I Don't Understand the Switch Virtual Console Hype

— Nintendo Enthusiast:

The Switch is nearly eight months into its life cycle at this point. While this system is definitely off to a good start, there are a few notable complaints that have been echoed time and again. One of the most popular ones is the seemingly massive desire for the Virtual Console service. Personally, I don’t really get why this feature is wanted so badly.

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145d ago Replies(1)
FallenAngel1984145d ago

I don't understand how you can't see the appeal of playing various retro games on a modern platform

AKR145d ago

As I mentioned in the article, the appeal of it can really only be enjoyed by older gamers. The ones old enough to have a real nostalgia factor attached. Retro games to me start around the early 2000s because I'm only 19 years old.

Don't get me wrong, I recognize there is a very vocal group of gamers who love retro titles. But the incessant whining for the VC to come to Switch just doesn't make all that much sense to me when there's a plethora of modern titles to play right now and even more piling in.

Seraphim144d ago

even then, gamers like myself who are 38. Many of us do or should still have some if not all our old consoles. If I want to play NES or GC all I have to do is pull out the tub filled w/ classics and hook them up. Same applies to Sega Saturn, PS, PS2. Don't get me wrong, I'm all about having options. But personally, depending on price, I'd likely have zero interest in repurchasing a lot of this stuff. If I want to play it, if I really want to play it I already have most if not all of what I'd want to play at my disposal.

Chaos_Order144d ago

Just because NES/SNES/N64 titles are "before your time" doesn't make them any less meaningful. I never owned any of the 3 mentioned consoles but thanks to the Wii VC got to play some awesome games like Mario 64, Castlevania 4, Kirby's Adventure, Super Mario Bros, Super Metroid, etc. The fact I hadn't played them as a kid meant nothing. Also, playing them on the go with the Switch adds another selling point.

wonderfulmonkeyman144d ago (Edited 144d ago )

"the appeal of it can really only be enjoyed by older gamers."

Which is to say, these older games do not appeal to gamers that have no memory/nostalgia of them?

Games like Chrono Trigger would say otherwise, I feel, if only we could get kids to play them.

See, this is why I've been saying for years that the focus on graphics in games, in recent gens, has been more of a negative than a positive; if what you're saying has any truth to it, and I'm not denying it does despite my comment about Trigger above, then I'd say it's because so many kids these days have grown used to having games that have hyper-realistic graphics, or high pixel counts, that they dismiss many older games due to their looks, and never get to experience how amazing they really are.

If retro games aren't being given the attention they deserve due to the reason you claim, then I feel it's our duty as older gamers, who know and understand the appeal of these games, to expose the younger gen of gamers to these games, and to educate them on how amazing these games were in terms of play, and replay, value despite their graphical quality.

Maybe more kids would question what's going on with modern games if they saw how much of a complete package many retro games were.

And going by that logic, then, this is also one of many reasons why the Switch having a virtual console is so important; this thing is becoming insanely popular with both older gamers, and with the younger generation.
With a fleshed-out VC, there will be more opportunities to expose that younger gen to many of the games that made our own childhoods so amazing, and will foster in them an appreciation and understanding of the past, and of the roots of gaming itself.

CorndogBurglar144d ago

You answered your own question when you said you realize there is a very vocal group of gamers who love retro titles.

If you realize that then why are you questioning it?

Also, if you don't want to play retro games then don't play them. Enjoy the games you enjoy and let others enjoy what they want. Be happy that Nintendo is catering to all types of gamers.

I really don't see the point of this.

ShottyatLaw144d ago

The NES and SNES mini sales must have blown your mind.

Summons75144d ago

You do realize that makes no sense, right? So you are saying teens and kids today are incapable of enjoying retro games? That's insane. Not only is keeping older games around great for the nostalgia of old gamers but it also allows new gamers to see where games come from, parents to bond with their children over introducing them to classics, not to mention a better form of archiving them for gamers in the future. It's very ignorant and closeminded to say it's only for nostalgia.

InTheZoneAC144d ago

you sound as if you were born after the ps5 came out...

