Welcome to this week’s Nintendo recap. Whether you’re tired of hearing about it or not, there have been an increased number of rumors floating around regarding upcoming Switch games and even the Switch Pro thanks to some trademarks and datamining. Some of the week’s most exciting news concerned the very real reveal of the Nintendo Switch OLED Splatoon 3 Edition and other accessories that will be launching for the game in the next two months.
In other news, a Twitch streamer has completed their archive of interactive SNES manuals, which are available for anyone to access. Finally, a newly announced “Web3 console” has been accused of using the GameCube logo. There’s even more to discuss so let’s dive in.
Switch OLED Splatoon 3 Edition, Pro Controller, and case
This marks the very first Switch OLED variant since the console’s launch last October. It truly stands out from other limited edition Switch consoles since the Joy-Cons are two-toned rather than a singular color on either side — Blue to purple on the left controller with an Octoling at the bottom and yellow to green on the right one with an Inkling on the bottom. With any luck, the Joy-Cons will also be sold separately. The dock and back of the console also include a design reminiscent of the graffiti art found in the game.
Preorders are currently not available yet, but we do know thanks to an email from Nintendo that this Splatoon 3 Switch OLED will sell for $359.99, which is $10 more than the base Switch OLED. Fans can also get their hands on a new Splatoon 3 Edition Pro Controller for $59.99 and a Splatoon 3 carrying case for $24.99 when both accessories launch on Sept. 9.
A case for a non-digital future: Wii Shop Channel and DSi eShops are finally back online
You might recall that back in March, the Wii and DSi eShops unexpectedly went down, making them unusable. Despite a number of people asking Nintendo about the situation, the gaming company remained silent. However, this week the servers have come back online after roughly four months of inactivity.
This situation has me thinking once again about the pitfalls of a digital video game future. I prefer to purchase physical versions of my games whenever possible since I know that digital stores and the ability to download my purchased games can be taken away at any time. Gamers need better purchasing rights in place to protect digital purchases but until that happens I will buy physical copies as long as they are available to me.
Rumor: Mario Kart Tour coming to PC?
Mario Kart Tour released for mobile devices back in September 2019 and has continued to receive regular updates. However, the latest update has captured people’s attention. According to MondoMega on Resetera, the coding in this new update brought mouse input along with several lines of code that deal with emulation. While the mouse input on its own could be seen as a developer tool, the emulation coding does seem to imply an intended presence on PC.
There has been a push recently to bring mobile games to computers, like with Google Play Games for PC, so this isn’t completely out there. Controls would need to be completely revamped to play Mario Kart Tour on PC since the mobile game relies on touch controls. Still, Nintendo hasn’t said anything official on this yet, so we’ll need to wait for any announcements to know exactly what is in store for Mario and his friends.
Donkey Kong trademark leads to new game speculation
Twitter user @KRoolKountry noticed that Nintendo updated the Donkey Kong trademark, but noted that “rather than being a routine extension of an existing trademark, this is a new trademark with updated verbiage pertaining specifically to video games, including ‘downloadable programs for portable and electronic consoles.'” This led many people online to speculate that another DK game is in the works.
We’ve heard rumors for a couple of years that a new Donkey Kong game is in the works for Switch, but there hasn’t been any proof to back these claims up. DK hasn’t seen a main console title since Tropical Freeze released in 2014 for Wii U and then was later brought to Switch. I’d love to see another 3D platformer in the vein of Rare’s Donkey Kong 64, but we’ll have to wait and see if Nintendo actually has any plans to revitalize this franchise.
Nintendo files new ‘NSW’ trademark
We’re not done with patents just yet. It seems Nintendo has filed a new trademark in Europe for the Nintendo Switch under the name “NSW,” as first posted on Resetera. NSW has long been a name used to reference the Switch, but this makes it official.
Of course, when this trademark was spotted, it led many people online to speculate about new Nintendo hardware or the next Switch iteration. It’s more than likely that this was just Nintendo protecting its brand the way it usually does. This far into the Nintendo Switch’s life cycle, it’s hard to say if we will see any more Switch versions before the next-gen console is announced.
My one caveat is that we could get additional limited edition Switch OLED variants. Perhaps, a Zelda-themed Switch OLED around the release of Breath of the Wild 2 or a Samus-themed OLED if Metroid Prime 4 gets released. However, huge upgrades like 4K and a more powerful processor will likely be found in the console that comes after the Switch and not in any variants that come before it.
Nintendo makes Switch OLED announcement video private
Famiboards user LukasManak22 noted that Nintendo’s official Switch OLED announcement had been changed to private on YouTube, making it unwatchable. This lead the internet to once again erupt in a slew of speculation regarding the possible announcement of a Switch Pro or Super Switch. The long-rumored upgrade supposedly will bring 4K and higher processing power to Nintendo’s hybrid system. However, Kit Ellis, who used to work for Nintendo and is most recognizable for his Nintendo Minute videos, provided a new theory.
