It’s Thursday, so that means it’s time for a new ‘Why I Want’ feature. Today I’ll be sharing my thoughts on a game I feel would be a fantastic addition to the newly released Nintendo Switch. The Switch’s launch has been successful for Nintendo, breaking sales records across the world. The console has sold itself to customers thanks to its simple, but effective idea of letting you play home console games on your big TV or out and about using the Switch’s handheld mode.
The Wii U struggled with its advertising. It was a great little console, and the second-screen gameplay it allowed for was unique and often smartly incorporated. The trouble is, they failed to properly showcase what it was capable of without actively getting the console in people’s hands. The Switch doesn’t have this issue. People are able to see what it’s capable of from its advertising. They show someone playing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, noticing what time it is, and taking the console out of its dock – with a seamless switch between TV display and handheld display. The person then is seen continuing his game on the bus, or train, or aeroplane, and then when they get home, they simply slot the Switch back into its dock and play on TV again. It’s simple, effective stuff.
The line-up of games on the Switch so far is rather slim. The only ones that seem worth buying physically are Breath of the Wild and Super Bomberman R. This will change with time, of course, with titles such as Splatoon 2, Super Mario Odyssey and Fire Emblem Warriors releasing before the year’s end. That’s not to mention the solid selection of third-party titles that have been confirmed for the Switch such as Skyrim, Fifa 18 and NBA 2K18. Each of these games could be incredible titles to be able to play anywhere and should do well on Nintendo’s brand new machine. We know a fair amount about the titles lined up for release in 2017 for the Switch, but we know of only a brand new Fire Emblem title for 2018.
Nintendo are being quiet on this front, but expect to see new game announcements throughout the year through Nintendo Directs and E3 in June. The Switch will look to have a strong, quality line-up in its first couple of years on market, and will hopefully avoid the slow content schedule that plagued the Wii U and 3DS. Already this year the Switch will have a new Zelda (already out), Splatoon, Mario, Fire Emblem and Xenoblade, alongside new titles such as Arms. Nintendo mean business with the Switch, but to ensure sales of the console go through the roof, they need to release a brand new Animal Crossing title for it. The Wii U never saw a new mainline entry in the Animal Crossing franchise, and struggled from it. The Wii, 3DS and DS entries sold bucket loads.
People love the franchise, and being able to play one with lush graphics, on your TV or on the go, would be spectacular. Animal Crossing seems like the perfect fit for the Switch and could be a big, big hit for Nintendo if it ever happened. The 3DS only really took off when Animal Crossing: New Leaf hit. The series promotes social play just as much as it does long, relaxing singleplayer sessions. If the concept of the Switch wasn’t simple enough already, a brand new Animal Crossing would help sell the idea even more, to those who aren’t interested in the likes of Zelda or Mario.
An Animal Crossing title would help sell the console to a wider array of demographics and age groups. Children would eat it up for example. “What? I can play Animal Crossing on the TV or anywhere I want?” You can just feel the annoyance parents across the world will feel if Animal Crossing on Switch were to release in time for Christmas. The Wii U missed out on this whole market, and I’m of the opinion that if a mainline Animal Crossing title hit the Wii U, it would have sold a fair amount better than it did. People (myself included) dig the series’ relaxing gameplay, social aspects, individuality, humorous writing and quality levels of detail. It’s an engrossing and passively enjoyable experience that would suit the Switch’s hybrid design down to the letter.
People will be more willing / addicted to play Animal Crossing on the bus than they will Breath of the Wild. It’s gameplay is better suited to quick play-sessions than most of Nintendo’s backlog, but can be enjoyed for hours at a time. The Switch’s amiibo functionality would work well with Animal Crossing, too, and could be a title to rekindle interest in Nintendo’s toy-to-life product. I’ve played Animal Crossing New Leaf on the bus, as I’m sure many of you have, but I think it’s about time for a new one. The Switch and Nintendo would greatly benefit from the beloved series hitting store shelves. If Nintendo were to announce a brand new Animal Crossing title while the Switch is still in people’s mind following the launch, it could prove a very smart and profitable move by them.