JunMei144d ago

It's not just nostaligia, though. All lot of these classic games still hold up now.

indyman77144d ago

The real hype is from Nintendo HATERS that want to complain about something.

Uken12144d ago


You shouldn't write a gaming article then if you feel this way. How can you say retro gaming started around the early 2000's? Um you mean early 2000 titles are the ones the feel Nostalgic to you. Which is fair.

Virtual Console gives many gamers a chance to play old games they love and old games they have never played or owned. They don't all have a Nostalgic feeling for older gamers, what you say is pure nonsense. Some games do, some don't. Also the ability to have these all on your Switch makes up for dry periods.

Virtual Console on Wii had a bunch of games that I never owned like Wonderboy and other TuboGrapx or NeoGeo games.

It's not incessant whining either, you are just putting yourself on a pedestal. It is a fair criticism of Nintendo. I'm a fan but there is absolutely no reason VC isn't fully stocked and launched by now. It would make me want to play my Switch more often. Also it was promised as if it were coming sooner than later. Another reason is because BOTH Wii and Wii U already had libraries, no reason the Switch doesn't.

Also there are a ton of retro games that uphold the test of time and are amazing still today. They should be enjoyed by people and more than just a "Vocal Group" are willing to buy them. Hence why the NES and SNES classics sold so well.

AKR144d ago


You clearly misunderstood what I said. Firstly, I said that TO ME retro games start in the early 2000s. I don't have any personal attachment to games from the 80s/90s, but obviously, that doesn't apply to gamers who are older than me.

Secondly, I also stated in the article that the complaint about the Switch not having the VC yet is something I've seen very often. I get why some folks are excited, but the hype just seems a bit much in my opinion. I'm not putting myself on a pedestal; that's impossible to do in this case since everyone has different tastes.

The whole point of this article was for me to share my thoughts on the situation. Personally, I think the VC is a cool thing but it's not a massive deal to anyone outside of the retro gamers who are passionate about it. There are so many games on Switch right now and in the pipeline, so it just seems odd to me that some folks want the VC this badly as if there's nothing else.

Vanfernal143d ago

Sigh... Millenials... News flash, the world didn't start with you. Nintendo has a storied home console history with 30+ years of timeless classics. Just because you're too young and uninterested in gaming culture doesn't mean that the VC is not a worthy feature. Not to mention that people have invested money on VC content and carrying it over to the new system can only be beneficial for the consumer.

dillydadally143d ago

First off, I'd say the appeal is not just having retro games on a modern console but having retro games on a really nice handheld console. I would love to play some classic games while lying in bed.

Second, I'd say if you think there are no appeal to retro games if you weren't around to experience them originally and have nostalgia for them, I'd say that probably means you haven't played the right retro games. That's true for a lot of old games, but I'd say most of the games on the SNES classic for example are at least as good if not better than the majority of indie games that come out today. If you like games like Stardew Valley and Golf Story for example on the Switch, there are plenty of comparable classic games on the SNES. Zelda for example on the SNES was a masterpiece, as were RPG's like Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy 6.

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FallenAngel1984145d ago

The appeal of retro games can be appreciated by any age bracket. In fact any product of any medium can and should be appealing to any age demographic.

Retro gaming is a constantly time sliding thing because of how fast this medium evolves in comparison to every other medium.

The plethora of modern titles will never negate the value of classic titles. The fact that various modern titles pay homage to a bigone era and find success in doing so is further proof of my point.

Not to mention that when a sequel becomes extremely popular, many gamers feel compelled to try out the earlier titles to see the evolution of the series.

It just doesn't make sense for console manufacturers to deny gamers of a method of experiencing titles that were the foundation of the titles they enjoy to this day. Not to mention that when games don't get rereleased, people have to pay exuberant prices at online retailers just to experience them, when this has been expertly alleviated by offering these titles as PlayStation Classics, Virtual Console, Xbox Originals, remakes, ports, remasters, etc.

