Nintendo has finally announced the pricing of its paid online service, the speculations of which were rife since last year. Nintendo Switch Online service costs $3.99 for one-month, $7.99 for three months and $19.99 for a year. More about the service is expected to be revealed at E3 or closer to the September launch.
Nintendo Switch Online service comes with complementary features like the online save game back-ups and NES games with added multiplayer. Users have always demanded a back-up of the saved data, and a rival platform already offers a similar service. So, the back-up thing will be cheered by the gamers.
According to Nintendo, the feature would enable saving most of the Nintendo Switch games online for easy access. The back-up service is ideal for those who want to get back their data in case they lose, break or purchase an additional Switch system.
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On availing the subscription of the Nintendo Switch Online service, the users would also get free access to 20 NES games and more would be added “regularly,” according to Nintendo. The launch titles include Soccer, Donkey Kong, Mario Bros, Super Mario Bros, Dr. Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Super Mario Bros 3, and Tennis among others. The Japanese company stated that “every classic game” in the NES catalog will have some form of online functionality.
Nintendo said that players would be able to play the classic NES games online for the first time ever. Also, players would be able to engage in online competitive or co-op multiplayer, or control the action based on the requirement of the game. Friends would be able to see each other play single-player games online and “pass the controller” at any time. There would be support for voice chat as well through the Nintendo Switch Online smartphone app for every classic NES game. Players can also take these games offline.
“You can compete (or cooperate) online with friends, share your screen, or pass the controller, depending on the game,” Nintendo said in a blog post.
According to Nintendo, players would also need the Nintendo Switch Online Service to play co-op and competitive online features in upcoming games such as Splatoon 2, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, ARMS, Mario Tennis Aces and Sushi Striker: The Way of Sushido.
On their website, Nintendo shared a few more details about the Nintendo Switch Online service. The game maker suggests that if the users have more than one Switch unit, they do not need to buy a separate paid subscription for each console. Further, the online service can be used on any device by signing in with their Nintendo Account credentials. For individuals, the membership would be one per account, but there is a family plan that costs $35 and would support up to eight accounts.
Nintendo also clarified that the online membership is limited only to the Switch and not Wii U or 3DS. Other functionalities such as friend registration and management, eShop, screenshot sharing on Twitter and Facebook would remain available without a membership. Nintendo also made it clear that the Nintendo Switch Online app is for users 13 years and above. Someone who wants to buy the service online should have internet access and a compatible smartphone.
In a separate development, a job listing on the Nintendo website hinted that the company is already working on the next Zelda game. Although not much can be made out of the listing, the description (in Japanese) does describe tasks such as “dungeon and field planning.” It also talks about “planning” enemies, possibly related to their positioning in the sequel.
Further, the “Dungeon” word does incite some inquisitiveness considering the Breath of the Wild ditches dungeons for an open and new approach to the world design. The game included a smaller passage and the puzzle-based “shrines” rather than the traditional dungeons.
Also, there are chances that the hiring could be for a completely different purpose such as developing another top-down title similar to A Link Between Worlds on 3DS. Last year, series producer Eiji Aonuma told the Game Informer that there was “definitely a possibility” that the 3DS Zelda team would bring such a game for the Nintendo Switch.
For a very long time, the 3D games of the series have made their way onto home consoles and 2D on the handheld ones. However, there have been exceptions. The GameCube game Four Swords Adventures took the top-down approach of the Four Swords Game Boy Advance game and transported it to the big screen, notes Digital Trends. Similarly, both Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask were transitioned to 3DS with great success.