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Nintendo Switch Sports Was Almost Way Weirder

For fans of nostalgic fave "Wii Sports," this year's release of "Nintendo Switch Sports" came as a welcome new take. "Nintendo Switch Sports," which features the games badminton, soccer, volleyball, bowling, tennis, and Chambara, has received generally positive critical reviews since launch. The fact that players can enjoy it solo or with friends near or far gives it wider appeal, even though some players are frustrated by the presence of bots in the game's online mode.

While "Nintendo Switch Sports" is a fairly straightforward game, there's something uncanny about it. Perhaps it's the awkwardness and laughter that can ensue when trying to hit just the right pose to control your character and score big. Or maybe you're trying to sort through all of the wacky accessories available for the game. And of course, the physical nature of "Nintendo Switch Sports" is a literal double-edged sword, as some players have run into accidents while playing, leading to Nintendo adding an official warning for the title.

Given its already-storied history and unique appeal, it's hard to imagine "Nintendo Switch Sports" being much weirder than it is at the moment. However, some new intel from its creators revealed a wild twist from early in development that would've completely maximized the game's eccentricity.

Nintendo Switch Sports characters were almost robots

In an "Ask the Developer" session shared by Nintendo on May 26, 2022, five of the developers behind "Nintendo Switch Sports" shared some surprising facts about the game and what it could have been. Namely, the playable characters were almost robots with whimsical designs.

As art director Junji Morii explained, the team went through multiple concepts in the designing phase. As he shared, "In the early stage, we proposed round-shaped characters with no arms or legs, similar to the Mii characters in 'Wii Sports.'" Reflecting on the armless predecessors to today's "Nintendo Switch Sports" characters — and why the devs chose to deviate from those designs — director Yoshikazu Yamashita said, "in the memories of our customers, the Mii characters have arms." Morii also shared an idea for college athlete characters that was kicked around.

However, one idea stands out in the memories of the developers above the rest. As producer Takayuki Shimamura recalled, "I remember we had the most outlandish characters that looked like robots." In this concept, the gamer was controlling a human character who was then controlling a robot. Morii explained that excitement was originally through the roof for the robots — until they were demoed on-screen and "a blanket of silence fell over everyone." This led to the developers cutting out the middleman – or middle robot, as the case may be – and going with a simple human-like design.

Though the massive robots shaped like hamburgers (and more) ultimately didn't make it into "Nintendo Switch Sports," just knowing that they could have is quite amusing.