Helmsly

Nintendo Switch paid online coming 2018

Recommended Posts

As I said, Nintendo have spent the past twelve months messaging that MK8 and other online games will be free for a limited time only. If they'd suddenly out of the blue decided to tell people they have to start paying for it, of course get upset, but they haven't. It was messaged from the very beginning.

When you start talking about "features" I can't help feel you are deliberately missing the point here. This is not about a hard choice between paid online (and the features that may bring) and free online (which may potentially be basic), which is the point you mostly just argued there. Rather, a choice between A) paid for online with free legacy game support versus B) totally paid for online.  So far you have not justified why B) is preferable over A) in any way other than from Nintendo's naturally profit-guided perspective. There is no reason why any consumer should want to ask for some previously accessible content to be paywalled. In fact it is somewhat concerning to see that viewpoint held.

 

With regards to a muddied message with "pick and choose" online, I can see nothing more muddied and confused than the people who will wake up one day to find their old games need a subscription to play now. No matter what Nintendo have done to publicise "what's coming" (very little IMO), lots of people will still be caught out regardless. What is better - confusion that benefits the consumer, or benefits Nintendo?

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

So far you have not justified why B) is preferable over A) in any way other than from Nintendo's naturally profit-guided perspective. There is no reason why any consumer should want to ask for some previously accessible content to be paywalled. In fact it is somewhat concerning to see that viewpoint held.

All I said was plenty of people on here seem to think Nintendo charging for everything rather than picking and choosing is probably the best way of doing things. I haven't needed to justify anything because others have already done it, or at least explained their reasoning:

20 hours ago, Ike said:

I don't personally think they'll retroactively start charging for games already released.

 

11 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:

It's certainly going to be interesting seeing how they deal with this and what games are going to be charged for and what will be exempt, if any. Personally, I think they should should charge for everything, rather than muddying the situation and having some games free to play and others not.

 

10 hours ago, DazzeL said:

I think it will be difficult to pick and choose what they charge for so I expect it will be everything.

 

8 hours ago, Happenstance said:

I think the fact that they warned people right at the beginning that there would eventually be a charge for online multiplayer means that they will charge for all the current games that are currently free as well. I think its a slippery slope anyway to have some games free and some not. You treat it as an online service and not on a per game basis.

 

4 hours ago, dazzybee said:

How will it divide the base like starters and dlc? You pay to play online, or you don't play online. Having some people with dlc packs and some not is literally splitting them up...

Splatoon is one of their biggest games, they're not going to give it for free and not others, it makes no sense whatsoever, I don't care if no ones ever launched a service half way through. It makes no business sense, no logic sense, it'll make it confusing and clumsy and in pretty much every way it's a bad idea from Nintendo's perspective.

 

Yes, from a purely selfish pov of course all consumers would rather have something for free than be charged for it, but I (and I suspect others) are trying to look at it from an objective POV and the fine line Nintendo have to walk between being consumer friendly but also operating as a business.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  Yes, from a purely selfish pov of course all consumers would rather have something for free than be charged for it, but I (and I suspect others) are trying to look at it from an objective POV and the fine line Nintendo have to walk between being consumer friendly but also operating as a business.  

 

Most people are saying they don't see "how" they could do it or Nintendo will most likely not do it, rather than actually supporting it (which makes sense, given it's anti-consumer). The thing is, there's going to be confusion no matter what they do as people will be caught out one way or another. Either they paywall old games and people get caught out (as they inevitably will), or keep some old games free and people may be somewhat confused as to which games need online subscriptions. Though, given PS4 has plenty of free to play games (e.g. critical success Fortnite), I don't really see that as much of an issue.  Nintendo should think about how often the carrot is better than the stick, particularly with a new service, as it's clear they're not fully decided on its implementation yet. Rather than the the stick approach of "pay or lose the access you once had", consider the "here's something cool we're giving you" approach (a la PS Plus at its inception). 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

Most people are saying they don't see "how" they could do it or Nintendo will most likely not do it, rather than actually supporting it (which makes sense, given it's anti-consumer).

