Starting from today and running until 26th January, Nintendo Switch Online users in Japan are being granted access to the entirety of Fire Emblem Warriors for free. The game will then be locked after that date (unless you buy the full thing), but if you’ve got plenty of time over the next few days you could certainly see what it’s all about for the low cost of nothing.
Even if you don’t live in Japan, though, there is a workaround you can use to get your hands on the game. You’ll need to have an active subscription to Nintendo Switch Online either way, but assuming you have that covered, here’s how to play Fire Emblem Warriors for free regardless of your account’s region.
Step 1 – Get A Japanese Account
First thing’s first, you’re going to need a Japanese Switch account to access that region’s eShop and download the free version of the game. We have a full, detailed guide on doing this right here if you need step-by-step instructions, but for anyone familiar with setting up a Nintendo account, you essentially just need to head to the official website and sign up with a new, unused email address, making sure to select ‘Japan’ as your region and following the on-screen instructions.
Make sure to get this account up and running on your Nintendo Switch console – simply go to Settings > User > Add User and log in using the details of your new account.
Step 2 – Download Fire Emblem Warriors’ Free Version
If you followed Step 1 correctly, clicking on the eShop icon on your Switch should now give you the option to load up the store using your new Japanese account. Do this, and move down one tab on the left-hand side of the eShop (the option below ‘New’). On this page, you should spot an image of Fire Emblem Warriors with a 40% off sticker attached.
Click on this, and then select the red button which is already highlighted when the page loads up. This will bring up a download page for the free version – click the orange and white box at the bottom-right of your screen to download the software.
Step 3 – Temporarily Alter Your Regular Nintendo Switch Account
So, you made a Japanese account and have the free software downloaded onto your Switch. Good stuff, but unless your Japanese account is subscribed to Switch Online, you still won’t be able to play the game. Yet.
The free software checks for two things when you try to play it: whether you’re a Switch Online subscriber, and whether or not your account is Japanese. Now, you can choose to buy another Switch Online subscription for that Japanese account and use that, but the best – and free – way to do this, is to temporarily change the region of your main account which already has a subscription.
The video below from The Famicast explains exactly how to do this from around the one minute mark (the video actually covers a similar promotion Nintendo held for Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, but all of the same little tricks still apply). Depending on your subscription renewal settings, you might have one or two more hurdles to jump over, but if you follow each step carefully you’ll get it sorted in no time. Note that doing this will wipe any funds in your eShop balance, so make sure you don’t have any money sitting around in your account.
And there we have it, hopefully you’ll now have access to Fire Emblem Warriors for free until 26th January. It’s not exactly a quick process, but it’s worth if it means you don’t have to pay a single penny, right?
Let us know if this helps you and if you have any questions, fire away in the comments below.