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Why are Nintendo Switch games still so expensive?

What gives, Nintendo?

person holding a nintendo switch console in well-lighted room
Image: Unsplash

Even if you’ve never touched a video game in your life, you probably know about Nintendo. They’ve been at the forefront of home consoles since the beginning, and has never been afraid to go their own way. Their latest console, the Nintendo Switch, is a hybrid console that can be used docked with your TV or on the go, but it’s unmistakably Nintendo.

That goes even further when you take a look at the games. First-party Nintendo titles are unmistakably Nintendo, filled with the same characters that we’ve been introduced so many times before. They’re also AAA-quality, with no such thing as Day One patches in Nintendo’s vocabulary.

Yes, that’s a dedication to quality across the board, with every Nintendo character receiving the same special treatment. No wonder Nintendo fans buy every console and every variant of each game that comes out. That comes with a hefty price tag though, so why are the games always so expensive? Doesn’t economy of scale kick in at some point?

So, why are those Nintendo Switch games so expensive?

Short answer: It has everything to do with the cartridge

Nintendo loves its game cartridges, only deviating from them on a couple of consoles. I can see their point, cartridges are hardy, more resistant to damage than CDs or DVDs, and don’t need expensive, complicated laser products inside the consoles. They’re also expensive to manufacture, which keeps the price high.

The other reasons? Nintendo has a completely captive audience. Where else are you going to play games from the Pokemon series, or those featuring Link and the Mario Bros.? Nowhere, that’s where and Nintendo knows you’ll keep coming back as long as they deliver quality.

Nintendo also doesn’t want you to not buy physical games, so the company keeps its digital versions the same price. Is that the best move in the shifting landscape of game ownership? Who knows, but we do know that Nintendo will always forge their own path. The console landscape is littered with companies that didn’t take Nintendo’s innovation seriously, so maybe they’ve been right all along.

While you’re here, go enter our giveaway and you might win your own Nintendo Switch console.

What do you think? Surprised that Nintendo Switch games are still expensive, even after been out for a long time? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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