When Nintendo first launched its Expansion Pack tier for Switch Online, N64 emulation was accused of not matching the original experience.
Since then, Nintendo has released some updates to improve certain games on the Nintendo 64 service, and now the latest one - bumping the service up to Version 2.0.0 and adding The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask - has apparently delivered even more fixes and improvements.
As highlighted by dataminer OatmealDome, the fog has now been added back to games like Zelda: Ocarina of Time:
In addition to this, there have also been fixes for some unexpected crashes in other games like Paper Mario. As explained by Twitter user GameBoy256:
"Paper Mario also used to have a bug where if you died with Watt as your partner, it would crash the app, but now the bug has been patched!"
There have even been some additional "unknown" fixes to other games like Banjo-Kazooie and much more, apparently:
If we see or hear anything else, we'll update this post. Have you noticed anything? How are you finding the updated emulation N64 library for the Switch Online service? Leave a comment down below.
Good to see they're continuing to work on the issues of the service.
It’s easy to say that this shouldn’t have been an issue in the first place and it’s easy to say that for most people the N64 expansion isn’t worth it…and that’s because it’s true.
kudos to Nintendo for the fixes. honestly, I haven’t indulged much on the N64 games. if only I could get my hands on that N64 controller 🤔🎮
Wile I don't think it should have had many issues to begin with, Walking to a destination is better then just standing there. (In this case fixing bugs is better then not, so I will give credit where its due) And its Not like I have to buy it now or anything, I can always wait till they iron out the bugs.
I'll keep playing my original N64 offline.
Cool! Man I wouldn't have noticed anyway lol I love the games though.
Everything should have been flawless the first time. It's literally lift and shift. Also this should have been free for all Switch owners who previously bought or played these games, virtual console or cartridge.
@Coalescence How the heck would they do that, Scan your old N64 case with a QR code, Oh wait.
And if you played these games before, just use whatever console you used to play it the first time, and if you don't have said console anymore its not nintendo's fault.
So all that "Nintendo hired one guy for one emulator for each n64 Wii VC game" that spread thanks to people like MVG was all massive bs.
Nintendo just got lazy, and it seems they noticed.
So Nintendo should make the games free, because people have bought them before. If you already have them then don’t buy the games again.
I gave Nintendo some (justified) flak for the initial N64 emulation. Now, for persevering with fixing many of the issues with their emulation, they get their rightful praise and applause.
I also thank the many fans who took time to voice their opinion, which seemingly led to Nintendo pushing out these fixes.
(Because *no one said anything back in the Wii U days and that might've contributed to the decision of releasing the initial NSO N64 with such issues in the first place).
*There were barely anyone there to complain.
@Coalescence Flawless the first time? That's not how emulation works, sure the game is already complete but know that originally the game was only optimized to run on real hardware. When you take its rom from its original source and try to replicate it onto a new source, the performance and quality varied because the rom was never meant to be run on another source. It will try to run it but major hiccups and performance, sound, and/or graphical issues will happen.
This is why emulation and cloning of compatibility doesn't work perfectly as the rom was meant to run on native hardware. Still that doesn't mean emulation and clone hardware can't run it, they could but hacking, various debugging, and reverse engineering are required in able to make those run these roms the same way native hardware did as the rom was not optimized to be run with those source to begin with similar to my source automatic car.
A better example is this, just cause I could drive automatic car doesn't mean I could drive any car. Driving automatic car is what I'm good at, is what I'm optimized to do but give me a manual shift car and I would had no idea how it functions or even drive it. That doesn't mean I won't ever know how to drive manual shift car, I just need to be familiarized myself with it first thus optimizing myself with the vehicle so I could run it.
As for your second point, nope it ain't free even if you bought these games before on Virtual Console. If life had a list of things you previously bought and you expect to go buy those same things free of charge then no business will survive. If you bought a game from my store lets say Sonic the Hedgehog for the Sega Genesis and you came back several weeks later and want to buy another copy of Sonic the Hedgehog for the Sega Genesis or even the Game Gear version, yeah you ain't getting that for free, you want another copy you pay the price again.
