Everything We Know About The Nintendo Switch 2

Everything We Know About The Nintendo Switch 2

We know there’s going to be a Nintendo Switch 2 (or some similarly named follow-up to the Switch), mostly because the other option is Nintendo just hanging up its hat and walking off into the sea, and that’d be weird. Nintendo has, as ever, been entirely mute on the subject up until recently. But we finally have concrete acknowledgement that a Switch successor does exist from the horse’s mouth, and we now know roughly when to expect that big reveal.

With reports of developers seeing the Nintendo Switch 2 behind closed doors and tech manufacturers announcing the sudden need to produce vast numbers of LCD screens on top of Nintendo’s official confirmation, it’s a good moment to collate everything we know so far about what to expect.

Latest Nintendo Switch 2 Leaks & News

July 2, 2024: Nintendo’s Plan To Prevent Scalping: Just Make Loads Of Switch 2s – Asked about an earlier promise to take pre-emptive action on Switch 2 hardware scalping, Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa says the plan is simple: produce so many consoles that shortages can never occur.

May 11, 2024: Could These Be The Real Nintendo Switch 2 Specs? – We don’t know much about the Switch 2 just yet, but the leakers and eagle-eyed hardware buyers are noticing some trends.

May 11, 2024: 13 Nintendo Ports, Remasters, And Remakes We’d Love While We’re Waiting For The Switch 2 – It is time to start manifesting the things that we want to see on the Switch 2. Join us (or argue in the comments).

May 7, 2024: Nintendo Switch 2 Will Finally Be Revealed This Year – Nintendo President Shuntaro Furukawa has finally officially acknowledged the existence of a Switch successor, and confirmed when fans can expect a reveal.

February 27, 2024: Here’s Why The Nintendo Switch May Not Launch Until March 2025 – Rumours continue to swirl about a delay of the Switch 2 hardware into March 2025. This would put it in a similar release window as the original Switch hardware.

February 9, 2024: Leaker Suggests Persona And Sega Games Coming To Switch 2 – A popular leaker has suggested that Atlus and Sega could have announcements to make about their Switch 2 slate at Tokyo Game Show.

February 1, 2024: EA Boss On Switch 2 Rumours: ‘New Platforms Are Good For Us’ – On the question of a Switch 2, EA CEO Andrew Wilson says the publisher is keen to embrace new hardware, but stopped short of confirming or denying its existence.

January 30, 2024: Nintendo Aims To Manufacture 10 Million Switch 2s In The Next Fiscal Year – According to new reports, Nintendo is looking to put a lot of Switch 2 consoles into the world over the next fiscal year.

January 19, 2024: Report: 8% Of GDC Survey Respondents Say They’re Working On Switch 2 – A new GDC State Of The Game Industry survey reports that 8% of respondents are currently making games for the still unannounced Switch 2.

January 12, 2024: Nintendo Switch 2 Rumour Patrol: Everything We’ve Heard So Far – The Katamari-style rumour ball surrounding the Nintendo Switch 2 continues to grow – here’s what we know so far.

January 11, 2024: Switch 2 Rumours Swirl As Major Nintendo Games Go Out Of Stock – American retailers are struggling to stock some of the Switch’s most popular titles, creating a sense that Nintendo is clearing the board.

January 4, 2024: Analyst: Expect A Nintendo Switch Successor In 2024 – A games industry analyst predicts Nintendo will have a Switch 2 console on shelves in 2024, but that it won’t be a revolution on the Switch.

November 23, 2023: Five Things We Want To See From The Nintendo Switch 2 – In which we list all our greatest hopes and dreams for any potential Switch 2, from hardware to software and everything in between.

November 8, 2023: Nintendo Disputes Switch 2 Rumours, Despite Credible Evidence – Nintendo is still denying that it has a Switch 2 console in the offing, even as evidence of its existence continues to pile up.

October 31, 2023: Switch 2 Could Look Like One Of Nintendo’s Classic Handhelds – A new patent has revealed one possible concept for Nintendo’s Switch successor, a design that resembles its classic handhelds.

October 19, 2023: Switch 2 Hype Grows After Nintendo Mysteriously Pulls Old Reveal Trailer – Nintendo has privated the original 2016 announcement video for the Switch, prompting fans to speculate it is clearing the deck for Switch 2.

September 19, 2023: Activision Says Switch 2’s Power Is Akin To PS4, Xbox One – According to Activision, Nintendo Switch successor is on the level of a PS4 or Xbox One in terms of its raw power output.

