How essential is the Ethernet adapter for Smash Bros. Ultimate?

Flandy

Community Resettler
Member
Oct 25, 2017
916
#1
How much better can it be than a fast 5GHz WiFi connection? If you’re playing against people on WiFi would it make the Ethernet adapter useless?

I originally planned to play on WiFi since all my Ethernet ports are currently in use but I’m starting to reconsider. (That and I’d have to buy the accessory)
 
Oct 25, 2017
11,971
#9
My internet is good and I'm doing 5ghz wi-fi. Didn't have much lag yet at all even for 3~4 player matches -- kinda surprised. tho I wish I didn't have to play in 3-4 player matches, but the game keeps pushing me to these matches. lol

But yeah, I would say most people need the adapter.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,285
#10
If it’s anything like Mario Tennis was for me, you might as well not even buy the game if you don’t have the adapter and you are mainly looking to play online.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,078
#11
Here's a really useful video on the matter.

It's a bad video because he completely misses the point of a LAN adapter. It's not for internet speed (bandwidth and latency), it's for consistency -- wifi speeds are generally fine (though you'll probably still see an improvement with ethernet) but you'll be dropping more packets even on the best wifi. Wifi is fine for downloading files but it's not great when playing realtime action games.
 
Oct 30, 2017
902
#12
I run my Wifi on Switch, PS4, Xbox and have yet to experience lag in anything.

Don't let Switch's internet issues trick you into buying a ethernet adapter.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,394
#13
please don’t make everyone else online suffer

It’s dumb as hell that you need an adapter in the first place, but get one.
 
Oct 27, 2017
470
#14
Does the LAN adapter help if your opponent doesn't have one? I'd imagine 95% of random online players are going to be using wifi so I don't see why it would help if you're the only one with the adapter.
 
Oct 30, 2017
472
#16
Even on the fastest Wifi you’ll still drop packets from time to time. The LAN adapter is about getting a consistent connection. Though since the Switch is portable you are going to be playing against plenty of people on WiFi connections so your experience will still be a crap shoot because of that.
 
Oct 27, 2017
2,379
#18
I just bit the bullet and bought the one for like $12-14 on Amazon. It’s not an official Nintendo branded one.

Sucks you even have to buy an Ethernet adapter for a console in 2018 but it’s Nintendo lol
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,826
#19
I bought one because sometimes my switch's wifi bar is not maxed out. I don't want to piss off my opponents by laggin' all over the place. I want to piss them off by connecting dat KO PUNCH, SUCKAS!!!!
 
Oct 28, 2017
202
NYC
#21
It's really sad that everyone is basically excusing the fact that Nintendo seems to be unable to make a multiplayer game work on modern wireless networks, especially on a system who's selling point is portability, with the answer being "buy an adapter and wire in". It's just not right

Hopefully things smooth out after initial launch bumpiness
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,057
#22
I feel if you haven't upgraded your wifi router in years (this is a lot of people) then you should be buying the adapter. Newer routers have a greater range, can handle more devices you happen to have in your house (this I feel is a thing many people don't consider), etc. If you have a fairly recent wifi router, that is close or has a 5ghz channel you don't really see that much of a change with the adapter. That has been my experience.
 
Oct 28, 2017
1,248
#24
TLDR - The lan adapter is preferred over wifi, but if both parties are not using it, then it doesn't matter. Considering that many of your opponents won''t bother, its up to you if its "worth it".
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,112
#25
What provider you all have that is so inconsistent that a lan adapter is a must in 2018.

You realize 90% of everyone you play against online is using WiFi right?
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,177
#26
Honestly my online matches were typically better on the 3DS than on Wii U with an adapter. So I’m not going to make any assumptions until I really play in all ways.
 
Mar 2, 2018
48
Iowa
#27
I believe you are paired with opponents who have similar internet connections, so worrying about other people's bad wifi will hopefully not be a valid excuse to not have your own ethernet dongle.
 
Oct 25, 2017
5,874
#30
How much better can it be than a fast 5GHz WiFi connection? If you’re playing against people on WiFi would it make the Ethernet adapter useless?

