Opinion: Switch Reward Program; Nintendo doesn’t owe you anything.

Nintendo pushed their new Switch Reward Program last night and people are acting like entitled little bitches over it.

Yeah, that’s my opening line. I’m so pissed at the attitude some people have toward a program Nintendo had absolutely no obligations to give us it pushed me to write an article for my blog for the first time in months. That’s how bad the situation is from where I’m sitting. I realize this is a vocal minority but I feel like I really need to blow off some steam about the whole deal.

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Quick Summary; Since the launch of My Nintendo, people have been able to collect Gold Coins by buying retail and digital games for Switch, Wii U and 3DS (digital only for those last two). Up until now there wasn’t all that much to spend the Gold Coins on. Mostly wallpapers and some “premium” 3DS themes. But with last night’s update, people can now use those Gold Coins to buy digital Switch games at a discount.

And SOMEHOW some people aren’t happy about it.

Most of the “criticism” seem to be about a few things;

  1. The % of the game’s price we get back as Gold Coin is too small (5% for digital games, 1% for physical copies)
  2. The Coins expire after a year.
  3. Not all games are eligible for discounts/Gold Coins.

I don’t even know where to start with the first point. Nintendo is still a company. They are still in a business to make money. A return % too big would cut too much into their profits for the Reward Program to be worth it for them. The only part of the criticism I can understand somewhat is the feeling that they are “punishing” retail buyers by giving back a lower percentage. It’s easy to understand why it is, however. Nintendo gets 100% of the profit when people by their games digitally (I don’t know the percentage for 3rd Party Titles.) So obviously they can afford to give a bigger return for those.

For the second point, again, there’s one specific part of the criticism I can understand. People who have a Switch since Launch Day inevitably had some Gold Coins expired just before the Reward Program started. That does suck. I wish Nintendo could have given an extension on those. As for the rest of it, well, correct me if I’m wrong but that’s just how most Reward Programs work. It will expire eventually.

As for the third point, I haven’t really seen the problem myself. So far every game I have checked on the eShop, ranging from Celeste to Resident Evil: Revelations, were eligible for the discounts AND Gold Coins. Maybe some of the bigger AAA games from 3rd Parties aren’t eligible. But it seems like most are for now.

Personally, I see the Reward Program as a very good thing. Especially for Indies. With the Gold Coins I have right now, I could go buy something like Celeste for 25% off, if not more. I think the program will be very beneficial to them and get them some extra sales. Indies are already a success story on Switch and this will only help them further.

It may not be the best Reward Program there is, but let’s remember that Nintendo had absolutely not obligations to do this in the first place. They owe us nothing. And the people saying they would prefer nothing over something are honestly idiots.

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