Actively offering less options is never a good thing and neither is trying to find reasons to justify doing so. Allowing consumers to buy titles from every time period is always a positive thing for every party involved.

steven83r144d ago (Edited 144d ago )

Well as someone who's been gaming since the 80s and still owns the retro consoles i also think retro releases are stupid. Gamers are retarded today. They pay $60 for a game 10 years ago. Then a company says they are releasing it again so you can play it on a new console, and again they pay $40 for the same damn game they already beat. This cycle lets developers make money off old accomplishments and we as gamers are the ones getting screwed. We need new games for our new consoles.

CorndogBurglar144d ago

@ Steven83r

Is there some shortage of new games for the current gen consoles that I'm not aware of?

I also have been gaming since the 80's. Guess what? Most people don't still have their consoles from back then. Bringing back retro games, or even remastering newer games do NOT keep brand new games from being made. Its been proven time and again. Almost all the remasters that have released this gen have had brand new sequels/prequels/spin offs come out in the franchise, or have new ones in development.

I'll never understand this argument. If you don't want them then donxt play them. But quit acting like its somehow hurting you or the industry. Because it isn't. At all.

FallenAngel1984144d ago (Edited 144d ago )

@ steven

Well that's good for you but that line of thinking doesn't apply to everyone. Not everyone plays a game the first time it releases, and not everyone will have the means to do so.

When a game gets rereleased it increases its exposure to a whole new generation that may not have been alive to play it the first time it released.

If you really think that videogames being rereleased is a stupid idea you must think movies shouldn't ever be released on home video/streaming services/television networks, television shows shouldn't have reruns, books shouldn't be republished/reprinted, & music shouldn't be reissued, comics/manga shouldn't have omnibuses etc. To hell with everyone who didn't experience an entertainment medium the first time it comes out or would like to experience it in a more convenient modern way right? 😑

Bigpappy145d ago

Its BC. Nintendo has been doing it for a while.

PhoenixUp145d ago

"how many people do you know bought the Wii just for the sake of the VC"

The biggest aspect of the Wii for me nowadays is its expansive list of Virtual Console games.

"Ask the average Wii owner if they’re even aware of the Virtual Console. In fact, do the same to the average 3DS and Wii U owner."

And you'll find a large amount of people who are aware. Why stop there? Go ask the average PS2, PSP, PS3, & Vita owner if they're aware their system can play PS1 titles. The answer will also be the same. Playing older titles on your modern platform isn't something that's unknown, especially in this age where information is more accessible than it ever was.

"The novelty of the retro titles on the Virtual Console is mainly appreciated by gamers who are old enough to have a sense of nostalgia about them."

Nope. People can appreciate any kind of quality videogame, book, movie, television show, music, etc. no matter what year it was released in. Nostalgia doesn't have everything to do with it since various times that the product of any medium gets rereleased a whole new generation of consumers will find it appealing. There's really no benefit in denying new/returning consumers from enjoying your product.

"The way I see it is like this: the Switch already has a plethora of games both available and scheduled to release."

So why not add Virtual Console titles to entertain even more people? Consider this. When FFIX was surprised released in September it quickly become one of the best selling games of that month on PSN, despite there already being various titles to enjoy on PS4. That just goes to show that no matter how many modern titles there may readily be available, audiences both old and new will always value a timeless classic.

"This isn’t the Wii U days—the Switch isn’t really starving for releases. So, just sit back, relax and enjoy the games."

Wii also wasn't staring for releases in its first year yet it still managed to put out a great deal of Virtual Console games. The VC or any service like it shouldn't be thought of or equated to a crutch. It's a quality service and it's a shame Switch is still missing out on it no matter how you spin it. Yes it has a great first year lineup like the Wii, but it could always have a plethora of more titles available to its audience just like the Wii provided.

Elda144d ago

I love what Nintendo has done with the new Mario game,it's absolutely stunning.I also love the concept of the Switch being able to play at home on tv or on the go.My only reason for not buying it is there are no games in the library that interest me except 2 games.I don't want to buy a console & I hardly use it,I traded in my Vita for that very reason.I'm hoping more games of my interest will start dropping on the Switch in the upcoming months then I'll buy.

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