Everything You Need to Know About Nintendo Switch Online

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Everything You Need to Know About Nintendo Switch Online

Highlights

  • Nintendo Switch Online will let you back up game save data
  • You will also get access to select NES games
  • It is available right now

The brand new Nintendo Switch Online service is Nintendo's answer to PlayStation Plus and Xbox Live Gold. It allows Nintendo Switch owners to play online multiplayer in games like Splatoon 2 and the upcoming Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as well as sample select NES games and back up save data of certain Nintendo Switch titles online. The services makes it debut following Nintendo Switch system update 6.0.0 and a few hours of standard maintenance. Should you bother with Nintendo Switch Online? Here's what you need to know about it to help you make up your mind.

Nintendo Switch Online price
The Nintendo Switch Online service grants access to online multiplayer, cloud back ups for game save data, and classic games from Nintendo's past consoles such as the NES. The Nintendo Switch Online price is $4 per month (around Rs. 280), $8 for three months (close to Rs. 560) and $20 for an entire year (nearly Rs. 1,400). There is a seven day free trial available for all Nintendo Account holders as well. Nintendo Switch Online is being available in territories Nintendo has an official presence in like North America, Europe, and Japan.

Nintendo Switch Online - how voice chat and friend invites work
With the promise of online play comes the need for voice chat and allowing you to ensure your friends are in the same game as you. And that's where the Nintendo Switch Online app comes in. Available for Android and iOS, it lets you voice chat, invite friends to online matches, and create teams. It will only work with Splatoon 2 at launch, allowing access to the SplatNet 2 network as well. SplatNet 2 lets Splatoon 2 users check out their online play stats and info on upcoming game features. It's an unwieldy solution, forcing you to use your smartphone while playing. While games like Fortnite have found a work around — with Epic Games creating its own APIs to allow voice chat and player teams in-game — we're yet to see other developers follow suit. Now that Nintendo Switch Online is out, we won't have to wait too long to find out.

The Nintendo Switch Online app is not available in India, so you'd have to sideload the Nintendo Switch Online APK via third-party sites like APK Mirror for Android or switch your App Store region to the US if you have an iOS device.

Nintendo Switch Online NES games list
Aside from playing online, you'll also be able to access a host of NES games. At launch there are 20, with more to come each month. So if you missed out on the NES Classic, this is one reason to subscribe.

  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • Donkey Kong
  • Mario Bros.
  • Super Mario Bros.
  • Balloon Fight
  • Ice Climber
  • Dr. Mario
  • The Legend of Zelda
  • Super Mario Bros. 3
  • Double Dragon
  • River City Ransom
  • Ghosts'n Goblins
  • Tecmo Bowl
  • Gradius
  • Pro Wrestling
  • Excitebike
  • Yoshi
  • Ice
  • Hockey
  • Baseball

Nintendo has also stated what you can expect post-launch too. October sees Solomon's Key, NES Open Tournament Golf, and Super Dodge Ball. November will bring Metroid, Mighty Bomb Jack, and TwinBee. December has Wario Woods, Ninja Gaiden, and Adventures of Lolo. Games for 2019 will be announced when they've been decided the company claims. And if you're looking for even more nostalgia, there are NES Controllers for the Switch available for pre-order exclusively to Nintendo Switch Online subscribers.

 

Nintendo Switch Online NES game weekly login
Much like Spotify and Netflix, you'll have to go online ever so often to verify and continue accessing Nintendo Switch Online NES games. This was discovered in the Nintendo Switch Online's FAQ stating that NES games “can be played offline for up to 7 days as long as you have an active Nintendo Switch Online membership”.

Nintendo Switch Online cloud saves limitations
A host of Nintendo Switch games such as Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu and Eevee, Splatoon 2, Fortnite, and FIFA 19 will not support cloud saves for the Nintendo Switch Online service due to concerns over cheating. This means that if your Switch console were lost, damaged or stolen, you'd have to start over from the beginning if you get a new Switch.

Nintendo’s reasoning relies on ensuring fair play in multiplayer by preventing any method by which Nintendo Switch owners could manipulate their save files to grant them powerful items or higher rankings. Although it doesn’t explain how some of those titles have support for cloud saves on other platforms such as Fortnite and FIFA 19. According to Nintendo's European site, 1049 out of 1096 games support cloud saves.

Free-to-play multiplayer games do not need Nintendo Switch Online
Nintendo confirmed that all free-to-play games for the Nintendo Switch can be played without a Nintendo Switch Online subscription. This follows Tencent's announcement that its online free-to-play game Arena of Valor for the Nintendo Switch would be playable without one. What this means is, games like Fortnite, Pokemon Quest, or the upcoming Warframe can be played online without additional cost.

We've just got our hands on a Nintendo Switch Online subscription and will be posting our impressions of how it compares to the likes of PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Gold in the days to come. Stay tuned.


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Rishi Alwani Rishi writes about video games and tech. Legend has it he bleeds pixels. More
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