Last month, Nintendo gave us a lot of information during their Switch presentation. Some of the less appealing news was that Nintendo was going to start charging for their online gameplay services. Online access will be free at the Switch’s launch, but a paid subscription will be necessary for online multiplayer starting this fall.
It’s fairly understandable that Nintendo would start charging for their online services, considering all the third-party support that the Switch will have. Many people seem to be displeased with having to pay for a previously free service, especially those that only play Nintendo’s first-party games online, such as Splatoon.
There is a silver lining, however. While online gaming subscriptions on other consoles can cost as much as $60 per year, it doesn’t seem that Nintendo’s will cost nearly as much. In an interview with Nikkei, Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima states that the pricing for Nintendo’s online subscription, which will include online multiplayer and monthly classic game downloads, will have an annual fee of 2,000 to 3,000 yen, which converts to $17.60 to $26.40. We are unsure at this time if the exact pricing will carry over into other regions, but the thought of paying only $20-$30 or so doesn’t seem so bad. There will also be a smartphone chat app available to subscribers. Online multiplayer for the WiiU will continue to be free.
Another interesting bit from the interview, was that Nintendo is looking into adding virtual reality functionality to the Switch. They want to wait until they can figure out a comfortable way to play VR for an extended period of time, but the fact that it’s a possibility is pretty exciting!
What do you think? Are you planning on subscribing to Nintendo’s online services? Is the price too high? Too low? let us know in the comments below!