Now if you bought the game through an online store and that game could still be downloaded then sure you could always redownload it, how many back-ups you make of it is up to you but once that game is gone from the old online store after many years and is available on a new online store and you want to buy it again, then yeah you're paying for it again. Chances are both online stores are not run by the same owner despite being part of the same company or branch.
Part of me wonders whether Nintendo thought that removing the fog was a good thing. In certain games, it absolutely would be. Just so happens that in Ocarina of Time it impacts the atmosphere of several areas.
Maybe this will tone down the complaining at last.
It seems there are four kinds of folks: ones who ordered the n64 controller and didn’t subscribe to the service yet; ones who subscribed but can’t get the controller yet; the complainers; people who love atmospheric fog. I fall into 2 of these categories!
HINT: I love silent hill and I’m real close to subscribing. I love that they actually took time and implemented these improvements! This is what a subscription service should be: nice to see a feedback loop with our money going back into it.
Still an improvement over the Wii U, never fixing that darker tone for games.
I'm just glad they fixed it in time for Majora's Mask. That game would have been trashed if it launched with those fog issues.
@Angelic_Lapras_King Yes. That was always so annoying. Looked terrible if you didn’t manual change the settings on your TV. Glad that’s gone on the Switch.
@PoeTheLizard That’s so very true. Majora’s Mask uses fog constantly to strong obvious effect. Would have been so terrible without it.
This is good because it proves nintendo listens to criticism and backlash
The bad part is, that means they saw the criticisms and backlash from taking down fan projects and music, and taking down the eshops, but choose to do nothing about it
Still not financially worth it. Even the current basic subscription isn't worth it. The imminent shutdown of the Wii u/3DS eShop a have shown me there is STILL more value in their shops than the switch subscription. We're supposedly half way through the switch lifecycle so time hasn't helped sweeten the deal just yet.
@nessisonett This is what I was thinking.
Is there still no button mapping? It's all I'm waiting for.
Well it's good that they're fixing it. I'm thinking of just going back to regular NSO subscription though after that first year is up, and just buying ACNH and MK8D DLC separately. I'll have to see what the people in my family group want, I don't think any of them aside from one even really use the expansion pass much, and for her it's mostly ACNH and later MK8D most likely. I'll just buy her the expansions separately too, because then at least we both get to keep it as well.
This whole service is trash, I've enjoyed it to an extent but losing everything later is going to suck so hard and the price is just way too much. But good thing they're fixing the emulation!
Nice improvements. Complainer culture is a cancer of the earth.
I don’t know...I think the 32 bit era consoles need good emulation, maybe even hardware level emulation. It’s a great era to master the jank, no doubt, but you don’t want added issues from the emulation, that feels bad, especially for some of the twitchier games that you need to finess the analog stick to pull off certain high level play. I guess if one just wants to mess around for 20 mins and not come back for that mastery, it doesn’t matter.
@Fazermint as is corporate drone thinking.
@gaga64 that article exactly explains my thoughts on 32-bit games. Analog controls were wildly different from game to game, it was all an experiment still. The controls had personality even. You really need the best performance to understand the scope of what can be pulled off in the games from that era.
We'll probably never know, but I am curious how much of these updates was based on the negative reactions. Because if they had say, not released this in October, would they have put in the man hours to fix this for right now? Nintendo is paying people to fix these emulated games, and they did put out a thing implying they were putting more money for NSO suspiciously not too long after the backlash, so its a real possibility.
Point is, maybe if they had really looked into this before, they would've noticed some issues (not all, they'd probably not run into that Paper Mario issue on their own), and it could've come out when they were fixed, and none of this PR disaster would've happened. Because between the actual issues and the solo pricing (where lots of people don't even seem to know or understand the family plan), I guarantee they've cost themselves a decent bit of money from all the people who were immediately turned off by this, and will not even find out about these updates. Expansion Pac for NSO on Switch, has a serious negative connotation that even after adding DLC to their biggest game for it, they'll have to work a lot harder to convince people its any good now.
