Nintendo Shutting Down Nintendo Wi-Fi Service For Wii And DS

By Spencer . February 26, 2014 . 9:21pm

imageGet in that last game of Jump Ultimate Stars or Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time soon. Nintendo announced they will shut down Nintendo Wi-Fi for Wii and Nintendo DS on May 20 in Japan.


Nintendo Wi-Fi is the main infrastructure for online matchmaking, leaderboards, and Dragon Quest IX’s online shop. This will effect all games including popular titles such as the Pokémon games on DS and Super Smash Bros. Brawl.


Wii users will still be able to use Hulu, YouTube, the Internet channel, Catering channel (a food delivery service only in Japan), and the Wii Shopping Channel. The DSi Shop and DS browser software will continue to work too.


Siliconera reached out to Nintendo of America to clarify if the closure will happen in North America as well.

Update : Nintendo confirmed this is a global closure. Here’s a list of Nintendo of America published games that will not work over Nintendo Wi-Fi. This is not a complete list of affected titles, just the one’s Nintendo published.

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  • Shane J

    What about online games with friends via friend codes? Is that also gone, or does this just mean match ups against random strangers?

    I ask because I just picked up Mario Kart for Wii and a friend and I were hoping to keep doing races on it.

    • 하세요

      Friend codes still require the use of the internet, so I’m pretty sure that kills any form of online.

    • All gone. Even Friend Codes went through Nintendo Wi-Fi, not direct TCP/IP connection like older PC games allowed. Honestly, I wish they would start offering that option on consoles.

      • Tatsuya1221

        Indeed, TCP/IP would prevent problems like this.

  • 하세요

    Just when Project M gets all said and done. Kaboom. Nintendo really wants players to move the hell onto their next gens.

  • Yor

    Sadly it’s also in America :(

    I will miss the laggy battles on brawl, racing in Mario Kart DS and Wii, get beaten on Tetris DS and Dr Mario and so on.

  • Dang. Happened a lot earlier than I thought. This is why online only games are a bad idea.

    • Shippoyasha

      Not just that, but having games and DLC logs online is meaningless if the service is pulled entirely. I get neurotic thinking about that happening with all the downloads logs I have on Nintendo consoles and 360 and PS3 in years to come.

      Good thing I don’t have many with Wii and DS but 3DS is another story. I will have to get many memory cards to store games and DLC content when the time comes. I feel for Wii/DS users who downloaded a ton of content online and need to scramble for storage.

      • They have said that the Wii Shop and DSi Store will not be affected, so at the least, things like games and redownloading them will not be affected. I don’t think Wii/DS games really had much in way of DLC anyway? Only thing I could think of that was notable was Brawl having custom maps there that you could download, but I think that was done through the computer…

        • Christopher C

          Not like custom maps were that great anyway.

        • Shippoyasha

          Virtual Console will probably be the big deal for those systems. I just hope the stores remain open at least for a few years but it still is a testament to the reliability of physical formats.

          • It might be why they’re keeping them open. They’ll probably stay open at least until N64 and Genesis games are available on the Wii U VC, since they need to be able to justify a shift like that.

      • I think the good news is that Nintendo is trying to move toward establishing a more permanent online infrastructure in future – Nintendo Wi-Fi was their first attempt, and it was very flawed. Hopefully future online services from them will be better integrated under a single roof.

    • AJ

      And online integration into single player games.

      I re-played Heroes of Ruin recently, and all the side-quests and extra stuff was just gone from the game.

  • crimsonidol

    Killing the whole online component? That’s quite a shame. Even Xbox Live for the original Xbox was longer active than this.

    • 하세요

      Microsoft had the money to spare to keep servers running for so long, as they’re not tied down only to Xbox. Nintendo really needs to push others onto their new systems, as they don’t have computers, software, electronics etc to bank off of if their gaming stuff goes bad.

      Seems harsh, but sometimes you gotta make the minority sad to keep the majority satisfied, i.e more 3DS / Wii-U titles. Business is business, yo.

      • Tatsuya1221

        Problem is, that “minority” is a pretty big minority, this isn’t something so simple as losing multiplayer functionality, this pretty much makes all ds pokemon catching useless, which for competitive players, it can destroy interest in the franchise, not that i expect it to have a major effect, but each chip does hurt.

        Again though i do agree that nintendo had to do this eventually, the fact that there is no option for even local co-op for a crowd as big as the pokemon fanbase

        could hurt their brand loyalty though.

        For me it’s things like this that make me avoid online games not on the pc, at least on the pc someone will eventually make fan servers/a fan server for them.

