a Tegra K1 to fit what their needs, they could probably do with a Tegra 4 if Nvidia wanted to do a deal with a modified Tegra 4. 

Now of course, you'd have to understand that Western AAA games are most definitely out of the question for a device like this, but I think Nintendo wants to treat a device like this, the same way they're treating the 3DS. It gets late, decent ports of their 1st party games and indie games, with occasional support from Japanese 3rd parties whose software can run snugly on a K1 powered device. 

As far as price goes, I think Nintendo and Nvidia can strike a deal and get this down to $150 starting off, if not less. 

As far as Software goes, I think Nintendo could do ports of Mario Odyssey, Pokemon Lets Go, Yoshi, Kirby, among other titles. 

So not only can Nintendo continue to focus on Switch titles, they don't have to completely leave kids behind on a 3DS, and they can have that new pool of revenue and profit. I think this is what Nintendo has been building up to ever since they started porting Wii U games to the 3DS. I think they figured, "why not do this for Switch, have our cake and eat it too".

So what do you think? Does it sound stupid, or perhaps a viable option for the future?

Last edited by Ljink96 - on 02 July 2018