Nintendo Switch: You Can Play NES Golf With This Fun Tribute To Iwata

Nintendo handles tributes a little different than everyone else. Satoru Iwata, the once President of Nintendo, left an indelible mark on the video game industry when he passed away on July 11, 2015. Iwata-San wasn’t always the CEO — once upon a time, he was a lowly programmer. He was involved with many first-party Nintendo games, but Iwata has a special connection to Golf. He programmed it entirely by himself.

This is all a long way to explain that Golf, a simple little sports-sim that released with the NES in America, holds a special place of esteem over at Nintendo. With that in mind, the Nintendo fan community just discovered an awesome secret on the Nintendo Switch — anyone can play Golf, but only for one specific day of the year, and only when you use a very specific hand-motion with your Joy-Cons.

And it’s all in tribute to the late, great Iwata.


How To Play Golf on Nintendo Switch

Golf can be played by anyone with a Nintendo Switch, but only for one day of the year. To activate it, you’ll need to perform a special hand-motion with the Joy-Cons on the menu screen. If you perform this action on the day, Golf will open on your console.

  • Golf can only be played on July, 11 — the date of Satoru Iwata’s death in 2015.
    • You must be in the Home Menu, with the Joy-Cons detached.
  • To play Golf, hold the Joy-Cons down at your sides with the controllers facing forward. Then, move the Joy-Cons up vertically with the “Direct” motion.
    • The “Direct” motion is a reference to this hand-motion, performed by Iwata before every Nintendo Direct presentation.

If performed correctly, the Nintendo Switch will automatically open Golf and you can begin playing. It’s a lovely little piece of Nintendo history, and a tribute to one of the pillars of Nintendo over the last few years.

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to switch the console date and time if you’ve every connected to the internet. After one internet connection, the time / date will be automatically set, and you won’t be able to change it. There are unofficial methods you can seek out to change the time / day settings, and we’ll leave it at that.