The OLED Nintendo Switch: Is it Worth It?by@jackboreham
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The OLED Nintendo Switch: Is it Worth It?

by Jack BorehamNovember 3rd, 2021
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In this slogging post, our gaming writers discuss the new OLED Nintendo Switch, whether it is worth the money and if its upgrades merit a purchase. Jack Boreham, Mónica Freitas, Limarc Ambalina, Adrian Morales, Blake Cram and Jose Hernandez all agree that the new model is not worth the $350. The writers also discuss the Steam Deck, which is a hybrid console like the Nintendo Switch but beefed up with the latest AMD chip architecture that is also present in PS5 and Xbox Series X|S.
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In this slogging post, our gaming writers discuss the new OLED Nintendo Switch, whether it is worth the money and if its upgrades merit a purchase.

This Slogging thread by Jack Boreham, Mónica Freitas, Limarc Ambalina, Adrian Morales, Blake Cram and Jose Hernandez occurred in slogging's official #gaming channel, and has been edited for readability.

Jack BorehamOct 26, 2021, 7:21 AM

Will any of you get the OLED Switch? Why or why not? Is it worth the money? Do you think Nintendo is stingy with the upgrades?

Mónica FreitasOct 26, 2021, 1:48 PM

Jack Boreham Just found this article comparing its features with the Switch Lite.

I haven't held one, but from everything I've read, the main perk is the screen and image quality. However, the price difference between the new model versus the old one is maybe too great just for a better screen?

Here it studies the pros and cons of OLED Switch:

Limarc AmbalinaOct 26, 2021, 1:53 PM

I have got to say I love the OLED PS Vita, so I'd probably like this too. I know the pros and cons of OLED vs LCD, but the OLED Vita graphics look crisp.

That said, no, I just bought my Switch last year. I don't need a screen update. When you say is it worth the money, is it more expensive or the normal retail switch price?

Adrian MoralesOct 26, 2021, 2:58 PM

I'm still using my original Switch from the first run in 2017, and I don't think I need an upgrade. I love OLED and would love to OLED my whole life, but I mostly play in docked mode anyway, so I may as well pocket that money and buy a better TV instead. Also, with the Steam Deck coming out soon, I see myself using my Switch far less when I get my hands on that bad boy.

Jack BorehamOct 27, 2021, 1:47 PM

Mónica Freitas, yeah, so from what I know, the new switch has an upgraded screen, better stand and is larger. I do agree. I don't think the price difference is justified due to the minimal upgrades. Rumour has it though Nintendo wanted to upgrade the switches resolution and framerate but couldn't due to chip shortages.

Jack BorehamOct 27, 2021, 1:51 PM

Limarc Ambalina, the new switch is about $350, making it $50 more expensive than the base model. Not sure it's worth the money, but it could be for first-time buyers. What I wanted for an upgraded Switch were higher framerates and better performance. Games like Pokemon: Legends Arceus need it. I know you are looking forward to that game. Are you concerned about the switch’s power? That's interesting because I usually play in handheld mode. It makes sense if you play handheld; this upgrade might be more for you. Can you tell me a bit about the steam deck? I don't know much about it.

Adrian MoralesOct 27, 2021, 3:10 PM

The Steam Deck is a super exciting new product from Valve. It is a hybrid console like the Nintendo Switch but beefed up with the latest AMD chip architecture that is also present in PS5 and Xbox Series X|S.  Valve is reportedly testing every game on Steam to ensure you can play every game on the platform and support other storefronts like Epic Games and EA Play. It is the Switch Pro that I wish we got but with the most extensive back catalogue of games for any console ever.

Limarc AmbalinaOct 27, 2021, 5:12 PM

Yeah, I'm with Adrian here. I'd buy a steam deck over a Switch upgrade. Like we bought the switch for portability, we know that it is less powerful than other systems. It doesn't make sense to me to pay $50 more for a slightly better screen.