September 8, 2023: Report: Nintendo Is Holding Secret Switch 2 Demos For Developers – The rumour mill surrounding a supposed Switch 2 console continues to turn, with a new report suggesting Nintendo has been demoing it for devs.

August 1, 2023: Report: Nintendo’s Switch Successor Console Releases In 2024 – Rumours continue to swirl about a possible successor console to the Switch, despite Nintendo’s insistence it has nothing on the go.

When is the Nintendo Switch 2’s release date?

Well, the phrase bandied around by analysts, developers and other soothsayers is that the next Nintendo console could be coming in “the second half of 2024.” Which most likely means, November-ish. That’s the standard launch window for a new console, given it allows the enthusiasts the chance to strip the shelves day one, with hopefully enough time to have them refilled in time for the holiday season. Given we’re getting a reveal some time this fiscal year, as per Nintendo themselves, we’ll likely have a release date sooner than later.

Will it really be called the Nintendo Switch 2?

Nintendo Switch 2
Image: Nintendo

The first thing to say is any new Nintendo console almost definitely won’t be called the “Nintendo Switch 2.” Nintendo has frequently iterated on its successful handheld designs, the DS becoming the DSi, the DSi XL, then eventually the succeeding 3DS and its own iterative generations. But they’ve never put a “2” on anything; they’re more likely to use a “U” or something equally peculiar. However, let’s stick with “Switch 2” for the sake of ease; people online are constantly campaigning for it to be called the Super Nintendo Switch, but we don’t want to get their hopes up.

Will a Nintendo Switch 2 be that different?

Of course, knowing what to expect from Nintendo is never that easy. For Sony or Microsoft’s forthcoming projects, you’d not get particularly good odds betting against both being in early design stages for beneath-TV boxes called the PlayStation 6 and Xbox Flowerpot 87, or whatever deranged name the behemoth concocts next. But Nintendo is the sort of company that might spring out of nowhere with a super-under-powered console that comes with a plastic sensor, operated by two remote controls; or a handheld gaming device with two screens, only one of them is a touchscreen, and it folds in half. They are…unpredictable.

The general thinking is that the success of the Switch is too vast to make any enormous changes over its own unique design when it comes to the Nintendo Switch 2. In 2017, we were all blinking in surprise at a dockable handheld device with controllers that fell off the sides. It was, as ever, wonderfully strange and innovative, and despite tech that was already out-of-date on its release, it’s held up and entertained us for seven years. It would seem an enormous risk, at this point and with such market saturation (the Switch is said to have sold 132 million units, outselling even the PS4’s lifetime sales, with time to go) to release something that didn’t at least feel compatible with the Switch. Analyst Dr. Serkan Toto told GI.biz in January 2024 that he believed the Nintendo Switch 2 would “be similar to the current Switch,” albeit with “some bells and whistles.”

It would also seem like some special kind of madness for Nintendo to step away from the hybrid model of the original Switch, where it docks as a standard console and lifts out as a portable gaming device, in a time where Sony’s trying to retro-fit the concept to its PS5, and Microsoft wants to achieve the same through mobile devices. Rumours are that this is the case.

Nintendo Switch 2
Image: Nintendo

The new Nintendo Switch may have one 8-inch screen, and only one

Nintendo is notoriously silent when it comes to new consoles, preferring to surprise audiences with the reveal and imminent release of its latest peculiar, form-twisting approach to gaming. The original Switch itself was not officially revealed until October 2016, ahead of its release in March 2017—and this was under the added pressure of the failure of the Wii U. Similarly, no one knew what the DS would look like until July 2004; the handheld device launched that November. There’s no reason at all to think Nintendo will change its ways for the Nintendo Switch 2, and we shouldn’t expect any serious announcements or technical details before this summer.

However, the Japanese company’s best efforts to remain enigmatic for each generation have always been thwarted by both leaks and inescapably public deals made with manufacturers. The Nintendo Switch 2’s most specific information so far has recently emerged via the latter, with Bloomberg’s report that Foxconn-owned Sharp Corp is supplying large numbers of 8-inch LCD screens to a Japanese company. While nothing is officially announced, and no one involved names, there really isn’t another option than this being for Nintendo’s next effort. The 8-inch screen is a jump up in comparison to the Switch’s 6.2-inch screen, and the 7-inch version on the Switch OLED.

