Excuse Me While I Gush
Growing up when I was a kid…. Wait!! … come back!! This isn’t another old man rant! Promise!
Ok…. In the 80s, there were these places called Arcades. They were
wonderful, magical places where there was a constant cloud of smoke hovering just above your head and seemingly any local bully or pervert could walk in at any moment. And I couldn’t wait to go! From the age of 7 until basically all of them shut down, I spent as much time (and money) in arcades as I could.
The games from that time period don’t usually hold up well to today’s standards and expectations. For me personally, there’s still plenty of fun to be had from playing that era’s games. But what do I know? I’m forty-freaking-six!! Even today, I could kill hours (instead of wasting quarters) playing games like Tempest, Dig Dug, Galaga, and Millipede. Oh how I worshipped that Tempest cabinet!!
Fast Forward to The Present
Retro games and Indies. Both genres have not only done well on the Nintendo Switch, they’ve flourished. They’ve spread across the Switch eShop like something the doctor warns you about. I’m just making an estimate but, I believe I’ve spent more total hours playing indie and retro games on my Switch than I have in the AAA titles like Breath of the Wild, Skyrim, and Super Mario Odyssey. And I’ve put in over 200 hours into each of those big budget games.
Now, we’re lucky enough to have games like Horizon Shift 81, Downwell, and Gunbird (among tons of others) that attempt to bring back that feeling of playing in an old-school arcade.
While retro collections like Pinball FX3, the Atari Flashback Collection, and Namco Museum add an almost endless amount of arcade entertainment value to your Nintendo Switch library.
Let’s Go Vertical!
What do all of the games I just mentioned have in common? They can all be played in vertical mode (or TATE mode) on your Nintendo Switch! Playing a retro arcade game in TATE mode gives a gamer that authentic arcade experience. The extra screen real estate it provides completely changes some game’s gameplay and even their enjoyment level. Seriously. Once you play any game in TATE mode, you won’t want to go back to playing in the normal orientation. I know I didn’t. I’ve even passed on games from certain publishers that I’d love to have on my Switch, simply because they don’t include a TATE option. I’m looking at you, Capcom, Konami, and Taito.
TATE mode does have one drawback. It can be difficult to play comfortably. Thankfully there’s an amazing, and elegant, solution…
Meet the Flip Grip, a handheld accessory for vertical-mode gaming on the Switch. A pair of Joy-con rails on either side of the grip allow you to flip the Switch 90 degrees for vertical handheld action.
The Flip Grip makes portable vertical-mode gaming possible. Simply slide the Switch into the Flip Grip, then attach Joy-Cons, and voila — a handheld system capable of playing vertical-mode games without wasting a single pixel of real estate.
When I first saw the Flip Grip, I thought that it was a great idea but that I wouldn’t have a need for it. It had been years since had spent time playing any of the arcade games from the past and I wasn’t really interested in trying to recreate those memories in 2018.
I can Admit When I’m Wrong
Then, in September of 2017, I ordered a Nintendo Switch and all of that changed. More specifically, it was Namco Museum’s Dig Dug that changed my mind. Playing Dig Dug in TATE mode opened up my eyes to what I had been missing since those days I spent pumping quarters into every game at Dream Machine Arcade.
I had to wait a while before I could actually order a Flip Grip for myself but I was obsessed with how the seemingly simple piece of plastic could instantly transform a Switch into a portable arcade cabinet. After using one for close to a month, I have to say….. The Flip Grip is right near the top of the list for “Must Have” Nintendo Switch Accessories.
I’m not going to write a novel about why all of you should or shouldn’t buy a Flip Grip. Instead, check out this list of bullet points and then go purchase one from FanGamer, immediately.
- Elevates Your Gameplay Experience to the Stratosphere!
- Simple to Set up and Remove (Handheld & Tabletop Modes)
- Doesn’t Block the Game or SD Card Slots or Headphone Jack
- Fits in Most Cases
- Inexpensive (Only $12 USD!)
- It’s Handheld TATE Mode
- Gets the most out of every pixel of your Switch’s screen
10/10 Essential Nintendo Switch Accessory !!!You’re doing yourself a disservice if you don’t buy a Flip Grip.
Looking for a regularly updated list of games that are compatible with the Flip Grip? Check out Retronauts’ frequently-updated list!