Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Regarding Nintendo Handhelds, was the Switch concept inevitable?

zorg1000 said:
I think it has more to do with development time/cost rising to the point where it was no longer feasible to support two platforms at once.
Not only did they go from SD to HD with their home consoles but they also went from 2D to 3D with their handhelds and this caused their outout to significantly decline from DS/Wii to 3DS/Wii U.
If they struggled with supporting a PS3 level console and PSP level handheld than how would manage a PS4 level console and Vita level handheld?

DS was when Nintendo moved to 3D on handhelds. But you do have a point that their Wii U output was significantly decreased due to their AAA games requiring more resources, as well as them not being prepared in the first place. 



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TheMisterManGuy said:
zorg1000 said:
I think it has more to do with development time/cost rising to the point where it was no longer feasible to support two platforms at once.
Not only did they go from SD to HD with their home consoles but they also went from 2D to 3D with their handhelds and this caused their outout to significantly decline from DS/Wii to 3DS/Wii U.
If they struggled with supporting a PS3 level console and PSP level handheld than how would manage a PS4 level console and Vita level handheld?

DS was when Nintendo moved to 3D on handhelds. But you do have a point that their Wii U output was significantly decreased due to their AAA games requiring more resources, as well as them not being prepared in the first place. 

Technically yes but a majority of titles were still 2D on DS, 3DS is when you really started to see 3D being more prominent.



When the herd loses its way, the shepard must kill the bull that leads them astray.

0D0 said:
Wii U was a disgrace and killed Nintendo's home console ambition for good. Then a more powerful handheld that connects to TV was quite inevitable.

In theory Nintendo could make a new home console.

A Switch that only connects to a TV. Maybe add more GPU and CPU power to help performance and dynamic resolutions in a brute force manner.



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Conina said:
The_Liquid_Laser said:

In hindsight, it does seem inevitable.  Graphically the SNES was so much better than the Gameboy.  But now I don't really care about graphical improvements anymore.  PS3 still looks really good to me.  Switch graphics are basically the same as PS4 graphics, I don't care what anyone says.  I doubt PS5 graphics will look significantly different either.

Okay, and your opinion in graphic discussions will be worthless for many others in future discussions. They won't care what you say.

I think he's trying to say the Switch can handle PS4 games to some extent, some better than others, but his statement obviously just comes off ridiculous. I mean you can't compare Wolfenstein II and say its essentially the same. Or maybe he looks at a game like Tales of Vesperia and determines Switch and PS4 are about equal.

Its kinda like boasting a cheap video card can play the same stuff as an expensive video card. One just might look like garbage in comparison.



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zorg1000 said:
I think it has more to do with development time/cost rising to the point where it was no longer feasible to support two platforms at once.
Not only did they go from SD to HD with their home consoles but they also went from 2D to 3D with their handhelds and this caused their outout to significantly decline from DS/Wii to 3DS/Wii U.
If they struggled with supporting a PS3 level console and PSP level handheld than how would manage a PS4 level console and Vita level handheld?

I think this is one of the biggest factors, yeah. 

Also looking back on it I think the DS might have been the peak productivity in regards to 1st party titles, or at least the best on a handheld. A lot of that was companies like IntelligentSystems and Gamefreak, but still. 



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zorg1000 said:
TheMisterManGuy said:

DS was when Nintendo moved to 3D on handhelds. But you do have a point that their Wii U output was significantly decreased due to their AAA games requiring more resources, as well as them not being prepared in the first place. 

Technically yes but a majority of titles were still 2D on DS, 3DS is when you really started to see 3D being more prominent.

I'd say it was more 50/50. Like, most of Nintendo's releases, especially their in-house ones, were 3D games, or at least had 3D polygons like NSMB. 



It is possible that they were going to have Nintendo NX be two separate purchases of handheld hardware and home hardware with a super streamlined SDK to port between the two systems (having possibly the same architecture and OS just with different performance profiles).

I think that plan (if it ever existed) went out the window fairly quickly when the Wii U mega-bombed (going from 101 million to 13 million is drastically worse performance for a console that was trying to ride on the successful brand of its predecessor).

It is fortunate that Wii and Wii U were low enough performance profiles that Nintendo Switch could receive slightly improved ports in a portable form factor. It makes you kind of wonder if, internally, the high ups at Nintendo had this merger of home and handheld consoles as a long term plan B or if it was just a bit of luck that the transition went so well (easily getting ports from Wii U to Switch).

If Wii U had sold say 50+ Million consoles, we might have had two different devices rather than the current Nintendo Switch.

I guess you could say it was the logical conclusion of inflating development budgets and Nintendo's very consistent success with portable hardware.

Maybe it could have taken another generation longer?
Maybe the transition to hybrid hardware could have been less powerful hardware than their most recent home console, making it a harder transition?
Maybe you could say it was inevitable, but just a matter of when, not if?

Maybe, but here we are, regardless which way we wax and wane on these thoughts...

That said, I am glad we got to the Nintendo Switch, the software and experience is much more my vibe than any of Nintendo's previous handhelds.

Would be bliss to get cool stuff like SSX Tricky HD on this thing. (I said that about Katamari and now we have that so... :P )



Yes, it was inevitable.



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TheMisterManGuy said:
zorg1000 said:

Technically yes but a majority of titles were still 2D on DS, 3DS is when you really started to see 3D being more prominent.

I'd say it was more 50/50. Like, most of Nintendo's releases, especially their in-house ones, were 3D games, or at least had 3D polygons like NSMB. 

Ok but my point still stands, both their handhelds and consoles had large leaps which impacted their output and would have continued to get worse if they had two separate systems.



When the herd loses its way, the shepard must kill the bull that leads them astray.

zorg1000 said:

Ok but my point still stands, both their handhelds and consoles had large leaps which impacted their output and would have continued to get worse if they had two separate systems.

I agree, and I'd also argue this is why Nintendo pulled out of the power wars starting with the Wii. Increased AAA development costs were putting a lot of pressure on Nintendo, a company who's always been very conservative with Game Budgets. So by not competing on Power, they can keep development budgets and team sizes as low as possible both for them and other developers who want to make something less costly than a AAA console game. The Switch has more than enough power for Nintendo's needs for quite a while, and many games these days are developed on flexible engines that don't really need anymore fidelity than what the Switch can handle, which leads to great third party support as well.

I think we're reaching the point where consumers are getting less and less wowed by each generational leap. You saw signs of this with 7th gen consoles, which still saw plenty of great AAA and indie games released well into the current generation as developers and consumers were still fine with that level of specs for a little while longer. This gen could last even longer, as Next generation with 4k standard means that development costs and team sizes will be even larger for AAA games, and the importance of remasters, indies, and mid-budget titles becomes even more prominent. This means that Switch, PS4, and Xbox One will still see plenty of great games even 4 or 5 years into next generation.