Nintendo will be launching its first ever paid online subscription service in September. The company has already listed the prices. On Nintendo's website, it states that $3.99 will give you one month of access, $7.99 will give you three months, and $19.99 will give you the full year. There will also be a special "family membership" for $34.99. You can now pre-order the 3-month or 12-month option on Amazon. The retail site lists the release date as December 31st, which of course is just a placeholder. Presumably, Amazon will update it when Nintendo announces the exact day in September the service launches.
Nintendo Switch Online is a new thing for the company. The idea of a paid service is a normal thing for the video game industry. Both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One offer a subscription service. Of course, because Nintendo has always featured free online play, giving players added incentives to purchase a subscription is key. What will the service feature? Nintendo lists two key incentives: access to 20 NES games (with more to be added) and cloud backup for saved data.
Giving players access to some of the biggest NES titles (Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda) at launch is a great way to get players interested. These classic games will also feature "added online play," according to Nintendo. Thus, there's incentive to play these games again, no matter how many times you've played them in the past. Meanwhile, fans have been wanting to see cloud saving for awhile. Both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One offer cloud saving, so it is essential for Nintendo to start offering it.
Simply put, Nintendo's pricing seems reasonable for the amount of content the subscription will bring. Of course, many players will just purchase a subscription to play online. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be Nintendo's biggest game of the year when it releases in December. Battling online will be an important factor in that game; so many will buy a subscription to play that game online, as well as older titles such as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Splatoon 2. Fortnite will also presumably require the paid subscription, and that's a game many people are playing every day.
Nintendo Switch Online will launch in September.