Nintendo Switch Online's Mario Kart 64 still wants you to insert a Controller Pak

Nintendo Switch Online Plus Expansion Pack
(Image credit: Nintendo)

Nintendo Switch Online N64 games have gone live, but the new way to play classic games hasn't made the transition entirely without issue.

The new set of nine games went live via the latest Nintendo Switch system update earlier today, and Eurogamer immediately noticed some issues upon putting them through their paces. One of the most glaring issues comes in Mario Kart 64, which repeatedly displays a warning message that it won't be able to save ghost data (that is, a playthrough of your previous races which you can more directly compete against) without an N64 Controller Pak.

This is an authentic error to the original version of the game, but there's not much players can do about it when they're playing on Switch. This is probably the first time many people playing have even thought about the now-forgotten concept of dedicated memory cards for game saves, or at least the first time in a decade or so. The only way to fix the issue will be for Nintendo to make some tweaks to how it handles emulating Super Mario 64 on Switch.

Another major issue pops up in Sin & Punishment, an arcade shooting game which was originally released exclusively in Japan. If you're playing with a standard Switch controller, the button for shoot is also perplexingly used to remap the face buttons into the C buttons, temporarily changing which button you need to press to strafe right.

You shoot and move at the same time a lot in Sin & Punishment, so your best bet to play right now is just to sync up a Switch N64 controller, though that will cost you an extra $49.99 / £34.99 on top of the increased price for a Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack membership. Hopefully Nintendo fixes up these emulation issues soon.

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Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.