Nintendo Details Switch Online Paid Service Launching Next Year

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
New service features online play, voice chat app, classic games selection, discounts

Nintendo revealed more details on Thursday for its Nintendo Switch Online service.

Nintendo is launching the paid service next year. The service gives Switch owners access to online multiplayer gaming, and a mobile app that connects to the Switch. Subscribers can also download a selection of classic titles with additional online play, such as Dr. Mario, Balloon Fight, and Super Mario Bros. 3. Subscribers can also get discounts on games or content on the Nintendo eShop.

Regarding the classic title selection, Nintendo confirmed with gaming news website Kotaku that the plan is now different than the one NIntendo originally outlined. Nintendo told Kotaku, "...subscribers will have ongoing access to a library of classic games with added online play. Users can play as many of the games as they want, as often as they like, as long as they have an active subscription.” Nintendo also told Kotaku that it will announce more classic games that will be part of the service later, and that the service will include original NES games. Nintendo is taking Super NES games "under consideration."

The subscription costs US$3.99 for a one-month membership, US$7.99 for a three-month membership, and US$19.99 for a 12-month membership. Nintendo of America is launching the service in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

Nintendo will offer a free trial version for the app for a limited time starting this summer. The app allows users to voice chat with friends during online matches, set appointments, and invite friends.

Nintendo is continuing to offer online play for free to Nintendo Account holders until the paid service launches next year. The online service was originally slated to be free until this fall.

Nintendo stated that after the free trial period ends, "most games" will require the paid Nintendo Switch Online service in order to play online.

The Japanese version of the service costs 300 yen (about US$2.70) for a one-month membership, 800 yen (US$7.20) for a three-month membership, and 2,400 yen (US$21.50) for a 12-month membership. The Japanese version otherwise includes the same features.

Nintendo released its Switch console on March 3, and the console sold 2.74 million units worldwide by March 31.

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