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UpdateAs of yesterday, December 26th, new accounts can now connect to Wii U and 3DS game servers once again.

With the shutdown of both 3DS and Wii U servers coming in April of 2024, some fans have been rushing this past month to experience the last gasp of previous Nintendo generations online. Sadly, it appears that brand-new user accounts on both platforms can simply no longer access online functionality in any games. The explanation as to why is a little tricky, however.

According to Pretendo, a fan outlet dedicated to creating a Nintendo Network replacement for these older consoles, the problem has to do with something called an NEX account on both platforms. It seems as if Nintendo has either shut down the NEX creation server early or as severely scaled back the number of available servers, which is thus causing the issue.



Players started to encounter the issue when attempting to play Super Mario Maker. They would be given the error code “106-0502,” which relates to the maintenance of a game’s servers having ended but the user hasn’t restarted the game to apply the update. Pretendo believes that Nintendo has started to close servers, but “most likely made an error in their presumed load balance to not remove” dead servers. It’s a lot of technical speak that’s hard to summarize quickly.

At the very least, if you were looking to grab a used 3DS or Wii U to experience some of these unique consoles’ online titles, you’re out of luck at this point.


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Written by Peter Glagowski

Peter has been a freelance gaming and film critic for over seven years. His passion for Nintendo is only matched by the size of his collection.