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How to Play Your Digital Games Across Multiple Consoles

The information in this article can help you when you have multiple Nintendo Switch consoles and you want to play your games on each of them.

Important:

Digital games are tied to the Nintendo Account that purchased them.

Additonal information

Nintendo Account Features on a Primary Console and a Non-Primary Console

Primary Console

Non-Primary Console(s)

Purchase new content using your Nintendo Account

Yes

Yes

Redownload your content using your Nintendo Account

Yes

Yes

Play your downloaded content using your Nintendo Account (online)

Yes

Yes

Play your downloaded content using your Nintendo Account (offline)

Yes

No

Allow other users to play your downloaded content, online or offline

Yes

No

What to do

Select the statement that best fits your intended use of your consoles.

I will be...

We recommend that you transfer your user data from the original console to your replacement console.

  • Transferring user data will move your user profile as well as all its associated save data and Nintendo eShop purchases to the replacement console. This will also make the replacement console your primary console.
  • Data is moved one user at a time, so you can keep other users on the original console.

Follow our steps to transfer your user data.

Will you be playing physical game cards or downloaded content?

  1. Determine how you will manage each user's save data across your consoles.
    • Nintendo Switch Online members can use the Save Data Cloud feature to back up save data from one console and download it on another.
      • Some games may not be compatible with Save Data Cloud.
    • Transfer a user's save data for the specified game to a nearby Nintendo Switch console.
      • Transferring save data will remove the user's save data from the source console and move it to the target console.
      • You can transfer save data as often as you need.
  2. Insert the game card into the console you wish to play the game on and select the game from the HOME Menu to begin playing.
  1. Determine which Nintendo Switch console will be the primary console for your Nintendo Account.
    • We recommend that you make the console that you play offline most often the primary console for your Nintendo Account. The primary console can access your downloaded games even when you are not connected to the internet.
  2. If needed, deregister your current primary console and set the desired primary console for your Nintendo Account.
    • The console you first use to access Nintendo eShop is set as your primary console by default.
    • You can change the primary console for your Nintendo Account, including returning to a previous primary console, as often as you need.
  3. Link your Nintendo Account to the non-primary Nintendo Switch consoles that you wish to play your digital games on.
  4. Redownload the games or content you want to access on each Nintendo Switch console.
  5. On any of your consoles, select your downloaded game from the HOME Menu to begin playing the game on that console.
    • You will not be able to use your Nintendo Account to access games on multiple consoles simultaneously.
  6. Determine how you will manage your save data across your consoles.
    • Nintendo Switch Online members can use the Save Data Cloud  feature to back up save data from one console and download it on another.
      • Some games may not be compatible with Save Data Cloud.
    • Transfer your save data for the specified game to a nearby Nintendo Switch console.
      • Transferring save data will remove the save data from the source console and move it to the target console.
      • You can transfer save data as often as you need.
  1. Determine which Nintendo Switch console will be the primary console for your Nintendo Account.
    • We recommend that you make the console that you play offline most often the primary console for your Nintendo Account. The primary console can access your downloaded games even when you are not connected to the internet.
  2. If needed, deregister your current primary console and set the desired primary console for your Nintendo Account.
    • The console you first use to access Nintendo eShop is set as your primary console by default.
    • You can change the primary console for your Nintendo Account, including returning to a previous primary console, as often as you need.
  3. Link your Nintendo Account to the non-primary Nintendo Switch consoles that you wish to play your digital games on.
  4. Redownload the games or content you want to access on each Nintendo Switch console.
  5. On any of your consoles, insert your game card or select your downloaded game from the HOME Menu to begin playing the game on that console.
    • You will not be able to use your Nintendo Account to access games on multiple consoles simultaneously.
  6. Determine how you will manage your save data across your consoles.
    • Nintendo Switch Online members can use the Save Data Cloud  feature to back up save data from one console and download it on another.
      • Some games may not be compatible with Save Data Cloud.
    • Transfer your save data for the specified game to a nearby Nintendo Switch console.
      • Transferring save data will remove the save data from the source console and move it to the target console.
      • You can transfer save data as often as you need.

Will you be playing physical game cards or downloaded content?

  1. Determine how you will manage each user's save data across your consoles.
    • Nintendo Switch Online members can use the Save Data Cloud feature to back up save data from one console and download it on another.
      • Some games may not be compatible with Save Data Cloud.
    • Transfer a user's save data for the specified game to a nearby Nintendo Switch console.
      • Transferring save data will remove the user's save data from the source console and move it to the target console.
      • You can transfer save data as often as you need.
  2. Insert the game card into the console you wish to play the game on and select the game from the HOME Menu to begin playing.
  1. For each user, determine which Nintendo Switch console will be the primary console for their Nintendo Account.
    • If one console will be shared by several users, we recommend that you make it the primary console for all Nintendo Accounts with purchased content.
      • Digital games are tied to the Nintendo Account that was used to purchase them.
      • All users on a console will be able to play games purchased by any Nintendo Account that has registered the console as its primary console.
  2. If needed, deregister the current primary console for a Nintendo Account and then set the desired primary console.
    • The console you first use to access Nintendo eShop is set as your primary console by default.
    • You can change the primary console for a Nintendo Account, including returning to a previous primary console, as often as you need.
  3. Link a Nintendo Account to any non-primary Nintendo Switch consoles that will also be used to play the Nintendo Account's games.
  4. Redownload the games or content you want to access on each Nintendo Switch console.
  5. On any of your consoles, select your downloaded game from the HOME Menu to begin playing the game on that console.
    • You will not be able to use the same Nintendo Account to access games on multiple consoles simultaneously.
  6. Determine how you will manage each user's save data across your consoles.
    • Nintendo Switch Online members can use the Save Data Cloud  feature to back up save data from one console and download it on another.
      • Some games may not be compatible with Save Data Cloud.
    • Transfer a user's save data for the specified game to a nearby Nintendo Switch console.
      • Transferring save data will remove the user's save data from the source console and move it to the target console.
      • You can transfer save data as often as you need.
  1. For each user, determine which Nintendo Switch console will be the primary console for their Nintendo Account.
    • If one console will be shared by several users, we recommend that you make it the primary console for all Nintendo Accounts with purchased content.
      • Digital games are tied to the Nintendo Account that was used to purchase them.
      • All users on a console will be able to play games purchased by any Nintendo Account that has registered the console as their primary console.
  2. If needed, deregister the current primary console for a Nintendo Account and then set the desired primary console.
    • The console you first use to access Nintendo eShop is set as your primary console by default.
    • You can change the primary console for a Nintendo Account, including returning to a previous primary console, as often as you need.
  3. Link a Nintendo Account to any non-primary Nintendo Switch consoles that will also be used to play games purchased using that Nintendo Account.
  4. Redownload the games or content you want to access on each Nintendo Switch console.
  5. On any of your consoles, insert a game card or select your downloaded game from the HOME Menu to begin playing the game on that console.
    • You will not be able to use the same Nintendo Account to access games on multiple consoles simultaneously.
  6. Determine how you will manage each user's save data across your consoles.
    • Nintendo Switch Online members can use the Save Data Cloud  feature to back up save data from one console and download it on another.
      • Some games may not be compatible with Save Data Cloud.
    • Transfer a user's save data for the specified game to a nearby Nintendo Switch console.
      • Transferring save data will remove the user's save data from the source console and move it to the target console.
      • You can transfer save data as often as you need.