Although the Nintendo Switch has quite a number of games available for it now, Zelda: Breath of the Wild is by far its still most popular title. That said, it isn’t one that’s exactly designed to take advantage of the Switch’s unique features, like the detachable Joy-cons. That distinction will probably belong to Nintendo’s somewhat odd Arms game. The game isn’t due until Spring, however, so we’ll have to make do with some videos that reveal the characters and weapons available for this game.
It’s a bit hard to categorize Arms. On the one hand, it’s a fighting game. But on the other hand, you fight from a distance and only use punching attacks, almost like a third-person shooter. It is probably best described as a “long-range boxing game” that takes advantage of the two Joy-cons that ship with every Switch.
Like a fighting game, Arms does have a fixed set of characters players will have to choose from. In typical Nintendo fashion, these characters aren’t the serious, grim, and violent types like you’d see in, say, Street Fighter. With names like Spring Man, Ribbon Girl, and Master Mummy, you get the feel of a game that is more like Super Smash Bros. Indeed, this would be the Switch equivalent of that popular Nintendo game, except with a totally new IP and new characters.
But Arms also resembles a shooter in the sense that you can choose your weapons. Or arms, in this case (get it?). While each character has his or her own signature move, the abilities of their extremities depends on the choice of weapons. And you can even mix and match those hands to your benefit.
There are still few Switch games that can be considered to embody the spirit of the console, especially its unique controllers. Nintendo’s own 1-2-Switch can hardly be considered a poster boy, especially with rather lackluster reviews. Whether Arms becomes that hit Switch game, next to BotW, of course, depends on whether the motion-based controls will be delightful or awful.