After quite a long wait, Nintendo are finally revealing their hand when it comes to the smartphone app that will provide the backbone to their online service. The Nintendo Switch Online app will release on 21st July, alongside Splatoon 2.
Within this app, Nintendo will be hosting SplatNet 2, a Splatoon 2-specific service to allow players to keep tabs on what’s going on in the game.
SplatNet 2 will show things like the stage schedule – stages remain on a strict schedule as opposed to having playlists as in other games – as well as letting you view gear and stats, such as your lifetime “inkage” or your last 50 online game results.
The app will allow you to invite other players to join you, tying into other social networks and messaging services, letting you then team up for private battles, league battle, Splatfest battles and Salmon Run events, with voice chat built into the app…. Of course, having voice chat in the app and not on console leads to a mess of cables, as seen with the Hori Splatoon 2 Headset here.
Teaming up for online play, you’ll be able to enter matches as a team of four or as a pair, where you’ll then be matched up with another pair. If playing privately, all those in the party can chat freely before being split into separate team chats during a match.
Nintendo Switch Online will be free until 2018, at which point it will turn into a subscription service for online play akin to Xbox Live and PlayStation Plus.
Source: press release