Anti-consumer? There's that sense of entitlement again. Everything needs to be free, just because. Online infrastructure costs money, most seem to agree that charging for it is fair enough if there's added incentives to do so, which there will be.

Quote

Nintendo should think about how often the carrot is better than the stick, particularly with a new service, as it's clear they're not fully decided on its implementation yet. Rather than the the stick approach of "pay or lose the access you once had", consider the "here's something cool we're giving you" approach (a la PS Plus at its inception).

They are giving us something cool. That's why they've delayed the launch of paid-for online, to get that something cool be as cool as possible.

Anyway, until we have more information, we're just going in circles. Maybe they will make MK8/Splatoon/PuyoPuyo Tetris and all the other online games free forever, but they'll have a tough time writing them all in the small print as exemptions going forward. They're in a relatively tough spot, I think we can all agree on that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nintendo made the fuck-up by not clarifying this from the beginning. Had they shipped all pre-subscription Switches with a 'free online trial until this date' message (or some other definite solution), then there would be no confusion. As it is, their open-ended language has led to the confusion in this thread (and I agree that such language was probably intentional - politicians do this stuff all the time).

For reasons of clarity, I think they should make all games, past and future, require a subscription for online features, but they should generously compensate pre-subscription Switch customers with extra games or other freebies. That's the least they could do. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing people are missing out here is that the whole trial period of free online was based on Nintendo trying to get Switch's online sorted by September 2017, just a few months after launch. They very much designed their first year around that in mind, with Splatoon, ARMS and Mario Kart all launched to supplement a service that was literally around the corner.

Naturally, things have changed pretty drastically since then and it's clear that Nintendo's own vision of what this online system looks like has become very different to its original intention. Therefore, I can 100% understand why someone who played online for well over a year for free becomes unhappy when they discover that they now need pay. It's not the end of the world, but it's a harder selling point for some.

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
They are giving us something cool. That's why they've delayed the launch of paid-for online, to get that something cool be as cool as possible. Anyway, until we have more information, we're just going in circles. Maybe they will make MK8/Splatoon/PuyoPuyo Tetris and all the other online games free forever, but they'll have a tough time writing them all in the small print as exemptions going forward. They're in a relatively tough spot, I think we can all agree on that.

I don't see how saying it's "anti-consumer" is contentious. If they restrict access to something previously accessible by paywalling then...hell yes that's an anti-consumer move. It's hardly a "pro" one, is it?

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

The thing is, there's going to be confusion no matter what they do as people will be caught out one way or another. Either they paywall old games and people get caught out (as they inevitably will), or keep some old games free and people may be somewhat confused as to which games need online subscriptions.

Ah come on, there won't be any confusion at all. Paying online is pretty much standard, and in general subscriptions are standard across software, apps, games all sorts. It's not going to be confusing when Nintendo confirm the exact details of - now you have to pay to play online. People aren't going to be scratching their heads confused at it.

What would be confusing, is some games you can play with out it, and some you can.

Your fortnite example, my nephew had their plus stopped; they now think they can't play fortnite anymore. Because, absolutely rightly, logics says if you have to pay to play games online, that includes everything

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ah come on, there won't be any confusion at all. Paying online is pretty much standard, and in general subscriptions are standard across software, apps, games all sorts. It's not going to be confusing when Nintendo confirm the exact details of - now you have to pay to play online. People aren't going to be scratching their heads confused at it. What would be confusing, is some games you can play with out it, and some you can. Your fortnite example, my nephew had their plus stopped; they now think they can't play fortnite anymore. Because, absolutely rightly, logics says if you have to pay to play games online, that includes everything  

 

 

It's confusing in the sense that there are many people who don't know Switch will go pay to play online. Maybe confusing isn't the right word, rather shocking. There are also those that have been playing it so long that they assume this is how it is now. Whatever Nintendo do there's going to be a shock/confusion either way. 