        As for pushing people onto their new systems, anyone who was a fan of say, smash bros. or mario cart, would have gotten the system for those games anyway regardless, so i doubt they did this to push sales(since in all likelihood, anyone who was a casual fan of online games on the older systems will avoid it due to the servers going down, as they aren’t company fans in the first place, they will go where it suits them), more than likely it was a financial decision that the servers weren’t worth keeping up.

        • You’re right about the popularity. I had no trouble playing Mario Kart Wii online for two solid hours early this morning. It was my first time in a year, but these were off hours and a few of the races were full.

          I imagine these players are going to be blindsided in May and not exactly keen on dropping over $300 to play the sequel.

          I know the settings menu would be alien to console players, but a private server option seems a necessity. Thousands are still playing Counterstrike.

          • Tatsuya1221

            Tribes 2 comes to mind for me as well, and i think doom uses a similar method.

      • malek86

        I just can’t help but think that some of these moves are unnecessary though. Like killing the online in GT5 so soon in order to make people move to the struggling GT6.

        I’m hoping that, now that the online is paid on PS4 too, the same thing won’t happen again. On the other hand, Nintendo’s is still free and if they can’t turn around the Wii U’s fortunes, I’m afraid it might happen again soon.

        I wonder if Netflix on Wii will be still available, and for how long. Back in 2011 it was the most used platform for the service, but I really doubt that will be the case today.

        • Guest

          Yes, the DSi browser, Netflix, Youtube channel, etc. are unaffected.

      • crimsonidol

        Nintendo also has the money to keep the servers alive. It’s not that they are near bankrupt because the Wii U sales are bad. They still did quite well.. And there would still be the possiblity to consolidate the servers so that multiple games are handled over one server.

        Still I agree that they had to do it eventually, but personally I think it’s quite too early, as there are still some titles that are played online like Smash Bros, the older Animal Crossings (still seeing severals threads on boards I’m active on where people ask for visitors etc.) or the older DS-pokémon:

        • Guest

          Oh yeah, Animal Crossing… ;_;

    • Guest

      Apparently not.
      Xbox Live for Xbox 1 was active from Nov 2002 – Apr 2010
      DS Wi-Fi Connection from Nov 2005 – May 2014
      Wii Wi-Fi Connection from Dec 2006 – May 2014
      A year and month longer for DS and the exact same time for Wii.

  • Slickyslacker

    That’s kind of disappointing.

    It brings up the question of when they would eventually cancel Wi-Fi services for the Wii U and 3DS.

    • Cody Bloodlines Blevins

      Well yeah, in next gen.

      To be fair the DS is like 10 years old and the servers are mostly used for Pokemon.

  • Izzeltrioum

    B-B-B-B-But I’m still an active MKWii player ;_; .

    • Ethan_Twain

      I suspect that Mario Kart had a lot to do with the timing of this cancellation. They waited until MK WiiU and 3DS are out before cutting online services to MK Wii and DS.

  • Just Tim

    Can I transfer my Wi-Fi data on my Wii/DS to WiiU/3DS, respectively?

  • echokanon

    Awww… so I cant transfer my stuffs from older games to my Y through my friends soon… I don’t have B/W…

    • You might just need to invest in a gen 5 game. They’re still viable to get!

  • Epic Markell Joshua

    Dang no more project m wifi even tho wifi sucked xd. :( sigh.

  • This is really unfortunate. So many of my favourite PSP games have had their online services taken down these last two years—Wipeout, Motorstorm etc.—and now this.

    I have such fond memories of playing so many DS games online with other people, too. Looking back, it’s kind of ridiculous how many DS games had online multiplayer, and pretty good online multiplayer at that. Mario Kart DS, FFCC Echoes of Time, Metroid Prime Hunters, Call of Duty 4. There was Phantasy Star 0, too, but I never got into that.

    Sigh. Ah well.

    • 하세요

      I remember how crazy people went when the original Xbox Live was being taken down. What game caused the most hell? Halo 2, back when we had to get creative with our own custom games. Whether popular or niche as hell, it sucks when a server of any kind must be taken down.

      In the wise words of Cherry: “Like, duh!”

      Perhaps I should’ve gone with someone more…honorable.

      • About 2 years ago I was in a small clan who played HEAVY amounts of PS0 during the weekends. It got a bit dull for me as I wasn’t the completionist that most of them were, but they managed to make runs fun and less repetitive as they should have been.

        Even after I left, they kept going on, as new players came in and were really having fun online.

        So, it really does suck to hear all online play will be going down for DS, especially when very late adopters won’t be able to enjoy what made some online games so fun….

      • Nah this one was just fine, I love this game so much, got all the available DLC and put over 105 hours into the main story/side missions game not counting DLC time. Truly worth the 35 bucks i payed for it back then when i first found it at the store.

