In just two days, fans will be able to add the Nintendo Switch to the list of platforms they can play Overwatch on. For the first time, Blizzard’s popular hero-shooter will be playable on the go, which should excite plenty of fans even amidst all of the drama surrounding Blizzard these days. With that in mind, though, it might help to remind them that, no matter where they buy the game from, they’ll be going digital.
That’s because amiibo support isn’t the only thing that will be missing in this version of Overwatch. As players who head to retailers will find out, the box that will be available in stores won’t in fact come with a physical cartridge inside. What it will come with, instead, is a download code.
This won’t be news to those who’ve been keeping an eye on the news, as this was revealed back when Overwatch’s Switch port was officially announced last month. But in case there was any doubt about it for everyone else, the Amazon listing for the Switch version shows that it says so right on top of its box art: “FULL GAME DOWNLOAD – GAME CARD NOT INCLUDED.”
It’s not that the game is too big to fit on a cartridge. At a rather lean 12 GB, Overwatch could have easily fit inside one of the Switch’s higher-capacity cartridges, which can hold up to 32 GB of data. Those are more expensive to manufacture, though, so a lot of bigger games have been taking the same approach with their physical releases, using them more like glorified downloads instead of a way of gaining a tangible copy of the game.
No doubt at least some fans will be bothered by this, as it creates the inability to easily and quickly move the game from one Switch to another. It’ll be less than convenient for those with both a Nintendo Switch and a Nintendo Switch Lite, that’s for sure. But if there’s any consolation, it’s that the Switch version of Overwatch, on top of including everything that’s already in the game, will throw in 15 character skins and three months of Nintendo Switch Online as free bonuses.
Overwatch is out for the Switch on October 15. The game is meanwhile currently available on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.