News Article

Virtual Console Games Will Eventually Be Playable On Wii U GamePad Alone

Posted by Andy Green

Nintendo still working towards getting the Virtual Console set up on Wii U

The Wii U eShop has been hailed by a number of small developers as an exciting new platform on which to publish games; however, since the system's launch the eShop hasn’t seen a significant growth due to few new titles emerging.

Many people have also been wondering what is happening with the Virtual Console, at the moment you can access it through the Wii Menu but not through the Wii U eShop itself. This is something that Nintendo is working on and it's reiterated this, telling Kotaku that it is “moving ahead with development of Virtual Console for Wii U”.

One dream some Nintendo gamers had upon hearing of the Wii U was to see Virtual Console titles like The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Chrono Trigger playable on the GamePad alone.

Thankfully, Nintendo has also confirmed that this is something it's working towards:

We plan to make it so you can play it on the Wii U GamePad alone.

There's still no news on whether or not GameCube games will be downloadable through the Wii U Virtual Console, but we do know Reggie Fils-Aime would "love for that to happen". So would we Reggie, so would we.

Are you growing impatient in waiting for the Virtual Console to appear on Wii U? Let us know your thoughts on the matter in the comments section below.

[via kotaku.com]

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User Comments (130)

True_Hero

#1

True_Hero said:

Can't wait to see what Nintendo does with this.
As for Ocarina of Time, I can already can play that handheld... in 3D!

RCMADIAX

#4

RCMADIAX said:

Yes! Wave Race 64 on the GamePad. Might be the closet I get to a Wave Race on Wii U.

Randomname19

#5

Randomname19 said:

Yes!I won't use it very much for the Wii virtual console thought. I'll wait for Gamecube games

Wildfire

#7

Wildfire said:

Awesome news!
I only hope that we don't have to buy all over again the VC games that we've already bought on Wii's VC.

KAHN

#8

KAHN said:

i bought mariokart 64 yesterday on the wii VC via WiiU, and i can't use the gamepad to play it! i need a classic controller D: if i buy something on the wii VC, can i use the WiiU transfer to transfer it to my wiiU?

TrueWiiMaster

#9

TrueWiiMaster said:

As long as it happens, and carries over purchases from the Wii VC, I'll be happy. If they add Gamecube games and a few VC titles that were never added, I'll be happier still.

ultraraichu

#10

ultraraichu said:

That would be sweet. Wishful thinking on my part that they will make it so you can convert your unused Wii points to the eshop. I got 5300 points just wasting away.

Svengoolie

#11

Svengoolie said:

Has Nintendo hinted if there will be Gamecube VC games or is everyone just expecting it? That would be great for me since I skipped that system.

LavaTwilight

#12

LavaTwilight said:

This is something that Nintendo is working on and it's reiterated this, telling Kotaku that it is “moving ahead with development of Virtual Console for Wii U”.

One dream some Nintendo gamers had upon hearing of the Wii U was to see Virtual Console titles like The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Chrono Trigger playable on the GamePad alone.

Thankfully, Nintendo has also confirmed that this is something it's working towards:

We plan to make it so you can play it on the Wii U GamePad alone.

Good to know, and yes! Gamecube games please!

FJOJR

#13

FJOJR said:

This is great. Still hoping to be able to launch Wii games from the Wii U menu without going through the process of going through 2 menus but WiiWare and VC is a good start.

Emaan

#14

Emaan said:

I'm very interested in this. Also, how will this work with the HD resolutions of the Wii U? Will they be improved slightly at least so the retro games don't look horrible stretched out across a widescreen TV?

Otto-Soq

#15

Otto-Soq said:

This is VERY good news!!! Now i am more interested in buying a Wii U, when i have $.

Nibelilt

#16

Nibelilt said:

Just holding off buying any VC games until this happens so we know the specifics. Good news nonetheless.

SteveSnowmn

#17

SteveSnowmn said:

They only confirmed this about the Wii U VC. We have no idea if we'll ever be able to play original Wii VC games on the GamePad. I really hope we don't have to buy everything again.

DefHalan

#18

DefHalan said:

I am still waiting to see if Wii VC will transfer into Wii U VC. I don't want to transfer everything then find out A) I still have to play it with a Wii Classic Controller and B) That I still have to hold onto my Wii to play Game Cube games.

Whopper744

#21

Whopper744 said:

For some reason I am getting impatient. :p
I think part of it is how mysterious Nintendo is with things, it makes you wonder if they are even going to come through with it.

Kirk

#22

Kirk said:

So, how does this work?