        “Yeah, I’ll shoot, and like, what-ever!” XD

    • malek86

      I wonder if this includes the Pokemon Bank service too. It literally just came out, and one of its selling points was the compatibility with the DS games too.

      • I’d imagine not, since Pokemon Transfer (the thing that connects to the DS games) is a 3DS app, not a DSi app.

      • Pokémon Bank connects to Nintendo Network, not Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. Poké Transporter is a completely offline app that lets you bring Pokémon from B/W and B2/W2 into X/Y.

        • malek86

          True, but since the DS games themselves have no way of connecting to the Nintendo Network, how does the app take data from them?

          I suppose it extracts data directly from the cartridge, which would be the easiest way. But in case it had to connect to the NWFC to get it instead (perhaps to avoid hacking), then it wouldn’t work anymore?

          • Nope, no Wi-Fi involved at all. It’s direct from the cartridge, and hacked Pokémon are dealt with in X/Y itself, to my knowledge.

  • Ethan_Twain

    Wait, DS online is getting shut down? OH NO! I still need a pokemon! I am ONE pokemon short of having caught them all in Pokemon white but I don’t have a Tornadus!

    I’ve been putting off tracking one down because I knew I could just find someone to trade with online… but now there’s a deadline set.

    Also: I’m gonna need to try and get Excitbots online one last time before the deadline too. Because that game was rad. Probably wont be anyone else on, but I feel like I ought to try.

    • It would be fun to get a bunch of Siliconera’s community into an IRC chatroom or something so that people can meet up and organize games together.

      • Ethan_Twain

        Only if you want to lose. I used to be a Metroid Prime Hunters FIEND.

        • Oh god, you’re one of those. Well, it wouldn’t be the first time I’ve gotten my butt handed to me in an online game. I used to play a lot of Quake 3 back in high school and the competition was brutal.

      • NimbusStev

        You name the server and channel, and I will be there! :D

  • NimbusStev

    Man, it’s things like this that remind me why I prefer single player games. Online features play an integral role in a lot of DS and Wii games, and just like that, those components are now gone. Imagine if something like this could just be taken away from classic offline games. “Sorry guys, we’ve announced that we are discontinuing local Street Fighter 2 multiplayer, using the Pegasus Boots in Link to the Past, and playing as Tails in Sonic 2. You can still pop in your cartridge and play the rest of the game, but those features will no longer be present.”

    It’s depressing and really highlights the transient nature of modern video games. For a company that invests so heavily in the past, it’s a shame to see how quickly Nintendo is ready to abandon it.

  • DungeonRPG

    this is insane……..some of the newer wifi games only came out 1-2 years ago (like pokemon black/white 2 on ds, and last story on wii)……

    i’m so disappointed…..

  • hazelnut1112

    I still have my copy of JUS. Then again I remember all the assholes with the black koma hack and decide not to play.

    • NimbusStev

      What I hated was when all the Japanese players would team up against me and then just sit there taunting until the timer ran out… I have a lot of good memories of playing online too though. I’m gonna have to bust that out at least one more time before May.

      • hazelnut1112

        That would happen to me a lot as well.

  • No more Megaman StarForce, Mario Kart Wii, nor Project M? Yowza, Nintendo is putting to rest all the fun I had with my buddies back in junior high…

    Fare thee well Nintendo Wifi, you will be greatly missed.

    I feel sorry for the Black/White 2 community……

  • so no more GTS for DS pokemons, that’s kinda sucks

  • malek86

    You know, considering Dragon Quest X for Wii came out very recently, this seems like a weird move. Unless that game doesn’t use Nintendo’s service and therefore you can still connect to it even afterwards.

    I mean, it’s been what, not even 2 years? FF11 on PS2 lasted a whole lot longer.

    • Guest

      Oh yeah, I didn’t even think about that! Unless that’s the case, this game is pretty much unplayable now.

    • It might be that either A) Square-Enix is the one footing the server bill for that, or B) They want players to move to the Wii U.

      • NimbusStev

        Mmm good point. DQX isn’t on the list, so it’s probably still playable.

        • malek86

          Technically speaking, it’s not on the list because it wasn’t published in the USA.

          And it’s not on the japanese list either, but since it was published by Squenix and the list only contains Nintendo titles, that doesn’t mean anything either.

      • malek86

        The latter would be a pretty bad idea. MMOs are long-term revenue generators. Forcing people to move to the Wii U might have the undesired effect of simply losing most of them, which means no more money for Squenix.

        I think it’s more likely that the game still works because it uses different servers and stuff. I think it doesn’t even rely on friend codes?

    • Guest

      That’s a paid service, so it will continue as normal.

