The Nintendo Switch Won't Let You Keep Your Free NES/SNES Games

Image: Nintendo

If you were hoping that Nintendo's approach to online services would match PlayStation Plus or Xbox Live, and got excited by yesterday's announcements, I have some bad news.

Nintendo of America has clarified some more details around the paid online service (which won't launch until later this year). When Mark first reported it yesterday afternoon, he noted that Nintendo's wording made it sound like a rental service:

Subscribers will get to download and play a Nintendo Entertainment Systemâ„¢ (NES) or Super Nintendo Entertainment Systemâ„¢ (Super NES) game (with newly-added online play) for free for a month.

And as it turns out, that's pretty much exactly how it works.

The monthly games through Xbox Live and PlayStation Plus are only available for a month, but users can continue playing them in perpetuity provided you add them to your account in the time period and maintain an active subscription.

But as far as the Switch is concerned, you only get that NES or SNES game for a month. If Nintendo was hoping to show that they have a better appreciation of how online gaming works in 2017, this isn't the best start.


    Nintendo seems like they are going to nickle and dime their customers with the Switch.

    Well that's a fail. I don't really play much online but still sign up for PS+ and Gold because you get so much value from the free games - I don't think I'll bother with the Nintendo service.

      Same here. I barely play online with PS4 but have been almost constantly subbed for a few years now just for the monthly games.

      Sounds like I just won't be playing Switch online if I get one...

      Last edited 14/01/17 12:19 pm

      Just want to point out that the games aren't free if you're paying for the online service (especially if you don't use it to play online much).

        Exactly. You also no longer have access to the games once your subscription lapses.

        Not knocking the service at all [especially compared to what Nintendo are attempting]. But they most certainly are not free games.

          With the exception of XBox 360 games which, when redeemed are yours irrespective as to whether you keep up you Gold subscription.

    I mean... what do you expect now that an ex bank manager took over as CEO? we're in it for the money now boys, no matter how hard we crash this shit into the ground. The ol' smash and grab, business style

      Was just thinking back to how Nintendo gave me 20 free games when the 3DS had its price drop, and wondering what had changed at the company

        First off, the console hasn't had a price drop yet.

    The thing Nintendo has to realise there are so many subscription services in the world if they be scrooges with subscriber value its going to show.

    Best thing at the moment is to critises this decision and get them to fold. EA Access services changed a lot from its initial proposal which was nothing more than a limit demo program.

    I like them allowing free gane weekends / demis to sell items on thier store... but paying for the privelage to demo something they want to sell you is DUMB.

    If users question the value of your online service you split your fan base and the access point to sell them more stuff. Buying access should be a no brainer like Xbox and PSN... thats how you get everyones credit card prefilled into the nintendo eshop.

    I want to vomit

    Do you keep them for a month or is it for the month.
    I'd hate to download one on the 30th and have 1-2 days to play it. Plus it'd possibly bog servers with everyone grabbing them on the first of the month.

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