Nintendo Switch Review: N64 Online/Sega Mega Drive Online

Are these Classics worth the Expansion Pack?

There’s been a lot posted about Nintendo’s Expansion Pack for Switch Online since it launched. Some are angry they have to pay extra for N64/Mega Drive games and others are also saying that they are suffering from a variety of issues like input lag, bugs and strange incidents. I’ve been playing the games for the majority of the past week so I’m here to render my verdict…

The N64 line-up is as follows:

Super Mario 64

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

Mario Kart 64

Lylat Wars

Yoshi’s Story

Sin & Punishment

Dr. Mario 64

Mario Tennis


Now I can’t stress enough that this is only what I experienced. I have seen videos of the input lag issues so I know it seems to be a problem for some, but I actually experienced nothing like it during my time playing the classics like Ocarina of Time and Mario Kart 64.

I completed Ocarina with no issues at all and while I did spot the fog/background problems, they didn’t hinder the game and overall, the framerate was more consistent than other versions I have played including the Wii/Wii U versions, also the text was moving a lot faster and not at a snail’s pace like it had done in the 50hz versions we were lumbered with before.

Mario Kart also ran smoothly, but I did come across a weird bug where the AI was more aggressive, hurling frontal bananas at an accurate and crazy speed while there was also no background music. A quick close of the N64 app and a relaunch seemed to fix that though. There are a few odd design choices like only having rumble active in the Japanese version or not being able to save Ghost Data since the game can’t detect a Memory Pak. It’s baffling and I can see why players are annoyed, but still when it works, it works well.

The big clickbait articles have been about Sin and Punishment being “unplayable” without the N64 controller itself, which is sadly out of stock till at least next year. I can say that’s categorically untrue, I managed to beat it using the Pro Controller and while it wasn’t easy, it’s definitely playable.

Other games like Starfox 64 (Which will always be Lylat Wars to me) and Super Mario 64 were reported with input issues, but I also experienced these with no issues. Starfox 64 felt more responsive than the Wii/Wii U version I’ve played in the past.

Yoshi’s Story, Mario Tennis, Dr Mario 64 and Operation Winback are the last of the launch line-up and also performed with no issues that I could spot. I’ve played each game in handheld and docked modes just in case there were issues with one type, but also couldn’t spot that.

Overall, the N64 line-up is a decent one and while there are some issues with some games like Mario Kart, I didn’t come across much of what has been reported on. Maybe I got lucky? I honestly don’t know, all I know is what I’m seeing and it looks more than fine to me. Online play itself in games like Mario Kart and Lylat Wars is a bit over the place, but I’m sure it’ll get better over time.

Nintendo is expanding the N64 line-up with more classics like Majora’s Mask, my favourite platformer Banjo-Kazooie, Paper Mario, Mario Golf, Pokémon Snap and Kirby 64. These are only the confirmed titles, but personally I’d love to see more obscure N64 games make the cut like Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon or other classics like Diddy Kong Racing, Donkey Kong 64 and of course, the original Super Smash Bros. I really hope we get some of these, but for now it’s a decent line-up that works well for the most part.

The Mega Drive/Genesis line-up is as follows:

Golden Axe



Shining Force

Sonic The Hedgehog 2

Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine

Streets of Rage 2

Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master

Ecco The Dolphin

Gunstar Heroes

Phantasy Star IV

Castlevania Bloodline

Contra Hard Corps


The Mega Drive line-up is a different story. These games all work fine with zero issues whatsoever. What I do think is a little odd is the line-up itself which alongside the likes of Streets of Rage 2, Ecco the Dolphin and Contra Hard Corps only has one Sonic title in the form of Sonic 2. I can imagine the rest of the Sonic library is missing due to Sega releasing all classic Sonic games in the form of Sonic Origins next year.

While Nintendo were quick to highlight what other N64 games are coming to the service, there’s no word on any other Mega Drive games coming, but it seems highly unlikely that they’ll stick with just these 14 games.

Personally, I’m hoping for the likes of Decap Attack, Comix Zone, Zombies Ate My Neighbours and one of my childhood favourites “Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster’s Hidden Treasure” to be added to the line-up and while I don’t hold my breath on that last one, I’ll keep hoping regardless.

The Mega Drive line-up does have something for everyone though, even if they aren’t your personal favourite entries for their series’. Personally, I prefer Sonic 3 & Knuckles to Sonic 2 or Shinobi II to Shinobi III but at least we still got these and other classics like Castlevania Bloodlines and Golden Axe.

All in all, both this line-up and the N64’s is a good indication that we’re in good hands with the new Expansion Pack. It’s been a launch that has had its issues, but ultimately, we know it’s going to get better and with many more games on the way. Plus, with  Animal Crossing Happy Home Paradise being added as a bonus, chances are we might get other Nintendo add-ons in the future too. My verdict is simple…give it a chance, you may end up surprised as me that it’s not nearly as bad as what it’s been made out to be…