Pokémon Stadium comes to Nintendo Switch Online Expansion Pack with online multiplayer next week

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The classic and much beloved N64 title Pokémon Stadium has been dated for a release on the Nintendo Switch through the Nintendo Switch Online Expansion Pack in just over a week’s time.

As per the official announcement from Nintendo, the first Pokémon title on a home console will be the latest addition to the Expansion Pack’s N64 catalogue of games that subscribers can enjoy as part of their benefits, and will debut on the service from April 12, 2023.

If you’ve not played the game before, Pokémon Stadium forgoes having a traditional story or the traditional catching Pokémon gameplay, and instead challenges you to a series of battles against other trainers with your team of up to six Pokémon; and for many, was the first time the Pokémon had been realised in 3D. And if you get tired of battling, there’s also a selection of fun mini-games starring some fan-favourite Pokémon like Chansey and, of course, Pikachu.

Almost all of that makes it across intact here with one exception – alas, there’s no way to import your Pokémon from other titles into this version of the game. To clarify, the original allowed you to import your monsters from the handheld game into the cartridge, and they’d retain their stats etc. Instead, you’ll have to settle for ‘Rental’ Pokémon with fixed stats – picked from the original 151 featured in Pokemon Blue, Red and Yellow.

On the flipside however, the Nintendo Switch version does include a feature largely impossible in the original release – as it supports online play. That’s thanks to the Nintendo Switch Online classic games emulator’s functionality that allows you to play local multiplayer with friends online.

Pokémon Stadium is the latest addition to the N64 catalogue, which had slowed down of late as Nintendo had been releasing GB and GBA games to the Nintendo Switch Online service. However, just this past January the service also added classic Rare shooter GoldenEye 007.

There’s no word yet if any of the future Pokémon Stadium titles could make their way to Nintendo Switch Online – so for now, fans will have to wait and see. Until then, Pokémon Stadium will be available on Nintendo Switch Online for Expansion Pass tier subscribers from April 12, 2023.

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Ben Borthwick

Ben Borthwick is the News Editor for VideoGamer. He's a fan of action adventure games, music games and especially comedic games like the Monkey Island series.