Nintendo Switch Lite’s trade-off of caprice for practicality is an efficient one

Nintendo right this moment revealed a new Switch Lite version of its current-generation console, which attaches the controllers completely, shrinks the {hardware} a bit and provides a contact extra battery life — nevertheless it additionally takes away the “Switch” a part of the equation, as a result of you possibly can solely use it handheld, as a substitute of connected to a TV or as a singular tabletop gaming expertise.

The modifications principally appear in service of bringing the worth down, as it can retail for $199 when it goes on sale in September. That’s $100 lower than the unique Switch, which is an enormous worth lower and will open up the marketplace for Nintendo to a complete new group of gamers. But it’s additionally a change that appears to remove plenty of what made the Switch particular, together with the power to plug it right into a TV for a big-screen expertise, or rapidly detach the Joy-Con controllers for motion-control gaming with rumble suggestions.

Switch Lite makes some essential modifications that I believe Nintendo is aware of are reflective of how lots of people really use the Switch, no matter what the aspirational, idealized Switch buyer does in Nintendo’s adverts and promo supplies. As talked about, it ought to bump your battery life throughout precise gameplay — it may add an additional hour when taking part in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, as an illustration. And the scale financial savings imply it’s a lot simpler to slide in a bag whenever you head out on a visit.

The new redesigned, completely connected controllers additionally embody a correct D-pad on the left as a substitute of the person circle buttons used on the Joy-Pad, and the smaller display nonetheless outputs on the similar decision, which suggests issues will look crisper in play.

For me, and doubtless for lots of Switch customers, the trade-offs made right here are literally enhancements that replicate 90% of my use of the console. I nearly by no means play plugged right into a TV, as an illustration — and will simply do with out, since principally I try this for one-off party-game use that isn’t actually all that needed. The controller design with a D-pad is way more sensible, and I’ve by no means used movement controls with my Switch for any sport. Battery life signifies that you most likely don’t must recharge mid-trip on most quick and medium-length journeys, and the scale financial savings signifies that after I’m packing and push involves shove, I’m that rather more prone to take the Switch Lite quite than go away it at residence.

Already, some critics are decrying how this mannequin makes the Switch “worse” in nearly each means, however really I believe it’s simply the alternative — Nintendo might have traded away a few of its trademark quirk with this model, however the result’s one thing way more akin to how most individuals really need to use a console more often than not.