When they finally get it sorted does the VC on the part of Wii U that runs the Wii become obsolete?

Are there going to be two VC services?

Can you transfer you Wii VC games to the Wii U VC?

Or can you only play certain games on the Wii U VC, that aren't on the Wii one?

It's so convoluted and confusing.

strenny

#23

strenny said:

If i'd be able to Transfer my Wii vc collection to Wii u and Stream them onto the gamepad, i'd be buying a Wii u immediatly.

DestinyMan

#24

DestinyMan said:

Playing console games on the GamePad as if they're portable will certainly be an interesting and fun twist. I'm looking forward to it.

brooks83

#25

brooks83 said:

@Kirk

Excellent questions. This article doesn't tell us anything we didn't already know. I'd really like to know if every VC game on the Wii VC is gonna be there day one on the Wii U's VC. And what of VC games we bought on the Wii? Will they be stuck to Wii mode?

Chomposaur

#26

Chomposaur said:

Urm will my previous VC games stored on the Wii work ? Or do I have to buy them again to play them on tr gamepad ..

Cipher

#27

Cipher said:

We already knew this. Iwata confirmed the Wii U Virtual Console in the last Nintendo Direct before the Wii U launched. He also made clear it was to be the "Wii U Virtual Console" - which sounds like a new library of titles, not existing Wii Virtual Console titles. He specifically said "Wii Virtual Console" titles cannot be played on the GamePad but that Nintendo was planning for the "Wii U Virtual Console" which would include Wii U functionality.

brooks83

#28

brooks83 said:

If Nintendo would have answered these questions, I may have bought a Wii U at launch.

MasterGraveheart

#29

MasterGraveheart said:

As long as it's on the way, I can wait for Nintendo to get it right. Honestly? I'd prefer a full integration of "Wii Mode" into the Wii U console so we don't have to switch back and forth so much. I still play a lot of Wii games, Virtual Console, WiiWare, and on disc.

Chomposaur

#31

Chomposaur said:

In think I'm S**t out of luck I defiantly can see nintendo wanting me to re buy all of my games ... I'll be extremely angry if they do that ....

Smitherenez

#32

Smitherenez said:

Let's hope that we are able to shift our wiiVC towards WiiUVC! Not going to buy those games again.

Chomposaur

#33

Chomposaur said:

I couldn't care less about gamepad functionality all I ask for is all of my 141 VC titles which I have spent well over £1000 to be playable via Wii U mode ! I should get special access for my loyalty to the VC !!

mamp

#34

mamp said:

If VC on the Wii U means having to buy VC games all over again just forget it.

brooks83

#36

brooks83 said:

@jogurt - I've got almost 100 titles myself (more if you count Wiiware) and you're right, we should get some kind of loyalty bonus haha

Le_Gazman

#37

Le_Gazman said:

Nintendo knows what VC games I bought. It knows that I downloaded a Gamecube screensaver with my nintendo points 10yrs ago FFS! So they can do away with this system transfer nonsense and just let me download my old VC games again once they get it up and running on Wii U.

Or I will tie it to my pick up truck and pull the whole site down, Martin Riggs style.

SPEtheridge

#38

SPEtheridge said:

Hopefully won't be too long then, good to ear though, is till don't know how GCN titles will work if they com to VC though the Wii U lacks the analog triggers.

Kevin

#39

Kevin said:

I want to play them on the Classic Controller Pro, not the Gamepad!

Peznaze

#40

Peznaze said:

More, what's it called? "Off-TV Play"? That's good. The fact that Wii emulation (and by extension Wii VC) cannot stream to the Gamepad is bad. Here's hoping they do a transfer service for Wii VC to Wii U VC.

Peach64

#43

Peach64 said:

If I can transfer my Wii VC purchases to the proper Wii U interface and play on the gamepad, then that's a big plus for me and a big step towards me picking one up.

Rapadash6

#45

Rapadash6 said:

If Nintendo charges again for the same titles, I might just not bother with it. I have over 100 VC games on my Wii (now on my Wii U), and it would sour me greatly to not only have to pay, but to have to wait till Nintendo decides to release them again. It was maddening how long it took for some games to show up on Wii's VC service; some of which never showed up at all. If the situation on the 3DS in the US is any indication, it's going to be even worse for Wii U. Ugh! Such a simple concept, but Nintendo certainly found ways to mess it up.

SteveW

#47

SteveW said:

I don't understand the desire to play them on the Gamepad, consoles are made for your TV, want a portable? the 3DS works for that and can go more than 15 ft away.

