Nintendo Switch 2 performance upgrade detailed in new leak — here’s what we know

Nintendo Switch OLED Splatoon 3 edition
(Image credit: Nintendo)

The news that the Nintendo Switch 2 was showcased to select developers in a behind-closed-doors presentation at the recent Gamescom tradeshow has led to a flurry of new rumors surrounding the hardware, and the latest leak suggests it will pack a huge performance upgrade over its predecessor. 

In the most recent Nate the Hate podcast, the host has detailed what they know about the Switch 2’s presence at Gamescom. And these details are pretty exciting. It’s already been reported that Nintendo used a new version of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild to show off its latest hardware, and Nate claims that this demo ran at a 4K resolution with a 60fps framerate, and near-instant loading times. 

This would be a pretty substantial upgrade compared to running the game on the current Nintendo Switch. On the first-generation Switch, Breath of the Wild outputs at 900p while the console is in docked mode, and this drops to 720p if played in handheld mode. The game plays at 30fps, and as anybody who’s taken a trip to the Korok Forest can attest, this framerate is far from stable. Furthermore, loading time can stretch up to around 30 seconds. 

Multiple sources including VGC have also claimed that Nintendo used The Matrix Awakens — an Unreal Engine 5 tech demo set in the world of the popular sci-fi movie — to further demonstrate the power of the Switch 2.

According to Nate, the Matrix Awakens looks the same on Nintendo’s new hardware as it does on PS5 and Xbox Series X with even better ray tracing features. However, the source does caveat this by suggesting the demo likely wasn’t running on native hardware but instead a developer kit with similar specs.

Other assorted claims made by Nate in this podcast include the Switch 2 utilizing Nvidia DLSS 3.5 technology, and that March 2024 was a date discussed during Gamescom. But Nate is unsure if this date refers to the console’s targetted launch window, or when Nintendo plans to reveal its next-gen hardware to the public (a previous rumor suggested the console is set to release in the second half of 2024). 

Disappointingly, Nate was unable to provide any insight into Nintendo’s plans for backwards compatibility on Switch 2 so whether the console will offer this crucial feature remains a mystery for now. 

There’s a lot to get excited about here, but it’s important to note that these new Switch 2 details are currently unconfirmed. Until we hear concrete words from Nintendo itself any details about its next hardware should be categorized as speculation. To date, Nintendo has yet to comment on the record regarding the Switch 2. We don’t even know for sure that it will be called Switch 2 yet. 

However, in the absence of official news, fresh Switch 2 rumors are popping up on a daily basis, so let’s hope we get an official reveal soon so we can start separating the fact from the fiction. And while we wait for that we’ve been thinking about the games the Switch 2 needs at launch, and also considering what features we want and the ones we don’t.  

More from Tom's Guide

Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.