Nintendo Switch Can Access Other Regions' EShops

This could be big news if it lets you purchase Japan-only games.


Back in January, Nintendo announced that the Switch would not be region locked, allowing you to import and play games from other countries. You'll also be able to access the eShop from other regions, although there are some caveats that may limit the ability's usefulness.

With the day-one update live, Switch users can now access the eShop, add friends (using friend codes, unfortunately), and more. This has led to the discovery that you can sign into the eShop from other regions--including Japan, where there are traditionally numerous games released that never make it overseas. Nintendo confirmed with GameSpot that this is intended functionality, and not the result of some kind of loophole.

The process is fairly simple: You make a profile on the system and connect it to a new Nintendo Account account that is set to the region whose eShop you want to access.

Logging into this profile on the system and going to the eShop then shows you games from that market. Should you make a Japanese account, it'll let you get certain things not available in North America or Europe currently, such as Puyo Puyo Tetris and New Frontier Days: Founding Pioneers, according to Eurogamer.

However, you reportedly can't purchase games from other regions with a debit or credit card from a different country. It's possible that purchasing prepaid cards will be a workaround for this, but that remains unconfirmed for now.

Despite this, it is possible to download free demos from other regions, letting you grab Japan's Puyo Puyo Tetris demo, for instance. Journalist Chris Kohler noted on Twitter that some Japanese games may even feature English text options. Update: NeoGAF member Cheesemeister has provided a list of languages supported in games on the Japanese eShop.

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