Recently I finally had the opportunity to attend a physical press event again. We last visited Big N at the end of September because we Metroid Dread and the OLED model of the Introducing the Nintendo Switch wanted and I was now allowed to visit the new Nintendo headquarters to see myself Nintendo Switch Sports to look at I’ll give you my first impression of the game as follows:
In Nintendo Switch Sports, which will be released on April 29, 2022, is all about sports, games and fun! The Joy-Con controllers allow us to use physical movements that are reflected in the game in a variety of sports.
In Spocco Square we have a choice between Soccer, tennis, badminton, volleyball, bowling and Chanbara. In autumn, however, a free update of the sport golf add to the game. If you Mario Golf: Super Rush and the upcoming one Mario Golf from the Nintendo 64 not enough, you get the opportunity to swing the golf club again.
Mii characters are also included
First things first: Yes, you can continue to play with your beloved Mii characters. However, none had been created on the console that was available to us. That’s why you only see them here in the screenshots and in the video Nintendo Switch Sports-Characters. Personally, I can’t say whether I found them worse or better, since the Miis could definitely use a fresh cell cure. In terms of play, the appearance probably doesn’t make any difference anyway and I’m really excited to see how many players you will later find in online mode with their Mii.
We played with and against each other locally on the big TV screen. It all started with volleyball and mercifully I was allowed to play the tutorial first to learn the controls, which I urgently needed. Timing is very important here!
Volleyball is probably well-known among anime fans, since this sport is Mila Superstar or Haikyu!! made many new friends. A good volleyball match includes the basic techniques of digging, slapping (pass), attack hit and block and both players must be able to master them. Anyone who has ever played volleyball in real life knows the movements exactly, which is why the entry hurdle is not that big.
I really liked that this mimics the actual movements you would make in a real volleyball game. For example, we swing the Joy-Con from bottom to top to pass the ball to the other player with both hands overhead. And to jump up the web and block an attack, we swing the Joy-Con from bottom to top as well, but the motion feels different (when done correctly).
who Wii Sports or Wii Sports Resort has played, however, will also notice that many movements can also be shaken off the wrist. So it’s up to you whether you see the whole thing as a sporting exercise or whether you want to defeat your opponents comfortably from the sofa.
The ball sport badminton is a racket game that is played with a shuttlecock and one badminton racket per person. The players try to hit the ball over a net in such a way that the opposing side cannot return it according to the rules. And believe me when I tell you how much I hated this sport at school!
In Nintendo Switch Sports I actually liked the short game of badminton, but I’m not sure if it makes my top 5 favorite sports.
The controls in badminton are actually quite simple. While in volleyball we still had the opportunity to steer the character over the field using the analog stick, in badminton it runs completely automatically, which is why we only have to concentrate on our shots. These are performed by swinging our Joy-Con – just as if we were holding a badminton racket.
With a press of the ZL/ZR button we can execute a drop shot. The drop, also called stop ball, is a short ball that goes just behind the net. It can be particularly effective when the opposing player is farther from the net, making it difficult for them to reach the ball. In theory, you could also fake a powerful smash, but then throw a drop shot, but since you’re not facing the opponent… it doesn’t do much good.
Even if both people are in one room, you stand next to each other and watch the TV, which is why there is no opportunity to look the other player in the face or to recognize a specific attack based on the physical movements.
In the overview trailer we could already see that there will probably be a special mode in which the track changes and obstacles block the way to the pins. However, we played the classic mode and took turns.
Bowling works here in Nintendo Switch Sports exactly the way you look at it, for example Wii Sports remember. The character is moved left and right with the analog stick, we can turn a little with the direction keys and by holding down ZL/ZR we can swing the Joy-Con from front to back to mimic a throw. We can only let go of the shoulder button as soon as the ball rolls.
There really isn’t much to say about this. It’s just the absolute classic and I’m already excited about the possible special challenges that I can try as soon as the finished game is in the editorial office.
In Chanbara you have to push your opponent from the platform into the water! We swing the Joy-Con to attack or to block and then counter the attacks of our opponent. We’ll have to choose from one of three weapon options, each with its own unique style. For example, you can wield the Twin Swords by using two Joy-Con controllers at the same time! You only need a single Joy-Con for the sword and energy sword.
The basic sword can be used to hit particularly hard, while the energy sword can be charged by blocking attacks in order to use energy slashes. Our sword will move in the exact direction we swing the Joy-Con.
With ZL/ZR we take cover, if you use the energy sword and have it charged, you can use R to unleash a powerful energy blow. Depending on whether your opponent is holding his weapons vertically or horizontally, you have to break through his cover from the other direction. To block attacks, we aim our sword so that it crosses the attacker’s sword at right angles.
Chanbara can be a very tactical game, where you push your opponent to the edge of the platform only to be knocked back again. On the other hand, it’s also one of those games that rewards you for just waving around wildly – Nintendo Wii owners will remember. The faster your own sword blows hit the opponent, the harder it will be for him to react.
Soccer & Shootout
Football, the number one popular sport, shouldn’t be missing either. The special thing about this: The football mode uses it Ring Fit Adventure known leg strap (in the physical version of Nintendo Switch Sports included and also sold separately) to impress in shootout mode.
We had a choice of one-on-one or four-on-four mode. I was also allowed to test how I got along with the controls under “Practice” without any enemy pressure. In the shootout duel, on the other hand, you can “shoot like in real life” with the bones. That was unusual but also quite impressive.
The shootout requires you to swing your leg up with the leg harness attached to shoot. The goal becomes increasingly smaller and therefore more difficult to hit. A really interesting game mechanic that makes the whole thing feel much more immersive, even if it’s just a “proof-of-concept” in a way at the end of the day. With VR you already have similar methods nowadays.
A free software update will also be released this summer, which will also allow playing with the leg strap in matches. Then you can sprint across the soccer field with the Joy-Con and actively use your leg to score goals.
There is actually relatively little to say about tennis. We hold the Joy-Con like a tennis racket and you know the rest. Swing at the right moment to smash balls past your opponents, adjust your shots to topspin, slice or lob, and the better your timing, the better your chances of victory!
It’s not Mario Tennis with super crazy shots and burning balls.
First impressions of Nintendo Switch Sports
But what about boxing, baseball, archery or even table tennis? The first impression too Nintendo Switch Sports is very positive. The title has nice graphics, the existing sports (and above all the movement controls) work and it turned out that the title can also be a bit physically demanding. It remains to be hoped that the title will also be convincing in the long-term test and, above all, that Nintendo will also provide it with further updates or paid DLC content. We will definitely take a closer look at the game as soon as the full version lands in the editorial office for testing. Until then, we’re happy to answer all your questions below!