Nintendo eShop shutdown for 3DS and Wii U in certain countries
Long-standing eShop services for 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. Deleted games will also not be downloadable, giving gamers more reasons to keep as much software as possible on their consoles.
In a Nintendo announcement, 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 the functionality of the eShop before it. 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 the three-year-old Nintendo Switch eShop. The renewed interest in the portable system is clear, as global shortages have 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 line of content, the eShop sought to give gamers more digital options because cartridges stayed at home. Full support for non-physical versions was also tied to its rewards system, which helped encourage more players to build a virtual library. Of course, the eShop included other applications such as Netflix and Nintendo Video which provided 3D content from supporting content creators.
The Wii U eShop was similar in its online distribution and gave owners an instant option to purchase games at launch, without having to go to stores for discs. Its service went live on November 18, 2012 and even offered a selection of streaming apps to accompany the gaming experience. Additional functionality was provided through the Wii U controller and the store could be used without watch a monitor.
Both platforms are also ending their lifecycle in parts of the world as the Nintendo Switch becomes the company’s primary console for the current generation. Its eShop offers full support for all published titles, with many owners having a fully digital library. Its service was first launched when the console launched on December 10, 2019 (for the first time in China). Purchases in the store were also tied to the My Nintendo rewards service, which essentially gives digital shoppers points to save and redeem on other games later.
The company has also suggested that users use the service as much as possible before the cut-off time in these regions as it remains unclear when eShops will start to die in North America and Europe. Users in Brazil and Mexico are unaffected by the changes, while a full list of countries that are can be found on their information page here.