Following reports indicating a Q1 2025 Nintendo Switch 2 release, Nintendo's JP stock drops by over 5 percent

Switch OLED
Nintendo Switch OLED, initially thought to be a "Switch Pro" prior to release, did not amp up Nintendo's handheld power— hence the continued wait for Switch 2. (Image credit: Nintendo)

Following a Bloomberg report on Saturday claiming Nintendo had informed publishers of a Q1 2025 delay for the Nintendo Switch 2, CNBC reported a 5.84% drop in Nintendo's Japanese stock market shares. Nintendo's reasoning in the original Bloomberg report was to ensure the strongest possible launch game lineup for Switch 2.

While this move from Nintendo would be in defiance of traditional launching-prior-to-holidays wisdom and past rumors pointing to a 2024 release, it would not be uncharacteristic with its past console releases at all. After all, the original Switch launched in Q1 as well— March 2017. But Nintendo and major delays like this go back farther than just that one example.

Nintendo's Legend of Zelda series is a good place to start as an example. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess was the first 3D Zelda game attempting to tackle a dark, realistic aesthetic for the Nintendo GameCube (following a cartoony Wind Waker, with then-mixed reception). The reveal of Twilight Princess was pitched as a GameCube game during E3 2004 with a 2005 release date, but it was infamously delayed for nearly two whole years.

These repeated delays for Twilight Princess pushed it to become a cross-generation release for both Nintendo GameCube and Nintendo Wii in the Winter of '06, with Wii's launch. Delaying until nearly 2007 allowed Nintendo to polish the game for a successful dual-platform launch, though not without quirks.

For example, Nintendo Wii's right-handed motion controls also meant that the Wii version of Twilight Princess was actually vertically "mirrored," so the East Side of the map became the West, and the playable character Link's left sword hand became his right hand. Link is left-handed on every Nintendo console but the Wii for this reason.

The delays of Twilight Princess and Nintendo's cautious release practices were so infamous that it led to "a rushed game is forever bad" being misattributed to Shigeru Miyamoto.

Twilight Princess isn't the only example, though: later on, we saw a similar phenomenon play out with Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. While it's known today as a March 2017 Switch release game, it was originally announced for Wii U back in E3 2014. Instead, it was a dual-console launch that had slightly worse visuals on Wii U and removed second-screen gameplay elements for parity with the Switch version.

Overall, it seems that this move from Nintendo to delay a console launch solely to have a stronger launch lineup would be in character with its past releases, though these are technically rumors for now. The original Switch launched in a similar window and experienced great success despite missing the previous year's holiday rush— and Switch OLED still proved successful despite not being the "Pro" people wanted it to be.

While these delays may bode well for future Nintendo and Switch 2 purchasers, they may leave a sour taste in the mouth of present-day investors or any customers who could purchase an old Switch model during the holidays without knowing of the Switch 2's existence.

  • Giroro
    If a Switch 2 was coming this year, Nintendo would have announced it last July.
    That's just how Nintendo always works. So I'm not sure why any reasonable investor would have thought otherwise.

    A Q1 release would only happen if Nintendo decided that Switch 2 qualifies as a gameboy/DS. So far the Switch has been following the home console playbook. I don't see why they would change how they classify the next console, unless it's a substantially different device than what we expect.
    Which, I mean, Nintendo might be making something weird again (good or bad).
    Reply
  • TheyCallMeContra
    Giroro said:
    If a Switch 2 was coming this year, Nintendo would have announced it last July.
    That's just how Nintendo always works. So I'm not sure why any reasonable investor would have thought otherwise.

    A Q1 release would only happen if Nintendo decided that Switch 2 qualifies as a gameboy/DS. So far the Switch has been following the home console playbook. I don't see why they would change how they classify the next console, unless it's a substantially different device than what we expect.
    Which, I mean, Nintendo might be making something weird again (good or bad).

    curious why you say a Q1 Switch 2 release would be Nintendo deciding it "qualifies as gameboy/DS" when the original Switch also released in Q1 and Nintendo's only handheld-only system since is Switch Lite— do you mind elaborating?
    Reply
  • JTWrenn
    Giroro said:
    If a Switch 2 was coming this year, Nintendo would have announced it last July.
    That's just how Nintendo always works. So I'm not sure why any reasonable investor would have thought otherwise.