Look, I love what this specific service is trying to do, its giving me what I specifically would want, and when you exploit the family plan to get a better deal, in the long term, I'll likely call this a great deal. But I never want Nintendo to release a product in this condition again. Delay it next time.
@Fazermint So people are acting like "Cancer of the earth" because they don't Don't agree with the pricing and the value of a 60$ add on of an already crappy internet service?
Vintage video gaming in the last 6-7 years has been a full-on enthusiast driven industry with insane amounts of dedication and resources being put into the quality of the experience. It’s beyond what Nintendo or Namco or Sega would have ever done to preserve the input and output quality of their early games. The complaints are valid, they just need to recognize that mainline commercial products for vintage games are not going to excel for one business reason or another
@kkslider5552000 if these aged Japanese games companies like Nintendo have put out a good emulated product, it’s probably because they luckily had a contractor that worked some miracle within the budgetary constraints of these companies. But largely these ‘retro rereleases’ aren’t hitting the benchmarks of software like Retroarch. And I don’t think there’s any goal to hit any benchmarks of vintage gaming emulation either.
For most people it is worth it because most people didn’t experience the games in the first place.
Pathetic that 25+ year old games needed fixing in any way to begin with when my phone can run them with HD texture packs without problems.
Really glad they got it fixed, wish it was sooner in Ocarina’s case (right at the end now!) but glad it happened at all!
...and the missing ghost data problem in Mariokart64?
Awesome! Now can they put the N64 controllers back in stick please benefice it feels too wrong playing these games on other controllers, hence I've not touched the thing for now.
@nmanifold Sadly not. I’ve gone and created a system button remap so that A and B are mapped to the correct orientation of Y and B, but it’s not ideal.
I’ve got one of the N64 controllers but it would be nice to a have a proper N64 joy-con with 6 face buttons for playing N64 on-the-go.
@Fazermint Yeah, i mean, how dare people, wanting Nintendo to emulate their own old console properly?
It's not like we're expected to pay $60 a year for it... oh wait, yes we are.
Sure, complaining can go too far, but expecting subscription-based emulation of a 26 year old console to work properly isn't "Going too far".
People saying this is to be expected should know that there are hobbyists out there who has made better emulators for Switch, before this expansion was announced.
Interesting... show me KI Gold and we'll talk business.
@bimboliquido that's like one of the laziest criticisms around just to antagonise people who offer a more reasoned explanation of Nintendo's actions.
@Specter_of-the_OLED I seriously wonder why those who expect the old games for free don't expect non Nintendo games for free. I'd have expected them to demand Quake and Doom for free. Half life for free. Skyrim for free
@NinChocolate yeah. Agree, there are loads of legitimate complaints about the launch. It's also disappointing that Nintendo didn't put in better emulation features, particularly considering how competitive the other emulation projects are.
Can't be right that you had to go elsewhere for a more authentic experience (even though elsewhere isn't perfect either)
I'm officially in, payday is coming up, the kid is finally into Animal Crossing, Mario Kart maps incomming.
They're resolving all the issues and y'all are still complaining, I'm happy they're taking care of it, my money aren't going to waste, there are bigger problems in the world right now tbh
Really enjoying NSO. Completed Ocarina and Banjo, going to get them Mario Kart tracks and going to do Majora. It’s already paid for itself this year for me.
But obviously not for everyone. It is an optional add-on for those who want it
Good to see they are fixing these. Finally upgraded my NSO due to mario karts dlc and majoras mask.which pushed me into okay it's got some value now camp (I still need to play it dispite having it on wii and wii u VC just never got arround to it) got the switch n64 controller already which was just gathering dust until now
For me my main hope is still that they offer the option to buy the games separate from the pass similar to what they do with DLC like the Mario kart one, i just don't like having access to the games dependent on a service and would be happy to have the option to buy them.
@NinChocolate I really doubt it's budget more like time. They have to offer these services over the span of a systems life span.
I think there's a difference between something delivered at a good pace to support the 6-7 year lifespan of a system. And open source emulators that has been chipping away for decades.
OoT may have been missing the fog in the NSO for a few months. But the PC emulators have had certain issues with games for years.
