Nintendo is bringing N64 and Genesis games to Nintendo Switch Online, but they'll cost...

Shawn Knight

Posts: 13,527   +132
Staff member
Editor's take: Nintendo’s new membership plan is launching in late October and ultimately, I suspect it’ll all come down to pricing. If it’s just a couple of bucks more per month, and if Nintendo can keep adding a steady stream of desirable games to the collection, the trip down memory lane will likely be worth it for many.

Nintendo has announced classic Nintendo 64 and Sega Genesis games will soon be coming to the Nintendo Switch Online service as part of an expansion pack.

Nintendo 64 games joining the family include Super Mario 64, Mario Kart 64, Yoshi’s Story, Star Fox 64, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, WinBack: Covert Operations, Mario Tennis, Dr. Mario 64 and Sin and Punishment.

Nintendo is also adding more than a dozen Sega Genesis games to its library including Ecco the Dolphin, Gunstar Heroes, Musha, Strider, Streets of Rage 2, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Shinobi III, Shining Force, Ristar, Phantasy Star IV, Golden Axe, Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine, Castlevania: Bloodlines and Contra: Hard Corps.

Some N64 games will feature up to four-person multiplayer, both locally and over the Internet.

Nintendo further said it plans to add more titles over time such as The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, F-Zero X, Mario Golf, Pokémon Snap, Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, Paper Mario and Banjo-Kazooie.

The Japanese gaming giant is even releasing two retro-styled controllers based on the N64 and Genesis, respectively. These optional controllers aren’t required to play N64 and Genesis games on Nintendo Switch Online, but rather provide a more authentic feel as if you were playing on original hardware. Both wireless models will set you back $49.99 each.

As a retro gaming fan, Nintendo’s approach is bittersweet. Addressing the Sega Genesis side first, all but two of the games that Nintendo will initially launch – Ristar and Musha – are already available on the excellent Genesis Mini all-in-one console.

Nintendo single-handedly created the (quality) mini retro console genre with its NES Classic and followed it up with the equally as intriguing SNES Classic. Sega and Sony soon followed with the Genesis Mini and PlayStation Classic, and an N64 Classic seemed like the next local step in this progression. Instead, Nintendo pivoted and decided to focus on building out its Switch Online service. With N64 games now heading to the Switch Online service, it all but guarantees a permanent void in my mini retro console collection.

Also worth discussion is the fact that N64 and Genesis games are an expansion, meaning they’ll cost extra on top of the base Nintendo Switch Online subscription. The company didn’t say how much more gamers will have to pay to access these “premium” titles, but we'll find out soon enough.

As for the first N64 games out of the gate, Nintendo got it mostly right. It’d be a crime not to include Super Mario 64 and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Mario Kart 64 and Star Fox 64 are also welcome, but where are other classics like GoldenEye 007, Wave Race 64, Killer Instinct Gold, Turok and Cruis’n USA? GoldenEye 007 is probably tied up in licensing limbo, but what about the others?

What other N64 or Genesis games would you like to see added to the expansion? In addition to the titles mentioned above, I’d also personally welcome Bomberman 64, Pilotwings 64 and Donkey Kong 64, among others.

Masthead credit Pat Moin

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DZillaXx

Posts: 387   +508
Shame no Original Mario Party Games, Would loved to have gotten 2 or even 3. The new remake coming out looks to be disappointing in terms of board space.
 

Sausagemeat

Posts: 884   +715
I will probably bite if it’s got Donkey Kong 64 and Lylat wars which is what star fox 64 was called in PAL regions.
 

madboyv1

Posts: 1,727   +642
Shame no Original Mario Party Games, Would loved to have gotten 2 or even 3. The new remake coming out looks to be disappointing in terms of board space.
I too would have liked to have seen the N64 Mario Party games, maybe they'll show up later...
 

defaultluser

Posts: 256   +230
Nintendo: we used to charge you an exorbitant amount of money to play an emulated console game forever.

Now we have learned that people only buy a few of these things (and will manually transfer them if we allow this), and we want that sweet Disney Vault Perpetual Dollar.

You folks blindly thought we would see even newer games at $20 a year ? Apparently not.

Nintendo intends to bleed you all dry forever, increasing the money they charge fro each new system..want GameCube titles, be prepared to drop an exorbitant $40/year!
 

EdmondRC

Posts: 150   +127
I have a Switch and Switch Lite so that my two daughters can play together. Nintendo's digital games are the worst experience I have ever seen. On the 2nd Switch, my daughter cannot play games I purchased from the digital store unless she plays them on my account! Even though she is a sub on my account. It's the dumbest policy I have ever seen. I understand limiting how many subs can play at one time, but I can't understand why a sub on a second Switch cannot play on their own account. Nintendo's policies are so backward, they are so afraid of losing even $1. It's just like them sending me a 15% off coupon for my birthday. I though great, my girls have been asking for Animal Crossing, I'll use this to get that. So I click on the link and find out you can only use the coupon on specific crappy merchandise, definitely not on any games. Now this, charging you extra to play 20-30 year old games while Sony and MS are literally giving you free games that are only a few years old and sometimes newer with their online programs. Yes, Sony and MS charge more, but their subscriptions actually have benefits. Nintenodo's online program isn't worth more than $20 a year. Honestly, this would not even upset me, I obviously am not going to upgrade my online sub for this, it only bothers me because Nintendo never does anything but fleece their customers. Yet, as long as people continue to say, oh wow, I can play N64 games on my Wii, Wii U,DS,3DS,Switch, take my money, it will never change.
 

Bp968

Posts: 236   +167
I have a Switch and Switch Lite so that my two daughters can play together. Nintendo's digital games are the worst experience I have ever seen. On the 2nd Switch, my daughter cannot play games I purchased from the digital store unless she plays them on my account! Even though she is a sub on my account. It's the dumbest policy I have ever seen. I understand limiting how many subs can play at one time, but I can't understand why a sub on a second Switch cannot play on their own account. Nintendo's policies are so backward, they are so afraid of losing even $1. It's just like them sending me a 15% off coupon for my birthday. I though great, my girls have been asking for Animal Crossing, I'll use this to get that. So I click on the link and find out you can only use the coupon on specific crappy merchandise, definitely not on any games. Now this, charging you extra to play 20-30 year old games while Sony and MS are literally giving you free games that are only a few years old and sometimes newer with their online programs. Yes, Sony and MS charge more, but their subscriptions actually have benefits. Nintenodo's online program isn't worth more than $20 a year. Honestly, this would not even upset me, I obviously am not going to upgrade my online sub for this, it only bothers me because Nintendo never does anything but fleece their customers. Yet, as long as people continue to say, oh wow, I can play N64 games on my Wii, Wii U,DS,3DS,Switch, take my money, it will never change.

While the steam deck wont make a dent in nintendos hold on the younger crowd, I believe it will relegate the system to "also ran" status for many of us. Ill keep mine for the exclusives and because I have too many digital games tied to the device (lame), but the steam deck is going to crush it.

I can play emulated games and the 1300+ steam games ive collected the past 17+ years. While its cool pulling out the old consoles (something that will stop being a thing with modern consoles) being able to play old games with maxed settings on modern hardware and tons of mods is just amazing.