Closure of Nintendo eShop for 3DS and Wii U in some countries

The long-running eShop services for the 3DS and Wii U are starting to show their age as some countries drop some features. Players on both systems will not be able to redeem codes for digital titles while games and apps will not receive updates. The deleted games will also not be downloadable, giving players more reason to keep as much software as possible on their consoles.

In an announcement from Nintendo, the changes come first for 3DS and Wii U owners in Latin America and the Caribbean, while the July 31, 2020 deadline will begin to limit eShop functionality before it begins. is no longer accessible. Its FAQ explains that this is part of the reassessment of the company’s business strategies, as the focus is likely to be on Nintendo Switch’s three-year-old eShop. The renewed interest in the handheld system is clear, as global shortages prompted Nintendo to increase production to 20 million by the end of 2020.

The Nintendo 3DS eShop went live on June 6, 2011 shortly after the release of the handheld console. A step up from the Nintendo DS’ content lineup, the eShop sought to give gamers more digital options as the cartridges stayed at home. Full support for non-physical releases was also linked to its rewards system, which encouraged more players to create a virtual library. Of course, the eShop included other applications such as netflix and Nintendo Video who provided 3D content from supporting content creators.

The Wii U’s eShop was similar in its online distribution and gave owners an instant option to purchase games at launch, which meant no longer having to travel to stores for discs. Its service went live on November 18, 2012 and even offered a selection of streaming apps to go along with the gaming experience. Additional functionality was provided through the Wii U’s controller and the store could be used without watch a monitor.

Both platforms are also finishing their lifecycles in some parts of the world, with the Nintendo Switch becoming the company’s main console for the current generation. Its eShop offers full support for all published titles, with many owners having an all-digital library. Its service first went live when the console launched on December 10, 2019 (first in China). Shop purchases were also linked to the My Nintendo rewards service, which essentially gives digital shoppers points to save up and later redeem on other games.

The company also suggested users use the service as much as possible before the cut-off time in those regions while it is still unknown when eShops will start dying in North America and Europe. Users in Brazil and Mexico are unaffected by the changes, while a full list of countries can be found on their information page here.

Timothy C. Mayo