Nintendo Switch 2 may not launch in 2024 after all

Man holding Nintendo Switch
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Despite being widely tipped for a release in 2024, it now seems that the Nintendo Switch 2 — or whatever it ends up being called — will not emerge this year after all.

The news was first broken by the Brazilian games journalist Pedro Henrique Lutti Lippe, before being corroborated by both VGC and Eurogamer’s independent sources. They suggested the later launch window is geared toward facilitating a stronger first-party launch game lineup. 

The good news is that it apparently won’t face a long delay, with a launch in the first quarter of 2025 tipped, which means some point between the start of January and the end of March. If it pushes to the very end of this window, there’s a certain symmetry, as the original Switch arrived in most regions on March 3, 2017. 

Still, that would mean the Switch would reach its eighth birthday without a successor, which is certainly pushing the limits of hardware that wasn’t the most highly powered when it first went on sale. That’s also a long time historically speaking, with Nintendo generally leaving five years between hardware generations (or six between the Wii and Wii U). 

We did, of course, receive the Switch OLED, but this didn’t offer the ‘Pro’ performance boost that it was originally rumored to feature. A number of developers reportedly received 4K development kits, but Nintendo’s ambiguously worded denial suggests that the plan was ultimately shelved, or that it was actually Switch 2 hardware all along.

A generational leap

Mario and Princess Peach walk in Mushroom Kingdom in The Super Mario Bros Movie

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

The good thing about such a big gap is that we should feel a genuinely generational leap in performance. True, this might not offer Xbox Series X or PS5-level grunt, but that could still spell big graphical improvements

With multi-platform titles increasingly struggling on Nintendo’s hardware, that can only be a good thing. Indeed, the titles that have wheezed along on the current Nintendo Switch hardware may get a bit of a boost too, with rumors of souped-up backward compatibility doing the rounds.

Of course, most people buy Nintendo consoles for Nintendo games that can’t be played anywhere else. And with talk of a delay being based on the need for more first-party launch games, we could see all sorts arriving with the console early next year. 

There have been rumors surrounding the first new Mario Kart game since 2013 (the one later remastered for Switch) and a new Mario platformer. There’s also the perpetually MIA Metroid Prime 4, originally announced in 2017, but unheard of in five years. Polygon speculates that this could be a contender to make the most of the new hardware.

Alan Martin

Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.