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Topic: Will a game bought digitally on the Switch last beyond it's support by Nintendo?

Posts 1 to 20 of 21

VOKZEL

I'm seriously torn on buying a game on the Switch physically or digitally, specifically Smash Ultimate, but that's irrelevant. I want to be able to take out my Switch and hop on Ultimate for years and years to come. If I bought it digitally, would the game become inaccessible once Nintendo drops support for the Switch? Would it automatically delete itself in 10 years? I really want to know, as this is a game I'm planning to enjoy for a long time, like people with Melee do.

Edited on by VOKZEL

VOKZEL

RedderRugfish

I highly doubt it'll delete itself. Worst case scenario, you just won't be able to redownload it in 10 years or so.

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Anti-Matter

@VOKZEL
Digital download games will not automatically deleted after the NSO service ended, but it will be vanished forever if you delete the games by purposely or accidentally. And you cannot redownload the games anymore.

Go physical and at least you will not worry after 10 years or more.

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Magician

As long as the onboard memory or sd card you've saved the game to doesn't become corrupted, digital downloads will remain as long as you take care of your Switch. But once Nintendo drops support of the Switch eShop a decade or so from now then you should be concerned. You'll be unable to redownload games, and swapping your current sd card to a different Switch requires you to format the sd card.

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SheldonRandoms

If you download Smash, it'll remain on your Switch forever and ever, even if the Switch online does go under. Even if something happens to a physical copy (lost, breaks, washing machine derby, etc), you could always get another copy, with digital, once the online shop gets discontinued, you'll be out of luck.

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Heavyarms55

@VOKZEL No way it would delete itself. So long as you have it downloaded to the system, it is there to stay unless you delete it. But if 10 or 15 years from now, your Switch broke and the online service was no longer available, most likely you would not be able to re-download it. However if you have a physical copy and your Switch breaks, you lose your save data - which is stored on the system - but can get a new Switch and play the game. Pros and cons to both.

Fact is though, we don't know how long Nintendo will support the eshop, but the Wii only saw online shop end a couple months ago, so 10-12 years is a reasonable estimate.

As far as I know, no company has ever deleted downloadable content from consumers upon closing an online store. I don't even think such an action would be legal, but even if it were, it would cause widespread outrage and I am sure we would have heard of it. When an online shop closes, we lose the ability to redownload our purchases or to buy more, but what we have, we keep.

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Agriculture

The Switch console won't last 10 years, and you probably won't be able to re-download games 10 years from now. If you have a physical collection then you just have to worry about buying a Switch in working condition to be able to play your games after 10 years. There's also the issue of licenses, with games like Silent Hill HD collection simply not being sold digitally anymore on the Playstation store, and I'm guessing you can't redownload it.

Edited on by Agriculture

Agriculture

SwitchForce

Since the NSW is Nintendo cash cow and eShop cash cow I doubt they would shoot themselves in the foot twice let alone loose money from eShop. What is more important is if the games loose support and eShop removes the game then you have no way to download it again. This is where Physical has the best protection. Some level of eShop will be there it's the game support from it's developers to keep it updated and listed on eShop and that isn't a Nintendo problem but the companies that sign onto the eShop delivery model. So that is the part this discussion is missing Nintendo doesn't create those eShop games but sells thems and if they loose money or no more updates or support they have every right to remove them because space is money for them.

Edited on by SwitchForce

SwitchForce

Magician

Agriculture wrote:

The Switch console won't last 10 years, and you probably won't be able to re-download games 10 years from now. If you have a physical collection then you just have to worry about buying a Switch in working condition to be able to play your games after 10 years. There's also the issue of licenses, with games like Silent Hill HD collection simply not being sold digitally anymore on the Playstation store, and I'm guessing you can't redownload it.

Support for the Wii was finally just pulled just earlier this year, that's almost twelve years since that console's launch. Based on that, it's not unreasonable to assume that the Switch eShop will be online and supported for at least close to a decade.

As far as PSN downloads are concerned, games do frequently become delisted. However, as long as you purchased that game before it was delisted it'll remain in your download library, available to redownload as long as Sony supports that platform's server. [OT] Sony just last month removed PS3 and PS Vita from their PS+ program. So it's fair to assume that Sony will either end PS3, PSP, and PS Vita support soon or they'll all be rolled into the PS5 servers.

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Yorumi

Given the way consoles work it really is best to go all physical. Backwards compatibility isn't standard like it is on PC. Old consoles are constantly losing access to their digital stores even though it's extremely stupid to do so. It's not always easy to keep backups, and on top of that consumer grade storage is really not built to last at all. A cart or even disc should be made of much sturdier material, especially since they're read only. Especially given the way Nintendo works if your console breaks you're in trouble with your digital collection. Finally the build quality of the Switch is pretty low. That means the chances of it breaking are pretty high, especially for launch systems.

Magician wrote:

Support for the Wii was finally just pulled just earlier this year, that's almost twelve years since that console's launch. Based on that, it's not unreasonable to assume that the Switch eShop will be online and supported for at least close to a decade.

That's not even really a full console gen from when the system was new. Meanwhile I play games on my 30+ year old NES to this day.

Yorumi

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NEStalgia

@Yorumi Nintendo and Playstation I'd always assume backward compatibility is unlikely. XBox is a bit different, they seem to be working on building their brand under Steam-like conditions with compatibility as part of their identity. We'll see what Scarlett does, but I have happy thoughts for them in terms of digital. Sony and Nintendo, not so much (Nintendo's been pretty adaptive recently though...they might embrace it before Sony! Especially with their ongoing coziness with XBox.)

