News Article

eShop Sees Turnaround For Nintendo's Digital Services

Posted by Katy Ellis

Is Nintendo finally entering the digital age?

Earlier this year, we interviewed Trent Oster of Beamdog Studios, who had infamously claimed he would never develop titles for Nintendo again after the issues he came across when using Nintendo's WiiWare service.

Since then, Nintendo has improved its gaming download facilities via the 3DS eShop, which has been praised by developers such as Nicalis, which is currently planning on bringing Cave Story+ to the eShop, after also releasing the title on Wii Shop Channel. "The eShop, I feel, has really turned things around for Nintendo on the digital side because the storefront is heavily feature-driven," Tyrone Rodriguez, president of Nicalis said to Gamasutra.

Renegade Kid founder Jools Watsham, developer of Mutant Mudds and Planet Crashers for the eShop, also praised the 3DS console's digital distribution facilities, commenting that its partnership with Nintendo has been very successful. Watsham stated that one day he hopes Renegade Kid can rely solely on the eShop as a home for its titles.

With such strong praise for the 3DS eShop, it seems that the future of Nintendo's digital services can only beam brighter with the launch of the Wii U.


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User Comments (55)



19Robb92 said:

Now all they have to do is make it account based so that you don't have to re-buy everything if you happen to loose your system.

And.. Get rid of the friend codes in exchange for user names.



moomoo said:

Just so you guys know, it's not all rainbows and sunshine on Nintendo's digital fronts. The gamasutra article's entire first page is about many dev's negative experiences.
Oh, and Nintendo has a lot of work. The eShop is better, but when compared to other services it is pretty bad. There's no real way to just browse certain things. If you want a DSiWare game, you have to search for it. There needs to be better organization to make the browsing experience better. PSN did a better job with it in 2007. We're half a decade later.
Also, everything @19Robb92 said.



TheDreamingHawk said:

What do you mean? In all honesty, they have been doing good ever since the 3DS launch. Considering the nightmare of a time with the PS3 and Xbox, I say they have the friendliest online.



thedanman64 said:

The eShop is certainly a massive leap forward for Nintendo.

Too bad they've taken two big steps back with the pricing for full retail 3DS games. (£39.99 for downloading New Super Mario Bros 2? Really?)



MrWalkieTalkie said:

The way I like to see it is, when your at the bottom as the worst, there is nowhere left to go but up!
P.S. what will the download store be called on Wii U? The Wii U Shop Channel? The uShop? what is it?



Wheels2050 said:

Still lacking account-based purchases. This is a major problem, and I imagine that it's preventing sales to some degree.



Emaan said:

The eShop is definitely better than both the DS and Wii's shop channels, but it still has plenty of improvements that need to be made.



x-mas_mii said:

@thedanman64 I think that with retail downloads, Nintendo should cut the physical production costs in half, take half of that half(a quarter) as profit and the other quarter as profit for the creators.
sorry that I got off topic, but I agree with @19Robb92



MrWalkieTalkie said:

Meh, I wont really care what they'll call it, just curious. Although, I do like the sound of uShop, cause it sounds like You Shop. IDK just sounded like a good name.



19Robb92 said:

I like the sound of uShop as well.

But just like with e-Mail I'm guessing the 'e' in eShop stands for electronic[Shop], which makes sense. It's a good overall name IMO and 3DS owners who buys a WiiU will instantly know what the eShop implies. That is also smart since the eShop is the most successful online store yet for Nintendo.



TheConsiglio said:

@TheDreamingHawk What Nightmare of a time? I still prefer the PSN over all others just because it's more user-friendly. I think some people just like the eshop because it's new and people put an overload of money on it at first chance.



RR529 said:

@Moomoo, while that is true (the first page being negative), it's all stories about WiiWare & DSiWare (stuff we've already heard). As far as eShop goes, however, there has been nothing but praise from devs about the 3DS's store, and enthusiasm for Wii U's store (due to 3DS eShop success).

While yes, there could be improvements to eShop, so far devs have been pleased with it, and have stated that Nintendo is now much more willing to update it with new features if need be.



