When Nintendo Switch Online released last September, I was underwhelmed. The selection of games seemed sparse, the price of entry seemed odd for something Nintendo gave away for free for so long and the lack of voice chat seemed like an oversight. With the surprise hack to the online system that hints at games from the SNES, N64 and later headed to the service — a gripe I had upon the release of the service — I took a closer look at Nintendo Switch Online.

Online Gameplay


Image via author’s Nintendo Switch

With the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, we were able to sink our teeth into the meat of online game play. Though there were patches and updates to make it better, it’s been a relatively rotten experience. The laggy gameplay and “communication errors” that cause you to be booted out have many wondering what they paid for in the first place. 

NES Library


Image via author’s Nintendo Switch

The NES library has been updated on a regular basis with niche games and mainline franchise entries alike. This steady stream of content updates (and the promise-not-promise one newer games to come) have taken this “Netflix for games”t to the next level. The added bonus of the “SP” versions — versions of the game that either give you all the power-ups from the start or fast forward you to a difficult boss — make playing older, ultra-tough games much easier. 

Cloud Saves


Image via author’s Nintendo Switch

I bemoaned the cloud save feature — and lack thereof when the system first came out — and thought it was a money-grab on Nintendo’s part. That being said, I recently deleted my Super Mario Odyssey save file on the actual system and panicked at the thought of losing all those stars. Being able to easily access the cloud save and know that my 968 moons were still there was a true relief. 

With the hope that the services gets built out and beefed up even more as we head into 2019, Nintendo Switch Online is a nice addition to the console with a promise for more.