A Switch Gamer's Guide To Hosting For The Holidays

By Staff Reporter , Updated Nov 20, 2018 08:55 PM EST

With the holidays just around the corner, you might be itching to make merry with your friends. If no one else has taken the lead, the responsibility of host may fall on your shoulders. Don't worry if this is the first time taking on the mantle. You have the Nintendo Switch. Its co-op and competitive multiplayer options make it easy to build a holiday party around your favorite console, and these tips can help you smooth out the details.

This isn't your granny's guide to hosting for the holidays. Leave the doilies, liquorice allsorts, and racism in the past and embrace this gamer guide to the holidays to make sure your party gets off on the right foot.

Nab Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Due out December 7, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the most hotly anticipated Switch game of the season. It also just so happens to be a perfect party game that gets as many guests involved as possible.

Your guests will appreciate playing the latest Smash Bros. - whether as the underestimated contender fighting as Jiggly Puff or simply as a viewer egging on other fighters. Rumors have it new characters will join the already jammed-packed roster of champions, including King K. Rool of Donkey Kong, Inkling of Splatoon, and Simon of Castlevania. It's also supposed to have new interactive levels and playlist options to help spice up the 20-year-old game.

Even if you don't manage to buy Smash Bros. before it sells out, you can curate your game library by choosing the best games for groups. Here's a list that will help if you're having trouble naming them on your own.

Call out for controllers

No get-together would be complete without at least one round of Mario Kart, which means you need as many controllers as possible to cut people in. While you could stock up on extra Joy-Con or Pro controllers, it's easier (and less expensive) to ask your friends to bring their own when they come. That way everyone gets a shot at racing a lap.

Naturally, if your party has more than four people playing, there will be some sharing going on. To make sure your Pro controller doesn't get lost in the fray, you should customize your Switch Pro controller with a unique skin. Available in black matrix, carbon fiber, and vibrant jewel tones, these Switch skins make your console, dock, and controllers easy to spot.

When you shop from a decal company like dbrand, these skins are made from the same materials used in all their designs. That means you can customize your favorite devices in the same texture and give them a uniform. Everyone in the room will know which controller, phone, and laptop are yours, so no one will unintentionally bring home your Pro and leave you controller-less after the party.

Improve your cable management skills

Go look behind your TV to see what sort of cord nightmare that's waiting for you on the other side of the screen. If you don't have to take a peek to know it's a huge jumble of cables, then you need to consider reorganizing this part of your home. It only stands to get more confusing when your guests bring their console and extra screens.

Part of every good cable management technique relies on patience. Unfortunately, there's no way to fast forward through that first step of untangling, so you need to make sure you clear your schedule. From there, you may want to invest in a few gadgets, including:

  •  A better power bar
  •  Pivoting plugs
  •  An HDMI coupler or HDMI Switch
  •  Labels

You can check out a guide like this for step-by-step instructions on how to tame the worst messes.

Think about food

Will you offer a meal or just snacks?

Will you serve alcoholic drinks as well as pop and juice?

Does anyone on the guest list have dietary restrictions or allergies?

These are the questions you need to ask yourself before you invite people. Regardless of how low-key you want to keep your party, any get-together needs a little bit of organization. Consider what you want to serve at your house. Think about what you expect your guests to bring along with them, too.

Go analogue

After a long night of playing video games, these are the signs that suggest you need to take a short break:

  •  You're crying - not because you just lost a round of Mario Kart. The screen is just burning your eyes, okay?
  •  Someone takes the game a little too seriously and throws an embarrassing hissy fit
  •  People are hogging controllers, unintentionally or purposefully leaving some guest out

When enforcing a pause on the game, you don't have to rely on conversation to fill the silence. You can move from your Switch to a board game to keep people entertained. Before some monster suggests Monopoly, bring out a set of Card Against Humanity. If you haven't already heard of this wildly popular card game, here's a quick run-down:

It requires players to fill-in-the-blanks using offensive, salacious, or otherwise politically incorrect phrases and words. Whoever can make the most people laugh with their suggestive and rude answers wins the game. With a long list of expansion packs, there's no way you can get bored of this analogue alternative. Just make sure you play it with the right people who won't take your fill-in-the-blank answers personally.

Your holiday party can be as elaborate or as simple as you want, but it should follow a basic plan. You need to have the right games, enough equipment, and a place where your guests will feel comfortable. That and a friendly attitude will help make your get-together the best party in a season full of parties - even if it's your first time hosting!

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