Nintendo held an incredible Direct during E3 2019 that outlined the games that will be coming to the Nintendo Switch in the coming year. One of the notable absentees of the Direct was any mention of Nintendo Switch Online, as fans expected to hear an announcement concerning games from other systems coming to the service.
Nintendo Switch Online is necessary if players wish to play online multiplayer modes in their Nintendo Switch games. The subscribers to the service also receive a handful of Nintendo Entertainment System games every month.
The lineup of Nintendo Entertainment System games was initially strong, but there are only so many first-party titles on the system. There was an abundance of third-party titles on the Nintendo Entertainment System, but few of them have appeared as part of Nintendo Switch Online.
E3 2019 has come and gone, but the fans still expect to see games from the Super Nintendo added to the Nintendo Switch Online service in the future. The only question is when?
The Issues With The Current Service
The Nintendo fans were wary of paying for an online service for a Nintendo system, due to the company's shaky history with their online modes. Games like Super Smash Bros. for Wii U were poorly optimized for online battles, but the fans accepted it because the online service was free.
The online service of the Nintendo Switch is mostly functional, though games like Super Smash Bros. Ultimate suffer badly on slow connections. The main concern that fans have is the lack of basic services, such as a basic Internet browser. A lot of fans are also annoyed by the fact that they need a mobile phone app to chat with other players.
The lineup of Nintendo Entertainment System games has also slowly become less impressive over time, with June seeing games like City Connection, Double Dragon II: The Revenge, and Volleyball being added to the service. The best first-party Nintendo titles are already part of the service and the games that have been added since then all feel like an afterthought.
The one bright spot of the Nintendo Switch Online service is Tetris 99, which has been one of the surprise hits of the year.
In January 2019, people on Twitter started reporting that evidence of Super Nintendo games was found within the files of the Nintendo Switch Online service. The files were later scrubbed, but these are the names of the games that were discovered:
Super Mario Kart , Super Soccer, Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past, Demon's Crest, Yoshi's Island Stunt, Race FX, Kirby's Dream Course, Pop'n Twinbee, Star Fox, Contra 3, Kirby Super Star, Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts, Kirby's Dream Land 3, Super Metroid, Super Mario World, Pilotwings, F-ZERO, Star Fox 2, Super Punch-Out!!, The Legend of the Mystical Ninja, Super Mario All-Stars, and Breath of Fire 2.
That is an incredible lineup of titles, and if they had been on the service from the start, then no one would have complained about the lackluster lineup of games on the Nintendo Switch Online service.
If the leak is real, then there are three likely upcoming dates when the Super Nintendo games will be added to the Nintendo Switch Online service.
September 19, 2019 - The Early Subscribers
The Nintendo Switch Online service launched on September 19, 2018. The cheap price of the service (compared to the ones provided by Microsoft and Sony) meant that a lot of people chose the annual plan. Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa claimed in October 2018 that over fifty percent of the original subscribers to Nintendo Switch Online chose the annual plan.
September 19th is the date when a lot of subscriptions will run out, so it makes sense to have something special planned for when they do.
November 15, 2019 - Pokémon Sword & Shield
Animal Crossing: New Horizons has been pushed back to 2020, which means that the big 2019 holiday season games for the Nintendo Switch will be Pokémon Sword & Shield. The mainline Pokémon series is making its first jump to home consoles and a Nintendo Switch Online subscription will be necessary in order to play the game online. Pokémon Sword & Shield will likely sell a lot of consoles, but the new owners might feel wary about buying the online subscription for a single game, so the addition of Super Nintendo games could sweeten the deal.
December 7, 2019 - Christmas & The Smash Bros. Subscribers
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is one of the best-selling games on the Nintendo Switch and it likely prompted a lot of people to purchase Nintendo Switch Online subscriptions. The game was released on December 7, 2018, which means those subscriptions will end in the run-up to the 2019 holiday season.
The fact that Pokémon Sword & Shield are the only big games planned for the 2019 holiday season suggests that Nintendo might be saving the Super Nintendo games for December, in order to encourage people to purchase the Nintendo Switch Online subscriptions for Christmas.