Nintendo is not ready to roll out 64GB Switch carts until 2019, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.
At the moment, Switch cards have capacities up to 32GB with 8GB and 16GB being more commonly used. Nintendo originally planned to introduce 64GB cards in the latter half of 2018, but WSJ is reporting a delay due to technical issues that are preventing Nintendo from mass producing larger carts.
The Switch, due to its design, requires carts for physical games unlike the high-capacity discs on stationary consoles. Discs also have the benefit of being far, far cheaper to produce than the Switch’s cart, which Nintendo handles the production of. When a third party developer wants to publish a Switch game, they contract Nintendo to produce the actual carts, which controls the costs of production.
This has lead to issues where third parties need larger carts than make financial sense. Take Two’s NBA 2K18, despite needing a 25GB download, and thus an SD Card, ships on a 16GB cart even though 32GB is available. Resident Evil Revelations Collection requires the second game be downloaded. Even the Nintendo-published Bayonetta Collection only has the second game on the cartridge.
While Nintendo’s own developed games tend to stay small, a 64GB cart could have been a welcome relief to developers who need it. They will have to wait until 2019, if this report is true, before they can consider it.
[Source: Wall Street Journal]
The thinner margins on Switch games due to their cost, the infamous “Switch Tax” for games on the system, and the need to download large swaths of the game even with a physical cart are all downfalls of the way the Switch interfaces with physical games. While Nintendo is fine with their usually sub-10GB games, even some of their games like Bayonetta are causing them issues, when they don’t want to use larger cards for the thinner margins. Even if they got 64GB carts off the ground, until they sort out better prices, it might not matter at all.