Nintendo Switch 2Nintendo Switch 2

The Nintendo Switch 2 hasn’t been officially announced but we’ve heard rumors about the handheld for well over a year at this point. Given how the Nintendo Switch is almost seven years old and running on aged hardware, it’s likely that the Japanese gaming giant is working on a follow-up. That console could be the Nintendo Switch 2.

Nintendo tends to introduce wholly new consoles that build on the features and power of their successors. Or, the company goes for something completely new (see the N64 to GameCube years). Generally, it has been more iterative with its handheld machines. As such, we’re confident that the next big game machine from Nintendo will be the Switch 2, even if that isn’t the given name.

We hope to see big improvements in power, an OLED display as standard, and the ability to output in 4K to keep up with the best TVs.  With that in mind, here’s what we’ve heard so far about the Nintendo Switch 2 and what we’d like to see.

Nintendo Switch 2 latest news (Updated March 1)

  • Leaker Moore’s Law is Dead discussed alleged hardware details and reasons for launch delay
  • A Japanese publication suggests the Switch 2 has been delayed until 2025 to avoid stock shortages at launch.
  • Nintendo has been tipped to reveal the Switch 2 in June, just in time for the summer gaming news season
  • Rumored Nintendo Switch 2 spec sheet leak hints at a disappointedly underpowered console.

Nintendo Switch 2 potential release date and price

A source claims the Nintendo Switch 2 has been delayed into next year, and more specifically that Nintendo’s follow-up to its best-selling handheld/home console hybrid will launch in March 2025, at the earliest.

This latest report comes from the popular Japanese media outlet Nikkei, and it corroborates a widely-circulated rumor from earlier this month that revealed the Switch 2 has been shifted from its planned launch in 2024 into Q1 2025.

This original rumor suggested that Nintendo had moved the release date of its next console to ensure its launch lineup was as strong as possible (rumors of Switch 2 launching with a new 3D Mario game are persistent), but Nikkei also offers up another reason for the delay.

According to the publication, one of the primary reasons that the Switch 2 will arrive a little later than initially expected is because Nintendo wants to ensure it can meet the expected demand at launch. The company is keen to avoid its own PS5 restock nightmare.

Leaker Moore’s Law is Dead corroborates this report. His NVIDIA contacts have suggested that the SoC powering the Switch 2’s software has been ready for a while, but it’s Nintendo holding back the launch for the aforementioned reason.

Right now, it seems we’ll have to wait a year for the Nintendo Switch 2 to arrive.

 Nintendo Switch 2 specs

Nintendo Switch 2 concept design

(Image credit: Katarzyna Penar at Lightframes)

We can expect Nintendo to stick with a system-on-a-chip from Nvidia, likely some next-generation take on the aged Tegra X1 chip found in the current Switch. We’d not be surprised if Nintendo got a custom chipset from Nvidia as well, given the success and scope of the Switch.

But advancements by AMD, as seen with the Valve Stream Deck and Asus ROG Ally, could put Team Red with an outside chance of providing the silicon for a next-generation Switch. But we’d still err on the side of Nvidia.

In fact, after a chaotic rumor tipping a Tegra chip based on Samsubg’s 5-nanometer process node, which was then refuted by the tipster it originated from, we feel that the Nintendo Switch 2 will definitely have some form of Nvidia chip at its heart.

It would be difficult to guess at potential power or clock speeds. But we’d like to hope that Nintendo taps into enough CPU and GPU power to deliver a next-gen gaming experience.

However, the latest Switch 2 spec sheet leak could point towards a console that’s not as next-gen as we’d hoped. According to RedGamingTech, the Nintendo Switch 2 will pack an eight-core Cortex-A78AE processor, 10 streaming multiprocessors (SMs), 8GB of RAM and just 64GB of eMMC storage. That’s an upgrade over the current Switch, but it’s nowhere near enough power to compete with PS5 or Xbox Series X.

There were murmurs of a potential co-processor chip to live in the dock of a Switch 2 or the once-rumored Nintendo Switch Pro. This extra chip would be used to boost the console’s power and video output when docked and connected to a 4K TV. Such a feature would be neat, but rumors around it have fallen quiet.

Onboard storage has been tipped at 512GB, which would be a significant upgrade over the 32GB and 64GB of the original Switch and Switch OLED respectively.

