Nintendo Switch Is Apparently Resetting Play Times After One Year [UPDATE 3]

Better take screenshots of your play times if you hope to keep a record of them.

64 Comments

UPDATE 3: Nintendo has shared more details about the Switch playtime glitch. The company says that users' Switch play activity "is still being recorded accurately in the background" despite not displaying correctly for certain titles that were first played a year ago. Nintendo has also announced that it will deploy an update that resolves the issue.

UPDATE 2: While many more Switch owners are noticing their play times apparently being reset on the console, it appears this, thankfully, isn't permanent. Nintendo fan publication NF Magazine confirmed on Twitter that your play activity isn't deleted after one year, but rather disappears for 10 days--the length of time it normally takes for it to show up in your profile after you first begin playing a title. After the eleventh day, it reappears as normal. Nintendo has acknowledged that some Switch owners' play times have begun "displaying incorrectly" on the console's first anniversary but thus far has only said it will have more details to share about the issue "in the near future."

UPDATE 1: Nintendo has confirmed that some Switch owners' play times are "displaying incorrectly" and that it will make a further announcement regarding the issue "in the near future." In a statement to GameSpot, the company said, "Some Nintendo Switch owners' play activity information is displaying incorrectly. We are aware of the issue and we expect to have more information to share in the near future."

The original story follows below.

The Nintendo Switch is already celebrating its first anniversary in parts of the world, but some Switch owners are discovering an unpleasant surprise on the console's birthday. It appears the Switch only keeps track of your game play times for one year and has begun resetting many players' records.

As pointed out in a thread on video game forum ResetEra, play times for launch day titles are being reset on Switch profiles. GameSpot has verified the issue; as you can see in the screenshot below, our Switch now says that we first started playing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild nine days ago.

No Caption Provided

This only appears to affect the play times listed in your user profile; save data for the titles in question remains unchanged, but you can no longer accurately see how many hours you've sunk into any games you first started playing on launch day. It's unclear if this is a permanent issue or if Nintendo will be able to restore the times via a system update. We have reached out to the company for comment and will report back with a response.

As the Nintendo Switch officially launched to the public on March 3, many early adopters in North America still haven't owned the console for exactly one year, so your play times should appear normally for the time being. If you care about preserving a record of your play times, now would be a good opportunity to take screenshots of your user profile before they are reset on the console.

Switch's first year has been a tremendous success for Nintendo and fans alike; the system was difficult to find in stores for much of 2017 and has already amassed an impressive library of acclaimed titles like Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, and most recently, Bayonetta 2. Despite that, the console is still missing some basic features we are hoping to see, such as a proper Activity Log to keep track of your play times. This new issue only reinforces the need for one.

Please use a html5 video capable browser to watch videos.
This video has an invalid file format.
00:00:00
Sorry, but you can't access this content!
Please enter your date of birth to view this video

By clicking 'enter', you agree to GameSpot's
Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

Now Playing: GS News Update: Nintendo Switch Is Resetting Play Times After One Year

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Join the conversation
There are 64 comments about this story
64 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
  • 64 results
  • 1
  • 2
GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

Avatar image for so_hai
so_hai

4074

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 89

User Lists: 0

That's fine - reset my eshop credit while you're there.

3 • 
Avatar image for xgalacticax
xgalacticax

2043

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 0

Ah another good old '<0.1% of Switch owners have had a problem on their console, but let's make it sound like it's 95%' article from Gamespot.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for spaced92
Spaced92

483

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Play times make me sad, I've either played too little or too much.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for deactivated-5d4c0b80dcd76
deactivated-5d4c0b80dcd76

595

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

Operational run time and total elapsed time - this feature must be a real head scratcher for Nintendo.

2 • 
Avatar image for astro_viper
astro_viper

126

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Can't see why this matters. I still don't comprehend trophies & in-game purchases, either. I mean, neat feature, but if this disrupts your life...damn.

3 • 
Avatar image for astro_viper
astro_viper

126

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@monkey_shines: I thought the game was incentive enough. Trophies are premeditated achievements rather than players deciding upon what consists of an achievement and trying to bend the game to their will. Just seems tacked on, I guess.

