One small step
Update: Nintendo Australia has confirmed that, as of September 3rd, Australians will also no longer be able to purchase digital items from the 3DS and Wii U eShop using a credit or debit card.
It’s not all bad news, however. In addition to the Switch account linking and eShop bypasses mentioned below, Nintendo Australia will also be opening up access to the web-based top up page. This will allow 3DS and Wii U owners to top up their wallets using a credit or debit card from a browser, which can then be used on those storefronts. The page will be accessible once credit card support stops on the 3DS and Wii U, on the 3rd of September.
Original story follows.
We’ve known the 3DS has been singing its swan song for a while now, and the Wii U’s been in the ground for longer than its successor has even existed. From next month, both consoles will be taking a longer stride towards obsolescence — at least in Europe.
Nintendo UK has announced today that, starting from an indeterminate point in September, 3DS and Wii U owners will no longer be able to add eShop credit to those consoles using a credit or debit card. If applied to Australia, this means that one of the only ways to top up will be to buy an eShop Card from somewhere like EB Games.
As of September 2019, credit cards cannot be used to add funds on systems in the Nintendo 3DS family or Wii U consoles.Nintendo UK website
For those overseas, you’ll still be able to add credit to 3DS and Wii U eShops by visiting this link, but for us in Australia, with no official webshop, that method won’t work. There is a workaround for 3DS and Wii U owners who also have a Switch, however — it is possible to merge your account balances between Switch and 3DS/Wii U. This means you could still use a credit card to buy eShop credit on the Switch, and it’ll also be available on the 3DS and Wii U.
It’s currently unknown precisely why these changes are happening, or exactly when they’ll go into effect next month. It’s also not currently known whether or not this applies to all regions, or just Europe (and by extension, probably Australia). It seems likely that the change could be due to new European Union regulations, which require stronger security standards for electronic payments, set to go into effect in September.
We’ll keep you updated if we hear anything more on the matter. In the meantime, probably best to stock up on eShop credit now.
One game every two months? Ooft.