Nintendo To Pull The Plug On Wii & DS MP Servers On May 20th

Find your friend codes, break out the game cartridges, hunt for the charger and mess around with your WiFi security settings, because your chance to play online games on Wii, DS and DSi is coming to an end. Nintendo are shutting down the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection servers worldwide on May 20th.

In all fairness, it’s not the most surprising move. The Wii and DS were Nintendo’s first forays into online gaming and never really seemed to hit the big time. Mario Kart, Smash Bros. and Pokémon games probably had the biggest online communities, but everything was hampered by the clumsy friend codes which were dealt with on a game-by-game basis. Thankfully, though online functionality is still nowhere near that of PSN or XBL, it’s much more streamlined on the 3DS and Wii U, consoles which are unaffected by this.


What’s affected on the Wii and DS is:

  • Online play and matchmaking
  • Leaderboards and tournament data
  • Sharing of user generated content (ghost data, user created levels)
  • User exchange of in-game items or characters (Global Trade Station)
  • Free add-on content or downloads (new levels, in-game items, Mystery Gifts)

Game-based servers are turning off, then, but services unrelated to multiplayer will continue to function. This means that things like the DSi Shop and DSi Browser will continue to work as will the Wii Shop Channel and video services like Netflix and Youtube on the Wii.

Still, it’s time to blow the dust off your console and settle any long distance grudge matches you might have outstanding. It won’t be long before you have to be in the same room to do so… or play a newer game.

Source: Nintendo, via Engadget



  1. I only really played Mario Kart online for a few weeks.

  2. I remember my friends constantly playing Mario Kart online and getting really into it, I never did as I personally dislike the gameplay style. I’m still surprised about Nintendo not getting up to speed with Microsoft and Sony’s online infrastructure for the 3DS and Wii U, they lost out greatly because of it.

    Still need to get a Wii myself, wanna get hold of the rarer games such as Xenoblade. Will be a few years yet.

  3. Will really miss Mario Kart wii online split screen when the family come round for the day.

  4. Disappointing for those who still make use of it, even more surprising that the console is still available to buy…

    The only games I played online on mine were Mario Kart and Smash Bros. The infrastructure is far and away better on the Wii U thankfully!

    I’m just glad Sony and MS don’t adopt this policy upon the arrival of a new machine… But then, I guess we won’t know til their new consoles have been available for 18 months. It’ll be very disappointing if the PS3 and X360 drop online play altogether seeing as very few decent multiplayer games on those consoles allow split screen :-(

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