What We Know About The Nintendo Switch's Low-End Graphics

The Nintendo Switch looks like it might be complete weaksauce when compared to the best consoles from Sony and Microsoft. But the real question is: Does that matter? Probably not.

Reports are suggesting the Switch will barely churn out 1080p graphics to a TV, and Nintendo has confirmed at least one game won't even handle that relatively rote spec. Meanwhile, Sony and Microsoft are so eager to please future-looking consumers that both companies have released console refreshes specifically for the alphabet soup of 4K HDR. Nintendo ignoring that soup seems positively stupid at first glance, but that's because we're accustomed to a console war of specs -- and Nintendo doesn't want any part of it.

It's a philosophy Nintendo's honed since the release of the original Wii and the perceived failure of the GameCube. The GameCube was a powerful beast packed into a tiny box, and it directly competed with the PS2 and original Xbox. But keeping apace spec-wise came at severe financial costs, and Nintendo didn't even "win". Instead, the company's consoles always came in second or third in sales.

With the Wii, Nintendo tried a different tack: Banking heavily on its healthy stable of first party properties, like Mario and Zelda, and funky peripherals, like the Wii Remote. It completely ignored the "specs" that get gamers giddy. There was zero talk of how many pixels the console could push, and Nintendo soundly ignored all criticism when it became clear that the Wii would only play games at 480p.

If anything, the strict adherence to 480p only seemed to bolster the Wii's populist image. The consoles from Sony and Microsoft were for hardcore gamers looking for 1080p resolution, HDMI out and hyper-realistic graphics. The Wii was for people who didn't know what any of those buzzwords meant.

And we're seeing Nintendo use the same strategy with the new Nintendo Switch. This console is for the masses, not the spec-obsessed gamer. Back in December Eurogamer reported that the Switch could only churn out games to the TV at a 1080p resolution and games to the Switch's tablet at just 720p. That's about the same resolution you'd expect from a smartphone or three-year-old PS4 and Xbox One consoles.

It's a perfectly adequate resolution in a lot of respects. Most of the TVs in my home, and in homes across the US, have televisions with a max resolution of 1080p. Unless you're updating your set this year, 1080p is all you need.

Which is probably why Nintendo is embracing the "good enough" resolution in the Switch's most anticipated game: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Nintendo, in a statement provided to IGN, revealed that the game will run at 900p and 30 frames per second on the Switch.

30fps is a common spec for consoles. It's the approximate frame rate for most movies. PC gamers, who prefer higher frame rates and the more realistic movement of characters that it entails, would clutch their pearls and faint at a game only rendering 30 frames per second. But a console gamer might not even be aware that there are higher frame rates they're missing out on. That's due to the TVs themselves. It is only recently that TVs cheaper than $1300 could play back content at faster frame rates like 60fps or 120fps.

900p is also a pretty common spec -- circa 2013. It falls smack dab between 720p and 1080p, and for the majority of people there is no visually discernible differences between 720p, 900p and 1080p. It's a common resolution for games to play back on the original Xbox One and the PS4. In fact some of the biggest games from those consoles, including Sunset Overdrive, Assassin's Creed and Battlefield, can't play back at anything higher than 900p.

This all means that 900p at 30fps is a perfectly populist set of specs. It's positively common and imminently playable. And it's perfectly in line with Nintendo's decade-long strategy of ignoring the latest and greatest TV fads (such as 4K and HDR) to focus on its own fads.

And due to the design of the Switch, these details aren't even that big a deal. The Switch's primary guts, reportedly based on the Nvidia Tegra processor found in the Nvidia Shield tablet and TV, are located in the tablet section of the device. That tablet, according to Eurogamer, is a 720p display. The Switch only needs to be able to handle higher resolutions when it's plugged into the TV, and it plugs into the TV via the Switch dock.

If Nintendo really wanted to, it could release a dock at a later date that sports a better processor for sending higher resolution games to the TV. As we saw last year with the mid-cycle PS4 Pro and Xbox One S, the really fanatical gamers will shell out a lot of cash to upgrade -- even only a couple of years after a console purchase.

So, conceivably, the Switch could get better graphics around the time consumers start tossing their HDTVs and start picking up the 4K sets. And even if Nintendo opts to ignore 4K all together, it could be fine. The Wii managed to be a wildly successful console because it let grandmas bowl and grandads lose weight and that random non-gamer friend of yours have a lightsaber duel. If the $469.95 Switch can get people as excited about virtual cow milking then all the resolutions and frame rates and processors won't matter.

This story originally appeared on Gizmodo


Comments

    if you want the best specs why the hell would you get any console over a high end gaming PC?

