Nintendo Switch Online’s ‘Mario Kart 64’ Has 1 Frustrating Glitch

Nintendo Switch Online has finally launched its Expansion Pack, which added a collection of Nintendo 64 and Sega Genesis titles to the classic game library. Many subscribers eagerly upgraded their plans to access these old-school video games but then found that some of the games came with problems. Some have expressed disappointment in Nintendo Switch Online’s Mario Kart 64, for example, because of a glitch with saving data.

Four player screens in Mario Kart 64, now available via Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack
‘Mario Kart 64’ is available now via the Nintendo Switch Online Expansion. | Nintendo

Nintendo Switch Online launched an expansion with ‘Mario Kart 64’ and other Nintendo 64/Sega Genesis titles

The baseline subscription model for Nintendo Switch Online includes access to online play, cloud saves, exclusive rewards, a mobile app, and Nintendo Entertainment System/Super Nintendo Entertainment System games, all for $20 per year. Now, in addition to these features, subscribers can upgrade to gain access to N64/Sega Genesis games and Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ DLC, Happy Home Paradise. Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack costs $50 per year.

For now, the N64 game library includes the following titles:

  • Super Mario 64
  • Mario Kart 64
  • Dr. Mario 64
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
  • Star Fox 64
  • WinBack
  • Sin and Punishment
  • Mario Tennis
  • Yoshi’s Story

And the following Sega Genesis titles:

  • Castlevania: Bloodlines
  • Contra: Hard Corps
  • Gunstar Heroes
  • Shining Force
  • Shinobi 3
  • Sonic the Hedgehog 2
  • Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine
  • Ecco the Dolphin
  • Golden Axe
  • Musha
  • Phantasy Star IV
  • Ristar
  • Streets of Rage 2
  • Strider

Nintendo has confirmed that it will add more titles from these consoles in the future, but there’s no date for that yet.

‘Mario Kart 64’ players can’t save ghost data without an N64 Controller Pak

For those who might be new to Nintendo 64 games, the 1996 console had an optional memory-saving accessory called the N64 Controller Pak. The memory card plugged into the back of the Nintendo 64 controller to save game data. Many people used one Controller Pak as a way to transfer game data to other consoles since data could not be transferred to another Controller Pak.

In Mario Kart 64, players used the Controller Pak to save ghost data — that is, a record of previous races so players could essentially race themselves and try to beat their own times. That’s still the case with Nintendo Switch Online’s Mario Kart 64, but there’s one problem: Controller Paks don’t work on Nintendo Switch.

As Games Radar reported, many Mario Kart 64 players have reported an error message saying ghost data could not be saved without a Controller Pak, thinking it’s still on the Nintendo 64. So, the ghost data will be lost every time someone logs off. Unfortunately, there’s not really a workaround for this, which means Nintendo will have to update the emulator if players want it fixed.

Other Nintendo 64 games are having trouble, too

Nintendo Switch Online’s other Nintendo 64 titles aren’t problem-free. Eurogamer reported that the rail shooter game Sin and Punishment’s controls didn’t translate correctly in the emulator, so the Switch version assigned the same button to two different controls.

Some Mario Kart 64 and Super Mario 64 players on Twitter have also pointed out lag in loading screens, making for some demonic-sounding intro music and voiceovers. Meanwhile, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has delays with controls working on-screen.

At the time of this writing, Nintendo has not yet addressed the bugs and glitches in these games. Hopefully, Nintendo Switch Online’s emulator will receive updates by the time more games are added.

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