Once again, the Nintendo Switch is going to be one of the season’s hottest gifts. More than a few people have asked us, “In addition to the Switch, what else do I need?” Here’s a guide to help you get started! Click the bold text for direct links.
- As a reminder, the Switch comes with controller called “Joy-Cons.” It’s a unique controller made up of a left side and right side. They can be used together to make one traditional style controller, or used individually as two smaller controllers. This means that two people can play together right out of the box. That’s great for a lot of games, but some more advanced games – like Super Mario Odyssey or Fortnite – play better using a complete set. And, for adults or teenagers, the individual controllers may be a little too small.
- Here’s the bad news, Joy-Cons can only be purchased in pairs and they’re expensive. A second set will cost you $79.99 at most retailers. If you can still find it in stock, there’s a great bundle that includes the new Super Mario Party game and a pair of Joy-Cons for $99.99. The game alone retails for $60 and is a blast, so it’s a significant saving.
- Mario Party/Joy-Con Bundle
- Pro-Controller: for Dad or more serious gamers, a Pro Controller is available. Similar in style to an Xbox controller, it’s comfortable and has a long-lasting battery
- I really like these grips for the individual Joy Cons. They make them a bit easier to hold and add some protection in case of drops:
- Your Switch comes with a grip that turns the two controllers into one, but if you buy an extra pair of Joy-Cons this Joy-Con Grip is a separate purchase
- Want to charge up to 4 Joy-Cons at once? You’re going to need this charger.
- The Switch screen is awesome, but like most devices it’s susceptible to scratches. This screen protector comes in a pack of two, is easy to put on and costs less than $10.
- One of the best things about the Switch is that you can take it anywhere, but you’re definitely going to want a sturdy case to pack it in. This carrying case from Amazon Basics does the job for under $10.
- Have more than one game? Awesome! You’re going to want a safe place to keep them. They’re small, somewhat fragile and can get lost easily. This game case keeps them secure – and it looks cool, too.
- Games! The best part of owning a Switch are the awesome games. This is far from exhaustive, but the following games are great for any age:
- Super Mario Odyssey: Primarily a one-player game, but a second player can join in and control Cappy, Mario’s hat.
- Super Mario Kart 8 Deluxe: Arguably the most fun you can have with the Switch, Mario Kart is the best version of the game available and it supports up to 4 players at once
- Steering wheels aren’t necessary, but add some fun. Get these Amazon Basic Wheels at a discount:
- Mario Tennis Aces: Tennis, Mario Style for 4 players
- Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: It’s already the most pre-ordered game for the Switch. One of the most-anticipated games of the year, Smash allows up to 8 players at once.
- Just Dance 2019: Work off the holiday calories with this fun dance game for 4 players at once.
- NBA 2K19: Sports games are the system’s weak point (avoid FIFA Soccer at all costs), but NBA 2K19 is awesome. Great graphics, commentary and fun.
- If you want to play Switch games online, you’re going to need a Nintendo Online Account. Unlike Xbox and Playstation, the annual fee is pretty reasonable at $20. Plus it comes with more than 25 classic NES games!
Ok, that’s a lot! You don’t need all of it to have a great time on Christmas morning, but we hope it helped you gain a better understanding of what’s out there.
Last note: If you want to get things going right away, go to Nintendo’s website and set up a MyNintendo account ahead of time. You’ll need this account pretty early on as you get started with the Switch. Existing Nintendo accounts can be used.