Ahead of launching Splatoon 2 this Friday, Nintendo has published its Nintendo Switch Online app in the iOS App Store.
While the features won’t be available prior to July 21, the app will allow users to carry out voice chat and access the SplatNet 2 portal, where it will be possible to view your game stats, buy extra gear, and invite friends to compete in battles.
As Nintendo launches other titles with Nintendo Switch Online functionality, the use-cases for the app will continue to increase. For now, users attempting to log into the app will receive a login error after entering their Nintendo account details.
You don’t need the app in order to carry out online Splatoon 2 play, but it will certainly help. The new app means Switch gamers probably won’t ever be able to chat natively in game as the functionality is offloaded to smartphones. To compensate, Nintendo is promoting a Hori headset that combines audio from the iPhone and Switch so that you players aren’t forced to awkwardly juggle devices while playing.
Free… for now
The Switch Online app itself is free to download. At present, multiplayer gaming is also free, although this will change next year once the full Nintendo Switch Online service launches. After that, games that involve online gameplay will require that players pay an ongoing subscription. This is set to cost $ 19.99 per year, or $ 3.99 per month.
The app is available in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. It’s worth noting that Nintendo’s FAQ points out that: “The voice chat will disconnect while you’re talking on the phone or using another application, but your voice chat will restart in the same room once you open the Nintendo Switch Online application again as long as the game session is still ongoing.”
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