Last week we reported that The Outer Worlds was coming to Nintendo Switch as a physical edition, with no game card. I personally got quite angry about this, because it’s not the first time that Nintendo has approved a game’s physical launch with a download code inside, making the case a complete waste of packaging. However, the situation has changed since then so that this physical Switch release won’t be a complete waste of plastic.
That’s right, The Outer Worlds will now launch on a game card for Nintendo Switch. That means that all of the problems with this release can mostly be put aside, though it’s still important to try to buy digitally to decrease your carbon footprint. However, the news comes with some other, quite alarming news. Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the Virtuous team, which is the team bringing the game to Nintendo Switch, won’t finish their work in time for the March release date. Now, the release date for The Outer Worlds on Nintendo Switch has been indefinitely delayed. This makes total sense, because a lot of countries, including China, are forcing people to stay inside in order to avoid contracting the coronavirus. Many businesses have simply closed until things clear up, which might not be until summer 2020.
The coronavirus is a serious outbreak, and it’s important for everyone to stay safe and away from it. If that means that a developer closes in order to protect their employees, then we need to support that, which is why this delay is totally fine.
Did Nintendo Change?
The initial announcement for the physical release of The Outer Worlds on Switch definitely had no game card. The delay of The Outer Worlds for the Switch is down to the coronavirus, so why has the game card suddenly become a thing? I think that the fan feedback on the lack of a game card, which was just pure fury, forced Nintendo’s hand. I think that the company realised how much of a waste this physical release is without a game card, even without the environmental factors taken into account. Collectors were not best pleased about the lack of a game card in this release, and I think that’s the core reason for it now being sold as part of the physical release.
Ultimately it seems as though this massive waste of plastic has been avoided, in a roundabout way. However, I can see Nintendo allowing yet more of them in the future. It’s still important to push against companies on matters like this, regardless of whether you’re fighting for the planet or your games collection.
Sometimes we write about sustainability in games. If you’d like to read more stuff like that, head over here.