Yosher

#48

Yosher said:

The only thing I want is for Nintendo to finally find a way to not have to delete everything from my Wii while still putting everything I have on that onto my Wii U. Including the VC games.

cornishlee

#49

cornishlee said:

This sounds worryingly like an excuse not to integrate the existing virtual console library with the Wii U eshop.

@ultraraichu
Yep, those points are annoying.

astrotriforce

#51

astrotriforce said:

@Rapadash6 I couldn't agree more. Nintendo really needs to get their act together. Although they seem to think it doesn't harm them, because sales of games they do release on eShop/VC are good, it does hurt them in the longrun, as it ensures people will simply go to PSN/XBLA/Steam to get their retro fix instead of buying a game they were looking forward to. That, or they simply download it illegally. With good reason.

I don't yet own a Wii U, but hearing this type of thing makes me more hesitant to get one. Having said that, it will be nice to be able to download GCN games (even though I still buy/trade for them regularly. And play them more than current gen stuff) and very cool to be able to play VC games on the GamePad.

Hopefully Nintendo will continue to make progress forward and not go backward in regards to not forcing people to re-purchase digital titles. Ease-of-use and satisfying the core gamer/Nintendo fan who spent lots of money on your last system should be TOP PRIORITY. Especially with the 720 and PS4 still to come, Nintendo needs to do everything they can not to alienate their base one iota.

pntjr

#52

pntjr said:

FINALLY! I CAN PLAY SNES AND N64 GAMES ON THE VC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

As soon as VC comes out I'm getting
Majora's Mask
Super Mario World
Super Mario 64

Oh gosh golly this will be AWESOME!!!!

ajcismo

#55

ajcismo said:

Wow, people jumped on this one in a hurry.
The ability to play a big chunk of Nintendo's past, all from one console and its tablet controller should be a huge selling point and a huge deal. I can just picture myself enjoying Link to the Past while the wife watches whatever she wants on tv. Pure bliss, make it so.
Besides Gamecube additions, I'd like to see some Dreamcast and Saturn support as well.

Bazly

#58

Bazly said:

Thank goodness! Why this wasn't a feature AT LAUNCH baffles me, but at least it's in the works! :)

millarrp

#60

millarrp said:

like most posts, I hope that the virutal console games are transferable, it would be a shame to have to redownload them

sweetiepiejonus

#61

sweetiepiejonus said:

@Rapadash6

Always cracks me up when people talk about how "simple" something is. I realize it's human nature to expect the worst, but let's just wait and see, huh?

You and astrotriforce will surely be missed, I'm sure, but VC should not be Nintendo's priority here. Not for a while either.

Kezins

#62

Kezins said:

Can't wait for them to implement this. Hopefully using the VC games we already have will not be a hassle.

strenny

#63

strenny said:

I can imagine that they will implement downloadable updates to each vc title in existance to enable gamepad support because every single vc game comes with its own emulator... Then we propably will have to pay for that update. Nintendo can't rip us off making buy games again at full price. Neither can Nintendo start a new wii u vc excluding their already released classics.

Peppy_Hare

#65

Peppy_Hare said:

Hoping that they allow existing VC purchases to be played on the gamepad. No way am I buying those games again just for the option to play them on the gamepad!

Xcape_DuCkMAN_X

#66

Xcape_DuCkMAN_X said:

Don't make it just to the game pad alone!!! Make it an option! The whole VC deal shoulda been popped off from the start!!! Com'on Nintendo!!! Y'all had time time during development on the Wii U. VC don't need to be on the backburner!!!

MAB

#67

MAB said:

As long as they work on at least getting 2 VC games up EVERY week then I will be happy ;)

TheRegginator

#71

TheRegginator said:

I hope we'll be able to play them on the gamepad screen. Because it's resolution is 480p, all NES, SNES, and N64 games will upscale perfectly from their resolutions of 240p on to it. Gamecube games would also look perfect on it because they are 480p. No longer would I have to worry about games looking terrible on my HD TV.

shake_zula

#72

shake_zula said:

If I just had confirmation that any games bought on the Wii VC would transfer, I wouldn't hesitate to invest literally hundreds of pounds into it. If this doesn't happen I'll simply wait and buy whatever's released on the Wii U VC. What really needs to happen is Wii mode being scrapped entirely, no other console has ever needed to reboot into a separate mode for backwards compatibility.

If they do simply release a new Virtual Console with a fresh library, then hopefully it will launch with a good catalogue of N64 and SNES classics. One thing I know for sure is that I won't be buying any WiiWare or VC titles unless I know that I can play them on the Gamepad.

