When Nintendo announced the arrival of Nintendo 64 and Mega Drive games in Nintendo Switch Online, the cost of accessing these titles was not disclosed. A few days before the launch of these additional games, the price of the additional subscription was finally communicated at the end of last week. And for some Switch users, the pill is struggling to pass.
Nintendo revealed a few days ago the price of the Nintendo Switch Online subscription + additional pack giving access to the N64 and SEGA Mega Drive games. And it appears that the latter doubles the price of the standard Nintendo Switch Online membership. Indeed, the annual Nintendo Switch Online subscription + additional pack costs 39.99 euros. For its part, the standard NSO costs “only” 19.99 euros per year.
This announcement was not without reacting Internet users. They did not expect to have to pay such a sum to access these retro games. Logically, Nintendo did not go into the details of the reasons justifying this pricing.
Emily Rogers, an insider always well informed of Nintendo’s activities, reviewed the situation on her account Twitter. And according to his information, this price is a consequence of the variety of games offered on the service:
Licensing costs are certainly the main culprits behind the aggressive pricing of the NSO extension. I have heard that SEGA has been paid very, very well.
This is notable because SEGA was not a huge fan of the Wii Virtual Console due to low sales, revenue sharing and lack of marketing. It is for this reason that SEGA was not present on the Virtual Console of the Wii U.
License agreements related to titles of third-party publishers (Konami, Capcom) have also been signed for the NSO Mega Drive catalog. The accumulated costs associated with licensing agreements end up being significant.
And who knows what licensing agreements / arrangements Nintendo has made with Rare / Microsoft…
To be clear, SEGA is not the only reason for the price hike. Nintendo has to pay licensing fees to Konami, Capcom, Microsoft / Rare, etc.
Would people still be excited if NSO didn’t have Third Party games? I doubt. NSO’s N64 catalog is less interesting in Banjo Kazooie.
A Switch Online price proportional to the expenses incurred?
If these elements are to be taken as rumors, it should also be remembered that Emily Rogers is always aware of the movements at Nintendo. And according to her, the main reason for the significant price difference between the two Nintendo Switch Online formulas is therefore the presence of third-party games.
Note that the annual family subscription also doubles with the arrival of Nintendo Switch Online + additional pack. If the family subscription to NSO is 34.99 euros, that to Nintendo Switch Online + additional pack comes to 69.99 euros for 12 months.
Finally, remember that the Nintendo Switch Online + additional pack subscription also includes the Happy Home Paradise DLC from Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Not all Switch players have Animal Crossing, so the presence of this content has no impact on all of them.
What do you think of these statements from Emily Rogers? Do you consider them credible? Do you think that the price charged for the Nintendo Switch Online subscription + add-on pack is proportional to what Nintendo had to pay to third-party publishers to get access to their games? Conversely, do you believe that the Japanese manufacturer takes its fans for cash cows? Tell us all in the comments below.