Nintendo Switch: 5 years told through its games

Nintendo Switch: 5 years told through its games

Nintendo Switch

It is said that every year, for a dog, it is equal to seven of the men. Applying the same reasoning to the consoles it turns out that 12 months are equal to about fifteen years. As we've seen recently, Nintendo Switch's 2022 promises sparks, running for "best sixth year" ever for any platform. Despite this, despite a sunset that promises to be radiant, five years on the market are really a long time. To give you an example, Wii U hasn't even arrived.

In this article, waiting for future glories, we retrace the life of the Nintendo Switch: not with a story of its history, or with a list of his successes, but by selecting the two most representative games for each past year. A perhaps unbalanced method, in the sense that some periods (like 2017) were pyrotechnic, while others decidedly less rich in releases (like 2021, for example), but it is still a good way to tell the 5 years of Nintendo Switch through its games.

Let's start our special from a game released on March 3, 2017, along with the Nintendo console, which you should know quite well.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (2017)

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild: Riju, Princess Gerudo Conceived and developed on Wii U, however it landed on out of respect for the users, the latter console has become the most important launch game of Nintendo Switch, the very symbol of the platform. But Breath of the Wild is much more than that; it was the title that brought with it the ambitions and the desire for redemption of the series, and from the whole company. That it could be special was clear from its presentation at E3 2014; that it really was, it was clear two years later, at the 2016 fair. The trailer shown in January 2017 remains one of the most beautiful ever made; and, without a doubt, among the most beautiful ever made is also the game, a game that at the first attempt (in the contemporary world) showed everyone how the open world could become interaction, and not just setting. This The Legend of Zelda made school in the dominant "genre" of the decade (the open world, of course), and its emerging mechanics, originating from the physical and chemical engine, its quality, its grace and its melancholy, remain something unique and unsurpassed. Our review of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild tells this and more.

Super Mario Odyssey (2017)

Super Mario Odyssey: In this game, Mario also rides a Vespa In 2017, many great games came out on the Nintendo Switch, including Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which is the best-selling of the platform. But our choice was never in doubt: 2017 opened and closed with the two most prestigious and important Nintendo series. That is The Legend of Zelda and Super Mario, which are only rarely released the same year. Still awaiting a sequel, Super Mario Odyssey was a serious nominee for Game of the Year, and had it not been for Breath of the Wild it could have become: it's a stunning platfom, with disruptive creativity and extraordinarily smooth controls. . A varied and creative soundtrack, a fast pace, a graphic style as edgy as it is courageous. And above all it showcases the best Super Mario ever seen in three dimensions: beautifully animated, it has never been so "alive" as in this game. Cappy and her transformations season this exceptional platformer. If you want, you can find our review of Super Mario Odyssey here.

Nintendo Labo (2018)

Nintendo Labo: Assorted Kit: the piano remains perhaps the most emblematic instrument of the Nintendo Labo project it was not a great commercial success, but it is undoubtedly one of the most representative products of Switch. Announced outside of a Nintendo Direct, as if it were something separate from the rest, it was a sort of manifesto by the company: it showed everyone that, although the Switch was aimed mainly at traditional players, Nintendo had not the slightest intention of abandon alternative products to that audience. 1-2-Switch hadn't been a coincidence, essentially. Nintendo Labo exploits the specificities of the console like no other, and it is a work of overwhelming creativity: conceived and modeled by that great talent of Tsubasa Sakaguchi, it is a kind of "witchcraft", with very solid technological bases, in which the cartoon it intersects with the console and becomes one with it and its controls. Many Nintendo Labo models have come out, many projects on this line, but perhaps the most characteristic remains the cardboard piano in the Assorted Kit. Here's our review.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (2018)

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: a colossal "fighting game" Overcoming Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be very complicated and we don't know if Masahiro Sakurai will have the will, or the strength, or the possibilities. It is simply, as the name suggests, the definitive episode of the saga: it contains almost ninety fighters and a number of literally insane match-ups, managing to find a surprising balance. Even in terms of mechanics, it is able to satisfy more or less everyone: from casual players to the most competitive ones. The amount of content present in this game is simply colossal, as is the number of brands that it contemplates within it. The best Super Smash Bros. ever made, which does nothing to be loved by those who do not appreciate the series: the sales have proved him right. Our Super Smash Bros. Ultimate review tells you everything.

Ring Fit Adventure (2019)

Ring Fit Adventure: you always move, but it is very different from Wii Fit Directed by Hiroshi Matsunaga, former director of Wii Fit, Ring Fit Adventure is a clear symbol of Nintendo's new casual "conception": no longer the main way to sell the console, but something to buy once the platform has already entered the family. Ring Fit Adventure makes physical exercise its main feature, but it is inserted within a narrative context, and the actions exercised serve to overcome obstacles. Rather than a fitness video game, it is a video game - however simple - with fitness. It hasn't had a huge launch, but its sales have been steady since its release, and has now placed nearly fourteen million units. Our review of Ring Fit Adventure.

