Strange and Wonderful Days Ahead for Nintendo?

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So Long, Reggie. And, what’s up with Nintendo and Microsoft Teaming Up?

So yeah, this has been quite an interesting few weeks as far as Nintendo is concerned. To start off, let me say that I wish nothing but the absolute best for Reggie Fils-Aime. Sure I’ve had my issues with him and some of the decisions that he made, just like I did with the late great Satoru Iwata, but we know how much he loved what he did over at Nintendo. We can go back to his “kicking ass, taking names, and making games” intro, his days as “the Regginator,” and his meme worthy lines such as “my body is ready.” Needless to say, Reggie is a huge icon when it comes to Nintendo, and when he retires in April, a huge void will be left behind.

But hopefully that void will not last long, because he’s already announced his successor, Doug Bowser, a name that cannot be any more ironic. After all, who better to replace the Regginator that Mario’s own arch nemesis? Still, I’m sure he will carry on the tradition.

But that is not all we’ve been hearing regarding Nintendo lately. In fact, the news is more Xbox related but it still affects Nintendo. Over the last week a rumor has been circling, stating that Xbox will be expanding their Game Pass subscription service over to the Nintendo Switch. Granted this is all just a rumor, but you know how the internet acts: they are responding to it like it as fact and speculation is huge on the rise.

I’m going to get the most obvious rumor out of the way, and sadly one that the mainstream press and the most extreme fanboys out there would want to happen: that this signals the end of Xbox as a hardware platform, similar to what Sega did back in 2001. This is obviously not the case because there are also reports that Microsoft is working on two more Xbox models: one codenamed “Lockhart” which appears to be a diskless successor to the Xbox One S, and codename “Anaconda,” a 12-teraflop “super monster” that would surpass even the Xbox One X.

However, some of the specs I read are a little on the extreme side. Aside from the 12 teraflops that Anaconda will over (double that of the X,) both are including a 1TB NVME SSD hard drive. That drive alone would increase the price of both consoles significantly. A 2TB mechanical hard drive for each system would make a lot more sense. Granted these are still ways ahead in the future, and will probably be hinted at come E3, but regardless, it proves Microsoft will still be producing Xbox consoles in the future.

It will also be quite interesting to see what titles would come to Game Pass. After all, even the standard Xbox One and the Xbox One S are more powerful than the Nintendo Switch, more so when in a portable state. That’s not even including the limited storage space the Switch has, even with a memory card installed. Will there be a cut down version designed to take advantage of the Switch’s hardware? Will games be streamed in the same way they are with Sony’s PlayStation Now? After all, some Switch games in Japan are played via streaming. Lastly, will this also allow Microsoft to help Nintendo out with their fledgling Nintendo Online service?

I have to admit, this partnership does not surprise me at all. Nintendo and Microsoft have been helping each other out the past two years. Microsoft allowed crossplay on Minecraft to work with those who play on PC and Switch along with Xbox, and just last year when Sony refused crossplay on Fortnite, players on both Nintendo and Microsoft were welcome to play with each other. So this is just one more step in their beliefs that gaming should not be limited based on platform.

Now I know what you’re saying. “I thought you hated this idea? Didn’t you go off on Sega when they went multiplatform?” Yes, I did, and I still stand by my comments from back in 2001. But as I said earlier this is because Sega completely turned their back on Dreamcast owners, even going as far as canceling Shenmue II just one week before it was going to come out. Microsoft is not killing off Xbox consoles, and this feels like an expansion of their “Play Anywhere” service that I’ve enjoyed on my laptop. It’s just another way for me to take my games on the go. I can still play them on my Xbox at home, and then on the road just take my laptop or my Switch with me with progression going along on all three platforms, something I wish I could do with Metro Exodus, which has me playing a separate save on my Steam account compared to my X.

But still, I do hope that if this all comes true, Nintendo brings some of their source material over to the Xbox platform too.

Currently Playing: Anthem (Xbox One X,) Metro Exodus (Xbox One X/PC on Steam)

Waiting For: Devil May Cry 5

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