The Nintendo Switch is a pretty impressive machine, boasting the ability to play the same games at home and on the go. Given the hybrid’s relatively new position on the market and rapid adoption so far, it’s a surprise that Nintendo hasn’t made a bigger deal out of the features outlined below. The following outlines the cool things your Switch can do that you may not have known about. From attaching headsets to accessing region-locked games, these features will help you make the most of Nintendo’s innovative console.
Hidden Nintendo Switch Features – Attaching Keyboards or Headsets
The Switch dock features three USB slots, which are compatible with a wide variety of keyboards and headsets. Users simply need to plug in their devices to the ports to take advantage of them in-game.To test if their keyboards are compatible, fans should go to their Switch’s Album to see if they can enter characters into the “Add Text” field. Headsets can be tested if players have downloaded Nintendo’s iOS/Android app for voice chat and join a multiplayer session using the Switch’s paid online service.
It should be noted that as neat this feature is, keyboards cannot replace controllers. Despite this, Nintendo surprisingly allows competitor products functionality on their platform. This includes Sony’s PlayStation Gold wireless headset line.
Hidden Nintendo Switch Features – Turning on Your TV Automatically
We all go through the tedium of making sure our TVs are tuned to the right input channel when turning on our consoles. You may not have known that the Switch eliminates this process almost entirely, as it’s possible to automatically turn on your TV the moment you boot your docked hybrid device.
This option, called “Match TV Power State,” can be triggered simply by visiting your console’s System Settings. Many TVs currently sold on the market support this functionality, though it should be noted that some users have experienced their devices suddenly changing inputs while using other channels. Should this be a concern for you, “Match TV Power State” can be manipulated on and off accordingly.
The feature also shuts down your Switch when you turn off your TV. This is great if you find yourself playing games until the early morning hours. It’ll get you to bed faster once your long session is over. It’s always important to rest those special eyes of yours, after all.
Hidden Nintendo Switch Features – Pairing Your Joy-Cons with Android Phones, Macs, or PCs
The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One’s respective controllers use Bluetooth technology to connect to their respective machines and third-party devices. The same goes for Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Cons. All one needs to do to pair their Android smartphone, Mac, or personal computer to the controllers is press the black button located on the side of each peripheral. This will allow the Joy-Cons to look for connection points. Simply go onto your other device’s Bluetooth settings to see the accessories available.
A variety of popular games on mobile and PC platforms support controller functionality, including some of Valve’s games, the Grand Theft Auto series, and Minecraft. The Joy-Cons could prove to be useful alternatives to traditional controllers, as each is smaller than their Sony and Microsoft counterparts and a little more convenient to take on the go.
Hidden Nintendo Switch Features – Using Your Joy-Cons as Wiimotes
Nintendo’s sophisticated hybrid device doubles as a Wii and Wii U without requiring users to install a sensor bar alongside their TV. As evidenced in the Switch’s World of Goo port, fans will simply need to set their Joy-Cons on a flat surface, with each peripheral pointing at the console. Each controller can then be used as a Wiimote in-game, complete with pinpoint cursor accuracy.
Though World of Goo is the only title that takes advantage of this functionality, it’ll be interesting to see if Wii titles will make their appearance on Nintendo’s eShop in the near future.
Hidden Nintendo Switch Features – Charging with External Batteries
Arguably the Switch’s biggest disadvantage when in handheld mode is its limited battery life. Thankfully, external batteries can extend the system’s lifespan significantly so long as each device has a USB-C connection or utilizes an adapter. There are a variety of batteries on the market right now that are compatible with the Switch, but many fans may not know that they can take advantage of them.
Users simply need to plug the battery pack or adapter into the tablet’s charge port to give the machine some much-needed juice. The Switch will recognize the device as an outlet or the dock itself.
Hidden Nintendo Switch Features – Changing Continents to Access Japanese Games
Nintendo consoles of the past usually employed region-locking, which restricted certain territories from playing games from other regions. A North American GameCube, for example, couldn’t play games from Japan, and vice versa. The Switch eliminates region-locking and allows users the opportunity to try out games from different countries.
Niche RPGs like SaGa Scarlet Grace and fun rhythm titles like Taiko no Tatsujin can thus be played by audiences all around the world, so long as fans outside of Japan create a Japanese eShop account. Users simply need to enter a different email address to set up a new profile. Once created, they’ll be able to purchase Japanese titles from the nation’s respective eShop and download them onto their Switch. Fans can utilize their regular accounts to access the new titles and play away.
It should be noted that while the Switch chooses your system’s language by default while in-game, not all titles offer English subtitles. It’s important to research which Japanese titles offer English language settings beforehand, lest you’ll have no idea what you’ll be reading.
The features above may not completely change the way you utilize your Nintendo Switch, but each may make your experience with the console and its accessories just a little more fun. Having a good time is ultimately what video games are all about, after all. Here’s hoping you get the most out of all of your gaming machines.