RupeeClock said:

What Nintendo need to focus on now is a better way to handle the rights for downloaded titles.

The idea that losing your system means losing all attached software is quite daunting. Club Nintendo needs to be used for more than just registering your download titles.
They could also stand to utilise cloud-saves if possible.



Cyrso said:

Sorry but Nicalis and Renegade kid don't represent the whole bunch of developers.

There are still lots of things that needs to be upgraded/fixed.



Cyrso said:

I think they should integrate the Club Nintendo account in the eShop.



RR529 said:

@Cyrso, while it's true that Nicalis and Renegade Kid only represent themselves & no one else, just because other devs haven't given their opinion on eShop yet, doesn't mean that they're negative (or positive) by default.

All we know, is that Nicalis and RK are the only two devs that have felt strongly enough about eShop to comment about it, and their opinions just happen to be positive.

With that said, on a personal note, I believe the eShop could be improved further, and I would like an account system.



Bankai said:

Like I said in the other news story on the same Gamasutra report (why two stories?):


Developers were enthusiastic about the eShop too.

It's still inferior to the competition. Being better than something even worse than that (WiiWare, DSiWare) is damning with faint praise."



Chunky_Droid said:

Almost the same article?

Anyway, it's positive that devs are seeing good things in the eShop for Nintendo, in saying that, this article points at some of the more successful devs for WiiWare. I'd like to think that the 3DS will get a firmware update once the WiiU comes out,and everything is tied to Club Nintendo and/or your Mii or something like that, that's the only real thing they need to do to catch up.



TheDreamingHawk said:

@TheConsiglio I was playing on my friend's PSN once at his house and when I was looking for Final Fantasy II and IX to have him download, it took me forever to find them. I don't know why, it just reminds me of the DSI shop in terms of finding a certain game only to have to wait 20 minutes before hand. Here is how I would rate the shops:

3DS>Wii>PSN>DSI>XBLA>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>App Store



WolfZombie said:

I've been fairly happy with the eShop on the 3DS so far. The quality of the some of the games actually surprised me a bit at first. Hopefully they start releasing a lot more good classics as well as new games. The revealed list from the other day didn't have much that interested me, hopefully some surprises are in store for the future.



DarkEdi said:

@#22 It is not the best option, the CN account only applies to USA and Canada. It needs to be something like the PSN.



Windy said:

I'm sorry but the eshop has a longway to go. So far it's been very disappointing with nothing more than a handful of good games and a ton of old re-released gameboy and gamegear games. Sorry guys maybe some people bought a 3ds to play old gameboy games on but I bought a 3ds not a gameboy or gamegear. If I wanted to play those I would get myself one of those. Not good so far. Nintendo should be embarrassed at this point. The system has such potential yet that potential is currently being squashed. Im sorry for the negative post but it's the way I have felt for quite sometime. I have banked that the 3ds would be my last gaming system as I am an older gamer and would love to see the 3ds really shine. I love the 3d and I also like not playing in 3d. Games like the mighty switch force are awesome and colors 3d to name a couple standouts for the eshop. This direction of virtual console just feels like they dont have any really good software to offer so they load up on old titles for old systems. Some online multiplayer titles would also be nice to see. You would think an old grandpa gamer such as myself would love to see the classics, but no is the answer



grumblegrumble said:

Seems to me their recent good releases have kind of dribbled to a halt. I hope they keep up with the virtual console e-shop releases for 3DS.



Windy said:

There is nothing wrong with the virtual console games but they need to do it better and this system needs to shine. They are Nintendo the best gaming company in the world. The eshop should be such as well. They just need to pay more attention to the system for what it is. Thats a very powerful system capable of well Mario type games in the eshop. Can they all be that way? Well no. I think for every 3 or 4 3ds games then you release a VC game is all im saying



grumblebuzzz said:

@grumblegrumble I agree. From around Christmas time last year to about March or April or so, it was at least one quality game each week, but now they're really slacking and putting out a lot of shovelware/expensive iPhone ports it seems like. I almost dread to see what we'll be getting in North America tomorrow.



grumblebuzzz said:

Also I really do feel that Club Nintendo should also serve as a cloud to store purchase information. I'm really kind of on the fence about whether or not to download NSMB2 at midnight on Saturday because while it would be nice to have the game earlier than some people and to get the 50 coin bonus, it's also intimidating because if I lose my 3DS or it gets stolen then POOF, it's gone. 40-something dollars wasted. This wouldn't be a problem if Club Nintendo were what it should be: Nintendo's version of iTunes.



