Nintendo has announced an online subscription service for its Switch console which will function much the same as PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Gold. The service will become available in September. For the moment, Nintendo Switch Online will be cheaper than its competitors.

An annual subscription to Nintendo Switch Online will be $19.99, and it will also be available month-to-month for $3.99. It will also have a family option for up to seven people for $34.99 per year.

In addition to new features like cloud save backups and a collection of old Nintendo Family Computer / NES games, some games will also require a subscription for online play.

The features of Nintendo Switch Online are as follows.

Online play

Nintendo has confirmed that the following Switch games will require a subscription to continue playing online from September:

  • Splatoon 2
  • ARMS
  • Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
  • Mario Tennis Aces
  • Sushi Striker: The Way of Sushido

Other games will vary, Nintendo said.

Classic Nintendo games with multiplayer

Nintendo Switch Online will include 20 classic games from the Famicom/NES era, updated with local wireless and online multiplayer features.

The following games have been confirmed, with more to be revealed later:

  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • Donkey Kong
  • Mario Bros.
  • Super Mario Bros.
  • Balloon Fight
  • Ice Climber
  • Dr. Mario
  • The Legend of Zelda
  • Super Mario Bros. 3

Save data cloud backup

No details about this much-requested feature have been revealed, except that you will be able to save your data online for easy access.

More information about this feature will be available before the paid service launches in September, Nintendo promised.

Nintendo Switch online smartphone app

The Nintendo Switch Online app will contain special features for compatible games, such as Splatoon 2.

Using the app's Online Lounge, you can send online play invitations to players on your Nintendo Switch system's friend list.

The app also lets you send invites via social networks and messaging services. When you're invited to a game, you'll get notified through a push notification on your smartphone.

Once players are connected, you can use voice chat openly with friends while in the online lobby and during online play (depending on the game).

Pricing

In addition to the standard monthly, quarterly, and annual subscription options, Nintendo Switch Online will also have a 12 month family membership. This allows a Nintendo Account holder to invite up to seven others to join a family group. All members of the group will have access to Nintendo Switch Online.

When the paid service launches in September 2018, NIntendo said that you will be able to subscribe on Nintendo.com and the Nintendo eShop on your Nintendo Switch system. You will also be able to buy subscriptions at select retailers.

Console membership service USD Price ZAR Price
12 month subscriptions
Nintendo Switch Online $19.99 N/A (±R250)
PlayStation Network $59.99 R899
Xbox Live Gold $59.99 R979
3 month subscriptions
Nintendo Switch Online $7.99 N/A (±R100)
PlayStation Network $24.99 R349
Xbox Live Gold $24.99 R399
Monthly subscriptions
Nintendo Switch Online $3.99 N/A (±R45)
PlayStation Network $9.99 R109
Xbox Live Gold $9.99 R159