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5:00, 10 November 2017

The Best Nintendo Switch Case Is Made by Waterfield, and They’ve Got a New One

The down side of having tons of mobile devices is you eventually end up needing something to carry all of them in. Waterfield has been killing it for years now when it comes to making fabulous bags for MacBooks, iPads, and other things we find ourselves hauling around all the time. Their Muzetto is practically legendary around TouchArcade Towers, with most of us rocking different sizes of our favorite Waterfield laptop bag. If this is the first you’ve heard of Waterfield, the entire gist of the company is they make incredibly high quality bags and accessories, by hand, in San Francisco.
When we all fell in love with our Switches, the search for the best case/bag started. Unsurprisingly, most (all?) of the ones you can buy at GameStop, Best Buy, and similar are surprisingly junky. I bought a couple different Nintendo ones, including but not limited to what many were referring to as the ‘best’ Nintendo case which came with the special edition of Breath of the Wild. They’re all bulky, don’t hold much, and worse of all just feel really cheap. With how hard Switches are (still) to get, and how expensive they are, I never felt great about keeping mine in a case that feels like it was built in the same factory as my Trapper Keeper in the 90’s. Thankfully, Waterfield came to the rescue with a lineup of great Switch cases which I either own myself or otherwise have direct experience with through friends/family who have them.
Let’s go in order from least to most bulky:

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First up is the Waterfield Switch Pouch. It’s the most minimal Switch case they offer, and (if you get a non-leather variety) barely more expensive than the ones Nintendo sells at $49. It has a main compartment that’s just big enough for the Nintendo Switch with the Joycons attached. The inside has a soft lining so nothing gets scratched, but there really isn’t much padding to provide any real protection from being crushed. But, that’s sort of the trade-off in a minimal case like this.
There’s a front zippered pocket that’s just big enough for two Joycon wrist straps, some old Apple ear buds (from before they switched to Lightning) and a USB-C charging cable. Also, given how tiny Switch cartridges are, provided you didn’t go 100% digital, you can fit a silly amount of them in here too. If you’re a minimalist, this is the way to go. (This is my girlfriend’s preferred case, and she’s got the red leather one which has held up super well being thrown in a bag every day.)

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Next up is the Waterfield Cityslicker Case which is what I’m rocking day to day. Its construction is a little different from the Switch Pouch in that it has some internal pockets and some additional padding as well as a stretchy reverse pocket on the back side. The amount of stuff I fit in this case is pretty silly.
It can take my Switch with Joycons (obviously) and then I use the internal pouches for a USB-C cable, the 3.5mm cable for my wireless Beats (although some ear buds would fit just as well) and a Lightning cable for my phone. Why a lightning cable? Well, it turns out the back pouch is perfectly sized for the Anker Switch battery we posted about a while ago. It has more than enough ports to charge both my Switch and my iPhone, and the Cityslicker has room for it, so why not? It also has tiny pockets in the front for Switch games, but I’ve never used them because I’m a 100% digital kind of guy. This case starts at $79.

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Moving right along is the new Waterfield Arcade Gaming Case. If you’re the kind of person who prefers to play their Switch using the kickstand and Joycon Grip on the go, this is the case for you. It’s basically the Cityslicker that’s a little thicker and in addition to everything I mentioned it can hold above, the Arcade Case also has room for the Switch AC adapter, Joycon Grip (or Pro Controller), and the Hori Switch Stand which has become real popular (and was super hard to get up until recently).
With this additional storage space, the price goes up to $109. The Arcade Case feels like a real middle ground between just having enough stuff to play your Switch on the go versus having enough room to take everything with you that you’d need to really settle in and play your Switch in marathon sessions.

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Last, but not least is the Waterfield Multiplayer Pro Case which holds everything you need to bring your Switch places. It has room for your Switch, Joycons, Joycon Grip, an extra controller (either Pro or another set of Joycons in a Joycon Grip), the dock, and all the associated cables to hook everything up. By holding all of this, the size of the Multiplayer Pro Case is closer to what you’d think of as a laptop bag.
At $149, this is the only case in the Waterfield lineup that I’m not super wild about. I feel like functionally, you’re better off buying one of the smaller Switch cases and if you ever end up going over to a friend’s house and you’re bringing your Switch you can just throw the dock, cables and extra controller in a backpack along with your other Waterfield Switch case- Or, at least, that’s how I’ve been doing it.
That being said, I’ve packed up all my Switch stuff exactly once to show some family members how it all worked, so I’m not really the target demographic for the Multiplayer Pro case. If you’re the kind of person who is always hauling your whole setup around to play Mario Kart with friends, the Multiplayer Pro case is a great way to do that.

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And if you don’t have a Switch and haven’t heard of Waterfield, I’d really recommend checking out the other stuff they offer. I’ve bought their MacBook sleeves, tablet bags, and a bunch of other small stuff over the years from them. (Their 3DS sleeve, which looks like is now discontinued, is another one of my favorites.) I always prefer buying American-made stuff when I can, and sure, you definitely pay a premium, but I’ve always been big into paying for quality.

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