      Cost!

        I'm pretty sure, the cost of you getting the console + a good 4K tv will be more than a PC.

          Not sure why you include the cost of a 4k TV for the console but not the PC.
          PC still needs a 4k monitor/tv also.

            Because a 4K monitor is way cheaper than a 4K tv. If you actually do compare them both having similar performance, you will notice the price difference is not as much as you would think it is.

            Last edited 23/01/17 2:04 pm

              You can run a console using a PC monitor/Speakers.
              You can run a PC on your TV.

              The reality is the cost of Monitor / TV is moot in a price comparison between PC and console.

                Well suit yourself if you want to twist it to that point.

                All I'm telling you is a full PC setup vs a full console setup is not that far apart from each other in terms of price.

                  I see the point that @Letrico is making and it's right.
                  I don't think you get it mccawsome.

                  I guess I just don't understand why you feel the need to include the more expensive setup for the console but not the PC. Smacks of justifing your statement rather than an accurate comparison of cost.
                  Agree to disagree I guess.

              Not if you want that monitor to support the latest copy protection nonsense. There aren't that many cheap 4k monitors that actually support hdcp 2.2, and if you're forking out a decent ammount of cash you dont want it to be obsolete within a year.

                You mean like the Xbox One and PS4 are obselete and have to be replaced completely with venue more expensive PC-lites than before?
                And then replace them again in another couple of years.

          Oh my, this is the most insane reasoning I have ever seen, thanks for the chuckle.

          You don't need a 4K TV to play console games!

          Most people would have a TV anyway, when I got my xbone I didn't get a new TV so the only cost was the console.

        The cost argument never held up in my eyes: most people need a PC at home anyway and the cost of a console will be about the cost of a graphics card that will typically be equally or more powerful than the console counter part. Throw in a few hobbies like photo or video editing that will be a lot more pleasant on a powerful PC and it's not bad value or hard to justify at all.
        There's nothing wrong with consoles to be clear, but most people will have a PC regardless of their preference.

        The other thing is that "high end" PCs don't have to be the overkill systems that keyboard warriors use to measure their dicks with, $1000+ systems are more than most will need and the best thing about PCs are the options they give you: want to play at high fps? Use lower res textures. Want pretty textures but don't care about shadows or a few jagged edges? Change the lighting and anti-aliasing options.

        People that want a "no-compromises" setup for games are not only wasting their money but also missing out on the absolute best part about the platform: customising a game to run to your specs, not the developer's. On a console you have your compromises made for you, on a PC you get to make them yourself and it's glorious.

      Time. Consoles generally work right out of the box. You need to spend serious time on a good PC to get the most out of it. Even then you're going to run into a lot of issues.

      I'm currently RMAing my 3rd motherboard for a PC that I built 6 months ago. 6 months of having a PC with great specs that have been spent trouble shooting.

      This stuff doesn't happen with consoles.

      Long story short, I regret going with socket 2011-3. I don't think I'll ever buy enthusiast hardware again. So many bios updates. So many disappointments. So many blue screens. So much money spent.

        I don't buy it. You can game on PC without having to build it yourself - in fact it costs little to get a custom PC made at a local computer store or you can buy pre-made ones from the major manufacturers. There are also gaming laptops which obviously do not require you to build them.

        Faults happen with all hardware - remember the RROD anyone? Or what about the YROD?

        PC's can also do a lot more than play games, I don't need to spell this out. And - you do not need a top of the line PC to outperform a PS4..

          My Xbox One crashed more than any PC I've ever owned has in its life. Updates have reduced the issues, but still have crashes, and the most annoying one is when watching a bluray. Got no opyions at all other than hope. PC has countless options.
          Plus games are sometimes even half the price on PC, look better and have mods and PC has as far too many exclusives to even bother to count.

            My PS3, PS4 and Wii U have only ever just worked. Yes I can't write a story with them or do my tax. But for gaming they do just fine. But my PC... I've been a pc user since I built my first one in 1998. For years I was an incredibly dedicated gamer and overclocker. I would spend hours tuning my machine. Until I got to my late 20s and I just... didn't want to do it anymore. I just wanted to game, not spend hours getting the system to work properly.

            I'm a filmmaker now, so I still spend a lot of time with my PC. I don't game that much but because you need a good rig to edit video, I have a good rig. And I just want it to work like my consoles do. Yes there are countless options for PC. But when you're getting crashes all the time and you have to find the culprit... which of the countless options is the one crashing your machine? Is it the PSU? The video card? Your memory? Hard drive? CPU (doubtful but it happens) or motherboard (prb worst case scenario). All of these take time to check. Time that I for one would rather spend doing anything else. THAT is the biggest downfall with PC gaming.

