Nintendo Switch boasts an exhilarating legacy, featuring a slew of renowned games and a high-quality experience in a small build. However, the age has gradually crept up to the handheld, with its constraints emerging in some recent AAA exclusives like Bayonetta 3 and Pokemon Scarlet and Violet.
To solve this dilemma, Nintendo allegedly planned to release a mid-generation revision, usually called “Nintendo Switch Pro.” Regardless, the plans were then scrapped in favor of a new console.
Sit back, relax, and grab some snacks to join us in exploring the specifics of a Switch console we never received and learn more about the next-gen Nintendo console that is its current focus in the short 2-minute video. Bibliophiles are free to scour through the rest of the article for a detailed write-up.
The Pro variant was slated to make up for the aging hardware of the current Switch variants, with rumors surrounding the development of the mid-generation edition for over a year. According to Bloomberg, at least 11 different game studios had received tools from Nintendo to develop 4K games for the Switch Pro.
However, Nintendo was quick to deny such claims, calling the report false to resolve any misunderstandings among investors and customers.
A news report on Sept. 30, 2021(JST) falsely claims that Nintendo is supplying tools to drive game development for a Nintendo Switch with 4K support. To ensure correct understanding among our investors and customers, we want to clarify that this report is not true. (1/2)
— 任天堂株式会社（企業広報・IR） (@NintendoCoLtd) September 30, 2021
Mihoyo, the studio behind Genshin Impact, was also developing the anticipated port for Nintendo Switch, but then it was never mentioned officially again. The fables in the community articulate that Genshin Impact was possibly initially being developed for the Nintendo Switch Pro, which was canceled when the model was dumped.
Highly reputable sources in the industry have unofficially solidified the existence of the Nintendo Switch Pro. For instance, John Linneman from Digital Foundry also discussed Nintendo’s secretive mid-generation Switch variant in the 92nd episode of the DF Direct Weekly podcast.
I think at one point, internally, from what I can understand from talking to different developers, that there was some kind of mid-generation Switch update planned at one point, and that seems to no longer be happening,” said John during the podcast.
Nevertheless, despite its development progressing smoothly, Nintendo eventually decided to internally pull the plug on the Switch Pro console, as per the credible Digital Foundry.
The concrete reason behind discarding the Switch Pro remains in the air. However, John Linneman from Digital Foundry has speculated one of the probable causes by Nintendo in the podcast.
As per John, Nintendo was probably concerned about the Switch Pro potentially performing poorly like some of the follow-ups in the past. Despite being good consoles, the Gamecube and Wii U performed relatively poorly in sales after highly prominent lineups.
For instance, the Gamecube rolled over a few units in contrast to the Wii, which is among the world’s most influential consoles so far. Similar circumstances followed, with the Wii U producing poor sales figures and the Nintendo Switch surpassing almost all the predefined records set by Nintendo consoles in nearly six years.
While we are not getting the Nintendo Switch Pro, images of a new Switch model in collab with The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom was recently spotted making rounds on different web forums. The rumored model could arrive with the anticipated game in the near future.
Though it is not all doom and gloom, after the mid-gen upgrade was canceled, several sources in the industry noted that Nintendo was going to direct its focus on the “next-generation hardware” next. In other words, instead of a Switch model upgrade, we could receive a whole new console from Nintendo moving forward.
It’s pretty clear that whatever they do next is going to be the actual Next Generation Hardware,” further stated John in the podcast.
However, it is certainly not happening this year, as noted by several reports within the last few weeks. Even John adopted a similar stance, stating, “I don’t think it’s going to be 2023.”
Similarly, a research director at Ampere Analysis Piers Harding-Rolls, while speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, has heralded that Nintendo’s next console will not be arriving in 2023. Piers alleges that 2024 is more likely for the next-gen console, “I’m not expecting a next-gen Nintendo console in 2023: we have 2024 in our forecasts.”
In the past, rumors have suggested that the next-gen Nintendo console will likely arrive during the second half of 2024. For instance, a recent report indicated that Nintendo has begun conversing with suppliers for the production of its next console.
Considering its healthy demand, Nintendo will produce more Switch consoles for the next fiscal year, which further signifies that a next-gen console will not arrive in 2023. This move disregards all the projections by various analysts in the past, showcasing the strength of the aged console.
The anticipated release of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom will overload the hardware sales charts for the Nintendo Switch. The current dominating games, like Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, and Splatoon 3, have also highly contributed to the recent sales of the hardware in the past few months.
The Switch has commenced this year with a bang, with recent developments showing that it broke a record in the US that no other console has in the last 30 years. Additionally, the handheld also allegedly accounted for 50% of all the consoles sold in France last year; lastly, it was the best-selling console in the UK and several other regions.
The alluring Nintendo Switch has proven to be the little giant of all the gaming platforms, often going toe-to-toe and sometimes surpassing the next-gen consoles in sales. What started as a convenient portable has now evolved into an all-in-one handheld with a chock-full of prominent exclusives and indelible experiences.
What are your thoughts about Nintendo allegedly dumping out its mid-generation Switch revision in favor of a new next-gen console? Do you think a new Nintendo console will be officially announced later this year? Do let us know your opinions in the comments below.
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