I originally planned to play on WiFi since all my Ethernet ports are currently in use but I’m starting to reconsider. (That and I’d have to buy the accessory)
It's not about speed, it's about latency and interference.

5GHz wi-fi on it's own channel, with no other devices connected, is the next best thing to ethernet.

EDIT: And yeh, you're still at the mercy of other people's connections, but it's still better to not contribute toward any crappy connection.
 

Joe

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,331
#31
TLDR - The lan adapter is preferred over wifi, but if both parties are not using it, then it doesn't matter. Considering that many of your opponents won''t bother, its up to you if its "worth it".
Woah, cool. It's a real life Prisoners Dilemma.
 

samred

Editor @ Ars Technica
Verified
Nov 4, 2017
515
Seattle, WA
#33
Pre-launch impressions of an online session, using WiFi instead of wired: 2/3rds of my matches on wireless, handheld play were FINE. As in, near imperceptible lag. 1/3 of my matches had Brawl-like pauses on occasion.

I'm not so convinced that wireless play is as necessary as Sakurai insisted in preview videos.
 

Dest

Member
Jun 4, 2018
541
#37
Part of my job is networking. I'm almost positive any issues I'll be experiencing in game won't be me own because I'll play playing on wifi. I play everything else on it perfectly fine and usually have pings/packet loss lower than my peers/anyone else connected to a server I'm on. My connections fine, but this is cause I've put a lot into my networking at home. If you're using the default dookie tier router that your ISP gives you when you get services, it's probably gonna suck, but if you've got your own equipment setup you're probably just fine.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,967
#38
I personally wouldn't care to get one as I find it silly to buy an extra accessory to sufficiently play online on what's meant to be a hybrid portable system. But if I did get Smash and I was hit with packet losses/network lag that resulted in losing a round and raging, I can see where people would recommend one.

In the grand scheme of things, so many will be using WiFi due to the nature of the console.
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,418
Alabama
#39
The Ethernet adapter will not increase your speed because the port it plugs into only uses USB 2 protocol. The only benefit is it makes your connection inherently more stable. If your connection is already stable regardless you don't need to worry about it.
 
Oct 25, 2017
9,474
#40
It's a fighting game, so for the optimal experience, wired will always be the best option. That's not to say wireless doesn't work.
 

Seik

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,047
Québec City
#41
It's a bad video because he completely misses the point of a LAN adapter. It's not for internet speed (bandwidth and latency), it's for consistency -- wifi speeds are generally fine (though you'll probably still see an improvement with ethernet) but you'll be dropping more packets even on the best wifi. Wifi is fine for downloading files but it's not great when playing realtime action games.
Would that even apply to a recent router with a 5Ghz Wi-Fi signal?

Also I think that if you play against someone who's playing via Wi-Fi, which constitutes 90+% of the playerbase, being connected via a LAN adapter would be useless in that context.
 
Nov 6, 2017
653
#42
Here's a really useful video on the matter.


TL;DW: The USB 3.0 port in the back still acts as a USB 2.0 and your Wi-Fi connection could be even better than with a LAN adapter, in a context where you have a good connection.
This video is garbage.

It's not a matter of bandwidth it's a matter of having a consistent connection. Most people are likely on 2.4ghz wifi and pretty much everything in your house and your neighbor's networks are also on 2.4ghz. Seriously download Wifi Analyzer on your phone and check. A wired connection gives you a much more consistent connection.

That said, a good adapter can actually improve your download speeds.
 
Oct 27, 2017
454
#47
It improves your connection. If you already have great internet, you can get by without it. But if your internet sucks at all, every little bit helps, and the adapter becomes a good idea. If it's cheap and you are serious about your online play, get it.
 
Oct 25, 2017
16,872
#50
Powerline adapters are incredible, btw. I just grabbed one of the ones that's 20% off on Amazon (via CC cashback) and I've got 90 down/10 up with 10ms ping at my new place. Just grab a cheap network switch for the room if you're using more than one device (PC,Switch, PS4 for me.)