The next Xbox needs to be just like the Switch


The next Xbox needs to be like the Nintendo Switch because: if you compare the Xbox One X to the theoretical next Xbox on the typical customers TV in 2021 (I’m assuming it will come out in 2021), the graphical improvements won’t be large enough to justify purchasing a new console. So if the next Xbox is another traditional console, that is, more powerful, Microsoft is dooming themselves to low sales. The Xbox One X is just too good. If Microsoft wants the next Xbox to sell, it should be like the Nintendo Switch. When docked to play on the TV, it would still be better than the Xbox One X, and when in handheld mode, it would put the Switch to shame.

Comments (18)

18 responses to “The next Xbox needs to be just like the Switch”

  1. wunderbar

    No. It doesn't.

    And I say that as someone who owns an Xbox One S and a Switch. I use the Switch almost every single day and love it. In fact, in the last 6 months I've probably played it more than my Xbox. It is a fantastic piece of technology.

    It does not hold a candle to the Xbox when it comes to actually being a game console.

    • Chris

      In reply to wunderbar:

      I don't own a switch, but I also agree with you. From everything I've read about the Switch, it fills a niche in the console world. If MS or Sony start trying to emulate Nintendo, they lose their niche, and thus also lose the sales. That would be bad for all of us.

      I also believe that the Switch isn't as powerful as the Xbox One or PS4. That's not to say that it doesn't have any grunt, just not as much as the latter two. We aren't quite at the stage where we can make a console like the Xbox or PS as small or as portable as the Switch, without sacrificing something. But we are close. Maybe in the mid to late 20's all our consoles will be highly portable, but not quite yet. The Xbox should stay as it is for the foreseeable future, and compete with the Sony PS, not the Switch. Let Nintendo continue to have their unique niche.

  2. Daekar

    I love my Switch. However, it's only a good console because Nintendo has stellar first-party games and has cultivated some SERIOUS third-party support from indy developers and... the ports, man, there are ports for that console like you wouldn't believe. If MS released an Xbox handheld... well, I'm not exactly sure what I'd play on it that would differentiate it from whatever Nintendo is offering then. I mean... there's Halo. And... Forza... and.. well, I'm sure there are more, but I don't know what they are.

    My Switch currently has Zelda Breath of the Wild, Skyrim, Sonic Mania, Super Mario Odyssey, one of the Dragonball Z games, a few indy titles you've never heard of... and I am waiting to be done with Assassin's Creed Origins on PC before I pull the trigger on both Dark Souls Remastered and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 on Switch. And then there are both Bayonettas, and the next Metroid whenever that comes out, and that completely adorable looking Yoshi game they showed off a while back.

    I'm totally over the graphics thing. We've gotten to the point where mobile consoles are "good enough" for me most of the time. Yes, Assassin's Creed looks amazing, and there's nothing quite like wandering around a pretty good approximation of ancient Egypt... but the gameplay is really no more innovative or interesting than back when the original Assassin's Creed came out, and it's certainly no more enchanting than Assassin's Creed 2. The way things are going, mobile consoles are going to be pumping out graphics like that sooner than we'd believe. I thought I was a permanent member of the PC master race, but Nintendo has seriously undermined my confidence in that position. I'm not planning on getting rid of my PC or dropping my existing graphics card, but this might be the last gaming computer I build.

    To be honest, my brother loaned me his 3DS this weekend so I could play the new Metroid game on that console. The thing has to be rendering at like 640x480 (the 3D effect really is good, btw) but darn if it doesn't matter a bit. The gameplay and art style are so good it is one of the most thoroughly enjoyable games I've picked up in years.

    FWIW, I play the Switch docked half the time, with the Pro controller. I don't feel that the overall experience is inferior to any modern console, because developers have learned how to efficiently use limited hardware. If I can't count the hairs on the ass of a fly, I really couldn't care less if the art style is good.

    • SupaPete

      In reply to Daekar: Yeah, i pretty much share your view. I have a higher end gaming pc and play higher end pc games and many indie games on there often, but i also have a Switch where i play a lot of games, too.
      For a xbox that could be both portable but also connected to a pc to succeed like the Switch i feel like it would with the current lineup and focus of the xbox only work out if they by then already have game streaming going and most people have fast enough internet connections. Then it could stream xbox one x level (or higher) games on technical side.

      If they instead want to go with running the games locally, then they'd have to push their game lineup and how they approach (indie) devs a lot compared to now, as you said, their current setup is not ideal for the types of games so popular on Switch right now (which are largely where gameplay is more important than graphics).

      Nintendo has the big advantage that they have enough great own first and third party games not existing on any other platform, that when one then takes many pc/other console indie games on top where then one has the benefit of being able to play them anywhere and then on top adds some "AAA" cross platform games which are only running quite watered down in visuals on Switch but then still nice enough to enjoy it being able to play it anywhere and as bonus on top of that rest of excellent library, yeah, that all coming together is a very strong package offering.

      When one compares it to the PS Vita/PSP, there they didn't have that huge Indie lineup, nor anywhere close the amount of system seller level super best gameplay first party lineup one couldn't have anywhere else.
      Then there it felt too much like: hey, ok, this pushes for the best mobile graphics but it's basically for it's most in depth games just feeling like cut down console games.
      Sure, over time the PSP still got a large very nice library going, but it somehow could never loose that initial stigma.

      I would quite like a well done MS handheld, but they would for sure have to watch out to get things going more as Ninti did than fall into the pitfalls Sony did with their portable.

