How to use Wii Virtual Console
January 11, 2008 3:53 PM   Subscribe

I bought a Wii in Japan, but will use it in Canada. Can I still download Virtual Console games? Two questions inside....

My wife is in Japan for an extended stay (I just returned to Canada after spending the holidays there), and she just bought a Nintendo Wii (and the excellent 'Wii Fit'). I haven't had a chance to take a look at it.

She'll bring the Wii back with her to Canada. Because the game software is region-specific, we'll ask relatives to send us new games from Japan. No big deal - we're not gamers, but like Mario and Zelda.

1) I would like to download old SNES titles from Nintendo's Virtual Console service. Will it be possible if my Wii is from Japan, but I am ordering from Canada?

2) Briefly, how does the Virtual Console service work? The web page is currently borked on the Nintendo English-language site.
posted by KokuRyu to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
1) It should be possible, but you might get the Japanese Wii Store instead of the North American one. If that's the case, the offering of games you can download will differ a little and will probably be all Japanese language. I'm not sure if it's possible to change this setting or not.

2) Here's the obligatory Wikipedia entry. In short, vou buy games from the Virtual Console with "Wii Points." I think the translation is about 1000 points -> 1 CAD. Generally older games cost less, with NES games being around 500, SNES games about 800 and N64 games at 10000. I've only ever bought one game, so I might be a little off on those prices. Once it's download, it shows up on the main Wii screen with all your other channels. From there you just click and play.

One awesome feature is that if you leave any Virtual Console title via the Home button, your progress will be saved upon return. So for those old NES games without really save systems, you can effectively simulate the "leave the game paused while at school" so many of us probably leveraged growing up.
posted by Nelsormensch at 4:35 PM on January 11, 2008

You buy Wii Points, which you can then exchange for games in the Wii Shop channel. You can get these Wii Points online on the console itself by putting in your credit card number (at least in the US on a US-region Wii), or you can buy Wii Points cards in stores, which have a code that you can enter into the Wii on the Wii Shop channel.

So you'll have to buy yourself some Japanese Points for your Japanese Wii. It shouldn't matter that you're ordering from Canada, as long as you are paying with JPY. I'm not sure what kind of limitations Nintendo puts on where your credit card is issued, but you could try that route first, as it's the easiest. If that doesn't work, you could have your wife buy Wii Points cards in Japan and have her tell you the codes. You can also order the cards online.
posted by zsazsa at 4:36 PM on January 11, 2008

I think Nelsormensch added some extra zeroes. It is about 100 Wii Points to the dollar and N64 games are 1000 points, so games run $5-$10.
posted by Rock Steady at 7:23 PM on January 11, 2008

Response by poster: I'll let you know how it goes. I'm just looking forward to playing SNES Super Mario World and Zelda. Hopefully they also have N64 Smash Brothers and Mario Kart...
posted by KokuRyu at 2:03 PM on January 13, 2008

Been lurking in this thread. I'm curious about the outcome, too, so please keep us posted.

FYI, they do have Super Mario World, Zelda, and Mario Kart 64, KokuRyu. I'm assuming you can read Japanese pages on your PC.
posted by misozaki at 11:12 PM on January 14, 2008

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