Arena of Valor Won't Need Nintendo Switch Online: Tencent

Tencent’s free-to-play multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) title Arena of Valor won’t need a Nintendo Switch Online subscription when it launches on the Nintendo hybrid console in September, the publisher has announced.

Variety cites Tencent to say Arena of Valor players won’t have to pay for Nintendo’s subscription service to play with others. This further contributes to the report from earlier in August that free-to-play Switch titles such as Fortnite, Fallout Shelter, Paladins, and Pokemon Quest won’t require Nintendo Switch Online.

A keen-eyed Switch user pointed out on gaming forum Reset Era that the Nintendo eShop descriptions for standard online titles and free-to-play online titles have a major difference. The former, say a game such as Minecraft, state: “From the full launch of the Nintendo Switch Online membership service in 2018, online play requires a paid membership.”

But the latter, which includes the aforementioned free-to-play titles, don’t have that sentence on their Nintendo eShop page. Tencent’s announcement about Arena of Valor is a nugget of the proof Switch owners were looking for.

Nintendo’s position would put it alongside Sony, which doesn’t require PlayStation Plus for free-to-play titles. Microsoft’s Xbox One, on the other hand, requires its Xbox Live Gold subscription service for any kind of online play.