Skip to main content

Small Home Gaming: Console Conundrum

Hi all. It’s Chris again with another dose of Small Home Gaming.

As a gamer living in a small home, there’s one thing that’s plagued me for quite a while now: game consoles. Consoles are great, but their sheer size and ability to monopolize a media station can make them formidable enemies of the small home ideology. Over the years I’ve had everything from a GameCube to a Nintendo Switch as part of our media setup. All of these consoles have served their purpose, some better than others. A couple, like my original “fat” PS3, tested the limits of our small space. It’s quite large and took up far more room than I was hoping. The Wii U, on the other hand, tested our setup in a different way. It’s much smaller and fit in our entertainment area much better, but the “tablet” style controller is not small and has its own separate docking station. This effectively means that you need to find space for two consoles instead of one.

Then, last year, Nintendo came out with the Switch.

Like many I lined up on launch day at a local retailer and brought one home, wondering what new challenges lay in store for our small home media center. In short, the answer is “none.” I pulled out the aging PS3, installed the Switch, and was left with what feels like buckets of space. In fact, the only real issue that I have is that it can be a little harder than I’d like to take the Switch out of its TV dock, but that’s mostly due to where I have it placed (the bottom shelf).

In addition to its small size, the Switch has some other “pluses” for small-home owners:
  • First, as a Nintendo console, the Switch is extremely family friendly. Sunshine and Sweetheart are still young enough that I spend the majority of my time downstairs helping keep an eye on things, which also means that any games played when they’re around need to be age appropriate. 
  • Second, the Switch is built to be portable. While I don’t carry it around with me much outside the house, it’s portable design means that I can crash on the couch for some game time while the kiddos (who were previously watching a movie) swarm me out of curiosity.
  • Finally, unlike its older brothers the Wii and Wii U, the Switch is much lighter on accessories. Nintendo’s last two consoles were a bit notorious for practically requiring a wide range of accessories to use for different games. The Switch has its share of accessories, but the only “required” ones are Joycon controllers (which are significantly smaller than Wii remotes).

Simply put, the Switch is easily one of the best small home gaming purchases I’ve made. It’s not the fastest, best-looking console on the block, but it is home to some of the biggest names in gaming. It’s also small, child appropriate, and reasonably affordable. What more could a small home family gamer ask for?


Popular posts from this blog

Living in a Small Home with Kids: 10 Reasons It Might Not Be Right for You

I recently read a great article over at The Tiny House asking "How Big Can a Tiny House Be?" In his post, Ethan ponders the definition of "tiny" when it come to little houses and concludes that the perfect "tiny" house is whatever size meets your needs, whether that is less than 100 square feet or much, much bigger. I think his conclusion is sound. He points out that even if a small house is too small for you, you can still benefit from some of the tenets of tiny house living. I would include living within your means and being mindful of the environmental impact of your chosen lifestyle as practices that anyone can enact, regardless of their home size.

If living large (or larger than we do!) is your thing, you'll hear no judgment from me. Living in a small home might sound romantic or adventurous, but the obvious truth is that there are downsides to the tiny house lifestyle. It's not all sunshine and roses, and you have to be committed to making i…

The Floorplan that We Call Home

I have been hoping to give you all a little more detail of what our home actually looks like, and when I was looking through some of my old photos and videos the other day, I stumbled upon this video footage of a home similar to ours that I took when we were still picking out our floorplan.
There are some minor differences since this is not our actual home, so some of the finish work is not the same. We have white appliances and a few more windows, particularly in the entry door at the foot of the stairs and in the dining area, where we have a bay window. We also have taped and textured walls, so it looks more like a real home. Our electric panel is accessed from the outdoors rather than the bedroom (which Chris says would be much more convenient, but I call it an eyesore), and we have extra storage cabinets next to the the door at the base of the stairs. We decided to forgo the porch options, so the front of our living room is covered in wall to wall windows with a sliding glass door…

IKEA KURA Trundle Upgrade Reveal!

How do you fit three twin beds into one <70 square foot bedroom? This is how...

After hours of planning and shopping and measuring and cutting and sanding and painting and drilling and building and painting some more, the IKEA KURA loft-bed to bunk-bed-over-trundle upgrade is finally finished, and I absolutely love how it turned out!

Here's another view looking in the mirror on the closet:

And here's what it looks like with the trundle pulled out:

I'm quite pleased with the entire structure. Lifting the bed seems to have actually made the KURA itself more solid as it wobbles and creaks much less now than it did before. The trundle is surprisingly comfortable, and I am eager to show you the simple hack we used to create a sliding trundle that an adult might actually be happy to sleep on regularly. (Hint: We built it around an IKEA LONSET slatted bed base.)

I took many photos of the entire process, so stay tuned for the free tutorial to see exactly how we added a trundle …