Why it matters: Nintendo is late to the online party and while it might not be as feature-packed as the competition, at least that is reflected in its price point.

Nintendo's long-awaited online service finally has a launch date. The Japanese gaming giant confirmed on Wednesday that Nintendo Switch Online will go live on September 18 at which time you'll be able to sign up for a free seven-day trial membership.

Nintendo's answer to PlayStation Network and Xbox Live will cost $3.99 per month after the free trial. You can save a few bucks by opting for a three-month membership for $7.99 or a 12-month subscription for $19.99. Additionally, a 12-month family plan will be available for $34.99 which lets a Nintendo account holder invite up to seven others to join their group and all will have access to Nintendo Switch Online.

Memberships can be purchased from the Nintendo eShop or through Amazon, Best Buy or GameStop.

In addition to facilitating online play, Nintendo Switch Online will include access to 20 NES games with online multiplayer components including The Legend of Zelda, Dr. Mario and Super Mario Bros. 3. There will also be cloud-based saves. More details on the service are expected during Nintendo's rescheduled Direct event which takes place on September 13 at 6:00 p.m. Eastern. You can stream the event live on the Internet over on Nintendo's website.