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Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Digital Games vs Physical Nintendo Switch Game Cartridges

Depending on what you want both digital and physical games have their pros and cons. But in a nutshell, if you want easier access to games on the go without having to constantly take out game cartridges each time you want to play a different game, then investing in a in a large-capacity microSD card and getting games digitally would be the choice for you. However, if you prefer owning the game cartridges and have your own little collection which you can trade or resell to fund future games, then physical game cartridges with a little investment on a  invested a smaller microSD card and a carrying case for the cartridges.


Note: The Nintendo Switch and Switch Lite have 32GB of internal storage, while the Switch OLED offers 64GB. When you download a game from the eShop, it will occupy some of that storage space. You can expand the Switch's storage through microSD cards up to 2TB (which is more than enough for plenty of Switch games), but that's an additional expense.


Personally, I prefer a mix of digital and physical because it just makes sense. This is especially the case for:

  •  digital games which go on sale on the Nintendo e-Shop and are way cheaper than the physical copy (sometimes up to a 50% discount or more!)
  • physical games which come with special bonuses, make for a good collection or if I don't like it, I can resell it away to fund my other games

But that's just me. Here is a quick rundown of the important factors you should consider when making the decision.


Pros 

 Physical GamesDigital Games
You own the game:Available as soon as it downloads:
The game is yours whether it's delisted or removed from the Nintendo Switch eShop. That isn't the case with digital copies.You don’t have wait for the game you purchased to be delivered or pick it up. As soon as it is available you can download it and play it. 
You don’t need to wait to download the game:Easily switch between games:
Unless there is an update you need to download, all you need to do is pop the cartridge into the slot to play without having to wait for it to download.Depending on your storage space, you can download, store and alternate between multiple games without having to switch out the cartridges.
It does not take up storage space:Easily re-downloaded:
As the games are on the cartridges, you do not use the system memory to install the games, unlike digital copies. All games you buy digitally are stored on your Nintendo Account. You can re-download them as many times as you want when you delete games to free up space.
Easily share with others:Can’t be lost:
You can let friends and family play the games you buy without any frustrations. You just need pass the cartridges back and forth.As long as you don’t lost your Nintendo Account, you can never technically lose a game as it’s there in your system.
Resell or trade cartridges:Some games are only available digitally:
You bought the physical copy and now own it. So you can choose to resell it to fund your next game adventure, or trade it to save a little budget.Many Switch games have only digital releases and are not available physically.
Cool physical goodies: 
Many physical Switch games come with cool pre-order bonuses or additions, such as posters, manuals, booklets, soundtracks, plushies and much more!  

Cons

 Physical GamesDigital Games
Cartridges can be lost:You can run out of space easily:
The Switch's cartridges are very small, slightly larger than a quarter. They can be easily lost, and if you lose them, you'll have to buy replacements.Unless you buy massive storage cards, you'll likely continue to run out of space on your Switch; you'll have to keep buying more memory.
Multiple games need to be carried with you:Downloads can take a while: 
If you want to swap out games on the go, you need to carry them with you at all times, unlike when they're installed on the Nintendo Switch.Depending on your internet connection, it can take some time to download your games. If you have a slow connection, it's  going to take a while
Games take up physical space:Games can be removed from the eShop: 
The more games you have, the more space you'll need in your home to store them. This isn't great news for anyone with small spaces who wants to own plenty of Switch titles.Occasionally, games can be delisted from the eShop, and you'll no longer be able to download them. You won't receive a refund for your time because if you cannot download it, you don't "own" it.
Not every game is available with a physical copy:Games can't be shared, traded, or sold
Some Switch games only get digital releases on the Nintendo eShop, so you won't get to buy a physical version.You can't simply share, trade, or sell the games you purchase on Nintendo Switch. They are tied to your system, for better or worse.
 You must have an internet connection to play digital games
 The Switch must occasionally "call home" to verify that you are indeed the owner of the game you're playing. Additionally, if you aren't on your primary system, your Switch will need to verify that you can play a game and it's yours before starting. That means unless you have portable internet, you can't take it on the go.



So which is your preferred mode physical, digital or a little bit of both? 
Share it with us below in the comments below!

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