OTOH, it's no longer true that you're screwed if your console breaks. The fixed the brokenness of the system. You can now log in online and deactivate your dead one (once) and then just make the new one the primary and download away. Within the Switch generation you're fine. It's post-Switch you're not fine.

Also, the build quality of the Switch is much higher than it looks. Remember the helicopter drop video post-launch? I've dropped mine off a chair onto a hard surface in a devastating way. It's fine. Fortunately they designed it well. The Joycons take the impact and sacrifice themselves. Not cheap, but cheaper than a console. And it preserves your data. I mean it's not infallable, but the "switch is fragile" meme needs to die. It's a well built, fairly rugged device, as far as a device with a 6" clear front can be if not heavy and rubberized.

@VOKZEL If you're concerned about Melee style play for decades, go physical. Digital won't be reliable in that time, on Switch most likely. XBox or PC, maybe. Switch, doubtful. It won't delete itself, but eventually the console will be too old to play and if it's off the digital store, you can't get it again. If you're only concerned about keeping it through the Switch generation until Smash 6 comes out on whatever future console, digital is more than fine.

NEStalgia

Yorumi

@NEStalgia Yeah it's easier to change consoles while it still has access to the eshop but this is talking about years later when it doesn't. That's when you'll have to be real careful about your digital collection. Who knows if you'll even be able to make a backup of digital games and use then when it loses access to the eshop.

For build quality, in terms of physical shock it's ok but will the circuits last? At least it doesn't have a disc drive so that helps. With joycon drift, pro-controller d-pads, and all the other things I do wonder just how long launch systems will actually last. Of course the battery is eventually going to die as well though that's a bit easier to replace. Those concerns might be unfounded but we won't know until they start breaking.

Yorumi

Nintendo Network ID: yorumi

NEStalgia

@Yorumi The long life if the circuits, honestly I expect Switch will do better than most consoles. Especially for predominantly handheld users, where it runs quite cool. Docked-only users may have more heating on the components. No moving parts (disc drives, HDDs) other than the fan, which can, one way or another, be fixed. It's probably the most reliable non-handheld console since the N64. Joycons will be available for a long while, but more importantly plenty of 3rd party controllers exist including wired USB options, so I think having a console but no controller isn't a realistic concern (and for legacy consoles in decades, getting it to work is the real trick.) And that would affect physical equally. And yeah, the battery is actually quite an easy replacement (assuming batteries can be located.) It's shockingly durable for a modern portable electronic device. (Samsung, Apple, PLEASE take note.....)

I do agree though, if looking for 10-20 year support, physical's the only way to go. 7-10 it's probably 50/50.

NEStalgia

TowaHerschel7

@Magician Vita is getting digital retail games through well into 2020 so probably not that one, but it wouldn't surprise me if Sony shutdown PS3's Store late next year, though I feel they are obligated to keep it alive this year so PS3 only gamers can keep their recent PS+ games such as Metal Gear Solid 4 long enough for most people to actually finish the games.

Edited on by TowaHerschel7

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Ralizah

@VOKZEL

Digital games don't automatically delete themselves.

I'll break with the pack here. Barring some unforeseen catastrophe (meteors hit the Earth; Japan gets bombed again; WW3; etc.), your digital Switch games will be fine for the foreseeable future. The totally outdated Wii shop lasted more than a decade, and the only reason that was retired was because it was Nintendo's first stab at digital distribution and was replaced by Nintendo's actual modern store going forward, the Nintendo Eshop. The eshop encompasses their Wii U, 3DS, and Switch games, and there's no reason to think it won't support the games from future systems as well. What happened with the Wii Shop sucks, but it's not indicative of what'll happen with games on more recent systems. ESPECIALLY since digital is huge for Nintendo now, whereas digital distribution was mostly an afterthought on Wii and extended only to cheap, smaller-scale experiences.

Gamers are a notoriously paranoid lot, and that paranoia is often baseless. Don't let it scare you off of digital distribution.

Edited on by Ralizah

Ralizah

Yorumi

@Ralizah The main reason console gamers are paranoid is the consoles makers have done nothing to give us confidence. They shut down access to redownloading of games why exactly? It's literally some data on a hard drive and it's not like they shut down the whole digital server. It's very arbitrary. Consoles don't generally have backwards compatibility like PCs so you have to maintain the old hardware. Even though it's become a bit easier there's still steps involved in moving your files(on PC just log into the store and start downloading). At this point it's nothing more than a pure faith position that digital is safe on consoles.

Yorumi

Nintendo Network ID: yorumi

Ralizah

@Yorumi It's common sense that modern digital games are safe over the next decade or so. There is nothing to be done with the Wii Shop, after all, and nobody uses it, but the eshop will likely host the digital games released by Nintendo for at least a couple more generations. There's no reason to arbitrarily switch to a different architecture now. After that? Who knows. And that's something to consider. Although, eventually, all physical media will corrupt and degrade as well.

It's true that you have to maintain your old hardware, but that's true even if you go entirely physical, y'know? My Wii U discs aren't going to run on Switch either.

Edited on by Ralizah

Ralizah

Yorumi

@Ralizah It's not the backend architecture that prevented the Wii shop from continuing though. The games are just data, and transmission protocols are standardized, not controlled by nintendo. All they have to do with the wii is authenticate the system, again using normal protocols, and then serve up the data. There's no reason to shut it down and yet they did. Similarly there's no reason to stop offering switch games but I bet they will.

Yorumi

Nintendo Network ID: yorumi

wafflesngravy

@Yorumi

But there is a reason. Make more money selling new stuff.

wafflesngravy

Yorumi

@wafflesngravy true which is all the more reason for to suspect the switch will lose access.

Yorumi

Nintendo Network ID: yorumi

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