Selective pay to play is already a reality. Your nephew was confused when his Plus subscription ended but that would be immediately rectified when he tried to open the game, no? Either way, it's not a harmful thing to have some games not need a subscription. At best, some people that just want to play MK needn't pay an annual subscription if it remains free to play. At worst, they get "confused" and pay for a subscription that they didn't know they didn't actually need to carry on playing MK. In that case, they'd still be no worse off than if an online subscription had been required, since they'd still be paying out.

There is literally no downside to the consumer for legacy games to be free. None at all!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, dwarf said:

but they should generously compensate pre-subscription Switch customers with extra games or other freebies. That's the least they could do. 

Sorry, what? Compensate them for what exactly? "That's the least they could do"??

They've said from day 1, January last year, before the Switch even launched that gamers will get a free trial of their online subscription service before it moved to a paid system later that year. They then extended that free trial by many months.

What do we need compensating for exactly?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
28 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

I don't see how saying it's "anti-consumer" is contentious. If they restrict access to something previously accessible by paywalling then...hell yes that's an anti-consumer move. It's hardly a "pro" one, is it?

It's this obsession the gaming community seems to have with complaining or crusading against everything that really winds me up.

Charging for online and giving games back in return has become an industry standard. Products cost money to make/maintain, businesses charge for them.

What's pro-consumer is keeping video games the same price or cheaper than they ever have been. If they want to charge me a quid or two a month to run their online servers, fine by me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It's this obsession the gaming community seems to have with complaining or crusading against everything that really winds me up.

I bet you nodded your head in agreement at EA's "sense of pride and accomplishment" comment on Reddit. XD

People's sense of standing up to industry bullshit is one of the better things to come from the gaming community in recent years.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Sheikah said:

People's sense of standing up to industry bullshit is one of the better things to come from the gaming community in recent years.

When it's justified, like it is in Battlefront 2's case, absolutely.

When it's justified and manifests itself by way of death threats, twitter abuse to Mass Effect Andromeda animators or heckling hosts and destroying property at Pokemon Go meets, as a few of many, many examples, no it isn't one of the better things to come from the community. A community that is shown to be extremely immature at times.

And in this case when it's demanding Nintendo give us games and other freebies as "the least they can do" for giving us free online for a year, then no, it absolutely isn't either.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a shame that almost all debates must end this way Ronnie.

 

If you think I'm equating death threats/destruction of property with people calling out industry bullshit then you don't know me very well.

 

I do think Nintendo have made missteps here, and potentially more if they paywall too heavily. One thing to remember is that their service remains relatively unproven and still an unknown - I'm hoping that this means they don't enforce it hard as soon as it releases.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nintendo charging £17 a year for online (with added extras like VC games) after offering it for free for a year isn't "industry bullshit".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wouldn’t it be a good idea if they’d continu the current free online model but on top of that offer a premium paid service with stuff like free monthly games, voice chat, clans, online leaderboards, miiverse, etc?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, dazzybee said:

No it's not the same, because there won't be a split between a base version and a more complete version; EVERYONE will have to pay to play online.

But don’t you think that has the potential to be a problem for them with games that have already been released? It might be common knowledge to us that this has been on the way since the start, but that doesn’t mean that every other consumer has been privy to that information up to this point. Like I said before, some parents might have purchased a Switch and Splatoon 2 for their children this past Christmas, but might not have been aware that future cost will be incurred in the form of an online subscription. Sure, we might argue that they should have done their homework on the matter, but at the end of the day it means that - besides a few offline modes - that game is going to become a pretty useless chip come this September. 

And not everyone will pay online, which only narrows down the active user base, which is a similar problem to the one we’ve seen with DLC season passes in years gone by.

Quote

As for the rest of what you say, it's kind of ridiculous, you have absolutely;ey no idea that no one has launched a service because it makes no business sense, you have no evidence or logic or reasoning to even say that, other than that no one has. But Nintendo ARE doing it, so do you think it makes no business sense for Nintendo to od it because that's exactly what you've just said.

...

Why are you fighting it and coming up with arguments why it's a bad business decision? This is getting surreal now. 

