Nintendo has reportedly demonstrated the Nintendo Switch 2 behind closed doors at Gamescom last month. Eurogamer reports that some trusted developers got an early look at the Switch 2 and some tech demos of how games run on the unannounced system.
There was reportedly a demo of an improved version of Zelda: Breath of the Wild that’s designed to run on the more advanced hardware inside the Nintendo Switch 2. Eurogamer’s report follows rumors from Windows Central’s Jez Corden that Nintendo had discussed a next-generation Switch with select developers at Gamescom.
Hours after the Eurogamer report, VGC corroborated the claims and revealed that Nintendo also showcased Epic Games’ The Matrix Awakens Unreal Engine 5 tech demo running on the type of hardware Nintendo is targeting for its next console. The demo reportedly used Nvidia’s DLSS upscaling technology with ray tracing enabled, suggesting Nintendo and Nvidia are working on a significant chip upgrade for this next-gen console.
The next Nintendo console might arrive in 2024
VGC also reported in July that a new Nintendo Switch is being planned for a 2024 release. The new console is said to include an LCD screen instead of OLED and continue to support cartridge slots for playing physical releases of games. Developer kits for the next Nintendo Switch are said to already be available to certain developers, with Nikkei Asia reporting recently that the new console development is “progressing well.”
A next-generation Switch has been rumored for years, though. Bloomberg first reported that Nintendo was working on a 4K version of the Nintendo Switch in 2020. The Bloomberg report claimed that the global chip shortage during the pandemic made Nintendo reevaluate its plans to upgrade the Switch hardware to a 4K resolution and new Nvidia chips. At least 11 developers had reportedly received 4K Nintendo Switch development kits. Nintendo denied that a 4K “Switch Pro” was in development.
Existing Switch sales have been slowing down recently, with Nintendo hoping to boost sales with special edition OLED versions.
Update, September 7th 9:15AM ET: Article updated with additional details from a VGC report.