  • “Online play for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS games will be unaffected (aside from the Wii mode on Wii U and Nintendo DS games on Nintendo 3DS family systems).”

    Wait, what does this mean?

    • malek86

      It means that playing your Wii/DS games on the Wii U/3DS will not allow you to play them online regardless.

      • Ah, thank you! The wording confused me for a bit, but now I see it clearly.

  • Ony

    No more Metroid Prime Hunters ;_;

  • TheSegaMan

    Disappointing, but it was going to happen eventually im afraid.

  • Blesmi

    Yet again Nintendo proving they dont fucking “get” online.

    • Guest

      At least it’s still free.

  • MaskedHero99

    Honestly who cares…I bet none of u even play online with the wii or ds on a daily bases…if u dont gotta new nintendo system by now u suck

    • I don’t, but now I’m going to play Mario Kart Wii one last time.

  • PlatinumMad

    I wonder if this will affect to those Pokemon sites that use the GTS

    • Luke

      I was thinking about this too, I think they will be fine as you don’t actually connect to Nintedno servers.

  • KonjikinoSora

    No! Jump Ultimate Stars was the only game I ever played online! It’s so good!

  • megaten666

    Great. Just when finally I got a Nintendo Wii, they close the servers.
    Now, that’s why I furiously hate console online gaming. They don’t live forever like the PC servers.

  • Spirit Macardi

    A bit disappointing, but I didn’t really use wi-fi multiplayer that much anyway.

    Does seem a little odd though with the news that DS games will be coming to the Virtual Console. But then maybe they’ll use another method for multiplayer through the emulation software.

  • Sayanthan Kanathipan

    Well, I guess this will be the reason to force people to stop playing Mario Kart Wii and buy Mario Kart 8. Seeing as the release date is about 10 days after the shutdown.

  • epy

    It’s too soon, there’s still A LOT of people using GTS in Gen V games, and I guess I better get around to playing DQIX before all those quests go offline. Geez Nintendo…

    EDIT: Anyone knows what games will be affected by this? I can think of the online shops in the DS Fire Emblems, weekly puzzles in the Layton games, a whole bunch of stuff in DQIX, a lot of quests and jobs in Final Fantasy III, of course GTS in Pokemon.

  • MrRobbyM

    That’s bad for people that still heavily play Pokemon games on DS or Brawl online. I guess that’d kinda force people to move to the new devices but I still feel it’s a bit too early to be shutting down. Guess we shoulda seen this coming with how bad a spot they’re in lately.

    • Guest

      For Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 it’s kinda shocking, those were released, what, less than two years ago? :P

  • I’m pretty sad about this! It seems silly now, but I actually met a lot of people I still talk to today just trying to find a group didn’t snake in Mario Kart DS. Lots of fond memories playing that, Metroid, Smash, and Custom Robo online.

    This probably means that they won’t be carrying over any online features into their Wii U DS ports then. Guess I’m not sure why I would have expected them to, but oh well.

  • ZEROthefirst

    Looks like I won’t be playing Phantasy Star 0 with friends around the world anymore :/

  • Raltrios

    And thus Action Replay shall forever remain the only way to get Darkrai and Shaymin because their damn events never got released, even though they were fully translated and operational.

    • Herok♞

      they did events for both of them however

      • Raltrios

        But not Oak’s Letter, the Azure Flute, nor the key.
        We have the Pokemon, but unless you have an AR you can’t experience the story.

    • Slickyslacker

      Or Pokemon Bank, because Nintendo sure succeeded in stopping hackers.

    • ShawnOtakuSomething

      pokeedit . com lol

      • Raltrios

        More haxncheatcodes, lol

  • Im heavily dissapoint.

  • Yan Zhao

    Kinda sucks but it makes sense. Gota focus on the current gen.

  • 4shiki

    Damnitdamnitdamnitdamnitdamnitmeandmylazinessandmyevergrowingbacklog. :(

    *exhales deeply* I wonder…is there a way to solve this? This is incredibly disappointing.

  • hawk222

    Well, at least local trading will still work. My friend needs to transfer a couple of Pokemon to my White card so I can transfer them to Y. (…It will still work, right?)

  • NintendoPSXTheSecond

    People say they have such fond memories of the online, so do I except, ya know, I still play them so the memories are constant :/
    Anyways, this should have been expected the moment the Wii U was revealed, so it’s not surprising and not disappointing as this is what happens anyways.

  • Bear Negishi

    What’s this!?

    Advance Wars: Days of Ruin is not on that list!

  • ShawnOtakuSomething

    Nintendo….why not wait till next year or something! NO

  • Kazekage Gaara

    Oh well I had my fun over the years.

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