Hope they eventually fix the unbearable lag while fighting Lava Piranha ...Absolute disgrace for such a great sequence. It completely ruined my timing throughout.
Besides that, I've not really experienced any major flaws with Paper Mario except the typical signs of emulation in general. Had one crash, that's it.
Holy crap, I really didn't think they'd fix anything. Actually considering picking up the expansion now.
@nessisonett I thought so too, but one of the weird things is that Star Fox 64 had too much fog!
Glad they fixed some of the issues that should not of been there in the first place.
If they re-stocked the N64 controller and made it so I can buy it (not on the Nintendo Store as it hates me and doesnt like my credit card, debit card, google pay and paypal) then I might cave and sign up for NSO and Expansion.
The Expansion Pack still isn't worth it for me (buying DLC outright is much better value and loading up the Wii U if I want to play N64 that desperately which hasn't happened yet) but it's good that the quality is improving.
@Dr_Lugae in product development time and money are the same in a budget. The more time spent, the bigger the budget has to be. Less money, fewer people/hours. The problem however, is Nintendo and other companies aren’t looking at emulation as a standard of quality (which is majorly the focus of the enthusiast industry), instead, it’s (necessarily) a minor release, meaning very set budgets (time and money). So complaints are valid. But I also don’t expect a shift in the way they approach back-catalogue releases
Nice. Expansion pack well worth the admittedly not bad price now that N64 emulation has been fixed. Banjo and Majora's Mask are two of the most desired games on N64 so with emulation fixed and those two games this is now a solid package that will obviously continue to get better as they add more N64 amd Genesis games (and presumably eventually GB and GBA), and of course the free Mario Kart DLC doesn't hurt either.
At this point the expansion pack is very worth the buy. Personally I was just waiting for the awful emulation to get fixed and now it is! Though granted my Switch backlog is such that I'll probably wait until I have a very strong specific desire to play an N64 game before actually buying. But very glad to see that when I do decide to get the expansion pack it'll be good to go!
Hard to complain about the expansion pack at this point unless you're just complaining for the point of complaining. Well I guess the somewhat slow game release schedule and the lack of announcing when and what is coming and like when GB and GBA will be coming is still a worthwhile complaint. But still, as is, the expansion pack is now looking good!
I'll be damned: that's actually a lot of genuinely big fixes. You can't say they're not improving it (even if it's at the speed of swimming in SM64/BK).
@Fizza yeah, it’s very good the games are getting a second pass in response to complaints about emulation issues. The complaints are valid. Nintendo responded.
@NinChocolate I think they would have fixed the issue anyway even if fans hadn’t complained but of course fans were going to complain.
@Joriss I’d rather have SNES Killer Instinct. Perhaps the two could be released on the same day?
@gaga64 Nice, although I was refering more to the issues present in general like the omnipresent dark filter, which never got fixed officially.
@Bass_X0 they are fixing the issues that have gotten attention, that we know for sure. Nintendo is usually good about valid complaints. Sure, there’s lots of complaining on the internet, but they were valid in the case of this emulator. As for improvements in emulation post-release… typically there’s been a limit to how well a particular emulator can perform on specific hardware within the scope of these products. Nintendo may improve it as the service goes along, but given the issues so far, there’s no indication that this will be given the optimization that it deserves. Therefore no indications they will fix issues not vocalized by the customers.
@Coalescence I'm not sure about the cartridges but anyone who bought a digital copy on a Nintendo account, so there is a record, should have that exact same purchase honoured on switch. I so do agree with that. I think the new rental strategy is to work around honouring people's purchases on the next system. With the cartridges, it would be a nice, generous act to honour the sale, but with digital sales it would be nasty not to (and Nintendo chose to be corporate pigs).
N64 Emulation has always been difficult. Just ask the people working on fan made emulators. There are still some N64 games that do not run well on emulators and they have been around for decades.
amazing!! might be considering picking up the NSO+EP myself...
If NSO was $20 a year, had a lot more snes, a lot more NES, a hell of a lot more N64 plus Gameboy GBA, plus some GameCube, all emulated to a professional standard (better than amateur free offerings elsewhere) at launch, while continuing to add more things, I would be so impressed I'd probably set up one of those auto-renew subscriptions and accept it as a good investment. At present, I'd rather buy them on the consoles they are discontinuing, and if they are not for sale, download them for free.
