Nintendo Switch Reviews Round-up: pre-release, with some potential

The Nintendo Switch is just about ready to launch, ready to roll with a setup that's both unique and highly user-friendly. Nintendo has been ramping up for this release for what feels like forever – having created the Wii and a new era in gaming all the way back in November of 2006. It's time for something new and something game-changing – and it appears that Nintendo may have it.

Everyone seems to agree that the game 1-2 Switch should have been bundled with the console from the start. Instead it'll cost users a cool $50. It seems to be worth the cash, when it comes down to it, but with such an array of distinctions that make the Switch awesome shown off in the game, it should have been part of the machine to start with.

Everyone also seems to agree that Zelda is a massively impressive game, and certainly the right one for Nintendo to start with. If Nintendo wanted to start with any game that'd make the Switch seem worth the cost on its own, Zelda was the right one to do it with. "Nintendo has maybe the greatest lineup of first-party franchises in gaming history," said Ross Miller of The Verge, "and the new Zelda may be the best yet."

Where people do not seem to agree is whether or not the console is a must-buy. Kotaku's Kirk Hamilton suggests that "if you're excited as hell about the Switch and know that you want one, go for it. But if you're on the fence, I say hold off."

There seems to be a problem with the Left Joy-Con controller when wireless. This issue is shown below, and has been reproduced by many reviewers and early-use users.

Chris Kohler from WIRED sums the possibilities of the Switch up nicely, saying, "Switch has the potential to be all things to all people: TV console, next-gen Game Boy, wacky motion controls, traditional hardcore game machine, even multiplayer-in-a-box. But today, with just hours to go before launch, Switch is lacking some basic functionality."

Jacob Siegal of BGR seems to agree, saying "when the Switch launches on Friday, the online service will be only partly operational, the Virtual Console will be missing and there's a chance your left Joy-Con won't work. In many ways, you're buying an early access console that won't be fully operational until the fall."

Cody Orme at CGMagazine suggests that "While it is surely lacking in terms of power compared to its living room competition, the Nintendo Switch makes up for this with pure functionality and a little dash of innovation. This makes it the most interesting home console to date."

Lots of functionality is not yet active in the machine – not in time for reviewers to get to test. That taken into account, most reviewers seem to suggest that the Nintendo Switch has the potential to turn Nintendo's fortunes and reputation towards an up-swing. If Nintendo can get the Virtual Console right, and online connectivity right, it would appear that they have a big winner.