But then again, I grew up on Coleco Vision, Sega Masters, & NES. So we just had to be ready to prove an accomplishment when challenged ;)

Upvote • 
Avatar image for blazingsonic
blazingsonic

139

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Sony, Microsoft, Steam etc, whenever they have a glitch Fanboys are like "Oof I hope they can fix it then."

BUT If Nintendo has a hiccup, then it's "OMG Nintendo so stupid! They can't make games at all!!!!!!!!" I mean never mind Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, Never mind their other hits, and upcoming games, Never mind their past success , No, One little glitch and suddenly they are idiots, I swear, this Blind Nintendo hate is the one of the dumber things I hear these days. No Company, That's including Nintendo is perfect and nor are they out to get you and your wallets, Okay EA, Activision, Konami and Bungie are clearly after money and only money, But that's gonna bite them in the butt hard one day.

5 • 
Avatar image for Lunastra78
Lunastra78

248

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

@blazingsonic: You must have been in a coma for the last 10 years and missed out of the 1000's of comments on every article regarding Sony's and MS's mistakes then. Well lucky for you there is still time to witness that cesspool in the IGN comment section, enjoy!

Nintendo is doing its own thing and innovating like you say, but they also make weird mistakes that only they could do. And they are always funny, like an old man farting loudly in a crowded elevator.

Well, funny until it starts to smell, of course... :-/

2 • 
Avatar image for joe_b1_kenobi
joe_b1_kenobi

849

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 6

User Lists: 0

My play time remains intact for now. But it’s always been abit off anyway, (Mario kart 10 hours? Yeah right, more like 40 at least). And some games i own don’t even show up at all. So if it did reset I wouldn’t be too upset.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for VirtualTofu
VirtualTofu

490

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This is awful for any Switch game that features time-based unlockable content. I know Street Fighter Alpha 3 has time-based unlockable content. Still, the Switch version of the game should be based upon the Arcade game so it shouldn't be affected by this glitch.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for ice12tray
Ice12Tray

821

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 0

@VirtualTofu: Doesn’t affect anything in game, it’s just the play counter in the system settings....

2 • 
Avatar image for FallenOneX
FallenOneX

2490

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

The amount of people ready with the comments of how bad a company Nintendo is because of this is amazing.

2 • 
Avatar image for Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

15303

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

Why does it seem like Nintendo is good at making games and absolutely incompetent at every other possible thing?

4 • 
Avatar image for xgalacticax
xgalacticax

2043

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 0

Edited By xgalacticax

@Thanatos2k: It almost seems like making good games should be what's most important to a gamer. Since these days, most other companies demonstrate competence at everything except making good games.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

15303

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

Edited By Thanatos2k

@xgalacticax: If you were just a developer, sure. But not if you're a publisher, a hardware maker, and the manager of an online ecosystem and digital distribution platform.

2 • 
Avatar image for dr_vancouver
Dr_Vancouver

1046

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Just like the Y2K thing lol. They'll fix it, seems the Switch haters got real amped up about it though- not that it would have affected them at all anyways. I'm sure it won't be an issue.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for cornbredx
cornbredx

1879

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 20

User Lists: 0

I don't care about play time. For example on Steam my play time is almost never right for many reasons- one of which is a handful of games I have I got and played well before they even add play time tracking. It's not a big deal. In the game is what counts.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for elkatana
ElKatana

42

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 5

Turning back the play time clocks, that won't affect save data, will it?

2 • 
Avatar image for xenomorphalien
XenomorphAlien

5016

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 7

User Lists: 0

Edited By XenomorphAlien

Probably just a glitch of some sort.

Edit: and it was. People on this site love to jump the gun don't they?

3 • 
Avatar image for lebanese_boy
lebanese_boy

15292

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

@xenomorphalien: Of course they do, what are you new here?

Upvote • 
Avatar image for xenomorphalien
XenomorphAlien

5016

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 7

User Lists: 0

@lebanese_boy: Lemme check...

Let's see, date joined : March 21, 2015

Nope!

