The Starter Kit from SnakeByte is a great all-in-one solution for protecting your new Nintendo Switch. It includes plenty of accessories to protect your console investment including screen protector, game cases, and a hard travel case to get your unit from point A to point B safely.
+Everything is of decent quality
+The price point is easy on the wallet
+Package as a whole address all of the major console complaints
-Earbuds aren't much and serve as little more than a bridge to a proper pair
-Screen protector is tricky to apply correctly, especially without instructions
One of the biggest issues with the Nintendo Switch is how expensive everything is. The console comes with “two” JoyCon which is cool, considering it lets you play multiplayer out of the box, but absolutely everything else is an additional charge and in most cases, it is well beyond the ESP that we would have assumed it’d be on the run-up.
Thankfully there are third-party options for accessories that will help keep the costs down. The first entry into that category that we’re looking at is the starter kit from SnakeByte. It includes several accessories for the Nintendo Switch to get you up and running, mobile, and protect your investment in your shiny new console.
Probably the biggest sound bite from the community post-launch of the Nintendo Switch was the fact that screens are getting scratched when entering/exiting the Switch cradle. The last thing that you want on a brand new mobile console like the Switch is to scratch up your screen. Nothing will haunt a gamer like seeing even a hairline scratch on the surface of a shiny screen.
The starter kit from SnakeByte graciously includes a screen protector which you can apply immediately out of the box. In my experience, though, I’ve never had good luck with these things. Bubbles and getting crap in under the protector (no matter how well you clean) is always a very real concern.
Unfortunately, the kit doesn’t include any instructions on this process either. No pro-tips to help you on your way, no suggestions for laying the thing down in a way that will minimize these common issues. I’ve run a few of these in the past and still had plenty of issues. In the end, after trying a couple of times and getting the sticky side painted with enough in-air dust, I had to give up on this thing. It’s a great piece that addresses the single biggest complaint of the console, but it’s finicky and difficult, especially without any help from the box itself.
Another big piece, for a mobile unit, is audio. The Nintendo Switch, again, does not include any audio option for mobile players other than cranking the built-in speakers on the console itself. That could lead to you being judged harshly by others if you’re planning to continue your game session on public transit. Snakebyte, once more, has thought ahead in their starter kit and included a pair of earbuds you can use to keep the audio experience of the Switch to yourself.
Now, admittedly these things aren’t too much better than what you might expect in box with a new smartphone, but this is very much a case of “something is better than nothing.” If you’re looking to have your ass covered, all-in, by a single additional accessory purchase you won’t be too disappointed with the sound quality of the earbuds included.
The single best part of the box, for my money, is the included travel case. Before the launch of the Switch when I was carrying my console around I had no carry-case option; third party options didn’t exist yet and Nintendo didn’t include anything in the package that I received!
Post-release and in the weeks following I’ve been using the included travel case supplied by the Starter Kit from SnakeByte. The case is hard faux-leather and includes a mesh hideaway in the top half of the case that’ll allow you room to put things like the included game-case, earbuds, screen wipe, additional JoyCon or whatever else you want to throw in there. I’ve greatly appreciated this addition because I absolutely hate having to put things in several different locations and must fish them out of a bag when I get to where I’m going. This travel case keeps everything safely tucked away and all within one singular case that’s easy to get at.
As mentioned, there’s also a screen cleaning cloth included in the package, serving as my second favorite add-in that the package includes. Nothing super special here, just a super soft chamois cloth that you can use to clean your screen at home or on the go, for the particularly anal about slick shiny screens this thing is an absolute must-have that I haven’t seen in enough mobile starter kits to-date.
Though not as important at launch, considering how few games were available, the kit also future-proofs your Nintendo Switch accessory need by including a small game-case. It can store up to four cartridges and keep them safe on your travels.
Lastly, but perhaps most importantly is the inclusion of two covers for the thumb-sticks of the JoyCon. It might seem like a frivolity at first snuff, but after a couple of days with the JoyCon sans grip or cover I found it a welcome change of feel to have them added on. It adds just enough weight to the sticks to make them feel the way you want them too and adds grip security as well. Not to mention that they include two colors (red and gray) which gives you an option to further customize the look of your Switch configuration.
Everything in the Starter Kit offered by SnakeByte feels like it addresses a complaint that the people of the internet have been voicing about the console since its launch on the third. Really, that’s the most important piece of the package overall. Secondary though is the fact that it is a cheap way to make sure you have everything you need, of importance on a console that seems to be charging a massive premium for everything offered on it (hardware and software both).
For $20 you really can’t go wrong for everything in this box, even if you won’t be using it all (for example if you already have a headset/earbuds that you like) it’s nice to know you’re covered should anything come up.