This information, paired with how things have worked out historically, does suggest there aren’t any major surprises to come on the scale of a Nintendo Switch 2 coming with a second screen, or a clamshell design, or only operating underwater. Even Nintendo gave almost two years’ warning that the DS was going to be a two-screen device. However, it’s Nintendo, so we wouldn’t bet against being entirely wrong here. In fact, it would be delightful if we were.

What other tech can we expect from the Nintendo Switch 2?

Nintendo Switch 2
Image: Nintendo

Of course, you can’t just release a new Nintendo console and then wait for the games to arrive. If the Nintendo Switch 2 really is coming out at the pointy end of 2024, then development kits (modified versions of consoles, sometimes PC-based, that allow developers to interact with the hardware) will have to already be in the hands of games developers. Clearly, any developer Nintendo trusts at this stage with such secret information will be drowning in NDAs, specifically chosen with the goal of there being a broad range of top-quality games available on day one. (This doesn’t always work—ask the Xbox 360) However, this process is inevitably vulnerable to leaks.

We learned through GDC’s State of the Industry 2024 report that 8% of surveyed developers are currently working on games made for the Switch 2, and sources with devkits recently told VGC that the device would match the Switch’s option to operate in a portable mode.

Matching the information that Sharp Corp is doubling its output of LCD screens this year, developers also anonymously told VGC that the next Nintendo console would have a standard LCD display, and still use cartridges for games.

The other odd slip of information came about via the FTC’s investigations into Microsoft’s purchase of Activision. A heavily redacted document was released as part of the trial, in which Activision Blizzard execs met to talk about the “NG Switch,” during which its tech was described as similar to that in the PS4 and Xbox One.

Nintendo has never fought to be at the cutting edge of tech, preferring to launch with solid enough specs and letting the games do the innovating, but Gen 8 console comparisons seem surprisingly behind. However, Eurogamer has since reported that developers have seen something much more powerful behind closed doors, a device that can run Unreal 5 engine games, and even offer DLSS graphics. This would bring it more in line with something lagging just behind the PS5 or Series S, which is generally the spot Nintendo aims for.

Clearly, we’re expecting to see a lot more than the Switch’s measly 32GB of on-board storage in the Switch 2, but given support for SD cards, rather than the need for entire additional drives, it’s unlikely it’ll go over 256GB. We’re inclined to guess as low as 128GB. That’s of course tiny compared to the terabyte of SSD storage that comes with the PlayStation Slim.

How much will the Nintendo Switch 2 cost?

The best guess we have so far for a Nintendo Switch 2 retail price is around $US400 – for Aussies, that’s just about $600AUD. That’s the prediction of Dr. Serkan Toto, although it’s fair to say it’s a guess. A reasonable guess, given the original Switch launched at $US300 in 2017, and inflation alone puts that at $US375 today.

You may have noticed that when we’ve mentioned the rumours of an 8-inch LCD screen on the Nintendo Switch 2, there’s no mention of an OLED version, as was later launched for the Switch. Given that, should this prove accurate, the new Nintendo Switch device’s screen will be nearly two inches larger than the previous generation, Nintendo is likely picking LCD to keep down costs at launch, with intentions of launching a version of the Switch 2 with a fancier screen a couple of years down the track.

Will a Nintendo Switch 2 be backward compatible?

Nintendo Switch 2
Image: Nintendo

Sorry to be Captain Clickbait, but we don’t yet know if the Nintendo Switch 2 will be backward compatible. Nintendo has a long history of backwards compatibility, generally between the current console hardware and the last – but with so many dramatic cartridge shifts, older console’s games don’t remain compatible with Nintendo devices for long.

It just feels so unlikely it won’t be this time. As Switch sales are predicted to collapse in 2024, Nintendo will be desperate for customers to want to buy a new Nintendo device, and telling them their entire catalogue of games is now useless to them doesn’t feel like the right move. Especially given how user-friendly the Xbox Series and PS5 have been in this regard.

In a very rare acknowledgement of the concept of there being anything beyond the Switch, Nintendo’s U.S. president Doug Bowser said last October, speaking about an intention to likely allow users to keep using the same Nintendo account in the future, that the company wanted to “help ease that process or transition.”

Just sharing an account between devices is such a novelty for Nintendo, it does offer some hope that perhaps our games and progress might be “eased” over to the next Nintendo console too.

Image: Nintendo, Kotaku

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