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Forums - Sales Discussion - Let's settle this once for all...

 

Which generation is Switch ?

WiiU and Switch are both gen. 8th 33 33.00%
 
WiiU is gen. 8th and Switch is gen. 9th 56 56.00%
 
None of them !! 11 11.00%
 
Total:100
Leynos said:

The switch is neither 8th nor 9th gen. WIsh people would stop putting it with traditional console generations. It's a 1ST Generation Hyrbid Nintendo console. It's in a category of its own.

People keep saying this. Like the Sega Nomad never existed.  The thing was a portable, it played the exact same games as a home console with no compromise, it connected to a TV, it allowed for a second player. It did everything the Switch does except it did it decades earlier.

And would you consider the Switch Lite a hybrid?

Would you consider the PSTV (PS Vita that only works on a TV) a console?

Where's the line?



Twitter: @d21lewis

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Nintendo consoles are on a weird scale. They always last about five years before there's a successor. The Xbox and Playstation consoles (especially after the 7th gen) last a bit longer. The only reason the Wii U kinda lined up with everyone else is because the Wii came out a year after the Xbox 360 and its successor came earlier but still only a year before. The Wii U fizzled out rather quickly but still within Nintendo's usual time frame. The PS4 and Xbox One arrived later and lasted much longer. Now we have a 2017 console that will probably have a successor in the next couple of years, living life amongst consoles that are fresh out of the gate and will be around for another seven or so years.

There's a good possibility that the next Switch will be ending its life right when the PS5 and XS are ending their lives. When that happens, what do we call it? We have an 8th gen Nintendo console along side 9th gen consoles? Or do we have a 10th gen Nintendo Console along side 9th gen consoles? AND the 3DS was clearly an 8th gen console. Is the Switch a successor to that? Is it a 9th gen portable/8th gen home console? I'm giving myself a headache.

One thing's for sure: 9th gen (aside from the Switch--if you consider it a 9th gen console) has been extremely boring thus far. It's hard to have an interesting conversation about the PS5 and XS at this point in time.



Twitter: @d21lewis

Amnesia said:

"the same games as the PS5 and Xbox"

Oh really ?.. I am waiting for that. It is not like if we were already barely seeing true powerful 8th gen games coming to the Switch.

Why are you talking about power ? I am speaking about library.



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d21lewis said:
Leynos said:

The switch is neither 8th nor 9th gen. WIsh people would stop putting it with traditional console generations. It's a 1ST Generation Hyrbid Nintendo console. It's in a category of its own.

People keep saying this. Like the Sega Nomad never existed.  The thing was a portable, it played the exact same games as a home console with no compromise, it connected to a TV, it allowed for a second player. It did everything the Switch does except it did it decades earlier.

And would you consider the Switch Lite a hybrid?

Would you consider the PSTV (PS Vita that only works on a TV) a console?

Where's the line?

You can't read the part where I said 1st generation Nintendo console/system?



Bite my shiny metal cockpit!

Mnementh said:
Amnesia said:

Strange though that people want to separate so much these two machines, they have nearly same capacities, same games, same size in hand, main concept is the same except that one is limited to 12 meters, the other one is infinite distance from dock. Games of the WiiU were all ported to Switch, Nintendo has proposed the "retro compatibility" where you pay two times full price a same game, and you all decided to deny this and call it "9th gen" instead.

As the Switch is so similar in concept and tech to the WiiU, that must be the reason it does sell so similar.

BraLoD said:

Switch is a handheld, don't worry about it.

That is why the Switch Lite sells so much more than the hybrid model that includes a costly connection to TV handheld gamers don't need.

mutantsushi said:

Nintendo itself has long been clear they are in no way actually competing against the other console twins.

And Switch actually is a rebranded NVIDIA Shield (launched same year as PS4) with low power handheld mode.
Why would Shield's hardware generation change just because it's rebranded under Nintendo?

And this must be the reason the Switch sell as well as the NVIDIA Shield did.

"But Mnementh, Switch sells because it has a Nintendo logo on the package."

As did the WiiU.

Switch is much more capable than a Wii U hardware-wise. Docked it's closer to Xbox One but still a ways away. Undocked raw power it's comparable to Wii U but still more capable. More modern chipset. Wii U used a GPU from 2008 and a  modified CPU from 2000.Switch uses hardware more modern than Xbox One or PS4.  Switch supports a lot of features Wii U could not do. Switch does not use Nintendo's craptastic API GX. It uses Nvidia NVN which supports OpenGL/Vulkan. Why else do you think modern engines like UE4/5 support it?

I'm not one to say power is the sole deciding factor on generation. Only point of this post is to point out Switch is not only a fair bit more powerful than Wii U but much more modern and offers features Wii U was incapable of power aside.



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Leynos said:
Mnementh said:

As the Switch is so similar in concept and tech to the WiiU, that must be the reason it does sell so similar.

BraLoD said:

Switch is a handheld, don't worry about it.

That is why the Switch Lite sells so much more than the hybrid model that includes a costly connection to TV handheld gamers don't need.

And this must be the reason the Switch sell as well as the NVIDIA Shield did.