It's cool that they're improving it. I still haven't subscribed because I already have all the games I really want (OOT and MM on 3DS, Mario 64 in 3D all stars). If they added GB, GBC, and GBA, and lowered the price, I might purchase it. If they also added GCN, that would be a no-brainer.
This is nice and all but they REALLY need to fix the control mappings, or at least allow you to remap them yourself.
How anyone can play these games with the A and B buttons in the wrong place, is beyond me.
Fog sucks. I completed Ocarina of Time yesterday for the nth time in my life, and without the fog, you can see now how much detail the game has. Fog was a way of hiding stuff that the system couldn't show back in the day, it was annoying then, it's annoying now.
@Edu23XWiiU The Silent Hill series would disagree. The HD remasters that removed the fog were notoriously terrible with one large reason being that the uneasy mood of the originals got largely lost in the remasters without the fog.
I'm happy to see they're actively improving the service, though it's still not worth the price for me. Maybe if they add GBA and/or third party SNES titles (i.e., Squaresoft games) to the Expansion Pack. Or if I can find a group to split a family pass.
@Bass_X0 If fans didn't complain Nintendo would never have noticed these issues. That is the benefit of complaining.
@Screen true, but better they fix it than leave it broken
@Gwynbleidd i mean it makes sense why most people dont want it, it really only appeals to people who want to play old nintendo games who only have a switch.. if you don't have a wii u or 3ds and love genesis/n64 games, then the expansion pass works for people. id prefer to own the games, but i really can settle either way. but hey, whatever works for you works for you!
@Snatcher its neither an apt or sensitive way of putting it on fazer's part, but you'd be surprised about how people can be mad about getting exactly what they want. I get this idea that it should have already worked, but it didn't. This is the best course of action, I don't get how them fixing mistakes is a bad thing! Also, to be clear, these are statements NOT directed at you. I've just been reading through the comments, seeing people complain and I've been a little miffed seeing that, as they would have been mad either way over videogames. VIDEOGAMES. I'm just saying, I guess.
People wanting a good product in return for their money is a ‘cancer of the Earth?’
@electrolite77 That's not what they said at all. They said "complainer culture" was. People consistently being dissatisfied with everything no matter what the circumstances are. And that is a cancer. Whether or not you think this particular situation falls into that category is certainly debatable, but you're deliberately misinterpreting a statement that encompasses a mass generalization and pretending it was directed at one tiny thing, wording it in a specific manner just to make it seem inherently wrong. Of course no one is saying "anyone who wants a good product for their money is cancer".
@Lyricana amen. You hit the nail right on the head.
Seems nothing satisfies these people and anyone who disagrees is deemed a "Nintendo-shill".
Sad really, but such is complainer culture.
It's actually very nice to know they are listening to the complaints and doing something about it. If the service is going to continue to be expensive, at the very least it should be its best version. It if ends up running smoothly and looking as it should, then I think I could start considering it. Still feel it's a bit too expensive.
No it is not a cancer. That’s a ridiculous thing to say and by attempting to elaborate on the original, short-but-stupid post you’ve made the same mistake. People having different opinions about the quality and value of a Consumer product isn’t a ‘culture.’ Trying to put labels on people for in an attempt to deal with the shock of seeing different opinions is stupid. A few people complaining about a consumer product on a Video Games website doesn’t warrant comparison to cancer, unless you’ve lost all sense of perspective.
@nowthisisepic I know it isn't aimed at me,and probably no one else here actually. I understand them getting annoyed with it, because it is, people complaining no matter how the service went, but my problem was the "Cancer of the earth" thing which I thought went a little to far? Idk maybe i'm being sensitive, I didn't type what I typed in any ill will. But I get what your saying.
So I get it, they meant no real offence, and wasn't aimed at me, or anyone else, but at people that complain over every little thing, at first it felt aimed at very who complained at the service, so that why I typed what I typed.
