The Nintendo Switch is finally on sale across the world.
The much-hyped – and risky – mixed-use console appeared to immediately sell out and only people who queued at midnight or pre-ordered long in advance were able to actually get their hands on one.
The console is unusual because it is made to be used in a variety of different ways. It can be used either on the move or plugged into a TV, for instance, and its controllers snap off the side so that they can be used by one or two players.
But it’s also been the centre of much focus around whether Nintendo can keep the legacy of its old products going, after the badly-received Wii U and a relative silence in the current generation of consoles.
The price – £280 – has also been called too expensive by some, as has the cost of the Joy-Con controllers, which are £75 a pair or £43 individually.
Online stores are now sold out of the console. Amazon’s listing makes clear there are no more available and says that it is “expecting to receive more stock in March. Customer orders will be fulfilled in the order they are placed,” it writes.
There are some stores on sites like Amazon Marketplace and eBay that are offered the console, apparently reselling stock bought from shops. Accordingly, it is being sold over the retail price – starting around £330.
Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima called the Switch a “brand-new kind of home gaming system that offers a wide variety of play modes”, and said the company hoped to “introduce the world to new experiences” with the console.
However, some critics have raised concerns over the number of high-end games that will be available on the Switch on launch day, with only a handful appearing alongside a greater number of indie games.
Nintendo has been fighting to compete with Sony’s PlayStation 4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One since both consoles first went on sale in 2013, offering higher end graphics and wider entertainment experiences.
However, Nintendo retains a hardcore base of fans for its consoles and games – including the Legend Of Zelda franchise, the newest instalment of which is a launch title for Switch, while a new Super Mario game is due at the end of the year.