Nintendo fans slam decision to close 3DS and Wii U eShops

goomba with nintendo logoNintendo

After many years of support, Nintendo is shutting down the Nintendo 3DS and Wii U eShops in March 2023, meaning fans won’t be able to buy any more digital copies of games for these systems. Understandably, this has drawn the ire of those who still enjoy the consoles.

The Nintendo Switch is pretty much considered the de facto brand for Nintendo as the hybrid console has been an overwhelming success for the company. Whereas most didn’t quite understand the Wii U and how it worked, the Switch simplified things and made itself instantly marketable.

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It seems that Nintendo have decided to go full-board with the Switch and are removing the ability to buy Wii U and 3DS games from their respective eShops.

The news hasn’t gone down well for fans of these consoles with many people desperately trying to remonstrate with Nintendo to reverse this decision.

3DS and Wii U life support is about to be pulled

An official statement from Nintendo has said the following: “As of late March 2023, it will no longer be possible to make purchases in Nintendo eShop for the Wii U system and the Nintendo 3DS family of systems. It will also no longer be possible to download free content, including game demos.”

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The proclamation is quick to assure consumers that they can still “redownload games and DLC, receive software updates and enjoy online play on Wii U and the Nintendo 3DS family of systems,” after March 2023.

Predictably, Nintendo’s announcement hasn’t quite gone down a treat, and it’s left many 3DS and WiiU owners disappointed, with one strong Reddit thread coming down extremely hard on Nintendo.

wiiu console trailerNintendo
The Wii U didn’t sell that well, but it was still owned by enough people.

Nintendo 3DS and WiiU stores removal is “anti-consumer”

“This bears repeating: Nintendo killing virtual console for a trickle-feed subscription service is anti-consumer and the worse move they’ve ever pulled” were the impassioned words used by user raylinth. The OP dissected the decision and underlined the severity of what Nintendo are trying to do.

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“Nintendo has done nothing to convince me that digital content on Switch will [still be] maintained in 5-10 years. And that’s a major problem,” they said. They also make mention of a now-deleted Q&A segment that informed owners of these consoles: “We currently have no plans to offer classic content in other ways.”

Some players were frustrated with one person sarcastically saying: “Nintendo? Anti-consumer? The company that has been the bane of streamers and fan projects? The company that purposefully limits digital releases to create artificial scarcity? The company that will not fix its massively prolific controller problem and resisted even admitting to it? That Nintendo? No, I don’t believe you.”

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Whereas a furious fan outright said: “F**k Nintendo so hard. Why do people support this? If Microsoft or Sony tried this they’d be absolutely destroyed for it by the press and the gamers.”

There were plenty more unhappy replies with players concerned that this is a way for Nintendo to move these archived games to the Switch eShop, and obviously increase Switch sales. With Breath of the Wild 2 on the horizon, Pokemon Arceus booming, and new Mario Kart content on the way, the console is already thriving.

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This very scenario happened with Sony and PlayStation in 2021, with the Japanese behemoth informing players that PS3 and PS Vita content wouldn’t be sold digitally anymore. However, due to criticism and negative feedback on the call, Sony reversed its stance and opted to keep the store operational.

Whether or not Nintendo decides to hold its position remains to be seen.

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