Nintendo will launch the long-awaited new console dubbed the Nintendo Switch on March 3. The console will cost 29,980 yen ($260) in Japan, £279.99 in the U.K., and $299.99 in the U.S. This is more than what most analysts were expecting. As details about the launch came out, shares of the gaming company declined, notes the BBC.

nintendo switch logo
Image Source: Nintendo

Details about Nintendo Switch released

The Nintendo Switch, which was previously dubbed the NX, looks similar to a tablet computer with controllers that attach to its sides. The games will be delivered on small cartridges. About 80 games are in development, including Super Mario Odyssey, which is based on a new Mario game to come late this year, according to the gaming giant.

Nintendo is also releasing its own paid online subscription service for the new console, joining the likes of Microsoft and Sony.

During the event, Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima said, “Users will be able to try out Nintendo Switch online services for free during a trial period after launch.”

Kimishima said the service will be paid starting the fall.

“We will provide additional details on this paid service and its features on our home page at a later date,” he said.

Later, the gaming company clarified that the online service will give members a free NES/SNES download every month. However, it did not reveal pricing for the service.

On Friday, many other details were also announced, including the information that the console will come with 32GB of storage, which is expandable with a MicroSD card slot. Also the gaming giant is planning to end regional locking, which means games can be played on all consoles (It does not matter where in the world the consoles are purchased.). The Japanese firm said multiplayer online gaming will be free initially but paid later. Also there will be a smartphone app for the social aspects of games, including chat, notes the BBC.

Much at stake this time

The stakes are high for the gaming giant after its latest console, the Wii U, failed to duplicate the success of the original Wii. In October, the Japanese firm disclosed that its next gaming machine would be a handheld device that would also work as a home console.

After the failure of the Wii U, the Switch would be a last-ditch attempt by the company at selling a home console, believe some analysts. The Wii U was outsold rapidly by Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PS4, even though the gaming company did have some success with its handheld 3DS device, notes BBC.

Piers Harding-Rolls, a gaming analyst at IHS Technology, said, “This is another watershed moment for the company because the Switch kind of epitomises the new strategy that the company is trying to put into practice.”