It looks like some games may be exempt from paying the Nintendo Switch Online membership fee to participate in online play.
On Nintendo’s support pages, it appears not all games will need players to pay the yearly $20 fee. The only game mentioned specifically was the popular battle royale title Fortnite, though it seems other games could be exempt as well. Nintendo also states that titles that do require the membership for online play will be identified in the Nintendo eShop beginning September 18.
The page states: “Beginning September 18, 2018, a Nintendo Switch Online membership is required to participate in co-op and competitive online features for many first- and third-party Nintendo Switch games, including Splatoon 2, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, ARMS, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Some games, such as Fortnite, can be played online without a Nintendo Switch membership.”
Though many first- and third-party games will require the fee, not all will. Nintendo also made it clear that other features, like the Nintendo eShop, friend registration, social network sharing and software updates will still be available without paying for a Nintendo Switch Online membership.
In yesterday’s news-packed Nintendo Direct, Nintendo shared a bit more information about this service coming September 18. Check out everything we know about Nintendo Switch Online to get acquainted with what will be changing before this paywall goes up for most online titles.
Unfortunately, it’s not all good news with this new service. Though the service allows players to store save data on the cloud, it appears that this data will be deleted if your subscription expires, and even then, some Switch games seemingly won’t support cloud saves at all.
However, the wireless NES controllers that can be used with classic titles through the service do look pretty rad.
Colin Stevens is a freelance writer for IGN. Follow him on Twitter.