For Nintendo, certainly. The Switch had a very top heavy launch, while Nintendo seemed to push harder through years 2-3 on Wii.
But, and it's a fairly big BUT, third party support on Switch is unparalleled in Nintendo's history for the first 2.5 years; the Wii is the next best, and that's a very distant second. Even the much loved SNES took about 3 years to really take off in the third party department; outside of Secret of Mana, Super Castlevania, and Street Fighter 2, nearly all of the classic SNES third party games are from 1994, 95, and 96. The DS ALSO took a few years to really take off in the third party software department.
The Super Nintendo is the only Nintendo console I can recall having strong third party support right from the beginning. Here are some of the third party games from the first 12 months in North America:
Final Fantasy 2 (4)
Super Ghouls and Ghosts
Super Castlevania 4
Super Smash TV
Street Fighter 2
TMNT 4: Turtles in Time
That is an extremely solid list of third party games. Any system (Nintendo or otherwise) would be proud to have that good of a list of third party games during its first 12 months. That is on top of really strong first party games like Super Mario World and Link to the Past. The first 12 months of the SNES were amazing. It was all of those later years where it looked like the Genesis might a competitive list of games, that is where the SNES got into trouble.
Point taken. I think those games are all good, but they don't make the early SNES period shine above the year one of other Nintendo consoles. IMO, it was behind Wii and Switch's year 1. Games like SimCity, Populous, and ActRaiser are the sorts that I (and maybe many here) would look at, but probably not most players.
What I was getting at was that it was really around the years of Illusion of Time, Fire Emblem 4, Earthbound, Dragon Quest 5, Donkey Kong Country trilogy, Final Fantasy 6, Chrono Trigger, Ogre Battle, Terranigma, and Kirby Superstar, which is (just my opinion) when the SNES really hit its stride. And, of course, due to the poor state of the market at this time, most of these games had to be imported, and the imported games cost more money (about 30% more in many cases). These later games are also the ones that carried the SNES.
First-party games on the SNES were strong in the beginning: I'd say Link to the Past is the strongest one on the console - not my favourite, that is Fire Emblem 4 or Earthbound, but one of my favourites and the one that made the most impact. Super Mario World was IMO a bit lacklustre, if it weren't for Super Mario Bros 3 a short time earlier, I think the impact would have been a lot greater; but it felt like a bit of a graphical upgrade, some new types of secrets (coloured blocks and Yoshi, most notably), but felt weaker in other areas (Tanuki and Racoon are superior to the cape, and the level design was generally more interesting in SMB3, and the variety of levels and worlds in Super Mario 3 clearly outclassed World; arguably, Mario 3 is the more interesting game). Then there was the Sonic factor; this was a much newer and fresher feeling game. Even if one persuasively argues that Super Mario World is objectively a better game than Sonic the Hedgehog, it felt less fresh and little dated in comparison. Then Sonic 2 was a definite improvement over Sonic 1. It's why Donkey Kong Country was so monumental; while the latter two games were objectively better IMO, it was the first DKC that made the impact, the game to end all arguments about the best platformer of the 16-bit era.
Last edited by Jumpin - on 06 October 2019