With the recent Switch event, Nintendo announced that they would be charging for an online service, starting in fall. They also announced that with this service, subscribers would be able to download an NES or SNES game free for a month.
Strangely, according to Nintendo’s website, these games will have online play. Nintendo didn’t elaborate on the topic at all. Adding online play to Nintendo’s classics could prove very interesting.
Perhaps these additions will be minimal, limited to minor touches such as online leaderboards or the ability to compare records with friends. But until Nintendo elaborates further, we’re hoping for the best. There are many different possibilities for Nintendo to add online play to some of their most historic games.
Super Mario Kart
Super Mario Kart brings memories of local multiplayer fun with friends. Online play could take it a step further, adding the ability to enter lobbies and compete in races with people across the world. Nintendo could also add the ability to play online with friends and even a ranking system.
Of course, the battle mode is also a fan favorite. Online play could allow eight players to compete in this mode instead of having to play against CPUs. Hopefully, it would also be possible to play online split screen.
Such features would not only work in Mario Kart. They could be implemented in many racing games from the era, such as F-Zero and more.
Multiple Contra games are on the Wii U virtual console. It would make sense for the first three home console Contra games to come to the Switch virtual console, as well. All three of them work great cooperatively. It would be awesome for these games to implement new online features allowing people to team up with others even if they are alone.
Donkey Kong Country
The Donkey Kong Country games are among Nintendo’s best. Of the three on the SNES, each of them included co-op that allows players to tag-team up when taking on K Rool and his army of Kritters. Online could allow friends to do this from anywhere.
Kirby Super Star
A similar function could work with other games including Kirby Super Star, often considered the best Kirby game to date. In that game, player one controlled Kirby and player two controlled his ability specific helper. Like with Donkey Kong Country, online functionality could allow friends or even strangers to work together no matter how far apart.
If Nintendo wanted to go even further, they could also add a whole new mode to the game. Kirby Fighters was a Smash Bros-esque side game in Kirby Triple Deluxe. It was a great way to compete with friends. A Kirby Fighters mode for Kirby Super Star would complement one of the best copy systems the series has to offer by allowing players to fight against each other from anywhere.
Dr. Mario’s multiplayer is simple fun, each player trying to be the first to clear their board. Nintendo could make it so players could compete online. There also could be leaderboards, allowing players to measure themselves up with the rest of the world. Features like these could also work in other puzzle games, such as Tetris and Tetris Attack.
Super Bomberman R, the first console Bomberman game in 7 years, is launching with the Nintendo Switch. The virtual console could give players a chance to play some of the other games in the series. Super Bomberman 1, 2, and 3, all for the SNES, are beloved by fans. The battle modes in particular, which feature up to four players., are an absolute blast. Being able to play them online, with strangers or friends, would be a great option to include.
Now You’re Playing with Power – Of the Internet!
Not much is known about how NES/SNES online will work, but clearly, there is a lot of potential to change many great games for the better. That being said, almost nothing is known about the Switch’s virtual console in general, such as how much games will cost, whether games can be transferred from 3ds, what consoles will be available, and even if it will still be called the virtual console. If Nintendo does add games from other consoles, such as N64, Gamecube, and Wii, that would only expand the array of fantastic games that newly added online play could greatly enhance.