Nintendo Switch DLC locked behind online membership?

The Nintendo Switch’s new online system has been a topic of massive debate since its detailed drop in the recent Direct. Some people feel it’s a great price for an online marketplace, while others feel it’s massively lacking and barebones. But no one expected the ability to download DLC to be locked behind a Switch Online membership as well. Well, Lego Worlds shows us that just might be the case.

Holding your Lego Hostage?

Lego Worlds has been prohibiting anyone from downloading its DLC without a Switch Online membership. That isn’t just free DLC but paid as well. That’s right — you can’t pay Nintendo to download its DLC content without also paying the company for the online. No more Lego bricks for you unless you empty your wallet.

Lego Worlds Nintendo Online Switch Direct Smash Ultimate Splatoon 2 Mario Kart Tweet by @pauljhaan

How do we know about this?

Now this information was primarily brought to us thanks to @pauljhaan on Twitter who actually followed up with WB’s support department. Lego Worlds customer support has been responsive on this issue, but as one would expect, they’re not giving any concrete answers. And WB, the publisher behind the game, actually can’t do anything about it as well since it’s a Nintendo policy. Most had expected this to be a mistake or a singular issue. But, with the response from the support teams, I’m not so sure that’s the case anymore. Especially since users on other platforms such as PS4 or Xbox One don’t have this problem.

Lego Worlds Nintendo Online Switch Direct Smash Ultimate Splatoon 2 Mario Kart WB Games Support response thanks to @pauljhaan

What does this mean for future Nintendo games?

We knew games like Mario Kart, Splatoon 2, or Smash Bros. Ultimate would be locked behind this online membership, but I would’ve never expected DLC to be as well. Let’s hope that Smash‘s echo fighters and guest characters aren’t released as separate DLC, or there will be a louder outrage.

What about you? Do you think it’s fair for a company to lock DLC behind their online subscription? Or is this another example of Nintendo’s innovation hurting their business? Let us know!

Jacob Buchalter
Writer, Illustrator, Graphic Designer, and "geek culture" aficionado. Jake B is an avid art lover based in San Francisco, California who has been hooked on video games and animation since he was just a wee lad.  As one of those so-called "creative types" Jake obsesses over art in any medium, whether it's video games, cartoons, or anime. Ask him about any artist, they're probably already in his bookmarks. Gaming is one of his biggest passions, and an industry he takes seriously.