            If you haven't had issues with your PC then awesome. That's great. But you don't have to look far to find millions of people who have and who are over the stuffing around. So that's my opinion as to why ppl would choose console over PC. Yes PC gaming when it works is amazing. But I am regularly blown away by the gfx from my PS4. It really does a good job and it's a totally legit way to play. And you can buy one right now for $400. That's a good deal all round.

          What don't you buy? And compare the cost of a gaming laptop with a console. There's a big difference.

        With my gaming rigs I've just paid my local parts shop to put it together for me for $150-200. Never had an issue with 2 PC's in 7 years.

          when PC purists argue that PC's don't cost that much more than consoles, but quote $200 just to have someone put it together. That's 2/3 of the way to a PS4 before you've even bought any components.

            Hey champ,

            I didnt say I was a PC purist or that PC's dont cost much more than consoles.

              wasn't saying that about you, specifically. just using your numbers to make a point

          $150-200 is loads of money compared with the cost of a PS4, PS4 Pro or XBox Slim.

        Some people just have rotten luck with computers.

        Me personally i rarely get issues, the only one was when a motherboards solder points were degraded. Put it in the oven, good as new :)

      "Exclusives" is the only real answer to your question.

    Didn't the original headline read along the lines of "What we know about the Switch's garbage graphics"?

    Did somebody get in trouble?

      Even with the headline edit, the article is still full of garbage like this:

      It is only recently that TVs cheaper than $1300 could play back content at faster frame rates like 60fps...

      Wat?

        @cubits Yeah mate, haven't you heard, 60 hz is the big new thing! haha

          I was going to comment about my 10year old 100hz plasma but ahh it wasn't under 1300.

        And this...

        If Nintendo really wanted to, it could release a dock at a later date that sports a better processor for sending higher resolution games to the TV.

        LOL no it couldn't. The dock on the Switch already costs something like $90 (which is extortionate). I can just imagine the Switch Dock PRO which would likely cost as much as the Switch itself, seeing as how it would have to contain some serious hardware, not just a 'processor'.

        Yeah i lol'd when i read that. Even many old CRT TV's did 60Hz. Hahaha

      I hope so, it was an intentionally misleading headline that could hurt sales of a new console, based on BS.

      Low end is more accurate I guess depending on what you compare it to, but the claims of only 900P and 30fps for its most demanding title put it on a par with the Xbox One.

      So if the Xbox One has low end graphics (which you could argue it does) then so does the switch.

      An accurate headline would be Nintendo Switch Graphics power similar to Xbox One and PS4, but that won't get us clicking on the headline.

        This was posted last week on one of the US sites and was subsequently ripped to shreds by most that read it. Someone with big balls posted it here today.

        only 900P and 30fps for its most demanding title put it on a par with the Xbox One.

        That's being fairly generous. BOTW of the wild is pretttty basic compared to something like The Witcher 3, which IIRC ran [email protected] on XB1. I'm confident that an XB1 would devour BOTW at [email protected] I think it's fair to call it "garbage graphics" if it's less powerful than a 3-year-old console (that was itself underpowered).

        Resolution doesn't equal performance. Not in the slightest.
        How many shader units does it have?
        How much vram?
        How fast does it transform raster graphics?
        The list is almost endless of the functions a gpu performs. Resolution is essentially meaning less.

        I'm not saying the graphics are bad but we have no information at all to say they are the same.

        Last edited 23/01/17 5:08 pm

          Resolution is not meaningless.

          I'll play a game on medium settings at 1080p.

          You play the same game on medium settings at 480p.

          You'll notice the difference big time. By your theory I could be gaming at 4K and you could be at 480p and there'd be no difference. I tell you the first time I booted up Metal Gear Solid V at 4K I could not believe the difference from 1080p. You can see everything. You can be miles away from the enemy and recognise the weapon they are using, from their shadow. It's quite amazing.

            Resolution doesn't not equal draw distance.
            I'd rather be able to see 100m ahead in a game at 720 than 5 meters at 4k

              But it does effect draw distance. But if we're playing the same game where you can see 100m ahead at 720P and I'm playing at 4K then there'd be a noticeable difference.

              So resolution counts. Yes there's other factors but resolution is important.

