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Nintendo Switch Super Bowl advert

This is how Nintendo will market the Switch to the hundreds of millions of non-gaming Americans at the weekend. While cheering on the Falcons against the favourite New England Patriots, viewers will see Wii-like family situations, plus gaming parties (where the screen will definitely get covered in beer or dips at some point) and some portable outings for Nintendo's microconsole.

Given the advert is for the masses, it seems effective, if way too clean. Where's the fat guy playing in his dirty vest and pants? Tech companies need to start showing some grime in their products. They help us escape the grim realities of health issues, taxes, mad politicians and so on. I'd buy a device that promised me a Trump-free hour or two!

Zelda and Mario Kart get a bout of screen time, but other than that, it is very light on games, as is Nintendo's launch line-up and no amount of fake smiles, perfect teeth and bright young things will change that.

Up to 4GB games now allowed on Apple TV and other notes

In a very brief note yesterday, Apple has upped the size limit for Apple TV apps and games.
The size limit of a tvOS app bundle has increased from 200 MB to 4 GB, so you can include more media in your submission and provide a complete, rich user experience upon installation. Also, tvOS apps can use On-Demand Resources to host up to 20 GB of additional content on the App Store.
Will this see a sudden boost in games for the insipid gaming platform? Seems unlikely when everyone else is forging ahead with PC, PS4 and mobile games. Only 4% of developers polled were coding for Apple TV according to the latest GDC survey and games news is pretty hard to come by.

Apple may plan to go all Netflix and Amazon, and produce its own shows, but it is hard to see Apple TV gaining any traction for a costly STB. Especially as the smart home crowd fall on love with Amazon Alexa-compatible gadgets that are coming thick and fast from third-party vendors.


Bandai brings drumming and Dragon Ball to Switch

Bandai is bringing Dragon Ball XENOVERSE 2 (Working Title), a Tales of RPG and Taiko Drum Master to Nintendo's microconsole Switch. Wouldn't be too surprised if one of the Digimon Story or Next Order titles followed it. No images, no video, so Bandai are really on the ball, as usual - insert generic Dragon Ball art here!
Nintendo Switch players will be able to experience many of the adventures, epic battles that make up the heart of the Dragon Ball XENOVERSE 2 gameplay experience. Nintendo Switch players can also look forward to sharing their Dragon Ball XENOVERSE 2 experience through local co-op gameplay, enabling players to share their Dragon Ball adventure with friends.

Nintendo first party trailers for Switch, Mario, Karts, Zelda, ARMS

Naturally, Nintendo has the strongest line-up of games for the Switch, even though the most popular ones won't be making it for launch, Mario Odyssey is out for Christmas, while a quick revamp of Mario Kart 8 shouldn't take that long to get out the doors.

Of course, the company is also trying to show off some of the microconsole's unique features with fighting games like ARMS, while new titles like Splatoon are tarted up for a rapid sequel. But key to the launch is Legend Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which looks awesome, but will eat the battery when played portably!







Nicalis bringing future racer Redout to Switch

Somewhere between WipEout and the Star Wars' Pod Racer game on the Dreamcast comes Redout, a PC game making its way to the Switch as part of the inevitable tide of ports and upgrades. Due for a spring launch, likely not long after the Switch Consoles March release, the render trailer looks impressive, but the existing PC gameplay looks terribly generic.

Nintendo microconsole Switch priced and dated

Nintendo has scratched far and wide to come up with a release list for its portable microconsole hybrid the Switch, Priced at $299 or £279, Switch launches on 3rd March, but be prepared to cough up more for the extra Pro controller.

It will come with a range of games, a weak launch list is headed by Zelda that will also be on Wii U, with some old and borrowed titles to pad things out until Mario Kart and Mario Odyssey hit later in the year.
Nintendo says: the system will include the main console, Joy-Con (L) and Joy-Con controllers, a Joy-Con grip (to which two Joy-Con are attached and used as one controller), a set of Joy-Con wrist straps, a Nintendo Switch dock (which holds the main console and connects it to a TV), an HDMI cable and an AC adapter.
Two stylish versions of the system will be released: a version with a set of gray Joy-Con, and a version with one neon blue and one neon red Joy-Con. It not only connects to a TV at home, but it also instantly transforms into an on-the-go handheld using its 6.2-inch screen. For the first time, players can enjoy a full home-console experience anytime, anywhere. The screen includes capacitive multi-touch capabilities for compatible games. Battery life can last for more than six hours, but will vary depending on the software and usage conditions. 

Nvidia updates the Shield TV hardware

After focusing on getting software onto its box for the last couple of years, either via download or streaming, Nvidia has finally refreshed the Shield micro console at CES. But don't get your hopes up for improved performances, Instead, the company has done away with the HD and micro SD card slot to create a base Shield TV unit, with those options now only available in a more expensive Shield TV Pro machine.
Still powered by a mighty Tegra X1 with four Cortex A57 cores, four × Cortex A53 cores and a Maxwell 2 SMM GPU, the new Shield TV unit is smaller, thinner and lighter, and adds a pair of USB 3.0 ports for expandability. A software update will soon enable 4K TV for the unit, while smart home functionality will be added with Google Voice commands and always-on listening mode.





Minecraft blocks up for Apple TV

Block-builder Minecraft is now live for Apple TV players at $19.99. Note, the game is only for the fourth generation model. Is this now the Angry Birds-de-jour title, that simply has to be on your format, no matter how old?


The bad news is that it is a separate buy if you already own the pocket iOS version, and its only up to version 1.00, while most other editions are around the 1.11 (or 1.38 on console) mark with a bunch of extra features. However, for completeness' sake, the game now exists and will likely catch up in features over time.

Nintendo Classic NES is nowhere to be seen

Launched in a wave of excitement, it looks like Nintendo has underestimated the numbers it needed for worldwide shipments of the Classic NES mini unit. The £50 retro microconsole with 30 games installed is out of stock pretty much everywhere. So, no Bubble Bobble, Mario Bros, Double Dragon or other joy to scratch that retro itch. Virtual Console on the Wii anyone? They must be about the same price now.