I was born in the late 1990s and never had an opportunity to play old Nintendo classics like Super Mario or MegaMan. I do harbour some nostalgia for that era of gaming, mostly because I got to play NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) games with my godfather, but I never actually owned any of the classic consoles such as NES or SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System).
After years of trying to satisfy my thirst for the old classics through emulators and other gimmicks, Nintendo has finally answered my prayers with a platform from where I can effortlessly get my nostalgia fix. This platform is the Nintendo Switch Online service.
SNES Online opening screen.
Nintendo Switch launched in early 2017. In the fall of 2018, Nintendo released online services for the Switch. These services include things like online multiplayer, for most of the games on the Switch, and voice chat. However, the best thing Nintendo Switch Online has to offer for me is the ability to play old NES and SNES games. The cost of the online subscription is ridiculously low at about 20€ for a year and this gives you access to a total of 90 games and counting.
Thanks to the well-designed online service, I’ve been able to fulfil my desire to have fun with older games. Nintendo Switch to me is the perfect console to play any type of platformer or Metroidvania-style games, old and new alike. The ability to play games on a handheld console that also plugs effortlessly into your TV is fantastic, and the games available for the genres in question are fabulous. Add to that the huge catalogue of retro titles they have available and subscribing to Nintendo Switch Online was a no-brainer for me.
The NES titles available include classics like Super Mario Bros. 3 and The Legend of Zelda.
The only downside of the service is that new games are added to it fairly inconsistently. At first, Nintendo would add two or three games each month to the NES library but after the SNES games were introduced, the updates dried up. Don’t get me wrong here, they still add games to both libraries, but the updates have become irritatingly inconsistent. When new games are added though, they come in bunches and for both “consoles”, but I can’t imagine it being a terrible burden to get some consistency to the updates.
In conclusion, Nintendo Switch Online has allowed me to play classic game titles I’ve previously missed out on. These retro titles have given me plenty of great times already and I’m sure they will continue to provide me with new challenges and feelings of success for the foreseeable future. The only hiccup with the service that I can think of is the inconsistency of adding new games to the catalogues, but this is something that I can easily look past as games available are already abundant.
All pictures and screenshots are taken by the author.