2016 was one of Nintendo’s worst ever, but 2017 has brought a huge change. The company launched the first-ever hybrid console, Switch, has yet another throwback system in the works in the form of the SNES Classic, and has one of, if not the, greatest single video game of all time. If that isn’t a comeback story, I don’t know what is.
Only a few months into the Switch’s life cycle and fans have already been treated to exclusive titles like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and ARMS. Given that the company has a stellar slate of releases all through 2017, the only thing presenting a problem for Switch is the shortage of systems.
An underlying theme of Nintendo’s messaging for this year has been inclusion of 3DS, and business wise, it’s for the better. If you thought the portable system was dead after 2016, think again. 3DS is not only getting an additional piece of hardware, the 2DS XL, but also getting killer apps such as a new Metroid, Pikmin, Mario and Luigi, and Pokemon game. The 66 Million users have a slew of new titles to pick up later this year.
The retro market is hot right now, and the Big N is capitalizing. Their infamous NES Classic was a controversial topic in the gaming world, but the new SNES Classic is another story. Although the item will surely be a hot commodity, Nintendo has gone on record stating that stock will be plentiful, but only in calendar year 2017. If you truly want to play with power, you better snag a system quickly.
With all this said, it’d be foolish not to bring up the negatives regarding Nintendo’s 2017. There are a few big cons that come with Switch, one of which being lack of proper 3rd party support. Fanboys can make all the excuses they want, but the system’s lack of multiplatform games is off putting to many gamers. Now, I’m fine with Nintendo systems being essentially Nintendo-only, but is the majority of the market?
Additionally, a point that needs to be addressed is the lack of Virtual Console. For all that the house of Mario brings to the retro scene, they’re really screwed up this VC thing. While I’m certain it will end up being an adequate service, the time it’s taking to launch is embarrassing. The absolute worst thing about Switch’s VC situation is the lack of communication. As it stands, we have no idea when the service is launching, what games it will hold, if we’ll be able to transfer Wii U games, etc. Nintendo dropped the ball, thus far, on this aspect of their newest console.
2017 is the Big N’s comeback year. The company’s stock is rising daily, and the fans seem to be, for the most part, happy. Now, let’s just see if Nintendo can ramp up Switch production and continue their success from summer into Autumn and Winter.