The Fitzgerald Scale – Mike Gets a Nintendo Switch

So, last week I had another one of those birthday things. I didn’t want to, but I was told I had to have it, something to do with living eternally at one particular age being medically impossible or some such explanation (I’m not really one for jargon). Seeing as I’m a dull dullerton, I didn’t really ask for anything, save FIFA 20 and the Spyro Reignited Trilogy, both for my PS4. However, when I ventured forth to my parents’ house on the day of the anniversary of my less than glorious birth (this is something functional humans do, apparently, so I decided to go along with it, best to keep up appearances and all that), I found something surprising waiting for me.

For you see, about a month prior to my birthday, I had been chatting with my sister about video games as I’d handed down my Xbox 360 to her so she could put it in her new gaff (I did sod all to help her do up her house, so I thought I’d at least give her something to fill it with, if nothing else), and the topic of the Nintendo Switch came up. I mentioned that I liked the look of Nintendo’s current foray into the console market, but it was eye-wateringly expensive and that I’d wait for it to go down in price before I picked one up in a year or two (my usual strategy with Nintendo consoles).

My sister brought the topic up with my parents, and they suffered what I could only consider a complete and utter moment of madness as they then went and bought me one! I remember picking the present up and thinking it was a new pair of trainers or some such and then watching in disbelief as my jaw plonked onto the carpet when I saw the Nintendo logo on the side of the box. My parents hit me with the “I hope that’s okay?” thing that parents do when they buy you something they know absolutely nothing about and are hoping they got it right. I assured them that it was more than okay, it was chuffing brilliant!

I often find that great presents you don’t expect can mess with your head a little bit as you haven’t planned to get the new thing you’ve been given, and as a result, you have no real plan of what to do next. I did the logical thing in such a situation and decided to buy a video game for the new video game device I’d been bought. Even my crippled and scorched mind was able to work that one out, just about, anyway. So off to the nearest video game emporium I went where, after much deliberation, I decided to go with The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening because I liked the art style, and footage I’d seen of the game reminded me of the top-down Zelda games of my youth.

Dom Richards has already done a very fine review on this here website for Link’s Awakening, so I won’t be able to effuse about it more than he did, but I really enjoy this game, and I’m mightily pleased that I decided to pick it up. This is the sort of game that made me want to pick up the Switch in the first place as Nintendo’s first-party content is usually always great, with the likes of Mario, Zelda and Donkey Kong bringing the goods way more often than not. Everything from the beautiful art style, the wonderful orchestral soundtrack and the sharp gameplay is just top notch here. I’ve always enjoyed this type of Zelda game over the Ocarina of Time or Breath of the Wild types, so everything about Link’s Awakening is right up my street.

What I also enjoyed was how setting up the console and getting into the gameplay was so wonderfully easy and straightforward. I didn’t have to sit there for ages waiting for the game to download and update like I did when I tried to have a quick go on FIFA. I stuck the cart in the Switch, turned it on, and within moments practically, I was playing the game. It’s a shame that modern gaming has gotten to be such a way that something like that is a novel bonus rather than something you should expect, but that’s the way the cookie crumbles, I guess.

I obviously intend to pick up a few more games for the console if I can before Christmas comes along, but I’ll have to see what I have left in my piggy bank once all my bills are paid. I’m thinking of getting another first-party game and a third-party one, with possibly a Pro Controller down the line as well. The first-party game I’m considering is Super Mario Odyssey, and the third-party one would be either Skyrim (because I’ve never played it before, and I’ve seen that it’s gotten good reviews) or the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection (hence why I might consider it worth it to shell out for a Pro Controller as the “Joy-Cons” that come with the Switch feel like they might not appreciate some frantic Street Fighter action).

I’ve been playing the Switch mostly on my TV, but I’ve tried it in handheld form a few times, and I’ve been impressed with how seamlessly you can move from one to the other. A while back I mused as to whether Nintendo should just make games rather than persisting with hardware just because I was sick of having to buy two consoles every console generation, but I do have to say that the Switch is a nice bit of kit that works very well. It’s just a shame that so many multi-plats for the console get chopped up so badly, because if the Switch could match the PS4 or Xbox One on that front, then I honestly don’t think I’d bother with the other two because I just love the first-party content so much.

Please feel free to recommend any games in the comments section (along with any advice on peripherals or memory cards that you think might be worth my time), and I’ll try to keep everyone updated on how my Switch adventure is going over the coming months.

The Urban Dictionary defines “The Fitzgerald Scale” as “A scale used to measure the awkwardness of a situation. The Fitzgerald Scale is divided into ten subunits, called ‘Geralds’. Each Gerald is in turn divided into ten Subgeralds, which gives 100 possible levels of awkwardness. One Gerald is a commonly awkward level, where a ten Gerald situation would be a scarring event.”

Man, the atmosphere of that party was off the Fitzgerald Scale when we decided to leave

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