Nintendo Switch 2 rumours reignite as Nintendo stockpile raw materials

What is Nintendo making now? (pic: Nintendo)

The first evidence for new Nintendo hardware has emerged from the company’s own records, which shows them getting ready for… something.

Clearly the Nintendo Switch is not going to last forever and yet whenever anyone asks Nintendo about a replacement, they just say the original is intended to have a 10 year lifespan. That means it’s supposed to last until 2027, but not only does that seem unfeasible but there’s now direct evidence that Nintendo is planning something new in the near future.

Rather than rely on insider gossip, which rarely proves to be true when it comes to Nintendo, this rumour is based on Nintendo’s own financial reports, which show a massive increase in raw materials and supplies this year.

Last year it only amounted to ¥9,553 million (£58 million) worth and yet for 2022 it’s reported at ¥66,517 million (£401 million). That’s a 600% increase and still double that of the 2019 figure, when the Switch Lite was launched, and yet Nintendo has provided no explanation for what it’s all for.

It’s nothing to do with their new R&D headquarters, which is accounted for differently, and when an investor asked Nintendo what is was for they were given a typically vague non-answer.

An official translation should be available shortly but according to Google Translate, Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa stated that, ‘It’s a technical and difficult story, so I’ll omit it a lot.’

‘One of the things I have is that I have a lot of raw materials, and there is also the effect of changes in accounting treatment’, he added.

The implication seems to be that there hasn’t been any major change and Nintendo is just changing the way they report their spending, but that seems peculiar given there have been fluctuations similar to this before – but only prior to a new hardware launch.

There’s no guarantee it’s for the Switch 2, or even the mythical Switch Pro, as it could just as easily be for a new Wii Fit pad, or some other high-end peripheral, but it’s certainly easy to imagine that this is the first sign that a Switch replacement is happening.

Even without this information, Nintendo’s current line-up of games is very peculiar. 2022 is surprisingly busy, even without all the third party games announced in the Nintendo Direct Mini on Tuesday, and yet the only game scheduled for next year is the delayed Zelda: Breath Of The Wild sequel (Metroid Prime 4 doesn’t have so much as a target year).

Even Nintendo isn’t usually that secretive and it’s not hard to imagine that they might be planning a new hardware release next year and is waiting to reveal new games until then.

Some fans have even theorised that the Breath Of The Wild sequel will be a launch title for the new console, even if it also appears on the current Switch. That is, after all, exactly how Nintendo handled the original Breath Of The Wild on the Wii U/Switch and Twilight Princess on the GameCube/Wii.

The detail was first noted on the FamiBoards forum, where they point out that Furukawa’s attempt to dismiss the number as an accounting change seems to be contradicted by another section of the report, which clearly states that, ‘at the end of the consolidated fiscal year ended March 31, 2022, inventories and other current liabilities increased by ¥36,559 million.’

That’s still not proof of anything but if you wanted a reason to hope that there will be new Nintendo hardware in 2023, and perhaps even a whole new format, this is the most convincing argument so far.

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