Nintendo doesn’t want you to play one of the biggest games of the year on Switch Lite

(Image credit: Nintendo)

Nintendo Switch Lite owners may want to think twice before purchasing Switch Sports, as Nintendo is dissuading those who own the handheld console from purchasing the game.

An online playtest for Nintendo Switch Sports is taking place this weekend, but a disclaimer on the app says that the "Nintendo Switch Sports Online Play Test is not compatible with Nintendo Switch Lite", as spotted by Nintendo Life.

The compatibility warning might seem obvious, considering that the Nintendo Switch Lite cannot be docked to your TV and doesn’t include detachable Joy-Con controllers, but Nintendo Switch Sports can only be played in TV and Tabletop mode.

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To play Nintendo Switch Sports on a Switch Lite, users will need to have a pair of Joy-Con controllers to hand, and a way of propping up the console as it doesn’t have a kickstand. You’ll then also have to wrestle with the fact you’re stuck playing the game on a 5.5-inch screen, which isn’t ideal when you’ll be actively moving around.

For that reason, it seems that Nintendo wants to temper buyers’ expectations. The game will obviously be far more enjoyable when played on a TV, just like Wii Sports was back in the day, but if you really want to play it on the Switch Lite, you can.

This isn’t the first time Nintendo has discouraged people from buying certain titles on the Switch Lite. 1-2-Switch, Super Mario Party, Ring Fit Adventure, and Nintendo Labo all require separate Joy-Con controllers as they don’t support Handheld mode.

Analysis: Nintendo Switch Lite has its limitations 

Nintendo Switch Lite

(Image credit: Nintendo)

The Nintendo Switch Lite is the company’s handheld-only version of the Switch. You can’t dock it to play on a TV, and the Joy-Con cannot be removed, which means you’re strictly limited to playing games that support Handheld mode.

The console also has a few other caveats, such as no HD Rumble, which is Nintendo’s take on haptic feedback, and a battery life of three to seven hours, which is less than that of the Nintendo Switch 2019 model and the new Nintendo Switch OLED.

Still, the Switch Lite’s smaller form factor and more robust design make it an ideal choice for younger gamers and those who simply never docked their Switch. It’s a sensible addition to Nintendo’s Switch lineup, albeit one that eschews the hybrid nature of the console that can lead to compatibility issues, like we’re seeing with Nintendo Switch Sports.

Nintendo Switch Sports is due to release on Nintendo Switch on April 29, 2022.

Still not bought a Switch yet? Check out the best Nintendo Switch Lite deals below in your area. 

Adam Vjestica

Adam was formerly TRG's Hardware Editor. A law graduate with an exceptional track record in content creation and online engagement, Adam has penned scintillating copy for various technology sites and also established his very own award-nominated video games website. He’s previously worked at Nintendo of Europe as a Content Marketing Editor and once played Halo 5: Guardians for over 51 hours for charity. He is now an editor at The Shortcut.