@Screen If you can complete every game in one month and then cancel… it might be worth it lol. (But you’re still left with nothing, which is why I can only barley stomach paying for the base NSO.)
It's just Superman.
@electrolite77 You're doing the exact same thing for a second time. You're deliberately misinterpreting what was said to make it seem trite and ridiculous. It's unbelievable, actually. No one anywhere said anything about putting labels on people, no one said anything about "a few people" complaining on a games website. I just pointed out the current pervasive climate of raging against everything no matter the conditions. I'm also not talking about videogames or anything specific. Just in general.
We're definitely locked in a culture right now where it's complain first, indict, rage on social media and don't consider any circumstances or rational reasons why things are the way they are. Obviously it's not literally a cancer, but it has turned the internet into a lousy place to communicate because it's almost nothing but angry people blowing up about things that often aren't actual problems. And I'm not just saying they aren't important, I'm saying they aren't even bad to begin. And because it wasn't clear enough before, I'll say this again. I wasn't offering any opinion on this situation or this article itself, I was just explaining the concept to you and your misinterpretation.
@idork99 Yesssss, finding a N64 Switch controller for sale that isn't $80 or $100+ is impossible. Nintendo needs to increase their stock big time, especially if they want to support NSO long-term. Can't believe it's more cost effective to dump money into my real N64!
I was waiting on OoT getting fixed before I bought the service, now I'm all good to go
Can't wait to play OoT again after like 2 decades lol
To be fair, the least we should expect! But, fair play
Great that they fixed the issue with the Water Temple in Oot and also other issues in the available games. Now after MM, I hope we get DK64 and Pokémon Snap next. Or if the deal with Microsoft is that good, maybe even Banjo Tooie or/and Conker's Bad Fur Day.
@stinkyx Want my advice? Go to Retro-Bit.com or Amazon.com, buy a Wireless Tribute 64 Controller. That way,, you have a decent N64 Controller that's good for the Switch, PC, Raspberry Pi, and even the Actual N64 itself. Then once it gets to your place, download the firmware update, so you can hold Start+A for 5 seconds, and you can play N64 games perfectly. After a while, it DOES Rumble occasionally. I guess Retro-Bit hasn't fixed that, yet.
@Snatcher yeah, using cancer there was extremely insensitive. %100 agree with you there
@faint @Screen I liked both your comments. I think the truth is somewhere in the middle. I still haven’t subscribed yet. Holding off until at least the N64 controller is in stock and by then they will have expanded the service and improved it. The truth is it would be my first choice. I’d much rather buy all the old nes and snes games and n64 and have them in a similar app. But I own the games.
@nowthisisepic Yeah, Like I understand where there coming from 100%, But the Cancer thing was going to far, thats why I think I needed to say something.
But, I did misunderstand what they were trying to say a little bit, so my bad LOL.
@YoshiAngemon I bought one of those. It’s not really anything like using a n64 controller though. If you are old enough to have found memories playing the n64 for hours and hours for years - using that just doesn’t cut it IMHO.
@Snatcher It's not even $60.
@BTB20 The service? Because then it would just be ten bucks less. I have a family plan anyway making it much more worth it.
Of course they would fix it. Nintendo prides themselves in high quality content, so, although the games were absolutely playable, they will continue improving the service until it's as good as it can be. This means people will keep paying and have more goodwill. It took some time, but I have no idea how complex it is. Emulation certainly ain't easy though, I have written a Gameboy emulator myself and it was not fun and games, N64 is significantly more difficult.
@duffmmann man, in Silent Hill, there was even black fog, if you were with a lantern at night, you couldn't see anything around the character until it was very late. Talk about using a liability on a console to add atmosphere.
@Snatcher cancer joke bad.
More at 11.
Everyone has an opinion and it stinks.
@Arkay I thought it went to far, idk if anyone else did, but I did.
The bug fixes are great, but did they have to rollback the actual improvement they made to the emulation (the lack of fog that was no longer needed to mask technical shortcomings) just to match the original experience? If Sony brought back emulated versions of original PlayStation games that no longer had long loading screens, would people also complain about that not matching the original experience?
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