Uh, Sony had been selling an extremely overpriced console at a loss in the PS3 and were miles behind Xbox 360 in terms of units sold for the early parts of the last generation. They’d already seen that Microsoft were making a very pretty penny from Xbox Live, but still decided to not join them in offering an online subscription service. Even when things were going very badly for them last generation, they still decided to not go that route. 

Fast forward a few years to the PS4, and the PS3 having recovered to nearly catch up on the Xbox 360’s sales, and Sony then decided to make the shift. Why? Because it would make them a pretty penny, despite them knowing that their free online is something that factored into nearly catching up in the previous generation. Oh, and at launch, the PS4 was being sold at a profit.

Sony had every reason to shift their focus mid-generation with the PS3 to have an online service, and yet they didn’t. If that’s not because of business know-how, then I don’t know why they didn’t try to actively take advantage of consumers in the same way that Microsoft had been doing for a few years. 

I’m not fighting it, actually. It makes very little difference to me, thankfully, but I thought that I’d suggest the possibility to open up the discussion, as I’ve seen it brought up elsewhere. I’m not just arguing against it, but I’m arguing for it, too; I have a fairly balanced opinion of what Nintendo should do, because honestly I just want them to succeed in every way that they can with the Switch, and I don’t think that offering free online for games released prior to a certain date - to maintain their user base and activity - is going to harm them in any great way. Like I said before, if anything, it’s just a smart PR move, which doesn’t cost them much of anything to do. 

Quote

I'll say it again, Nintendo told us BEFORE LAUNCH we were going to have to pay for online. 

There's no point discussing it really. I think we all understand each others points. I find the whole thing utterly bizarre. And know, come whenever Nintendo announce it, what the outcome will be.

That’s great, but like I said before: not every gamer is as informed or as involved with gaming news as many of us are. Of the ~15 million Switch owners, I guarantee that a large portion didn’t know that Nintendo had informed us of their plans to inplement a paid online subscription service last January, and that a fair number still don’t know that such a service is on its way. 

My problem is with how they’ve communicated things with the paid online so far. We’re probably looking at them having 20-25 million Switch users by that point; it needs to be made crystal clear that this is something that’s going to happen, and notifying everyone that they can about it via the Switch would be the smartest thing, I think, for them to do. 

Quote

As for announcement, I think before e3 wild be best, get stout of the way so e3 can just be about the games. But who knows.

Seriously. Get ahead of the curb on the objectively bad news, at least from an average consumer perspective, that’s in store with the paid online and how it’s all going to work, and just focus on games this E3. Heck, take Virtual Console, or whatever they plan to rename/retool it as, because that belongs at E3.

A 20 minute demonstration of how the paid online that no-one is begging to pay for? Not so much.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

Nintendo charging £17 a year for online (with added extras like VC games) after offering it for free for a year isn't "industry bullshit".

It’ll probably be £20 :p 

I think the problem, if there is one, is more to the effect of what @Goron_3 mentioned earlier.

The original plan was to have the service up and running by September last year, 6 months after launch. That might have been fine for consumers, and wouldn’t be that considerable a fraction of the console’s life. The plan now is for it to launch this September, some 18 months after console launch, and some 20%/25% into the console’s life cycle. 

I think that what myself, and many others, mean to say is that it is going to be much more difficult for Nintendo to appease and effectively communicate with over ten million more users than if they had effectively communicated their desire for such a service, and their plans for it, much earlier. 

And by plan, I mean something a bit more substantial and definitive than:

Quote

Classic Game Selection*

*name subject to change

It seems like something thrown together in a rush, and doesn’t effectively communicate what exactly it is that they plan to be selling me beyond the ability to play online.

@markderoos in an ideal world, honestly, that’s what I’d want to see. Publishers are leaving millions of units sold on the table when it comes to mostly online games, because not every single consumer with access to their respective network wants to pay to play online. Likewise, these “ongoing server maintenance costs” are a tiny blip on a spreadsheet for these companies, at least when compared to the profit that they make from their respective paid online services and on their games, consoles and accessories.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ronnie said:

And in this case when it's demanding Nintendo give us games and other freebies as "the least they can do" for giving us free online for a year, then no, it absolutely isn't either.

