Nintendo Switch Sports’ Spocco Square Requests Free Roaming Mode

Although Nintendo Switch Sports is only about a month away, there are still plenty of potential details that Nintendo hasn’t shown. For example, players don’t know the extent to which they can control the appearance of each playable Sportsmate. These new avatars look like solid blank canvases with lots of potentially malleable detail, but for now there’s a lot to learn about them. It’s also hard to say how much players can commit to setting up Nintendo Switch Sports. The heir of Sports Wii apparently takes place in Spocco Square, a sports complex filled with buildings that house all kinds of competitive events.

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Nintendo recently shared screenshots of Spocco Square, and these images do the Nintendo Switch Sports the home base looks really impressive. Each building is beautifully detailed, and the various NPCs hanging around each building make them look alive. This level of detail creates the perfect opportunity to add a free roaming mode to Nintendo Switch Sports where players simply stroll around Spocco Square, get to know other local athletes, and find all sorts of useful things. Previous Sports Wii games may limit the player’s ability to explore, but Nintendo Switch Sports doesn’t have to do the same.


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The exploration potential of Spocco Square


Aerial view of Spocco Square from Nintendo Switch Sports

Nintendo Switch Sports is not the first game Sports Wii family to have a unique setting. Wii Sports Complex featured Wuhu Island, the heart of a resort archipelago that featured the game’s 15 sports categories. While players typically only saw parts of Wuhu Island during certain games, Island Mode Flyover of Wii Sports Complex‘s Air Sports allowed players to view the wonderfully detailed island from above and uncover several secrets. Still, flying over the island by plane meant that some distance between players and the island was unavoidable. Wii Sports ComplexThe details could have been better appreciated with an additional hiking option that encouraged careful exploration.


Spocco Square offers Nintendo the opportunity to let players explore on foot, and players could enjoy this experience. For example, players might have the opportunity to meet NPC athletes who provide strategic advice on Nintendo Switch Sports‘ various game modes and even teasing sports that Nintendo will add to Nintendo Switch Sports later. Players can also have the chance to find exclusive clothes and other cosmetics by walking around Spocco Square. Walking around this sports park would be an immersive experience in its own right, but there are plenty of mechanical benefits to be had.


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Nintendo Switch Sports has new ideas


nintendo switch sports characters

There may be hope that players can explore in this way. According to Nintendo Switch Sports game testers, players can get in-game jobs, which could very well involve physically looking for work in Spocco Plaza or wandering around the plaza while performing professional tasks. Nintendo Switch Sports would also have restaurants and clothing stores, both of which could be in-game locations, rather than just menus that players interact with. These features, along with free-form exploration, would certainly make Spocco Square feel like a real community.


Until there, Nintendo Switch Sports seems to have quite a few new ideas built in, which is a good thing. Although Sports Wii is a classic franchise, Nintendo Switch Sports wouldn’t have been so interesting if it just carried over all the ideas of its predecessor. Nintendo needed to innovate to revive this franchise, and between new sports and cosmetic options, Nintendo has been innovating pretty well so far. I hope there are many other features that Nintendo Switch Sports hasn’t shown yet, though. Surprising and useful features such as manual exploration will help push the boundaries of Nintendo sports games while providing more ideas for possible future games.

Nintendo Switch Sports releases April 29, 2022 on Nintendo Switch.

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