The holy trinity of consoles can be tough to choose between, with friendships crashing and burning depending on your allegiance. Well maybe it’s not that bad, but the decision over whether to pick up Sony, Microsoft, or Nintendo’s hardware is based on a lot of factors; your friends’ platform of choice being one of them, and console exclusives being another. What can one bring you that the others can’t?
Exclusive games of course! Specs aside, each console has at least a handful of titles that you can't play anywhere else. And some are so good that they're worth buying an entirely new system for. Yes, it'll cost you an inordinate amount of money just for one game, essentially. But once you've invested in a new ecosystem, you'll have a whole new library of games to play, as well as the other perks each bit of hardware brings with it.
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Sony and Microsoft have launched pricey new systems that are going head-to-head on specs, services, and exclusives. The PS5and Xbox Series X have catapulted us into the next generation of gaming, and fanboys don't want to entertain the idea that they've picked the 'wrong' side. And so the war rages on with Microsoft's Game Pass battling against Sony's ever-expanding lineup of AAA platform exclusives.
Meanwhile, Nintendo continues to amble along, very much doing its own thing. While the Switch is hardly on par with the PS5 and Xbox Series X in terms of specs, it has the obvious advantage of established IPs like Mario, Zelda, Animal Crossing, Smash Bros., and more. The longstanding series are positively beloved, keeping ardent fans coming back for more throughout the decades. Toss in a few amiibo to tap into that vein of nostalgia, and the USP of a console/ handheld hybrid, and it’s carved out a very successful corner for itself in the market.
The Switch has been out for a good while now, making its debut in 2017 with its launch title The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. And if there’s one game in this world that’s worth dropping a few hundred pounds on, this is it.
You don’t have to be a fan of the series to dive into the game, and the art style ensures you’re not going to be griping about graphics; it looks gorgeous. Nintendo is playing to its console’s strengths and has delivered a beautiful open-world game full of seemingly endless possibilities. You want to toss wheat, milk, and a monster part into a cooking pot and see what ungodly dish it births? Go nuts! Fancy using the game's incredible physics engine and Link’s powers to discover new and frankly insane ways to complete a dungeon? Join the club!
Years after its release, players are still sharing clips online of their astounding feats in Hyrule. While the combat system is easy to get to grips with, mastering it is tough, and combining it with Link's abilities makes for some mind-blowing moments. In that regard, you can control the level of challenge you're after — be it a laid back adventure, or getting well and truly wild. YouTuber Limcube (opens in new tab)'s roundup of clips is well worth a watch if you're after examples of the latter. And let's not forget all that extra DLC that gives Link a flippin' motorcycle amongst other things.
Yes, the sequel has been confirmed, and yes, there are rumours of a Nintendo Switch Pro making an appearance next year, but why wait on those when you could be playing BOTW right now. This is the only instance in which I heartily recommend buying a whole new console for the purpose of playing one game. Sure, the platform has a ton of amazing games, but if you were never to pick it up again after Breath of the Wild, you'll have gotten your money's worth.
Taking into account the current chip shortage, even if the Switch Pro does materialise next year, we could be in for more supply issues. Grabbing a Switch while you can is the sensible move ahead of a potentially troubled new console launch. Just look at the ongoing debacle around the PS5 and Xbox Series X.
Of course, you don't want to spend more than you have to, so do keep an eye on our Amazon Prime Day 2021 deals for any bargains. With Prime Day kicking off on Monday, you could pick up the Switch for a snip of the price!