clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Nintendo’s always had the funkiest color palette for its consoles

New, 32 comments

It’s no surprise that the Switch is going all neon, all day

nintendo switch neon yellow joy-con Nintendo

Another color scheme joins the Nintendo Switch family in June. Neon yellow-colored Joy-Con controllers will be sold in pairs starting June 16. Our opinion of highlighter yellow peripherals be damned (we’re not totally in love with the color), we have to applaud Nintendo for once again proving that consoles don’t have to only come in drab, neutral shades.

The color of the Joy-Con controllers effectively determine which color Nintendo Switch you own, meaning the console currently comes in two different choices: typical gray and “neon,” which currently has one red, one blue controller. The majority of Switch console colorways, then, are bright and cheery; if you buy extra controllers separately, you can make your console entirely red or entirely blue or mix them up however you like.

Nintendo Switch handheld with Zelda main menu
Seeing a Switch that looks like this is standard, not anomalous.
Austin Pikulski/Vox Studios

Throwing yellow into the mix means that 75 percent of the Switch consoles’ color options are brightly colored. When you can only buy a standard PlayStation 4, for example, in black, all these options feel more refreshing.

Sure, Sony and Microsoft have sold a variety of systems in interesting shades. But these have always been produced in limited quantities. The average PlayStation or Xbox owner can’t claim to have a bright blue PS4 or red Xbox One.

Nintendo’s recognized that variety is the spice of life, and so it’s long provided us with as many colors as possible. The first video game system I ever owned was a mustard-yellow Game Boy Color; my twin sister had the hot pink one. I later had a translucent green Nintendo 64, a purple Game Boy Advance and GameCube (with delectable orange controller), and a red Nintendo 3DS XL, all of which I still own to this day.

Anyone could easily walk into a store and pick up a Game Boy Color in any one of these colors and then some; this rad collection wasn’t so unattainable, back in the day:

RetroCollect

Way before the Joy-Con brought neon controllers to the mainstream, the Nintendo 64 was doing it on the daily.

Photobucket via Zetaboards

It took years for the GameCube to even be sold in non-garish colors. Folks didn’t call it a “purple lunchbox” for nothing.

Ain’t that a look.
Imgur via Reddit

The only basic-colored Nintendo systems I’ve ever had were a white Wii and a shiny silver Nintendo DS Lite, which I chose over the red one for reasons I still don’t totally understand. Maybe it was because the sleek neutral tone felt radical compared to my traditional lineup of wacky-looking systems.

Nintendo’s always had an itch to stand out among the pack, pioneering with bizarre mechanics and giving its hardware unforgettable names. It makes perfect sense that Nintendo would now sell home consoles in bright neon shades by default. That’s a sensibility we hope it never loses.

Got some amazingly colored consoles — Nintendo or otherwise — lying around? We’d love to see them in the comments.