Update: Portable docks are popping up everywhere – click through to see the pocket-sized offering from SFANS that’s currently fully-funded and purchasable on Indiegogo with an expected shipping date of August.
The Nintendo Switch comes with everything you absolutely definitely need to get the console up and running already in the box, but there are plenty of additional accessories available that will without a doubt enhance your playing experience and unlock the console’s full potential.
To help you figure out what’s out there, what it’s used for, and whether or not it’s actually going to be useful for you, we’ve rounded up a bunch of the key first and third party Switch accessories right here for your perusal.
If you’re not particularly enamored with the Joy-Con controllers and want something that’s a little more traditional you should consider picking up the Nintendo Switch Pro controller.
Though the Joy-Con controllers do have a grip to slide onto to form a single device, it doesn’t have a traditional D-pad and nor does it look quite as ergonomically sound as the Pro controller for longer play sessions.
With its motion controls, HD rumble and Amiibo support it’s a solid alternative to the Joy-Con controllers.
Despite the benefits of the Pro controller for the single player, it might also be worth picking up some extra Joy-Con controllers if you’re fond of multiplayer gaming.
You might as well face the fact that not everyone in your life will have picked up a Switch. Though you could make the purchase of Joy-Con controllers a prerequisite for entry to your home, it might be better for your personal relationships to have a few extra controllers on hand for any impromptu multiplayer sessions.
You can get them in the standard grey, a more interesting neon blue and red combination or an even more colorful neon yellow for £69.99/$79.99. Or if you’re only looking for one, you can buy them individually for £42.99/$49.99 each.
If you’d rather not buy a Pro controller but you would like your additional Joy-Con controllers to be slightly more comfortable when they’re being used separately, you could always buy the grip kit.
This kit containing two controller grips and two thumb grips will make your slim Joy-Con controllers slightly bulkier and more akin to a traditional controller shape which should reduce any discomfort that would arise in a longer play session.
If you’re a physical media fan rather than a download fan, you should probably consider purchasing a game card case for when you take your Switch on the go. Even when storing your games at home it’s a much more compact way of keeping your Switch cartridges in order than piling up each of the individual game boxes.
True LAN parties are possible on the Nintendo Switch, but only if you have an Ethernet adapter as the console doesn’t actually have a standard Ethernet port itself.
If you’d like to connect up to 10 docked Switch consoles for an intense Splatoon 2 tournament with your friends with no dodgy wireless connection worries, you’ll need to pick up one of these. It’s not been confirmed whether or not an official Nintendo adapter is necessary or if one you already have will suffice. If you’d rather be safe than sorry, though, you can pick up the official Nintendo Switch adapter for £26.99/$29.99.
No, the Joy-Con grip that comes boxed with your console will not charge your Joy-Con controllers when they’re slid onto it, but considering the Joy-Con controllers have around 20 hours of battery life in them, this shouldn’t prove to be too much of a problem.
However, we all have those times post-play where we just throw our controller on the sofa and walk away. If you just know you’re likely to play with the grip frequently and forget to reattach the controllers to your docked console this could be a purchase worth considering.
You buy protective accessories for your phone, you buy them for your tablet, and we’d say it’s worth buying them for your Nintendo Switch to keep it secure and safe when it’s undocked and on the move.
You can get this nifty Mario case officially licensed by Nintendo which includes a screen protector, earbuds, character-branded Joy-Con Armor Guards, thumb caps, cleaning cloth, and applicator for $29.99/£29.99.
If, however, you’re less concerned about themed branding there’s also this starter kit from Orzly which comes in at £14.99.
We’d definitely recommend picking up this kit for the screen protector alone; there have been reports of players scratching the tablet screen when docking the console for home play so they’re worth investing in.
If you’re not really into the idea of buying and hoarding game cards and would rather digitally purchase your Switch games, you’ll definitely want to look into buying a microSD card.
The Nintendo Switch only has 32GB of internal memory and considering games like The Legend of Zelda will take up to around 13GB of storage, the ability to expand the console’s memory is essential.
The Switch will support microSD and SDHC cards as well as SDXC cards of up to 2TB, even though the latter aren’t actually available for purchase yet.
Think you’ll probably play the Switch in tabletop mode a lot? Then you’ll want to look into purchasing the HORI playstand.
Although the Switch has a flip out leg on its rear that will support it, it doesn’t really leave any clearance for plugging a charging cable into the USB-C port on the console’s base. The HORI playstand will allow for this, though, as it lifts the console off the surface you’re playing on as well as offering adjustable angles for more comfortable play.
Planning to use the Switch on the go a lot? It could be worth investing in a sturdy external battery pack if you haven’t already.
The Switch’s portable battery life isn’t unreasonable but it isn’t stellar either and since you can’t guarantee you’re always going to be near a plug socket to top up its charge a back up power source will rarely go wrong. Just make sure you have a USB-C cable to connect it.
Update: A word of warning – there have been reports from a company that produces adhesive skins for electronics that the Switch console and its Joy-Con controllers are prone to surface damage when a skin is applied and removed.
As a result the company is cancelling and refunding orders for Switch skins, advising customers not to purchase them. It’s not yet clear whether this applies to all skins including those officially licensed by Nintendo but this warning is worth bearing in mind if you want to keep your console pristine. Or at the very least until a Switch-friendly skin has been developed.
You love the way your Switch looks but you have to admit you can see yourself getting bored of its predominantly grey color scheme soon.
The Nintendo 3DS was great because Nintendo released so many fun protective cases for it you could make your console look different every day of the week.
Fortunately, it looks like Nintendo is planning the same thing for the Switch. This Legend of Zelda skin will let you protect and customize your console all at once. You can get it for £19.99 from Game or $19.99 from Amazon US.
We imagine Nintendo will officially license even more skins in the future but why not start your collection now?
Reports have started coming in that Nintendo Switch owners are scratching their tablet screens while placing and removing it from the main console dock. This is something you definitely want to avoid, so we’d say you should definitely invest in a screen protector.
Aside from this dock issue, it just makes sense to protect the console’s screen, particularly if you plan to take it on the go frequently.
You can pick up third-party protectors created by Orzly for as little as £5.99 on Amazon.
The Nintendo Switch itself may be a portable console, but its bulky dock isn’t which isn’t ideal if you want to take the entire set up on the go to play on a TV that isn’t your own.
Fortunately, there’s a third-party solution to that problem. Accessory maker Nyko has created a much smaller dock for the Nintendo Switch. So small it can fit in the palm of your hand.
Being so small, it doesn’t have the comforting stability of Nintendo’s official dock or USB ports but it’s a great on-the-go solution. With a recommended retail price of $44.99 it’s an affordable one, too.
The dock hasn’t been released just yet (you’ll have to wait until September) but we’ll update here with purchase information when it’s available. In the meantime you can visit Nyko’s official page to see more about it.
Hoping to nip in just before Nyko with a smaller, more portable and (most importantly) more affordable dock than what Nintendo is currently selling is SFANS.
SFANS’ Switch to TV adapter is currently seeking funding on Indiegogo with an aim to ship in August (one month before Nyko’s portable dock). It’s fully funded and costs $59 through the Indiegogo page, though that’s saving 45% on the planned final retail price which means it will eventually be more expensive than Nyko’s offering.
That said, it looks more stable that Nyko’s dock as it sits the Switch flat and it boasts a couple of USB ports to boot.