Samholy said:

screw digital download
they will ruin specialized game shops.

you cant share your game with a digital copy. i share my games with friends, we trade around so we see if we like the games or not.
lost,broke or stolen 3ds means losing your games !
this is too much downsides, the ''no-cart swap'' feature isnt even worth it.



FonistofCruxis said:

@moomoo I don't know about the American eshop but on the European eshop, there are tabs at the bottom for DSiware, 3DSware, demos, retail games and virtual console so you don't have to manually search for Dsiware games.



Windy said:

I wont be downloading the Mario bros. Definately a Cartridge I would like to own. Now if the digital price was say 10.00 or 15.00 cheaper I might consider the digital download. Now everyone who works at NOA will probably download it and they will say what a success just like local wifi is a huge success in north america and europe. There are so many issues to speak out about. it would be so cool to work at NOA and actually take part in Local wifi matches or games. But hello the rest of the world doesnt even use it. Sorry to get off topic I should wait till there is a wifi discussion



Kirk said:

I really hope Nintendo continues to improve in their whole digital services on both the 3DS/XL and Wii U.

The first thing they need to do is figure out that retail versions of digital games need to be much cheaper for a start.



lucianaeevee said:

@Kirk I agree, and I'm actually having a problem without an eshop voucher, because they are quite expensive, I'd say the game prices should be at least 30% lower



SyFyTy said:

by keeping the price of digital downloads and retail hard copies the SAME PRICE, they are essentially passing on the cost of the card to YOU. NOW you are paying MORE for the games than before because of this. Also has anysone stopped to see just how many games will fit on a 4GB card? not many [retail] at all. We're going to be buying these cards for e-downloads like they're going out of style; all because N doesn't want to pay for them anymore. Also, not many will fit onboard of the sytem either, for those stored that way. And NO @ MooMoo, there are no 'tabs' for seperating catagories here in the US...



SyFyTy said:

Besides $40. USD is far too much for most of these retail games to start with. They are simply NOT worth that much. N is about to kill-off a large portion of it's DS base owners purchases by not adjusting prices. and additional coins for e-downloads? PLEASE... until decent games are offered in trade, they're allmost worthless. Steel Diver and Pilot can be purachased for $5. USD here NEW., why pay $40. USD at day one?




@19Robb92 they're ridding of friend codes in an update this holiday and the wii u just won't have them at all as for the account thing i've had a tedious history with redownloading everything because i accidently delete the data on my computer or when i upgraded to my 16 gigabye SDHC card it's too long a process but what you're asking for is not only an eshop account they already have that (to an extent there's no official login and credit card data is deleted when transfered to another 3ds, but nonetheless it IS an account) you're asking for an entire 3ds account logging into a 3ds and logging out because the eshop already saves your titles it's why you don't have to rebuy objects, but to keep them on the home menu you'd have to log in to a complete Nintendo 3ds system and the 3ds would have to be entirely web-based or data network based and could abrupt various problems and complications i hope something like will come in the near future though




@moomoo i completely agree the psp is an old system and yet you can buy movies, books (comic and magazines and regular) the eshop just got Demos and it only let's you play for a limited time then that's it they're just now putting games on their digital download service and still no movies or books it can barey compete with psp let alone psp go and vita i suspect that the reason nintendo is so far behind its competitors is because sony and microsoft actually have experience with other areas of technology outside of gaming they know people want the technological aspects of a console over just games what can i do with this if i'm not a hardcore gamer and i don't buy many games nintendo understands that people love technology too but stated that their number one focus isn't technology it's gaming experience maybe it's why the wii u (a next gen console) still can't play DVDs while ps2 ( a pre gen console) can play them and ps3 can play blu-ray it would also explain why the psp can do so many things more than the 3ds even with two models ahead of it and being constructed around 2006 i have a 3ds and wii for some reason i'm still a nintendo fan even with all of it's disappointments




