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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
, Last Updated: 12:03 PM ET
TOKYO — The Nintendo Switch video game console will sell for 29,980 yen (about US$ 260) in Japan, starting March 3, the same date as its global rollout in the U.S. and Europe. The Japanese company promises the device will be packed with fun features of all its past machines and more.
Anticipation has been mounting. In teaser videos, Nintendo Co. has shown players using a handheld whose remote controller section detaches from the left and right sides of the main part of the device’s display. Players can use the Switch as a regular handheld, put the display on a table, or use a TV screen as a monitor.
Nintendo needs the Switch to buttress a turnaround after the disappointing sales of the Wii U and the 3DS handheld. Nintendo has been playing catch-up after consumers dumped older machines in favour of using smartphones and personal computers to play games. The company also faces powerful rival game machine offerings from Microsoft Corp. and Sony Corp.
Nintendo is promising a more immersive, interactive experience with the Switch, including online playing and using the remote controller in games that don’t require players to be constantly staring at a display.
Nintendo officials demonstrated features such as using the detachable remote controllers, called “Joy-Con,” to play a gun-duel game. Motion sensors enable players to feel virtual water being poured into a virtual cup.
Nintendo said 50 software makers, including Electronic Arts and Sega, are preparing 80 games for the Switch. It also promised in-house games such as a Legend of Zelda game, which will go on sale the same date as the Switch.