6 essential day-one buys for your new Nintendo Switch

Add these must-haves to your cart ASAP.

The Nintendo Switch is portable, fun, and sales are popping off during quarantine. Recent months have seen a record number of Switch sales and even scalpers attempting to sell the console at an inflated price. If you’re one of the many new adopters, it can be difficult to know what you should get with your Switch. Here are six essential items you’ll need right after you purchase a Nintendo Switch.

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6. Micro SD card

Sony and Microsoft are known for making expensive behemoth consoles optimized for heavy gaming, with massive 500GB - 2TB hard drives. Meanwhile, the Nintendo Switch touts a paltry internal memory of 32GB, so you’ll almost certainly need a memory card.

We recommend purchasing one from the official Nintendo-themed SanDisk memory card line, which is optimized for use on your Nintendo Switch a. For $19.99 you can purchase a 64GB card, the cheapest memory card available, effectively tripling your console's storage space.

5. A second controller

Although Joy-Cons are a large upgrade from Wiimotes, they aren’t the best for long play sessions in front of the TV. To avoid unnecessary frustration and open your system up to playing with a friend, pick up a Pro Controller for your Nintendo Switch.

The controller is laid out in an asymmetrical fashion similar to the ones used by Xbox players. Pro Controllers feel great in your hands as you explore Hyrule as or race past the competition as Mario. Nearly every game on the Switch is compatible with a Pro Controller.

4. Nintendo Switch Online

If you’re looking to play with friends who aren’t in your immediate proximity, Nintendo Switch Online is the way to go. For just one $20 payment, you’ll gain access to Nintendo Switch Online for a full calendar year. This will allow you to access multiplayer on every Nintendo title you own. If you’ve found that challenging the CPU isn’t enough of a challenge, go online, find a challenger of your own caliber. Or you can just use it to play with friends.

The membership also grants access to more than 60 classic Nintendo titles at no extra cost. If you were annoyed when Nintendo nixed the virtual console with the Switch’s introduction, let the library of NES and SNES titles offered act as a salve. It includes classics like the original Star Fox, Punch-out!!, and Legend of Zelda. Using the subscription, you can either fool around with your nostalgia or awaken a Nintendo savant within yourself.

3. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Behind every great console, there’s a fantastic party game to boot. On Switch, that game is Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. It includes more than 75 characters, eight-player multiplayer, a dense combat system, and a voracious fandom more than 18 million strong.

If you don't have access to online just yet and your pals aren’t around, don’t worry! Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has between 20 and 35 hours of single-player gameplay to keep you occupied. There’s always more content on the way, too. New fighters are added all the time. The next one is scheduled for release in June 2020.

2. Nintendo Switch carrying case

Nintendo is known for creating durable consoles. When designing the Nintendo DS, Nintendo’s then-president, Satoru Iwata allegedly requested hardware designers to drop the handheld nine times from 1.5 meters each time. He refused to sign off on a design until a console left this ordeal unscathed.

Durability aside, it’s definitely worth investing in a case to protect your Nintendo Switch from the elements and random stuff in your backpack. A case will make it significantly easier to travel with your Switch. Most cases can store all the necessary wires, multiple controllers, and numerous games. That little extra comfort will only cost $14.99. Isn’t that grand?

1. Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Nintendo Switch needed a killer first week after the company’s previous console, the Wii U, was a flop. Nintendo achieved this with Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which has since sold 17.4 million copies.

The open-world feels expansive, yet filled with activities. Everything is an absolute blast to do in BotW. In fact, when Shigeru Miyamoto first played, he didn’t fight enemies or work through the story mode. No, he found joy in just climbing nearby trees for hours on end.

When you do decide to hop into combat, the game feels methodical in the same way a Dark Souls title does. Every hit needs to be made with a great deal of thought and effort. You’re not going to get through it quickly either. The main story takes 50 hours to beat, and there are two sizable DLC expansion packs to enjoy after that.

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