The Nintendo Switch Online Service has finally received its first official details ahead of launching later this year. The paid subscription plan will include access to cloud saves, classic Nintendo titles and an assortment of other bonuses. It’ll also be required to play online multiplayer going forward.
Trusted Reviews has compiled everything you need to know about the Nintendo Switch Online Service including its release date, features, and all the latest news.
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Nintendo Switch Online Service – What is it?
It is essentially Nintendo’s equivalent to Sony’s PlayStation Plus and Microsoft’s Xbox Live subscription service. In order to access its library of online titles, users will be expected to pay a monthly fee to Nintendo, although its a smaller price compared to competitors.
Upon its release, the online service will provide users with an assortment of neat bonuses which we’ve compiled below:
- Save data cloud storage
- Access to online multiplayer
- 20 Free NES Games with new online features
Members will also be eligible for special discounts in the Nintendo eShop on digital titles, saving you a few extra pennies. It remains unclear whether multiplayer betas or similar trials will be available to all players or restricted to the service in future.
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Nintendo Switch Online Service release date – when is it coming out?
The online service will be rolling out worldwide in September 2018. A specific release date has yet to be confirmed.
Nintendo Switch Online Service Price – How much will it cost?
Three tiers of pricing have been revealed for North American and UK consumers:
- 1 month – $3.99/£3.49
- 3 months – $7.99/$6.99
- 12 months – $19.99/£17.99
- Family Membership – $34.99/£31.49
A Family Membership will be available for an annual cost of $35, allowing one account holder to invite a total of seven other players to gain access to online play, NES classics and more.
For comparison’s sake, PS Plus and Xbox Live currently cost £40/$60 a year at the time of writing.
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Nintendo Switch Online Service NES Classics – What games are included?
Players will gain access to 20 NES titles at launch with more to be added on a regular basis. So long as you maintain an active subscription they will remain playable in your digital library. Time will tell whether this is a definite alternative to Nintendo’s beloved Virtual Console.
You can find the full list of upcoming games below with the next 10 to be announced at a later date, hopefully E3 2018 will give us the next 10 titles:
- Donkey Kong
- Mario Bros.
- Super Mario Bros.
- Balloon Fight
- Ice Climber
- Dr. Mario
- The Legend of Zelda
- Super Mario Bros. 3
According to Nintendo, all of the above will launch with some form of online functionality whether it be co-operative/competitive multiplayer, sharing your screen or passing the controller across systems. Screenshot and video capture won’t be held behind a membership paywall, and neither will sharing said captures on social media.
We’ll likely see further details regarding the online service unveiled at E3 2018 alongside the remaining list of classic games. Super Smash Bros will be one of the first big titles to launch with the service so expect it to play a big part in its success.
Nintendo Switch Virtual Console – Is it coming?
Speaking to Kotaku, a Nintendo spokesperson has confirmed that Virtual Console will not be coming to Nintendo Switch in future.
“There are currently no plans to bring classic games together under the Virtual Console banner as has been done on other Nintendo systems.”
Past Nintendo systems allowed players to purchase an assortment of classic titles ranging multiple platforms including the NES, SNES, Nintendo 64, DS and Wii. Not having hundred of these at our fingertips is a bit of letdown.
It seems, the online service’s Netflix-style subscription service will act as a replacement of sorts for Virtual Console going forward.
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