In regards to the Switch and its functionality, Tabata called it a “dream machine,” noting its ability to change between a home console and a handheld device. He also mentioned how he would like to take the Switch a step further and make the handheld screen function like a tablet to play different apps.
Here are Tabata’s thoughts in full:
“Given my track record… I’ve worked on handheld titles, but I’ve also worked on console games. So the fact that Switch is both at the same time is really fascinating to me. I’m really interested in coming up with ideas and how to capitalize on that technology and how to create the best experience possible on the technology. But I’m not quite sure that I have it yet.
“You have your Switch sitting in front of the television and you’re playing on the big screen and then you take it out, put it down on the table. It becomes a monitor. You take out the two Joy-Cons, and you play with a friend … it doesn’t stop there, because in my mind, it would be really perfect if you could then take this new monitor and use it like a tablet, for example, and play different apps on it like you would on your iPhone or your Android. So basically, it’s accomplishing three tasks in one machine. It’s kind of like the dream machine.”
“While I may not be working on anything for it at this point in time, a lot of people on the staff are really interested in the Switch. Myself included! Many of the people on the dev team are older; they’re married; they have kids. One of the things they’d like to do is create something they could also play with their children, or that their children could play on their own, for example.”
Additionally, Tabata went on to say that he believes the Switch is a like a transitional device which will lead to cloud gaming becoming more mainstream.
“You have the Switch, and you have smartphones. I’m not really sure if handheld gaming will still run on dedicated systems, or whether they’ll be on machines or devices that will allow you to game and also do other things. It’s hard to say.
“It could be like cloud gaming. Something that, for a long time, people have said, ‘Oh, this is the future.’ Maybe the future is cloud gaming, but it hasn’t taken off as much as people had anticipated. Maybe once it becomes a little bit more mainstream, when things are a little bit more clear on what happens on the client side and what happens on the server side … then things will really start to take off.
“If cloud gaming then becomes mainstream, I don’t think it’s outside the realm of possibility for you to be able to pick up a game on your phone, start playing for a little bit, and say, ‘Oh, you know what? I want to play on the big screen,’ and put it down and play the exact same thing — pick up where you left off — on the television.”
The Nintendo Switch will release on March 3rd, 2017.