    This console is for the masses, not the spec-obsessed gamer.That is why I am concerned about the Switch's design. This isn't the days of the Wii and to a certain extent, the Wii U when consoles were better than the mobile experience. These are the days when mobile devices have embedded themselves firmly in the public consciousness, streaming devices that let you use your tablets and phones with the TV are prevalent and cheap, and mobile gaming is starting to reach parity with console gaming in terms of experience and graphics.

    The only real selling points of the Switch are the dedicated physical controls and eventual Nintendo first party games. Except Nintendo is breaking into the mobile market now so they are essentially going to start cannibalising their Switch sales if they aren't careful. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out.

      Not to be elitist but... real gamers aren't mobile gamers. The experience isn't even close. One is gaming. One is wasting time on your phone. Period.

        Nope. Justify it however you want to stop from feeling like you're wasting your time but playing a game = gaming, regardless of the format.

          True, but there is a big difference between you playing whatever on your PC or console vs your sister playing angry birds at the bus stop. I reckon that is what he was getting at.

            Yeah man it is. You said it better though.

            Ppl who play mobile games and nothing else: "I'm such a GAMER now you guys!".

            Um no. No. No you're not.

              A gamer is someone who plays games and either self-identifies or is externally identified as being a gamer.

              Someone wants to play games on their phone and identify as a gamer, what does it matter?

                No offence man but you tell me? You could've ignored my comment but now you're pursuing it up and asking me why it matters? I think it matters to you or you wouldn't still be asking.

                I guess the real answer is that it matters to me. Gaming as an experience is amazing. There's nothing amazing about mobile gaming. Shitty screen. Shitty controls. Maybe if you could plug it into a tv and use a controller it would be okay. But then it would be a console. But you can't. Not yet anyway. But honestly dude, horses for courses. I just don't think mobile only people are real gamers but if they want to call themselves gamers, it's cool by me. It's not like I'd call them out in public or anything. That would make me just as bad as the 'PC master race' arse clowns that are out there. There's room for all of us. But if I'm going to spend my time playing a game, it's going to be on my console or on my PC. I'd rather just read the net on my phone than 'game' on it.

                  There are some great games on phones, and there console games that are far worse than Angry Birds. Halo 5 comes to mind.
                  Indie titles aren't judged as good or bad as to whether they come out on PC, console or mobile.

                  There are some pretty deep mobile game to be honest. Ingress players are probably the most hardcore.

                  Fine, it matters to you. Play the games that you, in your discerning (a.k.a. "subjective") opinion think are "true games" and enjoy yourself. Why do you also feel the need to police the enjoyment of other people and their choice of games? How does it affect /you/ that they call themselves gamers for playing games that you dismiss?

          Hahaha. Maybe. Debatable. I'm not completely serious. But you said mobile gaming is reaching parity but I think they're completely different. mobile gaming is worlds away from hitting up my PS4 in a lounge room with a semi-decent sound system.

          That's an experience. That's amazing. Doodling on your phone doesn't even come close. It's not the same experience.

          But hey, just an opinion. Not calling you out and not saying you're wrong. Just that I disagree and it's not how I do it.

            @pylgrim - I'm not policing anyone. Please read all of my comments before calling me out. I'm sorry if my having a different opinion to you is causing you some kind of discomfort, but it's my opinion and that's that.

            As I've also said in my other posts, I'm not saying anyone else is wrong, it's purely my own opinion.

            I mean if we want to split hairs, you're obviously annoyed that I think mobile gamers AREN'T real gamers and I could ask you why you feel that way. But I respect that it's your opinion and don't feel the need to try and get you to change. We can disagree about things and still get along.

              I understand that it is your opinion. It is still an unkind opinion born of an elitist feeling of superiority. Otherwise why express it? When you go to the trouble of publicly mock the right of a significant group of people to call themselves as they wish, the only purpose such statement is filling is validating yourself, which is, really, quite petty.

              You talk about "disagreeing and getting along" and that's fine, but if you're in such a hugs-&-harmony mindset, you shouldn't post that kind of comments. If you have an unkind, entitled opinion about a group of people, it is your right to uphold it to yourself. Just... don't share it? Why would you?

                You're the one trying to insult me because I expressed an opinion you don't agree with. Says a lot more about you and where you're at. But unlike you, I'm not going to respond in kind because I understand that it's just your opinion.

                You're going to have a pretty rough time in the world if this kind of thing riles you up to this extent. Lots of people aren't going to agree with you about all kinds of things. Are you going to call all of them names as well?

                You obviously love pokemon go and Mario Run. Good for you. Be proud. Fly a flag or something.

