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The Nintendo Switch Chicago Preview Event

Friend of the site, Greg Meyer, had a chance to go hands on with the Switch at one of the exclusive events. In anticipation of tomorrow's release, he's put together a bunch of impressions to get you excited for what's coming next for Nintendo.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild


By far, the most popular game at the Switch event was Breath of the Wild. For the demo, I had the option to play using the TV with joy-con and grip controller combination with headphones or playing in handheld mode with the joy-cons attached to the system. I chose to play using the TV, as the handheld option didn’t have an option for sound at the event. Players had a twenty-minute time limit to see as much of the game as they could.

Since Breath of the Wild is releasing shortly, I decided to skip all story sequences and run as far as I could and explore Hyrule. Let me tell you, this game is absolutely massive in scope. After waking up in the middle of a temple, I made a quick escape, picking up the Sheikah Slate and some clothes to wear. I’m not a Zelda expert, though I’ve played plenty of the games in the series; so equipping clothes and weapons on Link felt strange to me. It’s not a bad change, just different, and more like an RPG.

Once leaving the temple, I stopped and took in my surroundings. There wasn’t a character waiting at the entrance to tell me all about my adventure or where I needed to go. Instead, I had the vast expanse before me, and I could do whatever I wanted.

Just like the original Legend of Zelda, Link starts off weaponless, but I was able to collect a woodsman’s axe and a rusty sword within the first few minutes. I also entered an old ruin and picked up a bow, with some arrows hidden in some pots. The weapon system in Breath of the Wild is unlike anything in previous titles. You equip a weapon, and can switch between them using the d-pad. Weapons degrade as you use them, which I learned that the hard way when my rusty sword broke while fighting a group of moblins. The bow stays equipped on Link at all times. Pressing the R button pulls out Link’s bow, and ZR fires an arrow. I loved using the bow in Breath of the Wild, as it allows the player to use ranged attacks on the fly without having to set the bow to a button in the menu to pull it out.

There’s danger around every corner in Breath of the Wild. As I ran down the landscape towards the valley in the distance, I’d encounter camps of three moblins patrolling an area. During my first meeting with a moblin band, I raided their campfire and stole a huge slab of meat they were cooking and used it later to refill my health. It took me some time to get used to fighting in Breath of the Wild, as every weapon handles differently. The rusty sword is quick, but breaks after a few uses. The axe and moblin club by contrast were slower weapons compared to the usual sword combat in Zelda, but had more durability to get the job done.

Navigating the world of Breath of the Wild is fun and simple for everyone. Link can climb up or down any part of the landscape he sees. For example, I jumped off a cliff into a lake, swam across, and climbed up the steep rock wall on other side without any issues. The world is a gigantic playground, and I imagine I’ll spend many hours climbing up mountains and seeing just how far I can go.

Breath of the Wild looks like a must own game for every Switch owner and was by far my favorite game of the show. Nintendo put a lot of love into this title, and it shows the moment you step out and see the wild world before you. If the demo is any indication, this game will be one to remember for a long time.

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Comments

Matt Snee Staff Writer

03/02/2017 at 02:10 PM

great article.  I'm pretty excited about the switch, but am waiting a bit until there're more games.  Excited for those who are getting it though!

TofuFury

03/02/2017 at 05:44 PM

Thanks! I think waiting to pick up the Switch is valid if you're wanting a fuller library, or a fleshed out eShop. I'm happy with what's coming out now to pick it up tonight, but I see why others would want to wait.

mothman

03/02/2017 at 06:45 PM

Oops, accidentally IP banned you. You didn't have  an avatar so I banned you instead of the spammer I meant to ban.

TofuFury

03/02/2017 at 10:25 PM

No worries! Gotta take down those bots when they pop up. I've changed my avatar to help distinguish myself.

Super Step Contributing Writer

03/02/2017 at 04:31 PM

What would you tell someone who might just get a Wii U instead for Zelda?

How much are games like Arms and Snipperclips? 

Do you think the Switch will have enough battery life on the go, and do you see yourself playing it mostly that way or primarily at home?

How awkward does it get having to stare into the other player's sould instead of the screen during things like cow milking minigames?

TofuFury

03/02/2017 at 05:57 PM

Hey, I'll try to address all your questions in one post. 

1) Zelda on Wii U- We only saw the Switch version at the Nintendo event. My friend that came with me isn't getting a Switch right away, but owns a Wii U. He loved the Zelda demo, and definitely plans on buying the Wii U version. If I couldn't get a Switch, I wouldn't hesitate picking up the Wii U version. If you even only like Zelda, I'd still recommend picking it up. 

2) Snipperclips is $20 US on the eShop at launch. Arms doesn't have a price yet. Though I seemed a bit down on it in my impressions, I still enjoyed my time with Arms, and I'll be following it as we learn more about it.

3) I didn't get a chance to play Switch in handheld mode, but when I pick it up tonight I'll have an answer for you. I play a ton of off tv play with Wii U and my 3DS while watching TV, so I definitely see myself using this feature a ton. I won't take it on the go until I get a case for it, but I'd take it with me. I still go around with my 3DS for streetpassing.

4) When my friend and I went to the event, Marcus told me he didn't want to play that minigame at all costs. I obliged, though I don't think it would bother me. I like games like WarioWare, where you do silly games, so I'm immune to that. I'm not sure I would've wanted to milk a cow in front a crowd of strangers though.

5) Don't be so quick to dismiss Sonic Mania because it's a throwback. It plays great, and it was one of my favorite demos from the event. It might not impress you with the visuals, but it's still a neat game.

6) Don't feel bad for wanting another version of SFII. It looks like Capcom has put a lot of love in this game, and it shows.

Super Step Contributing Writer

03/02/2017 at 07:33 PM

Thanks for the replies! To be honest, i love 16 bit graphics, I'm just not sure old Sonics are for me gameplay wise. I'd give it a chance though.

TofuFury

03/02/2017 at 10:24 PM

I totally get that. I played a ton of 16 bit Sonic back in the day and loved it. Playing Sonic Mania brought me back to those days. Keep an eye on it when it comes out, and it just might surprise you.

Super Step Contributing Writer

03/02/2017 at 04:33 PM

I didn't realize Sonic Mania was a 16-bit throwback ... I'm actually less excited now, to be honest. I thought it was going to be like Generations. 

It's a little stupid that I still kinda want to play the 500th edition of SFII, but here we are. 

KnightDriver

03/02/2017 at 05:05 PM

I'm putting the Switch version of Zelda on my rental list. When it gets sent to me, probably months from now, I'm getting a Switch. The portability of the system actually is starting to appeal to me now. I think I have a use for it.

Catherine Hauser Staff Alumnus

03/03/2017 at 12:35 PM

Sold me on Snipperclips! I think I will grab that from the shop later today. Fantastic article. I tried to get tickets to this event but no such luck!

TofuFury

03/04/2017 at 12:31 AM

Thank you! My wife and I played Snipperclips today, and we've been enjoying it so far. It's a charming little game, and I can see why Nintendo decided to publish this themselves.

As for getting tickets to the event, as soon as Nintendo sent me an invite I jumped on it. I missed out on the Wii U event they invited me to in 2012, but I wasn't going to miss this.

TofuFury

03/04/2017 at 12:36 AM

A quick update on Bomberman's controls: I tried it out today using my joy-con, and I'm not experiencing the odd jerky behavior from the demo. There's two possible reasons. Konami might've tightened the controls since the demo, and I hope this is the case. The other possibility is that my problems came from the d-pad of the switch pro controller I used at the event. I don't have the pro controller, so I can't say for sure at this time.

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