Nintendo Switch

Nintendo Appears To Be Limiting Devs On Switch Game Patches

The online mode update for the basketball video game NBA Playgrounds was supposed to come to the Switch a few weeks back, but until now it hasn’t been available.

It appears that Nintendo is limiting game developer’s patches on the Switch which was causing the delay. This came to light after the developer spoke out on the NBA Playgrounds’ Facebook page about the issues they had faced.

“Unfortunately there isn’t much update I can provide. There are certain elements of our patch that are absolutely essential but that are out of normal Nintendo guidelines. If Nintendo were to approve the patch it would be released immediately, but we are in the midst of a long process of back-and-forth to get small matters waived. It isn’t that we aren’t working on this. In fact, getting this relatively simple patch out has consumed more of our time than making further improvements in additions to the game. When I say it is entirely out of her hands I mean that. We were put in a position where we needed to get this game out at the same time as the other consoles and because the platform was so new, it suffered in certain areas. There isn’t even a change log at this point – is the same patch that has been sitting there for weeks.”

He went on to give an example, advising that it took almost three weeks to get an exception to allow their patch to be larger than normal size.

“The simplest one is patch size. There are certain size requirements that you can’t exceed in a patch. It took us almost 3 weeks to get an exception to allow our patch to be larger than the normal size. And the reason it is larger is due to the technology we are using and is beyond our control. In fact, we proposed reducing the entire file size of the game from seven gigs to 3 1/2 gigs but because the platform is so new it doesn’t support it now and that can’t be done”

This seems to be quite limiting for developers who are creating updates and patches for their games. Hopefully in the future there will be a way around scenarios like this to ensure a smoother process.

Source / Via


  1. Ok this is actually very strange and I think they decide to stop the patches for increase the power of the system or for doing some things on the online service.

    Well, we have just to wait. Right?

  2. King Kalas X3 {Greatness Awaits at Sony PlayStation 4; Awaiting Greatness on Nintendo Switch!} says:

    This sounds bad to me.

    1. It does. But im sort of glad. It forces developers to make sure the game is running at tip top shape before shipping it. It seems all these devs are releasing broken games, and just fix them after theyve gotten your money. If the game isnt ready, then it isnt ready. Patches take up server space and server space cost money.

      1. King Kalas X3 {Greatness Awaits at Sony PlayStation 4; Awaiting Greatness on Nintendo Switch!} says:

        It’s a double edged sword, though. It could easily cause a game to come late to the Switch while it’s had plenty of time to sell somewhere else, causing negative Switch sales for certain multiplatform games.

        1. That it does. Nintendo could very well also charge for patches like MS did. They had outrageous patch fees so the developer would think twice before releasing a broken game.

      2. We’ve already seen that happen on Wii U with games such as Watch_Dogs; granted, that one was on Ubisoft 100%, but when it’s not the devs’ fault and it falls on the distributor? I don’t see that going over well. And at this rate Yooka-Laylee is looking to become another example.

        1. Hmm 🤔 I wasnt aware of any patch issues during the Wii U days, but you guys are right. I just want more repercussion from these devs.

  3. I was wondering wt was going on with the patch. shame they can’t reduce the file size either. I bought playgrounds and haven’t played it yet cus I was waiting for the patch to come in lol

  4. I can see this being an albatross to other Developers. of course it would be great if everyone could release a game and it be a hundred percent right out of the gate, that’s not the way things are right now developers need to be able to patch their game.

    if developers discover it’s really hard to patch their games, we’re going to see a lot less third-party support. the only games that don’t need patches are Nintendo games, and even those need patches now sometimes.

    Nintendo’s my-way-or-the-highway mentality is going to f*** over switch owners yet again.

    1. King Kalas X3 {Greatness Awaits at Sony PlayStation 4; Awaiting Greatness on Nintendo Switch!} says:

      Let’s hope it’s not as bad as it sounds. :/

    2. King Kalas X3 {Greatness Awaits at Sony PlayStation 4; Awaiting Greatness on Nintendo Switch!} says:

      Then again, it is Nintendo. It probably is that bad. :/

    3. To be fair, anyone can accidentally ship a game with some issues and it’s happened to Nintendo in the past. I believe Skyward Sword had some sort of save corruption problem or something that needed a channel for fixing it. These days everyone is going for games that are large in scope that are so complex that it’s hard not to have some issues.

      1. I agree. that’s what I’m saying. So not being able to patch, or it being a hastle is a Black flag.

  5. I guess Nintendo is trying to save storage space for consumers, which sounds good on paper. Patches these days can be over 10 gigs. It might also convince devs to do everything they can to release complete games. Problem is it could also scare away 3rd parties, and any games that release broken could stay that way for a long time.

    1. King Kalas X3 {Greatness Awaits at Sony PlayStation 4; Awaiting Greatness on Nintendo Switch!} says:

      Hence why I told Demi it’s a double edged sword. I was thinking of ports to Switch coming out late when the game’s already been on other systems. Completely forgot to think about some games might release broken on Switch & stay that way for quite a while. Or scare away 3rd parties entirely.

      1. I made the same point to someone on YouTube months back when I was talking about the limited storage of the Switch. They just kept harping on how “if the developer is good then they don’t need these patches” or “patches are changes in code. If it’s 10GB, then it’s just them completing the game after it’s released” and that person wouldn’t be wrong to be critical of the developer in those situations. But if the Switch can’t get these patches then it just leaves Switch owners with broken versions of the game.

    2. I wish I could completely back you up on that one, but remember the optional patches Xenoblade Chronicles X offered to make the game load faster/transition smoother? Those took up another 10 gigs in addition to the nearly 24 the base game required if you downloaded it (lucky me, I got a physical copy). Again, they were optional and the game still functions well without them, but Nintendo limiting the patch sizes of third-parties and not their own stuff seems… hypocritical.

      1. That’s a good point. Could be that Nintendo learned from that mistake though. It was the Wii U after all and they seem to have been avoiding at least some of their past mistakes lately. They’ve released a few patches for Switch so far. Does anyone know how big they’ve been?

  6. Sounds like BS from Nintendo. An example is Minecraft. Those guys definitely had priority with updates and could release a patch whenever they needed to..and size was never an issue for them!

  7. Ugh, everything was going so smooth. Microsoft also did this in the X360 era. Now, Switch may have storage issues but they better work this out if they still want 3Rd party support.

  8. Nintendo’s insistence of same-day release is a bit brutal when concession have to be made for the Switch, and it seems the same old “board room” BS is haunting the Switch early on. Nintendo have admitted themselves that they are trying to loosen up, it just happens slowly for a traditional Japanese company.

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