                  Please point a single time when I "insulted" you or called you names? I have merely called you out on your negativity but you have gone on the defensive, feeling attacked and projecting those feelings on me. I am not riled, but perhaps you should reread your own posts and see who is getting a bit too agitated just because someone dares to infringe on your right to define your hobby as you like and tell others who don't share exactly the same view that they are not to include themselves among that select group.

                  You're going to have a really rough time in the world if whenever someone calls you out on a wrong attitude or behaviour of yours you feel "insulted".

                  Last edited 27/01/17 10:12 am

          Pokies are "gaming", but they're not gaming :P

            I'm really hoping in the next 40 years pokies get better. When I'm in my 70s I could totally put a few dollars down on Super Street Fighter IV Pokie Edition in the hope that I'll win a few dollars back if I can perfect the CPU. That'd be awesome.

        I'm going to one-up your elitism and opine that Nintendo gaming isn't real gaming either. So Casual's observation stands.

          Ooooooh. No. No. Just no. I love me some super mario. That is the epitome of gaming to me. one of the first games any of us 80s people played would've been super marios bro on the NES. The controls, the gameplay, the music. It's just perfect.

          I think the reason nintendo are still even making consoles is because they know exactly what gaming is. The fun factor of their titles is well over 9000.

          I'll counter that modern pretty garbage games aren't real gaming. Games that have a focus of graphics but the story is as painful as an ice pick in the eye and game play that's weak and repetitive, but sell millions because people buy the hype.

            I think they're bad games but they're still games.

            I judge the people who love them a little though. Dudebros. Cool.

      Have you stopped gaming to play Miitomo and Mario Run?

      Their whole point is to gain market share and point people towards their main games. There is some depth to them, but nothing on full priced 'real' console game.

    It is only recently that TVs cheaper than $1300 could play back content at faster frame rates like 60fps or 120fps.

    except for you know, CRT TV's that could handle 60fps...

    This is straight up wrong.

      CRT TVs could handle 60 fields per second, but only 30 frames per second (for NTSC) and 50 fields per second/25 frames per second for PAL.

        I am a big fighting game player, i have played Smash Bros Melee on a CRT in 60fps, they definitely can.

          A CRT computer monitor, or a CRT television?

          For computer monitors of that age, 60 Hz progressive over a VGA cable is believable. For televisions, it was more likely to be 60 Hz interlaced, so only half the scan lines would be updated each 1/60th of a second as @poita said.

            No actual TV's, i understand that the older CRT's couldn't do it but most of the later in life CRT's definitely can, however i think it was only in SD format (non interlaced as you said). i've been in rooms filled with Crt's playing Smash and other Fighting games in 60fps.

            even if you take into account some people may have never had a CRT capable of it, i don't think there are many LCD screens that couldn't do 60fps once they were a thing, so it's still a pretty wrong statement as i would bet that most gamers would have experienced a 60FPS game (whether they were aware of it or not).

              The most common connection methods for SDTVs were interlace only (antenna, composite video, S-Video).

              I agree that there exist CRT televisions with progressive inputs, but that was over alternative inputs like VGA, component video, or SCART (only if the TV had the required pins on the connector wired up).

              Perhaps they started becoming common on the lower end as HDTVs started to enter the market, to help them compete. But I don't ever remember progressive scan inputs being common before HDTV.

        Some of the late era CRT TV's did a full 60fps output, as did most monitors.

        But yeah, while most CRTs weren't really 60, once we went to LCD it became universal as we moved past the old standards.

        Last edited 23/01/17 12:54 pm

      It's astoundingly incorrect, wtb editorial oversight.

    I would agree - except the switch is selling for nearly the price of a PS4 Pro. Nintendo with its low graphic strategy had its best success with the Wii, which was cheap enough for people not to care.

    With the Switch being poor at being a portable solution (re: battery life), it doesn't have a saving grace of being a decent console either.

    The GC is also a poor example, it launched after the XBox by 6 months, and of which the Xbox was far better graphically, and two years after the PS2. On top of this, its gimmicky micro dvd's meant it couldn't be used as a DVD player, which is one of the primary things that drove initial PS2 and XBox sales.

    So what does that mean for the Switch? It won't have the cross benefit of being able to be a 4k Media Center, and that anything third party will have to be designed specifically for the Switch, and all the costs associated with it. My initial impression is that this will end up being another Wii U after the initial hype dies down.

    Last edited 23/01/17 11:28 am

      It all depends

      Right now it differs from its competitors due to its portability and party play

      Games will make this system
      and games will only come out if the system sells well

      I love my graphics but I'm having trouble resisting the urge to buying it on day one

        I've gone the other way and cancelled my preorder - the mobility thing I can understand what your getting at, but the $450 entry price means parents just aren't going to buy multiples for their kids (meaning it'll stay at home), and the older generation view it as somewhat passe.

