How to Claim Your Nintendo Switch User ID Now

The Nintendo Switch is about a week away from launch, but you don't have to wait until Mar. 3 to claim your online ID for the highly anticipated new console.

Photo: Samuel C. Rutherford/Tom's Guide

Photo: Samuel C. Rutherford/Tom's Guide

To get started, visit Nintendo's account page and log in using your Nintendo Account, your Nintendo Network ID or your Facebook, Google or Twitter account. From there, scroll to the User ID section and click Edit.

You can now pick a User ID, which will be the name you go by when using your Switch. User ID's need to be at least six characters long, and the site will let you know if the name you want is already taken. Once you've made a User ID, you're free to change it as often as you like from this page.

Your User ID is what your friends will see you as on the Nintendo Switch Online Service, the company's new premium online program that will provide access to online multiplayer, free NES and Super NES game trials and exclusive discounts. The service will be free at launch, and will reportedly cost less than $30 per year once the trial period ends this fall. We're still not quite sure how the Switch will handle online voice chat (Nintendo's website mentions use of a "smart device app"), as well as whether or not any of your digital purchases from previous Nintendo consoles will carry over.

MORE: Nintendo Switch vs. PS4 vs. Xbox One: Which Should You Buy?

Now that you've claimed "LuigiLover32," "Pikachu4Life" or whichever other User ID your heart desires, all that's left to do is wait patiently until the Switch arrives on Mar. 3 for $299. Nintendo's hybrid console, which can be used both on a TV and on the go, is launching with the hotly anticipated The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, with heavy hitters such as Splatoon 2 and Super Mario Odyssey coming later this year.

We'll be playing a ton of Nintendo Switch over the coming weeks, so stay tuned for tips, game coverage and our final verdict on Nintendo's new console.

Michael Andronico

Mike Andronico is Senior Writer at CNNUnderscored. He was formerly Managing Editor at Tom's Guide, where he wrote extensively on gaming, as well as running the show on the news front. When not at work, you can usually catch him playing Street Fighter, devouring Twitch streams and trying to convince people that Hawkeye is the best Avenger.