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Family Buying Guide for Nintendo Switch

The first thing to consider when purchasing a new console is what additional benefit it will give you over your existing technology. The Nintendo Switch offers a novel way to combine both on-the-go and in-the-living-room play. It's a system that can be played on a big TV or in handheld mode.

It comes with a controller that can divide in two and be used for two-player games without additional purchases.


Popular games on the Nintendo Switch include:

Identifying which games your children most want to play is an important driver to your purchasing choice. You can review the PlayStation, Xbox and Switch Exclusives list to help this decision.


There is a range of peripherals you might want to consider for the Switch. If you plan to use it in handheld mode a lot, you may want to purchase an additional battery. If you would like to play with more people then addition Joy-Con controllers are important. If you have younger children, having a protective case for when in handheld mode is a good idea.

You can play the Switch with two players out of the box. Some Switch games support up to 6 players and this is a great way to play together for larger families. Additional controllers enable this, as well as offer more detailed control of two player games where each player needs a pair of Jon-Cons.

Upgrade Path

Although the Switch doesn't support the Wii or Wii U games or controllers, many of the classic games are being enhanced and updated on the new system. Also, if you sign up for the Nintendo Online subscription for online play you also get free access to some games including a large library of classic NES and SNES titles. 


There are two versions of the Nintendo Switch:

  • Switch (£279) - with a pair of Joy-Cons for two players.
  • Switch Lite (£199) - for the handheld only version.

Although you can't connect the Switch Lite to a large screen, players can gather around with additional controllers to play together. Also, it's worth noting if looking for a second-hand unit, the original Switch consoles have been improved with a better battery.

Avatar for Andrew Robertson
Andrew Robertson
Andy Robertson is the editor of AskAboutGames and has written for national press and broadcast about video games and families for over 15 years. He has just published the Taming Gaming book with its Family Video Game Database.