          The difficulty for Nintendo is that as a launch price, it's not too bad at all, but Nintendo is coming in mid-cycle for the PS4 and Xbox One S, which are now selling much cheaper than the Switch will be. When I bought my OG PS4 it was $550, $90 more than the Switch is today. But now you can get a PS4 with multiple games for $398 from EBGames.

          I doubt Nintendo could match AUD$399 at launch, I think they were stretched for what they're charging now, given Reggi's comments about the lack of a pack-in game. I would say give it until year's end, when we will be able to see what the games play like and if Nintendo can give it a price cut more in line with base Xbox and PS4

            Nintendo are terrible when it comes to price cuts. A Wii U premium costs me more than a PS4/Xbone today at EB.

      Nintendo with its low graphic strategy had its best success with the Wii, which was cheap enough for people not to care.

      Pretty sure the Wii was $400AUD at launch. So is an extra $80 really that much of a problem? Sure the Wii came packed in with Wii Sports (the Switch's equivalent to 1-2, Switch). The Switch has no pack-in game, but has the added advantage of being able to take it with you, and you can play two player games right out of the box without the need to buy an extra controller.

        I'm loathe to use AUD pricing as its traditionally inflated and our dollar has gone to hell, however the Wii launched at $250 w/ a game in the US, compared to Switch is $300 USD without. Pricing at the time also compared favourly against the PS3 and and the X360 at $499 (I'm sure the X360 had a price drop against the PS3 after its launch window, but can't find it).

        The bigger thing however is Wii pricing rapidly dropped after launch as well, which was really where it had its biggest success.

        Last edited 23/01/17 4:04 pm

      "The GC is also a poor example, it launched after the XBox by 6 months..."

      Uhhh, nope. GameCube was only 3 days after the Xbox in America, about 7-8 weeks later in PAL regions.
      And in America, it was only 1 year after the PS2, which had a much longer launch period in Japan.

      I absolutely agree though, it's one thing to have aging tech, but the price on the Switch is pretty damn high when compared to its competitors and what's in their boxes. I understand we've got to pay for the luxury of the little screen, but I think 99% of gamers could have done without all the tech in the joycons if it brought the price down by $50 - $100.

      Last edited 23/01/17 6:04 pm

      Experts say the Gamecube was the most powerful if I remember correctly.

        This is just simply wrong. This is a little basic, and ignores architectural differences (and because of that clockspeeds) but.

        GameCube
        -485MHz IBM CPU
        -162MHz ATI GPU
        -40MB overall RAM

        Xbox
        -733MHz Intel CPU
        -230MHz nVidia GPU
        -64MB RAM

        CPU in the Xbox does Out of Order Execution which is a huge boon.

        GPU on the Xbox supported Vertex & Pixel Shader pipelines on die, which whilst possible to execute on the GC, was not an intrinsic function.

        And 33% roughly more ram doesn't help either.

        People really need to stop thinking the GC was anything but what it actually was.

          People really need to stop thinking the GC was anything but what it actually was.

          A pretty good console with memorable games?

            I agree (and I loved mine - and continue to love it thru Dolphin), but neither was it the lost alchemists cup of wonder that people make it out to be.

            Last edited 24/01/17 10:03 am

      Most 4K TVs are a media centre already. How many devices do we need to cost extta money to do the same things?

      Nintendo with its low graphic strategy had its best success with the Wii, which was cheap enough for people not to care.
      The Wii launched at $399.95 in Australia.

        Read Above

        "The Wii launched at $250 w/ a game in the US, compared to Switch is $300 USD without. Pricing at the time also compared favourly against the PS3 and and the X360 at $499 (I'm sure the X360 had a price drop against the PS3 after its launch window, but can't find it)."

        So eleven years later we are complaining about a price hike of $70 on a new console?

        I did a quick calculation on the RBA website which puts $399 in 2006 to over $500 with inflation.

        I know it is not a perfect way to calculate, but it is interesting nonetheless.

    If this site is going to cross-post other stories from Gizmodo (the AU editors are beyond reproach, but I'm sorry the US site is full of amateurs) then the least we should ask for is they be re-produced exactly.

    'What We Know About the Nintendo Switch's Garbage Graphics' and filed under a tag of 'console wars' is a nothing article, designed to incite animosity and the sorts of base comment section sewerage I thought modern video games web sites wanted to leave behind.

    I'm prepared to talk about the Switch and its horsepower but this is a poor place to do it, not when the article and many others like it on Kotaku/elsewhere are already acting as judge, jury and executioner.

