Here’s Why Folks Think Nintendo Might Be Bringing N64 To Switch

Here’s Why Folks Think Nintendo Might Be Bringing N64 To Switch
Hope whatever the new controller is doesn't suffer those pesky drift issues. (Photo: Nintendo)

If you’ve been on Twitter lately, you may have noticed that folks are spinning their gears contemplating the nature of a mysterious “game controller” application that Nintendo just filed with the Federal Communications Commission. Most seem to think it’s related to a rumoured, upcoming expansion of the Nintendo Switch Online subscription service.

Let’s start at the beginning. Earlier this month, Nintendo insider and leaker Nate the Hate sparked rumours that Game Boy and Game Boy Colour games are coming to the Nintendo Switch Online service. Eurogamer later corroborated this speculation, saying other “retro platforms” were also headed to NSO. This has prompted folks to assume Game Boy Advance games are in the cards as well.

But then this week, Nate the Hate suggested again that not only are Game Boy and Game Boy Colour games definitely joining Nintendo’s subscription service, but that Nintendo 64 games are allegedly making their way to NSO, too. And later on the 16th, Twitter user SamusHunter2 noticed that Nintendo had just filed some sort of “game controller”-related application with the FCC.

The description doesn’t explicitly mention the Nintendo Switch, but the console’s peripheral model numbers all share the prefix “HAC,” which is also present in the new filing. Unfortunately, any parts of the FCC filing that would reveal product specifics are hidden. And while there’s nothing particularly spectacular to glean from the handful of currently readable PDFs, that didn’t stop hardcore Nintendo fans from going wild with predictions for what this apparent controller could be.

Couple the copious amounts of speculation with the fact that a few anniversaries for Nintendo products are coming up — Axios reporter (and previous Kotaku EIC) Stephen Totillo noted that NSO’s third anniversary falls on September 18, while the N64 celebrates its 25th anniversary on September 29 — and you can kind of start to see why people are expecting some retro-related NSO news. For his part, LootPots founding editor Jack Parsons sounds pretty darn sure that the new hardware mentioned in the filing is “mostly likely” tied to a new NSO offering. Nate the Hate also believes a price hike for the subscription service is imminent, too, to coincide with the service expanding its content offerings.

So, where does all this speculation leave us? If the Nintendo 64-on-NSO rumours bear out, it’s easy to imagine the “game controller” now filed with the FCC is in fact a replica N64 controller for use with the Switch. All speculation, of course. It could just be another Joy-Con. In any case, there seems to be a fervent call for a Nintendo Direct in either September or October, which is typically when Nintendo holds one. Given the multiple anniversaries converging, maybe Nintendo will indulge its fans and finally spill some tea.


  • I’d love this to be true! Give me 1080, snowboard kids, Wayne Gretzky hockey, star fox & all that wrestling!!

    Also while we’re at it when we getting Tecmo super nba basketball on snes/switch??

    • You’re not getting any of those wrestling games or hockey. Half the wrestlers are dead and the licensing is scattered to the wind. 1080 has licenced content too although thats probably easier to fix.

      Even if Nintendo do deliver you can bet your home it’ll be half assed and over priced. It’ll be $15-20 each for the same handful of N64 games that got Wii support.

      Ive got the Retroarch emulator running in retail mode from the dash of my Series X. It plays 99% of N64 games in high res with widescreen hacks and is doubtlessly better than whatever Nintendo will deliver. Plus it plays NES, SNES and Gamecube too (as well as Playstation 1,2 and Dreamcast).

      I can play WWF No Mercy at 1080p+ widescreen without the framerate problems the original had. You won’t be doing that on a Switch ever.

      • Yeah I have the same set up running on my series x, I guess I haven’t had quite the success though. Save game states are weird and some games are missing whole menus. But for the memories I guess it will have to do.

        • Thats not unusual at all, it is a pain in the ass getting it all set up.

          I’ve had problems getting PS2 games to work and for some reason F-Zero GX has stopped booting.

          N64 works well though. Dreamcast is pretty much perfect.

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