Nintendo to end online multiplayer service for Wii and DS

27 Feb 2014

The Nintendo Wii

Two of Nintendo’s best-selling consoles of the last few years, the Wii and DS, are to cease their online multiplayer capabilities on 20 May, the company has announced.

After this date, players of some of the most popular games which developed small but loyal online communities, such as Mariokart, will no longer be able to game online, however, they will still be able to use some of the other non-gaming online capabilities.

These would include Nintendo’s web browser, shop and the video-sharing channel, YouTube.

In a statement, the company said its focus is now on looking to future implementation of newer games but eased fears that older gamers would be left behind.

“Our focus now shifts to readying our Wii U and Nintendo 3DS matchmaking services for upcoming games. such as Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros.

“We at Nintendo sincerely thank our fans for their continued support of our company’s legacy systems. Your enthusiasm for games made for these systems speaks to their longevity, and the passion of Nintendo fans.”

However, Nintendo’s latest console, the Wii U, has been nowhere near as popular as the Wii, which has just out-sold Xbox 360s in Japan. Last month, Nintendo scaled back its estimated sales for the Wii U as it struggles to compete with the more established next-gen consoles, such as the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic