The big N is well known for marching to the beat of its own drum when it comes to console gaming and its soon-to-be-released Switch machine proves this more than ever.

The games console, hot off the production lines and heading to homes now, delivers some interesting new ideas and it doesn’t just focus on more powerful specifications like its competition. Instead the Switch, like the Wii before it, aims to change the way we play.

We got to enjoy the Switch at an exclusive pre-launch event and the early signs are intriguing.

The Switch blurs the distinction between mobile games machines and home consoles, as Nintendo’s new toy does it all.

Indeed, what Nintendo has delivered here is a versatile device that has three distinct play modes, thanks in part to its built in touch display.

Firstly you can play with the Switch as a stand alone mobile device much like a GameBoy.

Further you can play in “portable” mode with the screen sitting up on its inbuilt vertical stand and the Switch “Joy Con” controllers detached. In this mode the machine is a self sufficient console setup, offering mobile multiplayer social fun.

One of the Nintendo promotional videos presents players having a quick go head to head on the one machine at a bus stop and this sort of play really is a cinch to enjoy anywhere two people can sit together. This kind of play is unique to the Switch and we can see it being a major draw card for the console.

Finally, you can use the Switch in a more traditional mode. You can simply plug it into the TV and the inbuilt screen on the console stays off while your TV presents the action in gorgeous HD. In this mode the machine works in a similar fashion to the Wii. The motion control Joy Con joypads can be used, or there is a larger more conventional joypad you can play with too. This larger pad feels like the hybrid offspring of a PS4 and Xbox One controller, which means it is a delight to play with.

Home and Away

This innovative ability to transform and offer home and away fun to suit the needs of the player is at the core of the Switch’s appeal. It is a really versatile machine that you can play anywhere anytime, while delivering the best performance and experience.

On top of this the Switch can be used in a “daisy chain” arrangement, with multiple consoles connected together for instant sports tournaments. Basketball, soccer and other team sport fans are going to love this option.

If this wasn’t enough, the Switch will play simple head to head games with the smaller Joy Con hand controllers, where the point of play is to look at your flesh and blood opponent, not the screen. If you check out some of the promotional pics we have provided you’ll get the idea.