Nintendo ready to flip the Switch

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In October 2016, Nintendo announced that its long-anticipated new game system would be called the Nintendo Switch but said little else. Now, we know the rest of the story.

The Nintendo Switch will launch worldwide March 3, 2017, in two colors—gray and a version that has a neon blue left-hand controller and red right-hand controller. Either version will have an MSRP of $300.

As we told you previously, at the heart of the game system is a tablet computer that has a 6.2-inch screen that can be used as a conventional video-game console when it’s placed in its dock or as a portable handheld game device when you’re away from home. The controllers can be attached to the tablet on each side (held horizontally) when it’s in portable mode, or they can be combined as a single game controller or used independently if each controller is held by a separate player, Nintendo says.

Nintendo says the tablet will support Wi-Fi multiplayer gaming and have multitouch capability and a battery that lasts up to 6 hours, depending on the game that’s played. Nintendo is starting an online subscription service that will begin a free trial in March 2017, with a full launch slated for fall 2017.

As for actual games, Nintendo announced that a Legend of Zelda game, “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild,” would be available at the time of launch, for $60. Special editions of the game, which include figurines and a carrying case, would cost $100 or $130. “Mario Kart 8 Deluxe” ($60) will be available in April 2017, and “Super Mario Odyssey” (price not announced) will be available during the 2017 holiday season.