Nintendo Switch Games: My Nintendo rewards values digital downloads over physical games


The lack of achievements in Nintendo Switch games continue to be a sore point for gamers living in Nintendo's world. While Playstation 4 and Xbox One players can obtain cheeky rewards for their performance, Nintendo players are only rewarded (if at all) through My Nintendo. The right amount of coins can be used to discount other Nintendo game purchases or for additional special bonuses. While coins previously could only be collected for digital titles, physical Nintendo Switch games will finally count toward your coin collection. But there's a catch.

Nintendo Switch games: How My Nintendo rewards work

My Nintendo, the follow-up to the now discontinued Club Nintendo, allows gamers to register their games online and receive coins for their purchases. Physical games are finally included in this tally but for 80% less than their digital equals. Where a Nintendo Switch game at $49.99 will net you 10 gold coins on the My Nintendo site, a digital purchase at the same price will bring you 50 gold coins.

Nintendo/My Nintendo

As shown, games in the $40 to $49.99 range give you 10 gold coins for a physical purchase and 50 gold coins for a digital one. But it doesn't stop there. Nintendo Switch titles $50 to $59.99 present you with 12 gold coins for physical and 60 for digital. Really expensive games at $70 or more present you with 16 gold coins physical and for digital 80 gold coins.

Nintendo Switch games: Why push digital over physical?

There's no official word as to why Nintendo has chosen to make physical games less valuable than digital on their My Nintendo rewards site. But it could have to do with resale value. Digital games are more valuable to Nintendo as a company because they can't be resold. A physical game can be bought, then resold to GameStop for an offensively low amount of money (damn you GameStop) and then sold again to one more person. Two people buying two full price digital games means more money for the game maker than two people buying the same copy of a physical game and GameStop getting a cut along the way. 

Or, who knows, maybe Nintendo just doesn't want people tasting their damn game cartridges.

Digital games still offer essentially the same experience as their physical twins. Unless you much prefer owning games on a physical cartridge, this could be a good time to start buying digital. But if Nintendo really wants to persuade people to download their games instead of grabbing them off of store shelves, they're going to need to offer more options for their flagship console than just a 32GB version.

More Nintendo Switch coverage here

Looking for more Nintendo Switch news? Check out our comparison photos sizing up the Switch to the Wii U GamePad (part one and part two) and the best way to get alerts when new stock arrives. Then take a look at a leaked video of the Nintendo Switch menu interface and dark mode features.