One of the little-known features of Nintendo Switch is the ability to install one copy of a digital game on many devices. This is how it works.
What is Game Sharing?
Game sharing is a process that allows you to use one digital copy of a game on several consoles, similar to how you share physical copies of a game. This is very useful for families with many consoles, or groups of friends who don’t want to pay for the same game repeatedly.
All digital purchases on the Switch are connected to a Nintendo Account. To share a game between two devices, you need one Nintendo Account on both.
When sharing a game, each device is registered as the primary console or secondary console. The main console has full online and offline access to all titles linked to eShop accounts. On the other hand, accounts registered on the secondary console require internet access to play. Also, both Switches cannot play the same game at the same time with the same Nintendo Account.
The process for doing this is very easy and involves a few simple steps on both devices.
Share Games when Switching
First, boot the Switch with the installed game. From the Home screen, open the Nintendo eShop by clicking the shop button at the bottom, and select the account that has the game you want to share.
Next, click on your player icon in the top right, and scroll down to the bottom of the page on the right side. There, I will see an option titled “Main Console.” Select “Deregister,” which will change the Switch to a secondary device. This setting can be changed later.
On the second Nintendo Switch, enter the same Nintendo Account as going to System Settings> Add User. This device will now be registered as the Main Console. After that, just download the title you want to save from eShop.
If you want to exchange primary and secondary accounts, simply switch the Register with the Primary Account. This will automatically change permissions.
Pros and Cons of Game Sharing
The best part of this process is that you can save a lot of money. This is especially true for Nintendo first-party titles, which generally cost $ 60 each and some of the most popular on the platform. Digital games are often sold at lower prices because of the frequent sales on eShop.
However, there are a few caveats to Switch from sharing the game. First, the secondary console always needs the internet to play. This is because Nintendo carries out an online verification process when the software is launched to ensure the game is owned.
One thing to note is that both consoles cannot play the same game at the same time when they log into one account. However, this does not apply to the second Nintendo account. If you create another account on the secondary device and select it each time you play, both devices can run the same game simultaneously. However, to play multiplayer online together, you need to subscribe to the second Nintendo Switch Online.
A final warning is that this process does not work for local multi-player gameplay. This is because playing locally involves turning off the internet modem Switch. You have to play online or play together on one console.