Tatsumi Kimishima has provided a price range for the Nintendo Switch’s paid online subscription.
The Nintendo Switch will require a paid subscription in order to utilize online gaming options, but until now, we haven’t had many details about the subscription – namely, the pricing. But in an interview with Nikkei today, Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima gave the price range – 2,000-3,000 ($17.63-$26.44) per year.
The online service will initially be free when the Switch launches, but in the fall of this year Nintendo plans to launch a paid online service. Its site says, “After the free-trial period, most games will require a paid online service subscription from Nintendo in order to play online.”
This will be the first console from Nintendo that charges for online pay.
The service will include one free NES or SNES game per month, however each game is only free for that month. At the end of the month, a new game will be available and the previous month’s game will no longer be free. The subscription will also include “special offers” that “may include discounts on select digital games and content.”
Many of the Switch’s online features, including voice chat and online lobbies, are going to be accessible through a separate mobile application. A “free, limited version” of the app will be available this summer. Nintendo’s Reggie Fils-Amie referred to the app as an “elegant solution.”
“The smart phone app that we’re creating, that will be part of our online service, we believe is going to be a very compelling part of the overall proposition because that’s how you’ll voice chat, that’s how you’ll do your matchmaking, and create your lobby,” he recently explained. “We also think it’s a very elegant solution because if you’ve taken your Switch on the go, you’ve put yourself in a hotspot, you’re looking at get a quick match of Mario Kart in, to whip out some sort of bulky, gamer headset is a bit of a challenge.”
The Nintendo Switch releases on March 3, and currently has 10 confirmed launch titles. You can check out our hands-on impression of the upcoming console here.