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Nintendo explains Wii U eShop purchase options

Wii U eShopThe Wii U eShop will offer digital downloads of full games and indie titles, in addition to DLC and other gaming related purchases. Nintendo has announced that users will have three ways of purchasing content on the Wii U eShop. The three purchase options are valid for both the Wii U and the Nintendo 3DS.

  • Purchase directly at the Wii U eShop via credit card.
  • Purchase via a download code that you have received or bought from someone.
  • Pre-paid download cards that can be purchased in video game stores and online.


Nintendo hasn’t revealed much about possible Wii U eShop prices, only that full retail games will be offered at launch. The company is rumored to be offering “insane incentives” to publishers to put their games on the eShop. Nintendo is also expected to offer their own first party Wii U games on the eShop, titles such as Pikmin 3 and Nintendo Land. It’s unknown whether the Wii U will stick with the “Nintendo Points” from the original Wii, or if prices will simply be shown in local currency.

Via Nintendo Japan

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  • NINTENDOFANBOY

    I think it’s going to be shown in local currency. The 3DS prices are in currency, such as “4.99″ instead of “500 Points”. Microsoft is also doing this, removing points and going into currency.

  • Alienfish

    Yes! Now I can go to the store and instead of picking up a hard copy of the game, I’ll be forced to go home, wait 2 hours for the download to finish, and pray my external HDD doesn’t die on me. No, I think I’ll get the hard copy. Downloaded titles on my 3DS sound better cause I hate lugging around my collection.

    • someshet

      i bet itll be like 45 min wait since the wii u is said t be powerful :D

      • Alex

        i think its a bit more about the internet than console power

    • Marq

      We’ve discussed the pros and cons of retail vs. digital before. I get what you’re saying, but consider the fact that you can redownload any VC or WiiWare title that you deleted or lost on your SD card. Why wouldn’t you be able to do so on Wii U? And if it’s like 360 or PS3 (which it should be), you should be able to play something else while waiting for it to download. I’ll probably buy 80-90% of my games in a physical form anyway, but why hate on having options?

      I just got Pikmin 2 for Wii ($20) in the mail a couple of days ago. Before Nintendo finally cleared it for America, I was extremely close to paying $40-50 for a used GameCube version. Thankfully, the announcement came in the nick of time, but imagine how such scenarios will now be avoided simply because we’ll be able to download games we’ve missed from years ago on a whim?

      • NINTENDOFANBOY

        Dude I just got goosebumps. The same thing happened to me! I was tired of waiting for years for pikmin 2, and I was fully convinced Nintendo wouldn’t remaster it on the wii. So I ordered it on eBay from Australia ($10) and I soft modded my wii and I got it to work. THEN two months later “New Pikmin 2 only 19.99″ I was so full of anger and happiness. But yeah, that was my pikmin story. Lol.

      • Zeldazero

        I think what would really be awesome is if they incorporated the ability to download and actually have the system burn your games to a blank media that they would sell and it would even print the disc image and everything…but of course that may just be asking for piracy…but still I good idea.

    • Alienfish

      Woops! I forgot to let all you serious people here know that I wasn’t being serious. This is exactly why the Nintendo fans at the party are sitting in the corner looking bored out of their skulls; because they’re too freaking serious about Nintendo to pay attention to the party around them. I’m about done with this site and its supreme lack of humor.

      • Matthewmc685

        I don’t see why you are getting so worked up. All anyone said was “i think it’s a bit more about the internet than console power” So there was no people going “lol you’re so funny” however you acted like you got death threats!

      • Wii UoopsSucks

        I have a sense of humor and I love you.

      • sknoff

        In all honesty, you made a legit argument and didn’t give us any reason to believe you were joking. Besides, if you come to an information site, don’t be surprised if people have legitimate discussions.

        I bet you couldn’t tell, but I was joking so don’t take it seriously. (warning sarcasm)

      • Marq

        Perhaps if you didn’t sound so serious about it, we wouldn’t have taken it as serious? You seem to forget that it’s hard to pick up such nuances on the Internet, where there is no accounting for inflection, tone or body language.

        I’ve seen enough of your posts on here and Nintendo Life to know that you’re a sensible, intelligent guy or gal, so I assume that you were just having a hard day or something. No need to get offended over this though; I don’t think any of us meant any offense. We’re just here for discussion.

