Nintendo is taking online a lot more seriously with the Switch. And why not? They have a subscription service coming in September that pay gates online play and provides free classic games each month with added network features. If there was a catalyst to get Nintendo to support online, this was it.
Due to this new service we’re seeing online features pop into games in different ways. Mario Tennis Aces includes standard online play in addition to an actual tournament mode. (where yours truly won in the beta matches)
These online tournaments are also functioning as early release gates for new characters. This was revealed during a Nintendo Treehouse broadcast at E3:
“If you participate in the online tournament that will be held in July after the game launches [and] if you earn enough points in the tournament, you can earn Koopa Troopa as a playable character early,” Roxanne said. “Otherwise, he will be available for everyone starting Aug. 1.”
Blooper joins Koopa Troopa in August with the same unlock parameters. Winners play early. We like it!