Since its launch back in 2017, the Nintendo switch has had a few different variants released in addition to the original model. We’ve seen the Switch V2 which offered a very minor battery and performance upgrade, the Switch OLED with its slight hardware redesign and larger, brighter OLED screen, and the Switch Lite, which removed the TV docking ability of the console (you know, the main reason it was called a Switch) and opted for a smaller build and design.
Out of all the variants however, the Switch Lite stands out the most because it foregoes the hybrid nature of its larger siblings and focuses on giving players a handheld-focused design. Now, a lot of people might scoff at the tinier system due to its smaller stature and display, but we think that there’s a few reasons that the Switch Lite might actually be a good choice if you’re in the market for a Nintendo Switch console. Let’s take a look!
You Mostly Play in Handheld Mode
The introduction of the Switch was pretty much Nintendo’s way of merging its handheld and home console systems. Throughout the company’s history, we’ve always seen two separate lines for consoles and handhelds, like the SNES and Gameboy, Gamecube and Gameboy Advance, Wii and DS, and so on. The Switch however featured a design which allows gamers to take the system along with them and play either in handheld mode, or connect it to a TV and play on it as a home console, which is a pretty great concept to be honest.
With that said, the Switch is heavy in general, and not everyone plays with their Switch hooked up to a larger screen. I think this is where the Lite comes in – it’s got a more compact and lighter design, comes in one solid body (since the controllers are attached to the system), and overall fits into a lot of smaller backpacks and such. The design even echoes the Gameboy Advance, with different shades of colors accompanied by grey buttons.
For gamers looking for a strictly “handheld-only” console, the Switch Lite might be right up your alley for this reason alone.
You Just Want to Experience the Latest Nintendo Games
Apart from the lack of docking functions, the Switch Lite comes with all the other features of the “regular” Switch models. It can connect to Wi-Fi, gets regular system updates, comes with all the same wireless and Bluetooth functionality (you can still pair an external controller to it), has expandable storage, and so on.
If you’re just after a way to get into Nintendo’s large and growing library of Switch titles, then the Switch Lite is a nice proposition. Games like Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Metroid Dread, and Pokemon Legends Arceus (to name a few) are great first-party Nintendo titles, and of course, there’s also a wide range of third-party games available for the system like The Witcher 3, DOOM Eternal, the Bioshock series, and even the Crysis games – yes, the Switch Lite can run Crysis.
Sure, you miss out on the split-screen multiplayer aspect of the console, but given that a lot of Nintendo titles and third-party games are mostly focused on single-player experiences – the same feeling that we all got playing on a GBA and DS back in the day – then going with the smaller model is a no-brainer.
That isn’t to say that there’s no multiplayer, as that would be silly – you can still go online should you wish to take on other players, as long as your software supports online play.
You’re After an Affordable Option
With a price of just £189-199 (depending on the seller) here in the UK, the Switch Lite is considerably cheaper than the Switch V2 and OLED models. The lack of removable controllers and the docking station means that you only get the basics like the handheld itself and a charger, and for budget-conscious gamers, the Switch Lite will be the most wallet-friendly option out of all the existing Switch models.
While this means that you miss out on some physical features of the larger models, this also means that you’ll have a bit of extra to spend on games and such. If you really must get a larger model, then the older Switch console will no doubt be cheaper second-hand, but I’ve found that the Switch Lite offers better battery life in comparison, partly due to the smaller display.
Should You Get it Then?
There’s a bit of consideration to be made if you want to get the Switch Lite. We’ve listed a few reasons above as to why this smaller variant might be the better choice for you, but if you’re really after the best experience that Nintendo’s convertible-console can offer, then the Switch OLED might be the one to get.
However, as we stated above, the Switch Lite’s lower price, portability, and access to Nintendo’s large library of software are some things to take note of when making you’re decision. Nevertheless, the Switch is one solid gaming system, and you should be prepared to have a great time with it, no matter which model you choose.
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