  • XxBlazeKiInGxX

    wait will we be able to use the wii pre paid cards “2000 points” or 3ds cards or will there be new ones

    • Dan

      New ones it has to say Wii U points card…

  • Kard

    wait, what about nintendo published eshop exclusives?
    You know, like freakyforms and pullblox was for the 3DS.

    • mr.nintendo

      pushmo PUSHMOOOO

  • KennardMoody

    Who The F would download full retail games from an eShop! Any TRUE gamer would want a hard copy for reliability! This download-only CLOUD universe that were transitioning to is a BAD idea!!!

    • Draco Breach

      I’d consider myself a true gamer, and I buy physical and digital media.

      There is nothing inherently wrong with digital. It offers the business another avenue for profit, and reduced cost is put towards developing further hardware and software. You’re far more likely to see super-saver special deals on digital content because the developer doesn’t have to pay for disc printing, shipping, overhead, et cetera. I’d go over all the costs associated with physical media, but the minutia would bore everybody to tears.

      I will state. I prefer physical media. I especially like it when developers, publishers, or whoever offer incentives to [especially] pre-purchase [usually] physical media. I prefer the touchie-feelies, but DLC isn’t bad either. I especially like it when developers, publishers, or whoever offers a digital backup of my physical purchase (EA Origin is a perfect example).

      I have accounts with Steam, Origin, and Impulse. I just bought the Dungeons and Dragons Ultimate Pack from GameStop which includes some classic games that are about impossible to find legitimate copies of. Now, admittedly these are indeed computer games. As such, I can download the latest ISO installer and burn that to physical, optical media.

      However, I have other points to make.

      1) There are plenty of secure ways to store your data, and any true gamer knows cartridges – like SD cards – offer the best storage options. If you’re worried about losing a digital game you purchased, back it up. You can move any games or expansions you download to secure digital cards or solid state drives. You can then move that onto optical media.

      2) A blockbuster title is likely to be very hard to find. You can try searching around town, wasting gas and time. If you give up, you know there is always an eShop copy waiting.

      3) A blockbuster title is likely to skyrocket in price. I’ll use Xenoblade Chronicles as an example. It’s a relatively new game on the NA market, but it’s already seeing prices as high as $75 on Amazon and eBay. It’s almost impossible to find it in stores, and some think it could hit $200 within the nest two to three years.

      There is nothing wrong with digital. You can bet expansions and mods will almost exclusively be delivered digitally, and resources like Steam aren’t popular without reason. It’s just another avenue to satisfy as many consumers as possible. It’s a medium quickly gaining popularity.

      Now, part of the reason gamers like me prefer physical is social in nature. I can stand in a store and talk to other gamers. The clerks behind the counter. The clients walking the store. It’s a social experience.

      Well, may more social for Nintendo gamers :p

      Just kidding. I know gamers of all systems ^_^

      • Danny

        A few things you may want to consider…

        1) A Wii U disc will hold about the same amount of data as a single layer BD-ROM of about 25GB. The cheapest SD card with a capacity closest is about $20, which you need to save the game. You could connect a USB hard drive, buy a bare drive, an enclosure, and plug it in. It would look unsightly though unless you hide the drive somehow. Make sure you get an enclosure that goes into standby when the Wii U is shut down or you will be wasting power.

        2) The opposite is true, if it is a blockbuster title, the manufacturer may have made more copies, unless it is a limited edition printing.

        3) Xenoblade Chronicles is a Gamestop exclusive, you can only buy it there new or at Nintendo’s website. Amazon is just using resellers who markup the price as they cannot get stock from Nintendo due to exclusivity.

        • Draco Breach

          Don’t worry. I’ve considered them ;)

          I have plenty of HDDs hanging around. I have a 120GB 2.5″ in a beautiful, black Mad Dog enclosure, and it powers off with the hardware it’s plugged into. I have others with power switches. I’ve even made external switches for HDDs without their own switches. I also have a SATA dock to make easy swaps.

          Also consider this, there are few if any games that actually take up a full 25GB. The real size of most games is around 10GB, which is a $10 card (also, you can find 32GB for less than $20). PS3 games are larger because the read speed is so slow that a lot of data is stamped multiple times. If you download a game, it will be the real size if different from stamped size.

          The developer doesn’t always know what will be a blockbuster. If you look at some of the best rated games, you’ll see they skyrocket in price on Amazon and eBay. You might see publishers second or third run a game, but they want to put more money into newer merchandise.