As someone who supported Nintendo through the Wii U era, and picked up a Switch at launch, I feel like I'm entitled (oooh) to some kind of reward or bonus for my loyalty. Even though they decided to screw me over on the My Nintendo coins front. I saved those things for a year hoping for decent Switch discounts and they've just decided to drop the value of them massively. Cool, I can pick up Elliot's Quest for free. Thanks. I would have preferred a bit mode choice and a bit more value for sinking £500+ into the company in the past year. 

Most companies reward loyalty. This concept is seemingly alien to Nintendo. I'll still support them though, because I'm an idiot fanboy. But for what it's worth, I'd rather the games that have already been released would remain free for online play. Especially Splatoon 2 and ARMS. I'm going to pay, (because Nintendo fanboy), and £17 a year isn't a lot, but you're damn right I'm entitled. I showed faith when others had a little bit of laughter mixed with mouth sick. Where's my reward??? Tesco wouldn't leave me out to dry like this. Pay up, Ninty.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Nicktendo said:

I'll still support them though, because I'm an idiot fanboy.

It's not as if it's a slog to support Nintendo, you support them and get fantastic games to sink dozens if not hundreds of hours into?

I get that businesses like to reward their customers and their My Nintendo rewards are pretty shit overall, but for me personally I had a Wii U for four years and I had a great time with it. I don't feel Nintendo owe me anything. Unlike, say, when they dropped the 3DS price so quickly and had to do the Ambassador program. I just don't think anything has approached that sort of shafting their consumers since.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Ronnie said:

It's not as if it's a slog to support Nintendo, you support them and get fantastic games to sink dozens if not hundreds of hours into?

I get that businesses like to reward their customers and their My Nintendo rewards are pretty shit overall, but for me personally I had a Wii U for four years and I had a great time with it. I don't feel Nintendo owe me anything. Unlike, say, when they dropped the 3DS price so quickly and had to do the Ambassador program. I just don't think anything has approached that sort of shafting their consumers since.

I adored my Wii U. It remains one of my favourite consoles, the Switch IS my favourite of all time. I know Nintendo and they know me. They know how to get my attention. But, I listen and I pay the troll toll and keep them in business when so many others lose faith. That loyalty is surely, worth something, no? Instead of 650 gold points. I haven't owned a PS or Xbox for years, but from what I've read, their customers, especially loyal ones get a lot of bang for their buck, and that's what I'm interested in. Entitle me more.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was listening to the latest episode of NVC on the way to work this morning and Brian was saying how his Switch needed repairing. He sent it off to Nintendo and in getting it repaired he lost all of his save data. The guy had got 100% on Mario and spent a crazy amount of hours on Zelda and many other Switch games. IGN's Jonathon Dornbush had his Switch stolen earlier in the year and he also lost all of his save files. You could tell Brain was upset, annoyed and disheartened by it. He even said it kinda of took the excitement out of the console for him, which is understandable given the amount of time he invested into the games he played.

Whatever Nintendo's plans are for their online service, I hope that cloud saving is one of them. It's crazy that in 2018 we cannot backup our saves on Nintendo's newest console The other platforms have had this feature for YEARS now and Nintendo has still yet to implement it, despite talking about such things as far back as 2015.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
52 minutes ago, Hero-of-Time said:

Whatever Nintendo's plans are for their online service, I hope that cloud saving is one of them. It's crazy that in 2018 we cannot backup our saves on Nintendo's newest console The other platforms have had this feature for YEARS now and Nintendo has still yet to implement it, despite talking about such things as far back as 2015.

It doesn’t even have to be cloud saves, just give us the option to manually backup save data via the micro SD card or a USB stick!

If they do introduce cloud saves as part of the paid online service, but don’t enable an offline alternative for those that aren’t subscribed, that’s also going to be really shitty. I mean, I obviously lost access to cloud storage on PS4 recently when my PS+ subscription expired, but at least all of my save data on USB is still useable as an alternative.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites