2000s classic returns to the modern age: Nintendo Switch Sports

When Nintendo announced “Switch Sports,” it was like being transported back to 2006, when “Wii Sports” was released and became the best-selling game for the title system. The Switch rendition of the cult classic was released on April 29.

“Nintendo Switch Sports” feels very similar to the original “Wii Sports,” with updated graphics and an improved motion-capture system from the Wii. Playing with friends or family will bring back that nostalgic feeling from “Wii Sports” almost instantaneously. 

Similar to “Wii Sports,” “Nintendo Switch Sports” is best played with other people in the same room. While players with an online subscription will have the option to play in online matches with people across the world, it doesn’t capture the same chaotic yet nostalgic mess of playing with friends or family in real life.

Players have six different games, a mix of returning sports from the Wii title and new ones exclusive to the Switch. Players will recognize bowling, tennis, and chambara sword fighting from the Wii title. However, “Switch Sports” also introduced volleyball, badminton, and soccer.

During the February Nintendo Direct, when they announced the newest addition to the “Wii Sports” series, they also revealed there would be a free update this fall, adding golf to the sports lineup. 

Screenshot by Arianna Nalbach

Hopefully, Nintendo will continue to add new sports to the game, but there is nothing to confirm further updates, free or paid, at this time. 

For the games currently available, chambara is still the chaotic experience it was in 2006 and brought back the nostalgia of playing “Wii Sports” with family and friends. Nintendo has updated the game with two new sword types for players to choose from. You can still opt for the standard sword and play a classic chambara match. “Switch Sports” also offers the option to dual wield with two swords or use a charged sword that hits heavier attacks after successfully blocking your opponent’s attack. 

The new game that stole the show, though, is volleyball. The controls are intuitive, and it is far more in-depth with different gameplay mechanics than some of the other sports available. Going up in a two-on-two match with a friend against AI is intense, and the “Powerhouse” difficulty did not disappoint. The AI is intuitive and was a great opponent to go up against. 

Screenshot by Arianna Nalbach

This was a refreshing change from some of Nintendo’s other titles, with AI opponents not being a challenge. The Normal difficulty is perfect for younger players or people playing with family because it offers the most flexibility and leeway with the motion controls. The Strong and Powerhouse difficulty levels are great for people up to the challenge. 

The Strong difficulty mode is less forgiving with the motion controls, and AI opponents are smarter and more challenging to go up against than the Normal ones. The Powerhouse difficulty lives up to its name – the AI opponents are ruthless and it feels like you are playing against real people. They will react faster and are highly intuitive.

“Nintendo Switch Sports” definitely doesn’t disappoint and is a refreshing blast to the past with new-and-improved motion controls. Retailing for only $39.99 for a digital copy, or $49.99 for a physical copy, which will come with a leg strap accessory (also available for purchase separately at $9.99), “Nintendo Switch Sports” is worth picking up.

Like the original Wii title, “Nintendo Switch Sport” offers fun for the whole family and will be perfect to take out at the next family gathering or holiday.

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