Nintendo Switch 2 display

On the display side, we can see the Switch 2 going for an OLED panel, much like that of the Switch OLED. But hopefully, a boost in refresh rates would be good, say taking the 60Hz display and boosting it to 120Hz; as seen in the best phones. There are no rumors to support this, but we’ve got our fingers crossed.

However, Sharp, which makes the current Switch displays, has said it’s working on a new LCD panel for a “new gaming console” — that could be the Switch 2. If that is the case then it could be disappointing as the Switch 2 may come with more dated screen tech than the Switch OLED. There’s a chance Sharp could be referring to another as-yet-unannounced console. But we’re a little concerned the Switch 2 might not use OLED panels as standard.

Our fears have been further increased by a recent rumor suggesting the Switch 2 will launch with an LCD display to keep production costs down. And a new rumor from tipster NateTheHate further adds fuel to the rumor that the Nintendo Switch 2 could have an LCD display.

Nintendo Switch 2 features

There’s precious little in the way of hints about Nintendo Switch 2’s features, but we can apply some educated guesswork.

If the Switch 2 sticks to the same control scheme as the Switch, we’d like to see it improve the Joy-Cons so they suffer less from potential stick drifting and have analog triggers for more precise control in the likes of racing games. Some tweaks to the ergonomics — if Nintendo does indeed stick with the Switch’s core design — would also be appreciated with the Switch 2.

And we’d like to see a boost in battery life, as the Switch tends to run out of juice in a handful of hours when running games like Breath of the Wild. A bigger battery would certainly help make it a more viable gaming machine for things like long international flights.

One other feature we’d like to see is improved WI-Fi connectivity for the Nintendo Switch 2. It might not be the first upgrade that springs to mind, but better Wi-Fi can be a dramatic upgrade when it comes to things like game streaming or simply downloading games at speed.

Nintendo Switch 2 games

Mario and Princess Peach walk in Mushroom Kingdom in The Super Mario Bros Movie

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

A new Mario game has been tipped for the Nintendo Switch 2. And it’ll apparently be created using the Unreal 4 engine. This initial leak has been given further credibility by a report claiming the system will launch with a new 3D Mario title. Plus, in the second year of its lifecycle, the console will get a new Mario Kart game, called Mario Kart X. It’s believed to be the most “expensive game Nintendo has ever produced.”

There are also reports that Final Fantasy 7 Remake “looks and runs” like a PS5 game on the Switch 2. The 2020 game could be a pretty excellent showcase of the device’s power at launch and is definitely a game the current Switch couldn’t handle.

A fresh report from a leaker known as Nash Weedle suggests that the Bayonetta Trilogy is heading to Switch 2. This collection would bundle together the three mainline Bayonetta games, and also upgrade them with enhanced visuals and performance as well as HDR features. This would be one seriously stylish package.

A recent Eurogamer report claims that select developers were given a behind-closed-doors look at the Nintendo Switch 2 at the Gamescom 2023 trade show in Germany. The website’s sources suggest that Nintendo demoed a new version of Breath of the Wild to show off the Switch 2’s power, but it’s unknown if a refreshed port of the game will ever be released to the public or if it was just for demoing purposes.

We can likely expect to see big first-party games come to the Switch 2, say a new Zelda game at some point. And likely a new version of Mario Kart. But potential other games exist only in the realms of speculation and imagination at the time of writing.

Nintendo Switch 2 backwards compatibility

One feature we really hope to see in the Nintendo Switch 2 is backwards compatibility, especially given the appetite we’ve seen for such capabilities on the PS5 and Xbox Series X; hopefully, running older Switch games on newer hardware would result in a performance boost and improved visual fidelity.

Rather worrying, is a new rumor has claimed that backwards compatibility for Switch games might not happen for the Switch 2. That would be a bit disappointing and would need Nintendo to have a stellar launch lineup for a next-gen Switch if it won’t rely on its older and established game library.

We have also argued that backwards compatibility will need to extend to the Switch Joy-Cons as well. Backup Joy-Cons can be an expensive extra for the current Switch, so if they are rendered moot with the Switch 2, that could be rather disappointing, And we’d hope other existing Switch accessories like the Ring Fit Adventure and external controllers would also be usable with the Switch 2.

Nintendo Switch 2 outlook

As explained, it’s still early days on these Switch 2 rumors, with not a lot of hard and fast information floating around. Nintendo is famously tight-lipped about what it’s working on, so we can’t expect to see a myriad of leaks anytime soon.

But the time is arguably nigh for a new and more powerful Switch or overall Nintendo console. And the Nintendo Switch 2 could be the answer.

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