Nintendo recently unveiled tons of details about their upcoming online service, Nintendo Switch Online. One feature included for members is access to a library of classic NES games. 20 NES games are planed at launch with more being added over time.

Nintendo has since confirmed that this means Switch won’t have a traditional Virtual Console, but there’s no way that classic games past the NES era will miss the system altogether. In lieu of a Virtual Console, how should Nintendo bring its classic games to Switch?

If Nintendo is going to go the route of creating a Netflix-style service for NES games, I think they should go all the way and expand it include classic games from other platforms as well. $20 a year for access to Nintendo’s vast library of retro games is likely too good to be true, but they could offer reasonable tiers in a sort of “build your own Virtual Console” package.

If you just want NES games, stick with the standard $20 per year model. If you want access to SNES, Game Boy (plus Color/Advance), and Nintendo 64 games, you could upgrade to a slightly beefier package. Nintendo’s already planning to add more NES games to their online service after the launch in September, and expanding the options to other classic consoles at a reasonable price would be a fantastic way for Nintendo to up the value of their online service continually over time.

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Ben Lamoreux

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