Nintendo Switch OLED made me fall back in love with handheld gaming

As a child, my Gameboy Advance and I were inseparable.

From family vacations spent squinting at its dazzling display in the back of a car to putting it upside down to play on the couch, this heroic little handheld is a favorite way to play. mine in my formative years. While I love taking hours to Metal Gear Solid 2Beautifully pointless on CRT, the GBA SP feels like an extension of my imagination – a doorway into another world. However, as time’s brutal journey continues, that window begins to close. As stunning graphics and colorful worlds became the norm, I’ve developed a taste for 4K high-definition gaming and have less and less time to indulge in it. So for the last two generations of consoles, the TV has become my only gateway to the virtual world.

Despite owning a Nintendo hybrid since launch, my Switch remains largely in its dock. It’s really odd considering that the Switch is arguably the greatest handheld console ever made. Its library is brimming with indie delights, little-known JRPGs, and some of the best first-party titles Nintendo has ever released.

Nintendo Switch OLED makes handheld gaming more fun.Nintendo

However, I don’t feel the same appeal for its tiny screen. For me, it’s the HD Nintendo box that allows me to spend hundreds of hours on Smash Bros Ultimate without developing claws. In 2017, Nintendo stats show that my dedication to the dock goes to the minority of Switch owners. For me, though, the Switch is just a pony with a trick. Since the death of the lovable oddball 3DS, my love of handheld gaming seems to be a thing of the past.

Or – until the Mario family rolls out the Switch OLED into my sweaty gamer palm.

At first I thought OLED was a cheap cash. Due to the lack of new processing power – or 4K dock output – I don’t quite understand the problem. Who is this for?! I grumbled, the shelves full of my amiibo. Turns out, it’s plenty for people like me. To my surprise, the Switch OLED completely rekindled my love of handheld gaming. I turned around and pushed that little screen right up to my eyeball like I was 13 years old again.

Thanks to the new OLED display, Nintendo’s hybrid device is finally unleashing its mobile potential. The half-finished Switch games I’ve ignored for years now are sparkling with new life. Titles that once looked muddy and jagged on a 4K TV appear on the OLED’s crisp contrast panel. Reaching for this great piece of gameplay has become a habit that I just can’t seem to get rid of. I find myself cuddling the Switch in bed, on the sofa, and generally anywhere I can, bringing mobile playtime into my life.

“The OLED switch is complete replanted my love for handheld games. ”

In many ways, the Switch OLED reminds me of Nintendo’s greatest handheld iteration to date – the GBA SP. Thanks to a killer one-two combination of a protective clamshell design and the all-important backlight – the optional, morbid tribal tatt design – the SP is a portable perfection. Now with Nintendo’s third run at Switch hardware, the Kyoto gaming giant has finally recaptured that magic. From the amazingly powerful and multi-angle stand that really makes it usable on flights, to the speakers that can be successfully used to annoy everyone near you, this premium upgrade just an infinitely cuter Switch.

Three girls enjoying snacks after school for 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim.Atlus / Vanillaware

Fares stylized as absolutely gorgeous 13 Sentinel appears on an OLED screen in a way that it simply cannot on a basic handset. When the Switch launch model sees colors look dull and washed out, the eye-catching contrast of the new console comes into play. The assortment of old classics also shines with vintage fare like Resident Evil Zero making the murderous zombies on a dusty ship look indistinct. OkamiThe timeless art style shines on the new console, causing me to forego the classic games on my Series X in favor of my cozy Switch OLED. Colorful first-party fare like Bayonetta 2, Breath of the Wild, and Metroid Dread Take on new life on the O-legendary screen.

It’s more than just a premium form factor and feel that harks back to the glory days of the GBA. Nintendo’s Advance Wars collection, whenever it’s released, will see the OLED completely become the obvious successor to the SP’s crown. It’s a release that is also among recent leaks of GBA and GBC games that are said to be coming to Nintendo Switch Online. Given how bezel-less SNES games already look on sharp OLED screens, GBA’s classics about this bad boy will be an absolute delight.

“Nintendo hybrid device” Final brings its mobile potential. “

The question as always, what will Nintendo do next? While a stellar library helped the 3DS recover from a difficult launch to become a huge success, the Wii U caused Nintendo to squander the goodwill it accumulated with its predecessor. This second album syndrome, which Nintendo itself recently admitted is a “big concern” when thinking about what happens after the Switch.

With the Switch’s continued success, hitting the reset button and launching a brand new console can seem like a bit of madness. In a world where people upgrade their phones constantly, a more powerful Switch co-existing with other members of the Switch family seems like the logical way to go. Nintendo’s strategies have always defied predictions, but for now, this late-generation hardware refresh has rekindled a part of my love of gaming that I’d forgotten about. Long live OLED switch.

https://www.inverse.com/gaming/nintendo-switch-oled-game-boy-advance Nintendo Switch OLED made me fall back in love with handheld gaming

Emma James

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