Upvote • 
Avatar image for lebanese_boy
lebanese_boy

15292

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

@xenomorphalien: Lol I was just kidding around, as in of course they jump the gun this is the m.o. of most people here.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for xenomorphalien
XenomorphAlien

5016

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 7

User Lists: 0

@lebanese_boy: Yeah I knew lol, just wanted to have a little fun.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for skemaal
skemaal

1128

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 10

User Lists: 0

Likely just a bug. Note on the picture that SMO still shows 55 hours.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for wildog2006
wildog2006

63

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@skemaal: Has SMO been out for a year? Because BOTW has...

2 • 
Avatar image for mcnichoj
mcnichoj

865

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@zero_juice: How does this even make sense?

4 • 
Avatar image for Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

2452

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I hate thinking about play time, so to me this is kind of cool to hear about. In all honesty, I wish less games would keep track of it.

3 • 
Avatar image for mcnichoj
mcnichoj

865

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@Jinzo_111887: It's good other people get penalized for your preference?

3 • 
Avatar image for Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

2452

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@mcnichoj: Well, after hearing about the Engage Ridley password in the original Metroid, I started to wonder what other games could be affected by play time being pretty high. I think Saints Row 4 for PC has an issue. I've played it for a cumulated total of 2-3 days on one file with the mission replay mod and noticed the animations got messed up. Some pictures weren't changing in town like they would before the time was hit. Replaying A Perfect Day/Leave It to the Saints had the Genki cartoon on the TV in the house stay a static picture after that time was reached. Not keeping track of it could cut down on potential bugs. If you're going to keep track of it, it might be a good idea to take the approach Sonic 3D Blast took with how long you took to finish a level and stop keeping track of time after an arbitrary length of time played to reduce the risk of potential bugs it can cause.

Upvote • 
Avatar image for todddow
Todddow

915

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 4

User Lists: 5

Edited By Todddow

For an extra $40, you can buy a Nintendo marker to manually tally up your hours on your $80 Nintendo cardboard.

11 • 
Avatar image for lionheartssj1
lionheartssj1

4367

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 12

User Lists: 0

@todddow: What foresight they have!

Upvote • 
Avatar image for asnakeneverdies
asnakeneverdies

3156

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@todddow: They thought of everything! We're so fortunate. ?

2 • 
Avatar image for dragonsama
dragonsama

913

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Again proving why Nintendo is bad at hardware...

4 • 
Avatar image for xenomorphalien
XenomorphAlien

5016

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 7

User Lists: 0

@dragonsama: Well, this actually software related...

And besides, for a portable system, the Switch actually has pretty damn good hardware

Upvote • 
Avatar image for asmoddeuss
asmoddeuss

623

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 34

User Lists: 0

@dragonsama: hardware issue ? are you for real?

5 • 
Avatar image for lebanese_boy
lebanese_boy

15292

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

@dragonsama: It’s a software issue and don’t act like no other console has had stupid problems such as this.

8 • 
Avatar image for asnakeneverdies
asnakeneverdies

3156

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@lebanese_boy: The bitching coming from that user account is often nonsensical, I've found.

5 • 
Avatar image for girlusocrazy
GirlUSoCrazy

8923

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 0

It wasn't too accurate to begin with either unfortunately

4 • 
Avatar image for lebanese_boy
lebanese_boy

15292

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

Edited By lebanese_boy

@girlusocrazy: Really? In my case it was but just not as precise as 3DS/WiiU

Upvote • 
Avatar image for doctor_mg
Doctor_MG

2366

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@girlusocrazy: Yeah, it was always about 10 hours off for my Xenoblade 2 play through.

3 • 
Avatar image for BladeManEXE
BladeManEXE

68

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@doctor_mg: Is that more or less than what your game says? Because there was a bug for a good while in XB2 where it would sometimes (but not always) count time in sleep mode as normal play time for its in-game record.

2 • 
Avatar image for doctor_mg
Doctor_MG

2366

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@BladeManEXE: It's less than what my game says. Maybe that's it then!

Upvote • 
Avatar image for girlusocrazy
GirlUSoCrazy

8923

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 0

@doctor_mg: Amazing how hard it is to get something so simple right

Upvote • 
Avatar image for doctor_mg
Doctor_MG

2366

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@girlusocrazy: Especially since the 3DS and Wii versions seemed pretty accurate.

2 • 
  • 64 results
  • 1
  • 2