Jack BorehamOct 28, 2021, 7:48 AM

That's very interesting. I like the sound of that! Are Xbox games pass on steam yet? That would be big if you could play Xbox games on the steam deck. I'm guessing games run at 60. Can it run higher than that?

Jack BorehamOct 28, 2021, 7:50 AM

Limarc Ambalina Agreed. What do you think about this?

Limarc AmbalinaOct 28, 2021, 8:11 AM

Yeah, I have to be honest, man I don’t care about it, haha. Again, if I wanted peak performance, I’d upgrade my PC graphics card. You buy Nintendo for the exclusive games and the portability! That’s my take at least.

Jack BorehamOct 28, 2021, 5:08 PM

Hahaha, Limarc Ambalina, but what if Legends Arceus runs choppy. Don't you think Nintendo might be pushing its hardware over the top?

Limarc AmbalinaOct 28, 2021, 5:10 PM

Ah, that's a whole other discussion, though It's on Nintendo if they make a game that the base model on the Nintendo Switch can't handle. The onus should not be on the consumer to upgrade their console if Nintendo didn't optimize well.

Limarc AmbalinaOct 28, 2021, 5:11 PM

I'd be super pissed if the base model switch couldn't run new games. For example, the PS Vita has 2 models, 1000 - 2000. But all games work on PS Vita 1000. They load faster on 2000.

Jack BorehamOct 29, 2021, 3:30 PM

Limarc Ambalina, I do think that could be the case, though. From what I've seen legends Arceus looks like it has frame rate issues. Evidence is piling up that the semiconductor shortage might have made Nintendo pull the plug on the Pro. I guess only time will tell. Without COVID, we definitely would have had a pro by now.

Jack BorehamOct 29, 2021, 3:31 PM

Nicolas Ng Jose Hernandez Blake Cram what do you guys think?

Adrian MoralesOct 29, 2021, 3:49 PM

Jack Boreham, the team at Valve, has stated that it will support multiple storefronts, with Xbox and Xbox Game Pass supported. So yes, you can take your Xbox games on the go AND also take all the PlayStation games coming to Steam these next couple of years on the go too! The Steam Deck screen is only 720p and 60 fps which is fine by me. For a portable gaming system, I think that is perfect, and if I want higher fps, I'll sit and play at my PC anyways.

Blake CramOct 29, 2021, 11:21 PM

Jack Boreham, I agree with much of what everyone said here. If I didn't have a switch, I would prefer the OLED for sure, but it's not near enough of an upgrade to bother trading my base Switch in. Honestly, I want more battery life more than anything. I also agree that the Steam Deck seems like a better option if I want to upgrade. It's what a Switch Pro should be. It's more powerful and far more consumer-friendly. I don't want another handheld console, so I'm stuck between giving up on Nintendo exclusives for something better or just sticking with my base Switch until Nintendo figures out a Pro model. I feel like they are the kings of "two steps forward, one awkward steps back." The OLED should be like a competitor to the Steam Deck, but I don't think it's even close.

Jack BorehamOct 30, 2021, 12:23 AM

Blimey, that's mad! Yeah, I think 60fps is perfect; as you said, you don't need fps anymore on a handheld. Blake Cram, yeah, I think it's a case of that. It seems the OLED is a half attempt at getting the job done. Why do you think Nintendo made a move like this? Do you believe the semiconductor shortage might be the reason?

Jose HernandezOct 30, 2021, 12:45 AM

Jack Boreham, I think I will have to agree with everyone in this thread; I don't think a better screen is worth the price. The Switch I bought years ago is still chugging away just fine.

Blake CramOct 30, 2021, 10:48 PM

Jack Boreham I think it may be the semiconductor shortage, but more than that, I think it's just the ethos of Nintendo to be a toy company. They haven't tried to push the fold of tech since the Super Nintendo, and I don't think they are interested anymore. They're just trying to make something fun to use, which sometimes leads to confusing decisions like the OLED Switch with only a few upgrades. And because it's Nintendo and the Switch already sells like hotcakes, I don't think they're worried about selling this thing. People will buy it regardless.