Luigi's Mansion 3 (2019)

Luigi's Mansion 3: graphically one of the best games for Nintendo Switch Developed by the recently acquired Canadians of Next Level Games from Nintendo, Luigi's Mansion 3 is (obviously) the third episode of a saga, as beloved as it is weird, born on GameCube. Graphically it is splendid, thanks to the talent of the developers and the restricted environments, which enhance the lighting system and the animations of the characters. It is a great game, usually a parody of a horror title, full of humor and with great puzzles, closely linked to the acquisition of new powers through the Poltergust G-00 (the vacuum cleaner that sucks ghosts). Our review of Luigi's Mansion 3.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons (2020)

Animal Crossing: New Horizons: for many it was the pandemic game 2019 was the year in which many historically portable games have arrived on Nintendo Switch, a hybrid console that has hosted everything; a year that ideally ended only in March 2020, with the arrival of Animal Crossing: New Horizons, directed by Aya Kyogoku, the only woman who plays this role in Nintendo. However, March 2020 is famous above all for another thing, and New Horizons, by simulating the daily activities and events of a community day after day, was - paradoxically and unintentionally - the symbolic game of the lockdown. It is considered by many to be the best chapter of the series, graphically it is flawless (very clean on a technical level, particularly on a stylistic level), and with almost 38 million copies it is the second best-selling title for Nintendo Switch. Our Animal Crossing: New Horizons review tells you about the genesis of this phenomenon.

Paper Mario: the Origami King (2020)

Paper Mario: the Origami King: a delightful adventure by Intelligent Systems The new episode of the Paper Mario saga, namely The Origami King, also developed by Intelligent Systems, was announced as a surprise, and published shortly after (in July 2020). It was a period in which, again due to the lockdown, the outputs were difficult to program; a period without major Nintendo Direct. Unlike many chapters of other series on Nintendo Switch, Paper Mario: The Origami King does not have the qualities of the progenitors for Nintendo 64 and GameCube. Despite this, due to the skill of the level design and the care placed in the visual (and musical) aspect, it is the best Paper Mario of the fifteen years, and has some ideas that you will hardly forget. We would dare to say that, had he had a different combat system (not necessarily turn-based) and a different character development, he could really have competed with his more illustrious predecessors. All the details in the review of Paper Mario: the Origami King.

Monster Hunter Rise (2021)

Monster Hunter Rise: the new mounts, among the major novelties of the Nintendo Switch game has given the way to a new habit for Japanese society: that is to propose a great release, perhaps not the main one of the year but almost, in the month of March. The launch came with Breath of the Wild, the following year (March 2018) Kirby Star Allies was published, in 2019 Yoshi Crafted World, in 2020 Animal Crossing: New Horizons and in 2021, precisely, Monster Hunter Rise . After years exclusively on Nintendo consoles, thanks to the agreements signed by Iwata, Monster Hunter has recently had the definitive commercial explosion on PlayStation, through Monster Hunter World. Here, Monster Hunter Rise is a version - technically exceptional, considering the potential of Switch - which in some ways tries to hybridize the classic formula with that of World. The most noticeable novelty lies in the mount, Canyne. Our review of Monster Hunter Rise explains it all.

Metroid Dread (2021)

Metroid Dread: the great return of Samus Aran With Metroid Prime 4 announced years ago, few would have I bet that the two-dimensional saga would return first: and instead, almost twenty years after the last unpublished chapter, Metroid Dread was published at the end of 2021, developed in collaboration between Nintendo (EPD 7, in particular) and the Spaniards of MercurySteam. In a way, Metroid Dread refuses to compete directly with the newer metroidvania, shifting the focus to the combat system, transforming Samus Aran into a kind of deadly space ninja (always dedicated to shooting). The pace of the game is high, the downtime rare, the boss fights valuable: a great unexpected return, and the quality - for many - surprising. Our Metroid Dread review tells you about this masterpiece.

Pokémon (2022)

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet: will they know how to mix the novelties of Pokémon Legends: Arceus with the main saga? There are many titles that we have kept off this list, but we feel compelled to mention Pokémon, which is one of the games that symbolize the hybridization between the portable and home market. Not only in the presence, but also in the ambitions: closed for years in its technological limbo, like it or not, and progressing by degrees, Game Freak was forced to dare. Pokémon Legends: Arceus (released at the beginning of 2022) is considered to all intents and purposes a spin-off; at the same time it has proposed a new way to explore, a renewed engine (perhaps partially inherited from Breath of the Wild, there are too many similarities for there to be no kinship), and its novelties, at least partially, should be integrated into a main chapter of the series in late 2022, when Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet will arrive on Nintendo Switch.

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