Content Continues Below

As the games industry continues to push for an all-digital future, there has been a lingering worry that the Switch successor would forgo physical games and become the first all-digital Nintendo platform. At least for the immediate future, that doesn’t seem to be in the cards. According to the latest investor Q&A from Nintendo’s latest financial results report, the company wants to “increase convenience for both customers who play the packaged version” and those “who play the downloaded version.”



As per a rudimentary Google translation (which likely isn’t 100% accurate), Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa was asked how Nintendo’s expectations for digital business evolved over the Switch’s life cycle. While digital spending has continued to increase over the last decade, it has not fully replaced physical purchases and it appears as if Nintendo is cognisant of this fact.

“As you pointed out, I think the expansion of the scale of the digital business is one of the major changes since the release of the Nintendo Switch,” Furukawa states. “Yes, digital sales and digital sales ratio increased. Our basic policy is not to simply increase the ratio of digital sales, but to maximize sales of game software, including sales of packaged software, and this policy will remain unchanged.”

In not so many words, that means Nintendo won’t be abandoning physical games in the near future. With the Switch successor likely releasing in 2025 –potentially-, it would stand to reason that whatever the follow-up console is called will continue to support physical games. What form that takes is yet to be seen, though it will likely be a small evolution of the current Switch game card format.

Still, that doesn’t mean Nintendo isn’t keeping an eye on the growth of digital purchases. Within the same question, Furukawa says, “As the convenience of digital content continues to improve in the future, we currently believe that an increasing number of customers will choose digital products for successor models, just as they did for Nintendo Switch.” Whenever Switch 3 rolls around (maybe in 2050), that could be when Nintendo finally drops physical games.

Leave a Comment

Written by Peter Glagowski

Peter has been a freelance gaming and film critic for over seven years. His passion for Nintendo is only matched by the size of his collection.