Nintendo Switch is getting a cheaper, more colorful little sibling: Switch Lite, a device designed specifically to play Nintendo Switch games in handheld mode.
The Switch Lite system is set to ship Sept. 20 at a suggested retail price of $199.99 — $100 less than the flagship Switch, which works in both handheld and TV-connected gameplay. Switch Lite will be available in three colors: yellow, gray and turquoise.
Nintendo also announced a Pokémon-themed limited-edition version of Switch Lite: Set to be available in North America starting Nov. 8 — also for $199.99 — Nintendo Switch Lite Zacian and Zamazenta Edition features cyan and magenta buttons and illustrations of the two new Legendary Pokémon from the upcoming “Pokémon Sword” and “Pokémon Shield” games for Nintendo Switch.
“Adding Nintendo Switch Lite to the lineup gives gamers more color and price point options,” said Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser in a statement. “Now consumers can choose the system that best suits how they like to play their favorite Nintendo Switch games.”
The flagship Nintendo Switch launched in March 2017 and offers three different play modes: playing in TV mode by placing the system into a Nintendo Switch dock, playing cooperatively or competitively in tabletop mode by sharing Joy-Con controllers and playing in handheld mode.
Nintendo Switch Lite has integrated controls and is smaller than the flagship version of Nintendo Switch. It has no kickstand and doesn’t support video output to a TV — so it does not come with a dock or HDMI cable.
Switch Lite is smaller than its predecessor, with a 5.5-inch touchscreen and weighing in at 0.61 pounds (versus the Switch, which has a 6.2-inch screen and is 0.88 pounds with Joy-Con controllers attached). The Switch Lite 3.6 inches high, 8.2 inches long and 0.55 inches deep, compared with Switch’s 4-by-9.4-by-0.55-inch dimensions (with controllers).
Switch Lite can play all games in the Nintendo Switch library that support handheld mode (although some games will have restrictions). Compatible game modes will be listed on the back of game packaging and in Nintendo eShop.
In addition, Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite owners can get together to play compatible multiplayer titles like “Super Mario Maker 2,” “Mario Kart 8 Deluxe,” “Splatoon 2” and “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” via Nintendo Switch Online or in local wireless multiplayer mode.
For games that support tabletop mode, Switch Lite users can wirelessly connect Joy-Con controllers (sold separately). In these cases, users will need to have a device to recharge Joy-Con controllers, such as the Joy-Con Charging Grip.