    What would I know I'm just a Nintendo apologist anyway :D

    720P/900P @30fps in 2017 is bloody ridiculous.

    Nintendo, continuing to be an entire generation of technology behind.

      Yet others say everything is 1080p on TV. But Xbox One and PS4 can't be played in a car. Only Halo game's you can play on the go are the horrible Spartan Assault games, and the Vita is something not to be even mentioned, or at least that's how Sony view it.

    Doesn't bother me. The WiiU was underpowered compared to the competition, but with the types of games Nintendo makes it didn't need to compete and the first party titles looked stunning.

    I'm not looking to upgrade to a 4K TV for at least a couple of years because then I'd also have to upgrade my receiver (handles 4K but not HDR) then I'd probably want to update my gaming PC that I use on the TV. I have a PS4 Pro but mainly got that for a better VR experience, probably won't bother with the Scorpio and just stick with the original Xbone.

    I'm happy to sacrifice some grunt in the Switch so that I can have portability and a better battery life.

    If you're going to have only one gaming device, I can't imagine it would be the Switch. You're obviously buying the console for the switch specific games and NOT ports.

    So with that in mind, comparisons to other consoles are irrelevant.

    Would I prefer graphics which were similar to a higher end PC - yes.
    Will I still buy a Switch even with the crappier graphics - yes.

    I have no issue with the specs or the price, but with Zelda being the only game in the foreseeable future which is also coming out on the Wii U? No Switch for me. If there was Mario and Donkey Kong coming soon I'd absolutely buy day 1. But nope, its either milking cows or PS360 ports.

    The low specs make it difficult for 3rd parties to port the games without a lot of reworking. This is the main reason that specs matter, this will get no support unless it sells insanely well, which is very unlikely. Wii-u-redux.

    I love my 3ds games. Most of the games on the 3ds can rival many games outright on the normal ps4 and xbox one. The fact that most of these games i can't get on any console or pc is enough justification for me to get a switch. Sure price wise against the heavy hitting ps4 plus console is questionable, at the same time its not like these consoles cover the portable aspects either.

    Justified? Up to a matter of a opinion.

    For me, the portability puts the switch in a genre that appeals to me. The fact that my wife, will get annoyed when she wants to watch tv before bed enables me to just remove the switch from the dock and continue playing somewhere else in the house. It's win for me. It's already hard enough to play my ps4 games uninterrupted. But with switch i can play on tv, and when situation calls for it, remove and continue playing.

    Understandably if you are a student, single gamer who doesn't live within a confined set of household rules it will feel that you are being jibbed. Fair enough. I understand your view as well. I was once like that too. :D

    To top it all off, I love my Zelda, Mario and Fire Emblem(s) and these games since the dawn of time have never needed to rely on the most advance hardware. They play just as well with artistic design and deep thought out level development for me to not care about specs.

      It would still be nice for Nintendo to just pretend to care about graphics when they released a console for once.

      Zelda being in 1080p instead of 720 isn't going to make the game worse for you guys who don't care about graphics.

        I won't lie. I wouldn't mind Nintendo breaking out into the 3840x2160 res field either. Would be nice to see one of their games without the jaggies.

    Of course it matters. The Wii can't be replicated as the cheap shovelware and licensed movie games are now on mobile/tablet and usually for free. Developers learned from the Wii that it was too costly to create for the ps3/xbox AND the wii, so they stopped.

    Same thing happened with the Wii U, except this time they didn't have the shovelware to make the library look busier.

    Nothing has changed, the Switch's pathetic launch line up shows that Nintendo is still struggling to bring enough first party titles to their consoles, and they will get a couple of shoddy ports of years old games from third parties and then sweet nothing.

      Like our PS4 and Xbox One getting so many tons of remastered games?

      they will get a couple of shoddy ports of years old games from third parties and then sweet nothing.

      Maybe, but their aim could be to get the Japanese developers that work mostly on the 3DS to move to the Switch. The whole unified platform idea seems to have benefit so that they can keep making hardware.

      They seem to be doing a lot better than Wii U.

      In year one we are getting Mario, Zelda, Splatoon, Mario Kart. Wii U couldn't manage that.

      Nothing has changed, the Switch's pathetic launch line up shows that Nintendo is still struggling to bring enough first party titles to their consoles, and they will get a couple of shoddy ports of years old games from third parties and then sweet nothing.

      I'll let Reggie Fils-Aime respond to that.

      All told, Fils-Aime said the Switch will have a "steady cadence of content."

