Forums - Nintendo Discussion - What elements of next gen could the Switch's successor implement?

A new console generation is upon us. Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 are both set to boast various improvements to visuals such as 4K standard, and Ray Tracing, along with faster load speeds thanks to the power of SSDs. So what about Nintendo? Nintendo for the past 16 years, has avoided direct competition in the main console race, instead preferring to cater to underserved and niche markets with less powerful, but still easy to use platforms. This especially remains true with the Nintendo Switch, which essentially sees Nintendo eschewing the set-top console design all-together, in favor of a mobile platform that can output to a TV.

While the Switch's specs may not be anything to write home about at first, its use of Tegra X1 gives it a very PC-like development environment, as well as many graphical traits present on current gen systems, which is why it's able to get games like Doom, Fortnite, Witcher III, and the latest versions of Unreal Engine, even if it doesn't have full current gen power. Even with the downgrades, the Switch is the easiest platform to port to Nintendo has ever developed.

That said, we're 3 years into the Switch now, and while it's an impressively engineered device, its hardware could be showing its age by 2021 or 2022, so its no surprise some people are looking to the future with its successor. Right off the bat, I don't see Nintendo going for a conventional next-gen console. They've been there, done that, and have shown time on multiple occasions that they're just not really that good at it. So a Switch 2 will probably be more of an evolution of the current system with some fancy new gimmick to separate itself as per usual with Nintendo systems.

But graphically what are the elements that a Switch 2 can incorporate from Next-Gen systems? Ray-Tracing is a big thing about next generation consoles, and while Switch 2 can incorporate it, its going to depend entirely on how mobile processors in the next 3-4 years can handle it. Remember, the Switch is still a mobile device first and foremost, so its successor needs to take battery and heat consumption into account regarding specs. If Nvidia can find a way to incorporate such a feature among other things, like the Nanite and Lumen tech found in UE5, while retaining a decent battery life and not burning the users hands, the Switch 2 could be able to get some next gen titles like how the current Switch does.

Another thing about next gen is loading times. For a cartridge based system, load times on Switch can be surprisingly long, painfully long depending on the game. Flash-based memory may be somewhat quicker and more reliable than HDDs, but the insane speeds of SSDs trounce it. So the challenge is finding a way to keep up with the load speeds of SSDs, without actually using an SSD (I mean seriously, where are you going to put it?). Some custom hardware to help speed up loading times could be an answer, along with a faster CPU. But that depends on if its going to make the console a lot more expensive.

Nintendo may not make a big deal about graphics anymore, but their consoles typically aren't less powerful for shits and giggles. The Switch had to strike a delicate balance between being power, price, portability, and ease of use for developers. The Switch 2 needs to be able to strike that same balance as well. I don't expect it to have the full power of a PS5, but much like how the current Switch is a pseudo-current gen console in the palm of your hand, I think Switch 2 could deliver a pseudo next-gen experience in the palm of your hands with the right hardware.



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Although it's not a strength of Nintendo to offer options (besides controller), I would very appreciate if we could get a lot more extra power in TV Mode ("powered dock"). I would pay 200 $ or more for that. I really like the idea to play the same game on the go with the same save file, but when I play at home on the TV (which is in 90 % the case) then I want to have a good experience. More RAM is necessary to run third party games like Rocket League properly, because third parties don't optimize that much. Loading screens are annoying and not really acceptable for a console which uses flash memory. Though, the successor should be backward compatible (game cards).

And we really need analog shoulder buttons as a standard.

I don't need 4K, Ray Tracing or other graphic stuff, just performance and 60fps in every game. But I think 4K in TV mode and 1080p in portable mode would be the next obvious step. I really think we will see a Switch 2 as successor instead of a true home console. I'm fine with that.



siebensus4 said:
Although it's not a strength of Nintendo to offer options (besides controller), I would very appreciate if we could get a lot more extra power in TV Mode ("powered dock"). I would pay 200 $ or more for that. 

I think we'll be getting a "Switch Pro" in that case, similar to the New 3DS or DSi. 



Nintendo will be the only console maker to have DLSS. They already won the graphics war.

In terms of “gimmicks”, I suspect something AR related would make a return.



Nintendo will be the only console maker to have DLSS. They already won the graphics war.

In terms of “gimmicks”, I suspect something AR related would make a return.



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Phone + Razer Kishi(Joycon clone) + cloud > any Switch 2 in performance.



TheMisterManGuy said:



Another thing about next gen is loading times. For a cartridge based system, load times on Switch can be surprisingly long, painfully long depending on the game. Flash-based memory may be somewhat quicker and more reliable than HDDs, but the insane speeds of SSDs trounce it. So the challenge is finding a way to keep up with the load speeds of SSDs, without actually using an SSD (I mean seriously, where are you going to put it?). Some custom hardware to help speed up loading times could be an answer, along with a faster CPU. But that depends on if its going to make the console a lot more expensive.

I'm pretty sure they could fit one of this if they wanted. mSATA or M2 SSD



CuCabeludo said:

Phone + Razer Kishi(Joycon clone) + cloud > any Switch 2 in performance.

ok... play Super Mario odyssey in that phone



I agree with the poster who said that we will get at least one "New 3DS" style refresh from the Switch. A major power bump while in docked mode would be welcome and it may be a fairly economical upgrade (maybe $100 for the new dock) for Switch users where the docked version could basically bring the Switch up to the level of XOne and PS4 graphics. This would keep the Switch relevant in attracting 3rd party support as developers are likely to still be supporting the PS4 and XOne for several more years with ports even after the new consoles launch.

New console sales of the switch should also start shipping with enhanced portable devices that can provide the higher graphics level both in docked mode and in portable. Older Switch users would be the ones who would need the enhanced dock and they would be dealing with a reduced graphics mode for newer games while on the go and maybe certain games cannot be played if the developers feel they cannot offered a downgraded graphics mode. It really isn't that much different from how Nintendo handled the Expansion Pak on the N64 as there were some games that required its use and many games just looked like garbage if you didn't have it.

I don't think that Nintendo should be in a rush to release a new console platform. The future is probably one where the days of having dedicated hardware sitting under your TV is coming to an end. With cloud computing and faster and faster mobile devices it won't be long before Nintendo can go the way that Disney has with Disney+ and start offering an online environment that people subscribe to for playing Nintendo games. All that people are going to need in the future is going to be a wireless controller and a smartphone/TV to play games. I think that this is where Nintendo should be looking for their next "generation" but that said, I do think that they can easily get another 4-5 years out of the Switch. They should milk this generation for as long as they can because I am not entirely confident in Nintendo's ability to avoid another Wii U disaster when launching a completely new concept.



I think 4K resolution (docked mode) for certain games and video streaming is the best we can hope for. Ray-tracing, 3D Audio, and the really complex AI possibilities are almost completely out of the question if Nintendo wants to balance battery power, cooling, and pricing.
Basically think of a PS4 Pro. That's about the best I can see Switch 2 performing docked, maybe slightly better or worse. It won't be as capable as the Xbox One X, and nowhere near the level of the Xbox Series X and PS5.
As for the controller, it doesn't need triggers on the level of the DualSense. But how about analog triggers again (absent since GameCube), a headphone jack, and speaker/mic.



Lifetime Sales Predictions 

PS4: 130 mil (was 100 million) Xbox One: 55 mil (was 50 mil) Switch: 110 million (was 73, then 96 million)

3DS: 75.5 mil (was 73, then 77 million)

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