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Fortnite for Switch won’t require Nintendo’s premium online service for play

Fortnite can be played without a Nintendo Switch Online subscription

Fortnite running on a Nintendo Switch being held by a left hand Samit Sarkar/Polygon

Nintendo will launch its for-pay online service for the Nintendo Switch next week, but fans of Fortnite don’t need to worry about another bill; the popular online battle royale game will not require a subscription to the new service.

“Beginning September 18, 2018, a Nintendo Switch Online membership is required to participate in co-op and competitive online features for many first- and third-party Nintendo Switch games, including Splatoon 2, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, ARMS, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate,” Nintendo states on its official FAQ. But it makes a special note about Fortnite.

“Some games, such as Fortnite, can be played online without a Nintendo Switch membership,” Nintendo explains.

This is great news to the legions of Fortnite fans who enjoy playing the game on the go, and it’s a smart move for Nintendo to carve out an exemption for the massive free-to-play game. Fortnite was also the first game to allow standard voice chat through any headset without the use of Nintendo’s smartphone app; Nintendo seems comfortable making sure the game doesn’t have to conform to some of its more arcane restrictions on the Nintendo Switch.

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