@thedanman64 let me guess you're one of those people who think that since the game is on eshop it should only cost 5 or 10 bucks because they've never charged that much on the eshop before but in retailers the price is just fine right? then nobody would buy it in retailers you're still getting the full game you just don't have to worry about losing it now and you can carry at least two full games with yo without a special case it's completely fair it's how much the game is worth whether digital or actual




@SyFyTy i suspect that the cards will cost a few dollars extra for unknown reasons however most of your argument isn't legitimate the only thing they're "passing on to us" is the fragile card not to damage or easily lose remeber they're still going to keep releasing retail games in addition to digital download it's not a replacement or like psp go where you MUST download digital games




@Windy charging cheaper would be stupid digitally downloading a game (outside of the large memory it will consume) would be better you never have to worry about losing the game remember every game on the eshop is just a minigame it's why they're socheap but to pay essentially less for the exact same thing you could get on a cartridge well then no one will buy them in retailers no legit reason for a cheaper price




@Windy well to stae that nintendo is the best gaming console in the world is only opinionly correct sony and microsoft are far ahead and well developed over nintendo realistically i wish nintendo was though i have a 3ds and wii




@Windy actually your post is quite accurate no good games are on the eshop the problem is that nintendo is too bust focusing on remakes or sequals as opposed to completely new games wth completely new characters,storylines, and ideas




Everyone keeps commenting that eshop needs an account system and to murge with club nintendo. Both are very good ideas. I've grown weary of entering long codes for acceptionally okay prizes. However, the eshop ALREADY has an account system! It's also linked with club nintendo as well. The account system and CN link just aren't as strong and direct as most of you'd like. Thre's no login or lougout feature with usernames and such. I believe that with all the improvements Nintendo needs to make with the eshop the most important one is making a poll or review/comment section so we can see releases of games people actually want. Let's face it. Most of the games on the eshop are crap and leave people begging for releases such as Flipnote Memo (which recieves so much buzz because everybody will download a free title) and a Youtube app (much like apple's (because apple doesn't support flash) youtube system). On another note people keep complaining the game for digital download should be cheaper just because the most expensive game on the eshop currently doesn't pass 12 dollars. EVERY SNGLE GAME ON THE ESHOP AS OF NOW IS ONLY A MINIGAME. WHEN NSMB.2 RELEASES, IT WILL BE A COMPLETE FULL GAME. IF ANYTHING, IT SHOULD BE MORE EXPENSIVE! People often argue that it will take up memory. It will. You might have to invest in a new SD card unfortunately, but now it's possible to carry multiple games at once without the need for a dedidcated bag or case or cartridge holder. Cases don't fit in my pocket. People also bicker that if you lose your system, you're out 40 bucks. Believe me. It's a lot easier to lose a cartride than full game system. I've already lost Ocarina of Time 3D. Plus if you lost your 3ds, you're also short 170 dollars and I doubt 40 bucks would be much of an issue especially if you're buyng a new replacement next day. Chances are you'd also have the money to buy a new game. If you're poorer and lose you're 3ds system, then you'll probably going to just have the game and no system to play it on and end up selling it to Gamestop ( and getting like $0.01 back) or Amazon/ebay/etc. (for a more profitable sell). The price is perfectly fine and nobody was complaining that 3ds games in general are too expensive (which they're not for portable system games). To be complaining because it doesn't cost 3.99 like other MINIgames is unrealistic. This a full game ( a first one I might add). Recheck your expectancy values. Stop complaining about smething that hasn't released yet and you haven't tried yet yourself. People like that end up killing off buying things like the Wii U or downing and not buying new releases such as NSMB.2 without even giving it a chance and usually miss out on a lot. Comeback after you've exerienced the new service and stop making predictions and start making reviews. Remember this is suppose to be a GOOD thing critics.

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