He stated in a tweet, “These major videos typically have music or actors which are licensed for use for a year, then need to be renewed or taken down. Switch OLED was announced a year ago tomorrow. This is most likely nothing.” While it’s always fun to jump into the speculation train, Ellis likely has the proper handle on the situation.
July has historically been the time that Nintendo has announced new Switch iterations, which then go on to release in fall. Switch Lite was announced July 2019 and released September 2019 while Switch OLED was announced July 2021 and released October 2021. Now the Splatoon 3 Edition Switch OLED fills that space for 2022.
Nintendo offers new Wide Care repair warranty service in Japan
Nintendo has announced a Wide Care repair warranty service for Switch. However, it’s currently only available in Japan and it’s unclear if it will come anywhere else. Anyone familiar with AppleCare for Apple devices will understand the basic premise of Nintendo’s new program.
Basically, this is a service that allows Nintendo subscribers to send in their Nintendo devices for repairs that go above the basic warranty, like providing repairs for wet or damaged systems. According to Nintendo Japan’s website, this ensures that a subscriber can get up to six repairs — with two of those being a total replacement of the console — worth up to 100,000 yen (about $737) in repair costs. The catch here is that Nintendo will not accept Switch consoles that are already “out of order” to be covered under the subscription. However, if you get the device repaired through Nintendo’s regular customer service, you can enroll it.
The program offers both a monthly and an annual plan — 200 yen (about $1.47) per month or 2,000 yen (about $14.73) per year. However, if your device is past its one-year warranty or you don’t have proof of purchase, you can only sign up for the annual plan and must wait one month before repair requests can be made.
With any luck, this Switch service will find its way to other places around the world. The price is reasonable and it would help give peace of mind to long-time Switch owners.
Dubious new “console” accused of using GameCube logo
Last week, the internet erupted with incredulous and upset posts when Polium One devs announced their Web3 Console, which is exactly what this announcement deserved. As Kotaku’s John Walker pointed out, this console, which promises to be a console for blockchain games, is just as big of a scam as NFTs themselves.
Originally, the official website claimed the Polium One would handle 8K, but then the site was changed to say 4K. Another huge flag is that Polium claims that it will have Touch ID, which is a fingerprint reading technology made by Apple and can only be used legally with Apple devices. Consumers have the option to pre-purchase one of these systems by buying an NFT and then redeem the NFT in order to purchase the Polium One.
If that wasn’t bad enough, Polium’s Medium page states that the console will be “built by the community” and that the company will be taking preorders before the console is even built. Granted, this is how crowdfunding campaigns usually work, but that’s under a far more established and credible structure than some random company’s claims that it will deliver after taking your money. Not to mention the company claims that the system will release in 2024, but that’s impossible when you consider that the final version of the console hasn’t even been created yet and manufacturing hasn’t even begun.
Perhaps the biggest sin of all is that it appears that the Polium logo is a flagrant rip-off of Nintendo’s GameCube logo, with many tweets pointing out the similarities between the two. Polium responded to these accusations by saying, “We did not copy the Nintendo’s GameCube logo. There are multiple companies that are using a similar logo. But we will illustrate a new logo that is original.”
Regardless of the logo’s issues I advise staying far away from this “console” as the devs have failed to produce any credible information regarding it. Just like NFTs, it appears like this is just a major scam.
Complete library of SNES Game manuals gets archived by Twitch streamer
The art of the video game manual has gone by the wayside, succumbing to the same fate as album art and physical game guides. They are rarely ever seen anymore, but that hasn’t stopped me from missing them and wishing they still existed plentifully. Even finding older game manuals isn’t an easy thing to do. But someone has been out to fix that for SNES titles.
Twitch streamer, Peebs, has spent the last eight years compiling an SNES Manual Archive after finding that there wasn’t really a good place to find them anywhere online. Almost 100 people across the internet submitted scans and this week, they finally completed the library with 724 manuals available. You can click on any game within the list and use the slideshow-style interface to flip through the pages of any manual.
What to play this weekend
Every few years I get a hankering to play one of my favorite games of all time, Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, and that time has come around again. Unfortunately, it isn’t on Switch, so I play it on my Wii U via the virtual console. If you love turn-based RPGs and haven’t played this yet then you definitely need to check it out. You can bet that if it ever releases for Switch I’ll be there to purchase it again. And if it ever gets a remake I’ll probably lose my voice from screaming so much.
As far as Switch games go, Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle is currently offered in a free game trial for Nintendo Switch Online members until July 12 at 11:59 p.m. PT, so you can check out this silly strategy game before the sequel releases this October.
Until next time.
- Rebecca Spear