Nintendo announces shutdown date for 3DS/Wii U servers

Scott Baird
Nintendo 3DS and Wii U icons

The end of an era is near, as Nintendo has announced that the 3DS and Wii U’s online servers are shutting down in April, save for a few Pokemon-related apps.

The Nintendo 3DS & Wii U represented a huge step forward for Nintendo’s online ambitions, following the dismal online support on the DS and Wii. Games in franchises like Super Smash Bros. and Pokemon suddenly were far better online than before.

Nintendo would eventually move onto the Switch, with the 3DS and Wii U audience slowly dwindling over time. This left the question of what will happen to the servers for these games, as they cost money to run, but some players still use them.

It was eventually revealed that the Nintendo 3DS & Wii U servers are shutting down in 2024, with only a loose release window given. Nintendo has finally provided a concrete date for everyone to prepare for the end of the previous generation’s servers.

Nintendo 3DS & Wii U servers close in April

A new post on the Nintendo of America Twitter/X account has announced that the 3DS & Wii U servers will close on April 8, 2024. All offline content will continue to work as normal, but nearly all online functionality will be closed down.

The only exception to the shutdown will be Pokemon Bank and Poke Transporter. As these apps are still popular, they will remain online for the time being but will also likely be shut down at some point in the future. Make sure to save your Pokemon from being trapped in Gen 6 & 7 if you need them.

The Nintendo website also confirmed that you can still download games you own and software updates for the foreseeable future. However, this functionality may also cease in the future, so make sure to download any games you have purchased on the eShop in the past.

With the rumors about the Switch’s successor increasing daily, it seems like the end could also be in sight for the Switch’s servers, presenting challenges for console owners who prefer digital ownership over physical media.

Now that the end is coming for the 3DS and Wii U, we have an idea of how Nintendo is handling its online structure for the foreseeable future, and if you lose access to your game library on those systems, then the shift back to physical media might be the better option.

About The Author

Scott has been writing for Dexerto since 2023, having been a former contributor to websites like Cracked, Dorkly, Topless Robot, Screen Rant, The Gamer, and TopTenz. A graduate of Edge Hill University in the UK, Scott started as a film student before moving into journalism. Scott specializes in Pokemon, Nintendo, DnD, Final Fantasy, and MTG. He can be contacted on LinkedIn.