    A Q1 release would only happen if Nintendo decided that Switch 2 qualifies as a gameboy/DS. So far the Switch has been following the home console playbook. I don't see why they would change how they classify the next console, unless it's a substantially different device than what we expect.
    Which, I mean, Nintendo might be making something weird again (good or bad).
    What are you talking about? Switch one was announced in November of 2016 and released in march of 2017. So a 5 month window. That same cadence could be a July announce and December release. They more often do this than what you said for their main systems, with the wii u being the exception and the gamecube falling in between.

    switch announce oct 2016, release march 2017
    wii u announce april 2011 release nov 2012
    wii announce april 2006 release nov 2006
    gamecube announce aug 2000 release sept 2001
    n64 announced nov 1995 june 1996

    So they do it faster than you said more often than not and that is not even looking at the handhelds.
    Reply
  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    The global economy is in shambles right now, with inflation and cost of living skyrocketing, and Japan and the UK entering a recession. Launching a new game console this year would be a disaster,
    Reply
  • oofdragon
    Nintendo should have stopped making consoles long ago, they went from power house to mobile that even smart phones perform better

    Palworld came to show Nintendo famboys how much the pokemon franchise has been lacking, wait till the same happens to Zelda
    Reply
  • oofdragon
    7 years ago Nintendo released a console that was already underpowered by that era standards, now they r pushing to 2025 a hardware that maybe won't even match the standard of that same 7 years ago? I really wonder how they didn't went bankrupt already.. but then I remember apple fanboys
    Reply
  • George³
    Alvar Miles Udell said:
    and Japan and the UK entering a recession.
    Germany too. It's a big economic and market and have influence in decision of Nintendo.
    Reply
  • TerryLaze
    oofdragon said:
    Nintendo should have stopped making consoles long ago, they went from power house to mobile that even smart phones perform better

    Palworld came to show Nintendo famboys how much the pokemon franchise has been lacking, wait till the same happens to Zelda

    oofdragon said:
    7 years ago Nintendo released a console that was already underpowered by that era standards, now they r pushing to 2025 a hardware that maybe won't even match the standard of that same 7 years ago? I really wonder how they didn't went bankrupt already.. but then I remember apple fanboys
    Nintendo is the only gaming/console company to survive from the very beginning...
    They didn't do that by making games for YOU, they did that by making games for their target audience.
    They never had better hardware and they never needed it to flash people into thinking they were playing good games, they just made good games and they keep making good games.
    Reply
  • bigdragon
    2024 always felt too soon to me. 2025 seems like a better fit for a Switch replacement. Nintendo really needs to bring their best with launch games. Competition from smaller developers launching games on Steam is very strong right now. Hopefully the economic environment will be more stable in 2025 too. I'm not liking the signs that inflation may be ramping up again for 2024.
    Reply
  • artk2219
    oofdragon said:
    Nintendo should have stopped making consoles long ago, they went from power house to mobile that even smart phones perform better

    Palworld came to show Nintendo famboys how much the pokemon franchise has been lacking, wait till the same happens to Zelda
    oofdragon said:
    7 years ago Nintendo released a console that was already underpowered by that era standards, now they r pushing to 2025 a hardware that maybe won't even match the standard of that same 7 years ago? I really wonder how they didn't went bankrupt already.. but then I remember apple fanboys

    Its not always about having the most powerful system, and its foolish to say that they should be out of the hardware business when they're still clearly making money in it. Besides, the last time Nintendo was truly a powerhouse with the most powerful console would have to be the Nintendo 64 days, and it was absolutely destroyed by the original PS1 in sales. The Gamecube was the most second powerful console of its generation behind the Xbox, and it was similarly creamed by the PS2 and Xbox in sales. With this being the case twice in a row, why would they not focus on something that would bring you more sales instead of worrying about being the most powerful. Especially when their previous big sellers, the original NES and SNES were not the most powerful consoles, yet they sold very well.

    That's why we got the Wii, a bit more powerful than the Gamecube, but not a generation leader, and it sold incredibly well because it was priced well and had something that the competition didn't. Unfortunately they relied on that too long and while the Wii-u did have a neat new feature with a tablet as a second controller, it didn't really get used in the ways it could have been. Similar to after the Gamecube they looked at what worked, figured hey lets cram it all into the tablet portion of the Wii-u, and see how that does. Now the switch is very long in the tooth, and its not the only handheld game in town anymore, but I don't see Nintendo getting out of the hardware game, even if the switch 2 doesn't perform as well as they'd like. This is mainly due to something else Nintendo has made a priority that hasn't always been the case for the competition. They try not to sell their consoles at a loss, at worst its at cost, but generally they try to make a profit on the hardware from the get go, so they're never losing out on money if they're making sales. Don't get me wrong, im no Nintendo fan boy, but they're a smart company thats been around for a while, they're not going anywhere just yet.
    Reply