    • Bdsrev

      In reply to Daekar:

      Great points and I love the Switch too. There's no point in Microsoft making anything more powerful than the One X, it's not worth it. The TV is the bottleneck at this point, not the consoles graphics capabilities. A 120Hz OLED TV is the only way to significantly improve the One X experience

  3. Bdsrev

    Even Daniel Rubino agrees, today he posted a video about this on the windows central youtube account

  4. Polycrastinator

    Microsoft should focus on cloud infrastructure. With 5G networks the latency will probably be low enough to stream to a portable device anyway, and then the hardware won't matter so much. Maybe that means something like the Switch, maybe that means a box under the TV, maybe a portable device and a home console, but I think emulating the Switch itself would be a mistake and would fail to exploit Microsoft's advantage where they have it.

  5. Smidgerine

    I wonder how close Microsoft could make Andromeda with a controller attachment that would play Xbox One and BC games at the original Xbox One resolution.

  6. Paul Thurrott

    If I could refine this a bit, I'd say that Microsoft does need something like the Switch. But that thing should not be "the next generation Xbox console" (e.g. an Xbox One successor/replacement). It should be part of a family of Xbox consoles/devices that satisfies the part of the market that the switch does. Which is portable gaming, really. This is one of the those "if [company name] is serious about [market] then it needs to do [x]" conversations. Right now, Microsoft is only addressing part of the market for gaming.

    • Bob2000

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      Precisely, MS can in no way compete against Nintendo in the handheld space, it does not have the same level of experience, branding or games.

      It could compete in-directly by building up Xbox Play Anywhere with handheld Arm PC's but MS screwed all of that up.

      There is no proper Xbox portal or store front on Windows the existing MS Store plus Xbox app are massively insufficient, they are universally mocked in gaming circles & by top level streamers.

      The Windows 10 Arm PC's cannot run existing Xbox Play Anywhere games either.

      What is needed is

      1) A port of the Xbox interface to the PC & allow loading into this from login

      2) Get "mobile" ports of AAA games to Arm Windows 10 (piggy back Switch ports)

      3) Allow PC makers to make their own Xbox handhelds

      That way on an Arm Windows PC/Xbox handheld you can load up PC games that default to a mobile version and with cross play it is seamless with desktop PC and console.

      But none of this was done.

    • SupaPete

      In reply to paul-thurrott: I'd only agree with that MS doing a portable xbox as additoonal member of the family instead of it becoming the only device going forward if/once MS has game streaming going (and enough people have a good connection).
      Then, sure, an additional member of the family which can stream all the same games, sure, why not =)
      But else, without the streaming (or before enough people have a fast enough connection with no draconian data caps), well, another family of the xbox family is tough to handle nicely.
      We saw it with Sony, it isn't that easy to have two console platforms and games library for both etc when they have too different specs.
      Also: One of the most appealing sides of the Switch to many is exactly that one can use it both on the tv and on the go as handheld.
      I personally use my Switch most to play while on the couch/in bed, i hardly ever connect it to the tv, but i know millions of others do or do it the other way round or both.
      And just the part that everyone knew it is basically the one single console by Nintendo going forward, the one all future dev will be put into, that made a lot of people buy into it who wouldn't have otherwise if it was "just" a handheld.
      And it is also what made way more developers be excited about it because of the thought that it basically allows to make indepth games in gameplay as one expects on a home console but also playable anywhere while at the same time users are also totally fine with the graphics being a bit toned down compared to high end consoles and pc because one gets the advantage of being able to play them anywhere and high quality games, not mobile app store trash.
      I know pretty much no company who could really pull off and succeed with supporting multiple console/handheld devices at the same time besides Nintendo in some Wii/DS years, but even there it started to fall apart in later Wii years and completely in WiiU days where as the platform did not sell huge numbers it was tough to support both the DS and WiiU with a huge number of great games each at the same time, the platform having less sales just automatically got the catalogue cut down.

    • Bdsrev

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      Yup. And Paul also, many have brought up the similarities between the Switch and Surface tablets, as well as Windows Phone Continuum (and for us Microsoft followers, the upcoming Andromeda handheld) . A "Xbox Switch" feels like Microsoft's territory more than Nintendos. I know Microsoft could make this device with relative ease. The Switch proves that there is huge demand for true mobile gaming (not silly smartphone games) that's been untapped. Sony is too conservative to do this, this is a big opportunity for Microsoft

      • Usman

        In reply to Bdsrev:

        It's suicide for Microsoft to create a handheld console with out any first party games, yes they matter, because for a new system there needs to be something worth while. Zelda, Mario Kart and Oddesey are system sellers, unfortunately Microsoft doesn't have any worth while games.

    • shameermulji

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      I don't have data to back it up but my hunch says that's because the majority of mobile gaming is happening on smartphones.

  7. RR

    In gaming and in general, think Microsoft is looking to emphasize new cloud services. So, in the near future of 2019-21, they are probably rolling out new cloud based gaming services that they hope wow the customer, rather than concentrating on differentiating their console. I doubt that Microsoft will put a lot of energy into making "just" a mobile console. Rather, if they do mobile gaming, they will probably try to provide a superior mobile gaming experience in their Andromeda unicorn, as a way of leveraging their gaming assets to further differentiating it from existing mobile phones.

  8. lukenlow

    This is a great idea, I hope to listen to it and it will heal a new life