Does The Nintendo Switch Need Wifi To Play Games?


The Nintendo Switch is the first of its kind a true hybrid between console and handheld, but does it need Wi-Fi to play games? I decided to find out

You do not need WiFi to play Nintendo Switch games on the go or on the plane, but you need WiFi to create a Nintendo account and shop for games in the Nintendo E-shop. WiFi is needed to use the Nintendo Switch online service to play online with other players.

I will explain the benefits Wi-Fi gives to your Switch experience, even if you don’t have Wi-Fi at home. and why you need Wi-Fi and why you don’t and if you can Animal Crossing without Wi-Fi

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Why You Don’t Need Wi-Fi For Your Nintendo Switch

The Switch is the first of its kind a true hybrid handheld console designed to be enjoyed on the go when you do not have internet, I play with my Switch all the time whilst commuting!! To see what the Switch is so special check my post here.

Luckily for you and me the Switch has a tremendous library of amazing single-player masterpieces, from Breath Of The Wild to Mario Odyssey both are 100+ hour gaming experiences!

The Switch has a massive game collection there is always something for everyone to enjoy, compared to the PS4 and Xbox One the Switch arguably is a BETTER offline gaming experience.

To see my personal picks of the best 40 Switch games, check my post here. You will never get sick of playing games on the Switch!

To get a Switch for a steal see it on Amazon here.

Local Switch Multiplayer Is Amazing

Even if. you don’t have internet at your house, this does not stop you from enjoying the way the Switch was designed to be played, local coach co-up multiplayer! The Switch supports up to 8 different players on the same console without needing an internet connection as everything is done via bluetooth.

Numerous games like Super Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros can be played and enjoyed without the internet, to see the best local 4 player co-op games that do NOT require an internet connection check my list here.

Honestly, playing Switch games offline can sometimes be bad as Nintendo is notorious at having a lets just say ‘underwhelming’ online experience compared to Sony and Microsoft, I remember playing Super Smash online and the lag was so bad it was unplayable.

To see exactly why Nintendo Online is so bad check my post here.

You Can Just Use Public Wi-Fi!

The issue with not having internet is if you need to go online to download an update or access the Nintendo E-shop you will not be able to.. Wait! There is a solution.

Just use your phone as a mobile hotspot or better yet use public Wi-Fi in Starbucks or McDonalds, even single-player games get regular updates to improve performance so you wouldn’t want to miss out on these improvements just because you don’t have internet

Honestly whilst my Switch is connected to the internet I never use the features, everything I do is offline so it will not hurt your Switch experience not having internet trust me.

Why You Do Need Internet For Your Switch

I still think the Nintendo Switch is more of a offline gaming experience than the PS4 or Xbox One but this doesn’t mean not having internet will not somewhat hurt your experience.

Online Multiplayer Gaming

I mentioned how fantastic local co-up is but what if you live alone and don’t have anyone to play with? Truthfully Super Mario Kart and Super Smash are fantastic local and multiplayer single player experiences, and can be played against the computer but are better shared with other people.

Playing a real person that is fighting back is a richer gaming experience, and yes you could play these games in public Wi-fi but what if everywhere is closed or you cannot get a decent internet connection?

Or you cannot be bothered to travel and public Wi-Fi could be far from where you live, or you just cannot concentrate playing Mario Kart with 4 8 years olds screaming all around you at Mcdonald’s

Games like Fortnite and OverWatch are multiplayer-only and require an active internet connection to play, whilst not super common for the Switch you still miss out on SOME gaming experiences not having internet.

You Will Not Have Instant E-Shop Access

The Nintendo E-Shop is Nintendos online shop that sells games and downloadable content, they often do sales especially during the festive season.

With internet the E-shop is just a click away, needing to travel to get public Wi-Fi or use your phone every time you want to buy a game is a bit of a pain, now you CAN offset this by doing all your E-Shop business whenever you have internet access but it’s nice having access all the time with internet.

Certain Games Require Internet Updates

Software updates for the Nintendo Switch fix problems in games or give improved performance, or include updates and features like in Animal Crossing, not having Wi-fi means you will miss out on these features until you have internet access.

Certain games like La Noire(Amazon) REQUIRE an online update before you can play them, this isn’t the case with 99/100 games but make sure you update La Noire before you take it on 5 hour plane journey!

Having Wi-fi gives your Switch games the best performance they can get as soon as possible but it all depends on how convenient getting Wi-Fi is for you

Can You Play Animal Crossing Without WI-FI?

Animal Crossing is complely playable without Wi-Fi however certain features like having someone visit or you going to someones elses island require an active Nintendo Online subscription and internet connection.

The only purpose of playing Animal Crossing online is going to other peoples islands, and trading fruit/turnips and it will take you longer to acquire certain items and money, see this reddit thread for more information.

Online doesn’t have a huge impact of items money or advancement for your Island unless your trying to abostouely maximum your items or doing item swaps.

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