- The joycon controllers charge best when attached to the console and docked. They offer approx. 20 hours of gaming and take approx. 3 hours to fully charge.
- Game saves are tied to the device - save data is stored on the console’s System Memory. Game save data cannot be saved or copied to a microSD card or transferred between switch consoles.
- The console only has 32GB of on-board memory, but 6 GB of that is already taken up by the system files, giving you a total of 26GB for games.
- Images and downloadable games (not the save data) can be recorded on a Micro SD card to extend the life of the console's measly 32GB.
- Nintendo Switch carts come in 1 GB, 2 GB, 4 GB, 8 GB, 16 GB, and 32 GB sizes. The larger the cart is, the more expensive it is for the publisher to purchase. If the entire game is put on a cart of the appropriate size, it will not eat into the console's limited memory too much. If only part of the game is put on a cart (such is the case with L.A. Noire) then the rest of the game will be downloaded to the console, dramatically eating into the console's memory.
- Switch cartridges have an average lifespan of 5 to 20 years. After which they will cease to function.
Essential items to buy in conjunction with the console:
Storage: Micro SD card
The on-board 32GB of storage won’t last you very long, especially if you’re looking to buy your games digitally. In fact, games like L.A. Noire require an external storage card. Even the boxed version of that game requires a big install - 14GB. You’re going to want a Micro SD card to expand your storage, and the Switch works with any Micro SD on the market. The only requirement for Switch Micro SD cards is that they are UHS-1 compatible (looking around 90mb/s). The Nintendo Switch is itself capable of using Micro SD cards of up to 2TB in size (a size which currently doesn’t exist). The card will be formatted by the console as long as it is connected to the internet. Otherwise, the micro sd will need to be formatted to FAT32 on a PC. A program to convert cards to FAT32 will need to be used for anything over 64GB.
Optional items to buy in conjunction with the console:
A plastic or glass covering made specifically for the Switch screen to prevent scratches and screen damage that occur when docking and undocking.
Common problems/faults with the console:
- The Joy-Cons may drift after some use (roughly 200+ hours worth). The issue seems to affect the left Joy-Con controller more often. Drifting causes the analog sticks on the controllers to randomly move around and input commands to the console, even when they're not being physically moved. It is caused by the metal prongs in the stick wearing down the soft graphite contacts.
- In 2022, a UK watchdog found that every two in five Switch Joy-Cons are affected by drift.
- The Joy-Cons may jump around menus (usually up or down). The issue is caused by a rubber pivot on the D-pad that is shorter than it should be, causing it to make unwanted contact with the other buttons.
- MicroSD cards have melted in the switch. The problem may be related to hairline cracks in the microsd cards.
- Switch cartridges are coated with Denatonium, a bitter tasting chemical compound to discourage children from eating the small cartridges. However, about one quarter of people don't have the gene to taste it.