How to port a game to the Nintendo switch?
The Nintendo Switch was recently released to massive success, and many popular games are already being ported to the new console, including Grand Theft Auto 5 and Skyrim. There are some game developers who don’t know how to port their game to the Switch due to its complicated architecture, but you can make this process easy with this article! Below are the steps that will show you how to port your game from any platform to the Nintendo Switch, saving both time and money.
1) Decide if the game is worth porting.
This is one of the first important decisions you will make when trying to decide if you want to know how to port a game to switch. If the game you are trying to port is extremely popular, it might be a good idea to port the game to the Nintendo Switch. This can potentially increase your game sales because of how popular the Switch will become. But if you’re developing a new, unpopular game that only has a few sales to its name, then it would not be worth porting your game to Switch because you would gain little profit from it.
2) Determine your budget for the porting process.
Porting your game to the Nintendo Switch could cost a lot of money. But if you are aware of what you will spend, you will be able to make a more informed decision on whether it would be worth spending so much on a single game. The most expensive part about developing and porting a game is actually the game engine itself. There are quite a few different engines available for developing games, each with its own pros and cons.
You could possibly use your own engine and build it from scratch, but this can be expensive and time-consuming. Try out Unity as an inexpensive option to play around with different possible options before making the final choice. It’s very easy to use, and some online retailers even offer a free license year with every purchase. Unity allows you to create 2D games, which the Nintendo Switch doesn’t support natively. But if you want to keep running on the same engine and achieve good performance, Unity is totally fine! You can then check out Unreal Engine 4 and see how it might work out for you.
3) Decide if you want to convert the game to 2D or 3D.
Depending on your game’s popularity, it might be worth trying to port it again if the first attempt at porting failed. But this means you will have to go through all of the steps again and make another decision on whether it’s worth converting the game from 3D to 2D or vice versa. Try to think about your budget, as well as how small the audience for this game is and if you would be willing to put in the time and effort to port the game again.
4) Pick a game engine.
If you decide to convert your game from 3D to 2D, choose the game engine that will be better for you and your team. There are several options available, but Unity is probably the best choice of them all. It’s extremely easy to use, especially because it comes with its own online editor! You can also create 2D games on Unity, which is good if you think the Nintendo Switch doesn’t support 3D games very well. If you think the Switch will support 3D games natively, then Unreal Engine 4 might be a better option for you.
5) Design the layout for the game’s menu.
A lot of games on the Nintendo Switch have a tutorial and a menu, which is important to their success. The tutorials make sure that players learn every button and how to play the game, while the menu allows them to customize their experience. You should try to imitate these designs as much as possible because it will help your game stand out on Switch. See what other games your target audience has played and try emulating some of their designs. You can also check out the Nintendo Switch’s menus and see how they work so you can create something similar in your own game.
6) Edit all of the different buttons used to control your game.
The Nintendo Switch uses joy-con controllers, which means you will have to edit all of the buttons in your game. Some different buttons that you need to edit include the joy-con thumbsticks, the directional pad, and A/B/X/Y. It’s also worth testing out all of the different buttons on both left and right joy-con controllers as well as different joy-con combinations. You don’t want to leave any mistakes behind in your game because it could be a real problem later.
7) Design a map for your game.
You can design the map for your game in many different ways, so it’s worth trying something a little different. Begin by looking at the Nintendo Switch’s menu system to see how they work. You can also try emulating the menu design of their games to see how it works on your game. If you don’t know what map you need, try going with a tower defense game and see how this type of map works on the Nintendo Switch! The Nintendo Switch also supports a couch mode, which means you could make a tower defense or puzzle game that has players sitting next to each other. This is a lot of fun and could give your game an extra dimension no matter what it is.
8) Test the game on multiple devices.
You should test your game on multiple devices, ensuring that it is compatible with the Nintendo Switch and can run smoothly. There are many different types of sensors in the Nintendo Switch, along with different wireless connection standards as well. So be sure you’re testing your game on these different devices as much as possible to avoid any major issues later. You should also consider converting your game from 2D to 3D or vice versa if you don’t already support both options.
9) Make a patch if you need one.
You won’t really need to make a patch if you are using a game engine that supports this, and it works fine, but it’s a good idea to do so anyway because it helps fix the problems that might have been introduced during development. If the game crashes or has errors, or your game screen on the Nintendo Switch isn’t displaying correctly, patching could help fix these issues.
10) Release your game on the Nintendo eShop.
To release your game on the Nintendo eShop, you must review some requirements. First and easiest, you will have to create an account with Nintendo. Once approved, you can log in and start submitting your game! You will also have to create a launch date and set a price for your game. You should also make sure that your game is compatible with the Nintendo eShop and use keywords related to the game in the description if possible.
In conclusion, the Nintendo Switch is a very popular console, especially because it can be played in various modes. So if you think your game would be well-received on this new platform, you should try to port it so that your game can reach all potential customers. It’s also important to note that you can make and play 2D games on the Nintendo Switch, which is perfect for everyone who doesn’t have much experience with 3D game development. But you should also take into account some of the more technical issues when porting your game. The Nintendo Switch uses joy-con controllers instead of joysticks, which can make making and playing a camera-sensitive game more difficult.
Yuriy Denisyuk is Game Production Lead at Pingle Studio. He’s responsible for successfully
managing the Game Production pipeline. Yuriy is this lucky person who plays the best
games for work in order to keep up with trends and create new ones. He likes writing, reading Manga, fantasy and professional literature in his free time.