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Retail Copies of Overwatch: Legendary Edition for Nintendo Switch  Won’t Include Physical Cartridges

Retail Copies of Overwatch: Legendary Edition for Nintendo Switch Won’t Include Physical Cartridges

Blizzard’s massively popular first-person shooter is primed to be ported to the Nintendo Switch on 15th October, but those who plan on purchasing a retail copy of the game should be wary.

Buyers who purchase a retail physical copy of Overwatch: Legendary Edition for Nintendo Switch will find a digital download code in lieu of a physical cartridge.

The official cover art of the game case clearly makes note of this lack of any physical cartridge, though it does so in a rather ingenious manner, at least from a marketing perspective.

The “game not included” text is displayed at the top of the games packaging in a gaunt and muted grey font. The disclaimer regarding the lack of any actual product within the packaging sits below a bold blue line of text indicating that you’re purchasing a “Full Game Download”.

Conversely, the “INCLUDES 3 Months Nintendo Switch Online Individual Membership” text is emblazoned in a classic Nintendo red-on-white color scheme, and occupies roughly 10% of the cases front cover space. Compare the size of the “INCLUDES” text versus the “Not Included” disclaimer, and it becomes rather obvious what the Blizzard marketing team wanted to accentuate and what they wanted to deemphasize.

In porting a massively popular game to the Nintendo Switch without a physical cartridge, it seems that Blizzard has adopted the Fortnite strategy of acquiring shelf-space and a physical store presence while simultaneously skirting the notoriously high production costs associated with Nintendo Switch cartridges. 

While the omission of a physical cartridge makes perfect sense from a financial and distributive point of view, it may spell trouble for players who lack the internet speeds required for larger downloads.  Despite the Overwatch file size weighing in at a modest 12.1 gigabytes, Overwatch players with unreliable internet connection are likely in for a long initial wait time before they can begin their play experience on Nintendo Switch consoles.

Overwatch: Legendary Edition releases on 15th October and is now available for pre-purchase on the Nintendo eShop.

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