"But Mnementh, Switch sells because it has a Nintendo logo on the package."

As did the WiiU.

Switch is much more capable than a Wii U hardware-wise. Docked it's closer to Xbox One but still a ways away. Undocked raw power it's comparable to Wii U but still more capable. More modern chipset. Wii U used a GPU from 2008 and a  modified CPU from 2000.Switch uses hardware more modern than Xbox One or PS4.  Switch supports a lot of features Wii U could not do. Switch does not use Nintendo's craptastic API GX. It uses Nvidia NVN which supports OpenGL/Vulkan. Why else do you think modern engines like UE4/5 support it?

I'm not one to say power is the sole deciding factor on generation. Only point of this post is to point out Switch is not only a fair bit more powerful than Wii U but much more modern and offers features Wii U was incapable of power aside.

Yeah, the point of my post was to show, that all these comparisons fall short, as obviously customers perceive Switch different to WiiU, Nvidia Shield and a dedicated handheld. That is what sales figures show.

Customers seldomly care about tech in itself. They do care about gaming experiences. True enough, new tech *may* help new experiences, but it doesn't on itself opens these possibilities. For instance: motion tech in Wii was not what made it successful, but it enabled new gaming experiences showcased by Nintendo with games, and that made the Wii successful. That also made the Wii a new gen compared to Gamecube, as GC didn't have the possibility of these experiences.

Therefore new tech is an enabler, but not the driving market force. It is what devs do with that tech. For that reason I think also defining a gen based on tech alone is foolish.



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The Switch only came a good three years after the PS4 and XBO. That's not a new generation, the Switch was just a latecomer to the 8th gen. The Wii U flopped, so they had to rush in the next thing prematurely and this is where the confusion comes from.



Amnesia said:
Leynos said:

The switch is neither 8th nor 9th gen. WIsh people would stop putting it with traditional console generations. It's a 1ST Generation Hyrbid Nintendo console. It's in a category of its own.

Strange though that people want to separate so much these two machines, they have nearly same capacities, same games,

Ok now your whole point is invalid. They have like 10-15 games in common over 3000 titles.



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The reason why the battle over which generation Switch belongs in continues to be a thing is because the initial "Nintendo exited the home console market" argument didn't stick. The PlayStation Vita sold only ~15m units lifetime and forced Sony to exit the handheld market which was the first such occurence since Sega called it quits in the home console market after the Dreamcast had failed, and we all know how significant of a defeat such an occurence is in the console wars. So because Nintendo's Wii U sold about the same amount as the Vita, there was a strong desire that Nintendo had to have failed equally. This is what brought us "Nintendo exited the home console market" in the first place, a nonsense argument that was pitched by the PS fanbase.

However, there was never anywhere close to a majority in the gaming community in late 2016/early 2017 who was willing to consider such a statement reasonable. That's why the conversation moved on to "Switch is 8th gen" because if Nintendo didn't have to make an exit like Sony, at least they should have lost so bad that they had to do the embarrassing thing of launching another console during the same generation. That's what behind this.

If you've observed this over the years, you may have noticed that the people who have tried to convince themselves that Switch is 8th gen have kept making bad Switch lifetime predictions; not just their initial predictions, but each update they make continues to be wrong. On the other hand, those who've been able to put Switch in the correct generation have been much better with their predictions, because their expected end of Switch's lifecycle is far further in the future, so they calculate lifetime sales accordingly.

So while on one hand it is annoying that people are in denial of Switch being in the same generation as the PS5 and XS, it provides continuous entertainment on the other hand because the "Switch is 8th gen" crowd keeps making bad Switch predictions, both in sales and expected lifecycle. The latest hot topic that is emerging is whether or not the upcoming Switch revision is a revision or a new generation, and that's derived from the same premise as which generation Switch belongs to.

...

That being said, here's a rundown of the timeframe in which console generations have been launched:

Gen 9: 2017-2020
Gen 8: 2011-2013
Gen 7: 2004-2006
Gen 6: 1998-2001
Gen 5: 1994-1996
Gen 4: 1987-1990
Gen 3: 1983-1986
Lost Gen: 1980-1982
Gen 2: 1976-1978
Gen 1: 1972-1975

Generations are defined by when consoles are launched, not by when their lifecycles end, hence why the Dreamcast is considered gen 6 despite its lifecycle coming to an end before Nintendo's GameCube and Microsoft's Xbox arrived on the market. Also, an especially easy way to determine a generation is to look whether a console succeeds another one by the same manufacturer, hence why both the Dreamcast and Xbox 360 constitute a new generation despite launching only 4 years after their respective predeccessor.

If you look at the list above, you'll notice that the launch timings of each generation fall into a 3-4 year window, although including every single oddity in console history would extend some of these timeframes to 5 years. If someone believed that Switch was gen 8, then they'd get the first 7-year-timeframe for a generation (2011-2017).



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It's not simply about hardware, but rather about which machines are to be considered relevant rivals and/or counterparts in the ongoing market cycle. This same thing happens in the smartphone market all the time, and PC components function on much the same level. It makes a lot of sense seeing as the console market is more inspired and influenced by both smart devices and PCs today.