      Fils-Aime said in a separate interview that it's not all about launch.

      http://www.gamespot.com/articles/nintendo-exec-on-the-two-reasons-why-switch-wont-s/1100-6446987/

      Last edited 23/01/17 3:37 pm

        Here is a quote from Reggie from over 4 years ago when asked about the Wii U lineup of first party titles.

        “Rest assured, Mr. Miyamoto [and] the team at EAD are working on fantastic projects. Rest assured that Retro is working on a fantastic project. We’ve got big games in development that’ll be coming, that’ll continue to drive the install base of the system. All of that’s gonna be there.”

        Sounds like more of the same to me.

        Last edited 24/01/17 4:18 pm

    Nintendo just need to give up on the home console market and develop cross-platform, and handheld.

      Companies exist to make money. Why would a company throw away everything that makes them lots of money for something that makes them less money?

        Everything that makes them a lot of money? You reckon they made a lot of money on the WiiU??? There's no way. I reckon they'd make more money by putting first party games on the two big home-systems than they would leaving them in-house with the pathetic install base of the WiiU.

        As I said, keep going with handheld devices, sure, but at this point Nintendo are pretty much irrelevant to the console market.

      That's such a bad idea in so many ways. Where will MS and Sony et their ideas from? What bit of gaming innovation did either of these two come up with?

        So if Nintendo got out of the hardware business we wouldn't have to endure another PS Move or Kinect?

        Nintendo could do with stealing MS/Sonys ideas for how to make an online system function.

        "Oh your old 3DS died? Just put the old one next to the new one on the floor, draw a circle of salt around it and then slaughter a pig between them. Your system should now be transferred!"

    As long as the games are enjoyable I don't care if the resolution and frame rate aren't at the bleeding edge. Absurd to think 4K or 60fps are going to Midas shit design into gold play.

      No one thinks that. Just because a game is 4K doesn't magically make the design terrible. Like the little Mexican girl says "why not both?"

      Good game + 900p = good
      good game + 4K = better

    This is a terrible article. Trying to justify why it is okay for Nintendo to stay with lower ends specs is not a bad thing. If you truly wanted this article to shine, it should have been an un bias and analytical view on how and why Nintendo went for the mid range tech specs verses the other consoles and what it could mean for developers down the track in terms of bringing games to the Switch and what would need to be done to brings these games over, such as is it worth the port/creation on a lower end spec machine, will there be a demographic that will want these games, what needs to be adjusted or sacrificed ans so on so forth.

    Last edited 23/01/17 3:19 pm

      Nintendo aren't trying to have the most powerful hardware, because they already did that with the Gamecube. It was more powerful than the PS2, and the XBox was more powerful than the Gamecube, but the PS2 still managed to sell more than both of them put together.

        They already did it when Pokemon GO got millions of people wondering around the physical world; life is the most powerful hardware 0_0

    the refusal for nintendo to use x86 architecture and weaksauce specs will result in most 3rd party developers abandoning the console early on like all other publishers did with the wii and wii u

      The wii was out along with the ps3 and the Xbox and neither were x86.

        the wii was vastly underpowered and gimmicky, if it had similar specs and a normal controller by default it wouldn't have been abandoned by third parties. the gimmick is what sold it to most people who were not gamers and they barely played anything outside of wii sports or wii fit.

        this generation for ease of scaling x86 has saved developers a tonne of money, no one wants to fork out extra for a nintendo port considering its smaller consumer base.

    Jesus. The pretentious wank in this comments section is jaw-dropping.

    *popcorn*

    @pylgrim. Hey man are you into recycling? Cos you're throwing my own words back at me. You even edited your response to get it 'just right'. Too bad you can't edit in anything original or you know, insightful. But it's okay, we were all young once. You're like, 17 right? I remember my first beer.

    I can also recognise a pointless argument when I see one. Sorry that my opposing views have triggered you but I still don't think mobile gaming is gaming. It's like going for a walk around the park and calling yourself a sprinter. There are similarities, but that's as far as it goes.

    And in your case, you went for the walk, said you're a sprinter, I said "not in my opinion" and you got the crankies. That's your right dude. Enjoy that. I'm reinstalling Witcher 3 now. Amazing game. Can't play it on mobile though. But I guess you get to play flappy bird or something. More power to ya man. You enjoy tapping that screen.

    Last edited 27/01/17 9:46 pm

    Who gives a shit if it 720 or 1080 i dont play pokemon yellow or star craft for the fuckin resolution!
    You can have ya 4k ill take a good game over graphics any day. Morrowind, super metroid, the list goes on.

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