          GameStop has a set price and is incomparable to the collector’s market on Amazon and eBay. GameStop will never sell a used game for more than the MRSP of a new game. In fact, they’ve stabilized the price of a used game to $5 less than the MRSP.

          Amazon and eBay represent what collectors are willing to pay for something hard to get. Believe me, Xenoblade is is getting to be very hard to find.

    • Adam Fox

      Agreed!! I dont like digital copies. Heck, I bought PSP UMD discs of games I downloaded for my PSP Go because I like having the case, disk, manual, at least I have something that could be resold or shown off in a collection.

      • shadowfan2z

        I just want to always have an option. Either digital or physical.

    • XxBlazeKiInGxX

      yea i kinda agree unless the collectors edition is downloadable and the items flys out your wii u or an pizza delivery is at my doorstep giving me free pizza and or the items with collectors edition… oooo free pizza (P:)

    • Herox95

      Nobody CARES. It’s not all about you, buddy.

  • Gamer

    I agree with you my friend.

  • Kazid

    And about my games on wiiware or console? I can also download these games or have to use the Wii to keep playing them?

    • Marmor

      Nintendo said you can transfer the games from your Wii to the Wii U.

    • pach

      I heard they will be available for your account on the Wii U too.

  • pach

    I hope Nintendo make it easy to indie developers make their games available worldwide. I want to see some old school Jrpgs and platform games in the shop.

    • Zeldazero

      Agreed Pach, I would give anything for RPG’s to go back to nice turn-based style like FF7. I can’t stand this live action RPG crap, gave up on FF series after FFX-2 :(

  • Ben

    They better give the option to do other stuff while the games are downloading. AND i want to be able to download everything i ever downloaded with 1 simple click instead of having to select everything separate like on Wii.

    • Herox95

      Like the 3DS. All you could do was play games and go online the internet while you were waiting for the content to finish downloading.

  • Marmor

    I don’t understand why they keep the prices identical (retail vs digital). From a sold retail game the shop makes 3 times more money than the publisher. And the developer makes less money than the publisher.

    From a retail game sold for 40€ the developer gets around 5€ in Germany.
    Selling the games for an identical price digital is only about maximizing the profit.

    I still hope Nintendo uses the eShop to sell older games cheaper. Like Steam does.

  • Zeldazero

    I will always buy the hard copy if possible because that way I will always have it, and one day it may be collectible and worth something. If you just download it who is to say you will always have it? Maybe downloads won’t carry from one system to the next or eventually downloading your purchased content will no longer be available so your money spent just evaporated into nothing. All I can say is I like the idea of physical possession in hand than digital possession that doesn’t physically exist.

  • Paul

    will buy a few cards instore in december after console is released

  • Wii UoopsSucks

    I already got money saved for the wii u. I’m going to download so much titles!

  • poopooman

    It gonna b tight

  • Robert

    Did Nintendo ever talk about transfering your Wii virtual console games to the Wii U?

    • Draco Breach

      Yes they did.

      All Nintendo Wii online purchases can be transferred to the Nintendo Wii U.

  • SteampunkJedi

    Although I’m used to physical copies, I see how convenient it is to download games. For people with good internet, anyway. I would have to download them in the middle of night with my connection, so physical ones are far more convenient for me.

  • Enigma

    Wait so direct purchases, no more of this putting money on the account……

  • VirtualBoy

    Just an idea for Shenmue 1 + 2 (hopefully 3 in the future) is the integration of the Wii U gamepad being used as not just the inventory, but the diary where you have the main quest notes, but you have a section to write your own notes, and could go as far as drawing your own map on a page. It could be used for a few of the mini games as well, such as but not limited to arm wrestling, darts and the game I forgot the name of but known to me as the marble dropping game. I am interested to see what they can do with these, a regular HD remake would be OK, but control change similar to Pikmin 1 + 2 re-release. Making it seem fresh and new. Well there’s my 2 cents.

  • VirtualBoy

    Woops wrong topic.

  • Herox95

    If I ever wanted to trade my Wii and transfer my paid content to the Wii U, how do you think they’ll do that? I’m a bit worried myself, although I have a feeling somehow EB Games will transfer the games to the Wii U, and all the saved data. Like pictures, videos and game data. Hopefully we can actually play Skyward Sword on the Wii U GamePad lol.

  • Herox95

    If I ever wanted to trade my Wii and transfer my paid content to the Wii U, how do you think they’ll do that?

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