The Nintendo Switch has been around for an incredibly long time, and with each new rumor of an upgraded, next-gen model arriving at some point there have only been alternate editions released. The Switch Lite and OLED Model are representations of how the console has been iterated upon in the last six years since the Switch has been on the market, but there have been signs that it is now showing its age, and that a legitimate successor should take its place. There has been no clearer indication of this than The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.
Tears of the Kingdom is one of the Switch’s most hotly anticipated games as it marks the next big-budget entry in the Zelda franchise. Tears of the Kingdom also has the unenviable task of following Breath of the Wild’s enormous success as an open-world adventure game. Details about Tears of the Kingdom’s narrative or gameplay have been pieced together through infrequent trailers, but two recent concrete pieces of information are more revealing about the state of the Switch.
Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom Presents Tech, Pricing Concerns
The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom’s price tag and file size are both higher than that of any other Switch-exclusive game. Tears of the Kingdom’s $70 price tag has alarmed a lot of fans, eking it over the default (if not already steep) price tags that Nintendo clings to with barely any discounts coming out.
Likewise, Tears of the Kingdom’s 18.2GB file size makes it the largest Switch-exclusive Nintendo title, with Breath of the Wild coming in at just 14.4GB before it. Neither of these confirmations are necessarily a bad thing, and in fact it suggests that Tears of the Kingdom will be a massive game with a lot for fans to mull over, rather than just being a clone of Breath of the Wild with locations suspended in the sky.
Gameplay trailers have also shown that there will be changes made to make it more distinguished, and its narrative looks as enigmatic as a Zelda game could hope to be. However, having an increased price tag and file size is something fans should be wary of due to the implications for Nintendo's future.
Tears of the Kingdom Could Set a Precedent for the Future of the Switch
Nintendo could adopt The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom’s hyperbolic file size for its next landmark titles as well. This would ultimately mean players need to be conscientious about their Switch’s storage and how many games they have installed at any one time, especially if they are hesitant to dip into external storage.
Tears of the Kingdom's over 18GB file size is already a lot to work around considering the base Switch model and the Switch Lite only have 32GB of space. Switch OLED models double that space at 64GB, though it cannot be expected that most fans will own one. With all the games that players already have installed or loaded onto their console, people will likely need to uninstall a lot of digital games they currently have to fit Tears of the Kingdom.
Because of these changes and how taxing it could eventually become for the Switch, Tears of the Kingdom might be cashing a check that only next-gen Switch hardware can really handle. It is already too late for Tears of the Kingdom to make that leap as a launch title for new hardware, but fans will hopefully not have to deal with hardware-intensive hikes for long.
The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom releases May 12, 2023, for Nintendo Switch.