If Switch owners in the west thought they had to wait a long time for Nintendo's belated Online service to arrive, spare a thought for their counterparts in the east. The service, which launched back in September last year, will finally arrive in South Korea and Hong Kong this spring.
Interestingly, @chinesenintendo, the Twitter account devoted to reporting Nintendo developments in the region, points out the use of Famicom controllers despite labelling the service as 'NES' in both the Simplified and Traditional Chinese banners:
To be fair, while four months is a long time, this is a relatively small delay if you look back over the history of product launches in the region. While South Korea is arguably the home of eSports, conversely, the Chinese government has historically been very restrictive with official releases, digital or otherwise.
Until as recently as 2015, a ban on the sale of video games consoles produced outside the country led to some inventive solutions from the likes of Nintendo and other companies. With that in mind, it's impressive that Switch's online service has come to Hong Kong so quickly.
The Chinese mainland, of course, is another matter entirely. Despite being the largest video game market in the world, companies of all varieties must deal with some very stringent restrictions to get their products on sale in China.
There's no word on pricing just yet, but it's great to see Nintendo slowly expanding the service.
Are you a Switch owner in the region who's been waiting for NSO to arrive? Drop us a line below...
[source twitter.com, via nintendosoup.com]
I hope they can handle Tetris 99...
Large market penetration could prove to generate some large amounts of money, however I hope Nintendo continues to utilise this extra income to improve their server infrastructure and combat any potential hackers / cheaters, in particular for online games like Splatoon 2.
They're in for a treat!
Guys can u reply my answer, Android application is going to the Nintendo Switch(eShop)?
It would be interesting to see if there are different NES games, as in the Japanese service. There aren't many, in fact only The Adventures of Lolo 2, Tsuppari Ôzumô and Joy Mech Fight, though.
Everyone be prepared for a huge influx of cheaters
@MrGlubGlub Don't worry, I don't live in SK or HK.
Let me tell you about this little thing called the Internet
Interesting Taiwan has no mention here when (for the last generation anyway) Nintendo of Hong Kong was looking after distribution for both regions. I cannot get over Nintendo's approach to new markets. They distribute consoles with minimal support which only condones piracy, ruins their reputation and frustrate fans. The saddest part is I can't see a day when Nintendo will stop shooting themselves in the foot and engage with the market.
Oh and here's how i see the service going - the vast majority of Hong Kong consumers will have already got at least one other region's account already set up on their switch possibly with NSO already and won't bite for this without a VERY compelling reason - a subpar offering compared to JP/EU/US will mean low subscription rates and minimal future support from Nintendo killing the region's hopes for quality localised support.
I could actually write a thesis on this whole fiasco and I just might.
You mean we could have continued playing online for free with a Chinese/Korean account for all this time?
creates Korean account
Why has it taken so long for this to come to China? Come on Nintendo, step it up.
I'd love to have one of those Ique controllers, they even release Ique 3DS!
Oh yeah another article mention switch in china mainland is restricted. Funny everything is working normal so far. Except the youtube app on switch of course.
@Der "Why has it taken so long for this to come to China? Come on Nintendo, step it up."
Go ask China.....
Actually, No. I live in SK.
We had to get nintendo switch online service from other countries. For example, I use japanese account for 2 years. I also registered switch online in japan.
We do not have E-shop due to korean law, too.
I heavily don’t recommand you for making korean account. It’s trash TBH.
@Octane okey thanks
They can try, but China, South Korea and other non Japanese Asian countries really don't care all that much about console gaming, they instead prefer PC and mobile.
AWESOME FOR THEM!
Soon they'll be also be able to play online in the exact same manner as they can at this very moment.. but now with a fee and some prehistorical NES games.
More people to be disappointed with the service!
I know everyone likes to bash on the online service, and it's not the best. (No universal game invites?!) But between Tetris 99, and OMG Kirby's Adventure is awesome! Feel like I'm getting my monies worth now.
Can South Korea's online infrastructure handle such a demanding network service? Time will tell.
@RandomNerds Was the part about this service being "demanding" a joke, or do you actually mean it?
@TheAwesomeBowser Well it was really a two part joke (a bad one).
Part 1: South Korea has some of the best internet in the world so surely any service would be highly usable if operating within it. So to imply it might struggle is a joke.
Part2: I joked about Nintendos online services being “demanding” because the popular opinion is that said services are quite basic and backwards, hence it’s not even close to demanding. That being said if the code base and hardware that powers it are inefficient it might actually be demanding despite being limited. So yeah... Funny...
Jokes are funnier explained in detail!
Created an account as I would like to clear out some facts between China and Hong Kong games market that has been mixed up in the article. ^_^
1. Hong Kong, although being a city of China, has a totally different system (legal, trade laws, etc) as the government is running a "One Country - Two System". A lot of history here, but put it simply, Hong Kong's system is largely based on UK before handing over to China. Chinese government restriction DOES NOT APPLY to Hong Kong.
2. Therefore the ban of consoles and games DOES NOT APPLY TO Hong Kong at all. We enjoy having the same release day, or even few days earlier of ALL games, from triple A to crappy ones, from Japanese to US/Europe (We are very lucky and grateful to have choices to buy whichever version we like). In fact, since HK is a free market, its a great place for gamers around the world to shop their favorite here too. (One point to note. Play Asia is based in Hong Kong )
3. Services of Nintendo HK is a bit of a drag. They did some bummer choices like releasing a Hong Kong version only 3DS which can only play a handful of Hong Kong version games. (Most of us buy either Japanese 3DS to catch the Monster Hunter Wave, or like myself buying US 3DS to enjoy RPGs that can be played in English version) However they have improved over time and I see things turn out quicker. I doubt the slowness is due to decision making from HK office, but the long planning process in Japan headquarters. (Because they are Nintendo...).
4. A user above about Korea players has pointed out correctly, Nintendo gamers in HK mostly have created several accounts from different regions already (I have US, Japan and Australia ones). So that we can seek out which region provide the best value of a particular game.
Hope that clears up the difference between games market in China and Hong Kong. Both of them are totally different in terms of landscape and games availability
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