Either way, I just want them to hurry up with it ;_;

SMEXIZELDAMAN

#74

SMEXIZELDAMAN said:

Lol, not growing impatient. Games and entertainment things are never worth hyping over. We feel new and refreshed for about 3 days then it's same old same old.

brooks83

#76

brooks83 said:

@sweetiepiejonus - if Nintendo wants me to buy a Wii U they better not ask us to buy VC games we already bought again. I know other people feel the same as me.

luminalace

#77

luminalace said:

Thats excellent news. Virtual Console titles would be perfect for the Gamepad..infact that thought alone has got me very excited. My VC games stopped looking good on my HDTV last gen but they will undoubtedly look great on the Gamepad.

DarkNinja9

#78

DarkNinja9 said:

that would be amazing if you could play in the gamepad! :D now make it happen for sure this time

Zodiak13

#79

Zodiak13 said:

Part of me wants this, but the other part of me that has bills to pay does not. Thankfully the latter of those usually loses out.

Peppy_Hare

#84

Peppy_Hare said:

@Kezins it shouldn't have been a hassle to transfer VC games over to the WiiU but it was. I would've preferred a Club Nintendo to Nintendo Shop link that would've allowed for me to simply redownload purchased VC titles.

Gamesake

#88

Gamesake said:

@Peppy_Hare Repurchasing titles for the luxury of playing them on the VC or 3DS VC is already a crime in progress. (I'm onto you Nintendo.) Repurchasing games to play on Wii U really wouldn't be any different. Although it would certainly make the Nintendo Network less attractive to loyal Wii owners.

Peppy_Hare

#89

Peppy_Hare said:

@Gamesake great point. I refuse to pay for VC titles I've purchased on the Wii for my 3DS. It's ridiculous and, I believe, the harm done to consumer loyalty is greater than the benefits Nintendo receives in extra digital sales. Forcing Nintendo-philes to redownload these games only injures the brand we've known and loved throughout the years.

Peppy_Hare

#90

Peppy_Hare said:

@dragon_rider her·e·sy
/ˈherəsē/
Noun
Belief or opinion contrary to orthodox religious (esp. Christian) doctrine.
Opinion profoundly at odds with what is generally accepted: "cutting capital gains taxes is heresy".
Synonyms
misbelief - heterodoxy

Peppy_Hare

#91

Peppy_Hare said:

@Gamesake I agree with you regarding the 3DS. I appreciate that on my iOS devices I can redownload apps that I've paid for on other iOS devices. My PS Vita allows me to play PSX titles (such as Klonoa, Symphony of the Night and Metal Gear Solid) I've purchased years ago from the Playstation Store (titles which were originally purchased and played on my PS3). Nintendo's strict "walled-garden" approach regarding digital content frustrates the loyal fan, nickel-and-dimes already-paying consumers and drives some to hacking and emulation.

Gamesake

#92

Gamesake said:

@Peppy_Hare What I'm saying is a lot of us bought many of these games the first time around when they were in retail stores. They've already made their profits. By charging us for retro digital downloads companies like Sony and Nintendo are double dipping into our wallets. It's become commonplace. A lot of you guys are potentially getting upset over something that has been going on for awhile now.

sweetiepiejonus

#93

sweetiepiejonus said:

@brooks83

No that's not what I meant. I was talking about people who think emulation and backwards compatibility is "simple."

And people are already assuming that we have to buy them again. Until we're told they won't be providing a transfer tool or something you guys need to stop complaining.

I didn't have to re-purchase all my DSiware to get them on my 3DS. Did I just get lucky? Like the one millionth customer or something?

SCAR392

#94

SCAR392 said:

Awesome. More features... Whether this means Wii U will run Wii without Wii mode is yet to be seen... If they bring Wii VC to eShop, I'm pretty much 100% sure they won't make anyone buy their games again if you already have them. Maybe they were testing the Donkey Kong Country games and Sim City to see how they run on Wii U, hence their recent absence? All speculation...

WiiLovePeace

#95

WiiLovePeace said:

So does that mean virtual console games won't be playable on the TV? Bummer if true but I'd definitely still buy some gamecube classics if made available.

If true that really hinders the use of the Pro Controller.

seronja

#96

seronja said:

this time is it possible for nintendo to publish some old rareware game's on the new virtual console? or atleast could nintendo buy old rare IP's because M$ has no use of franchises like banjo-kazooie, conkers bad fur day, perfect dark or killer instinct and the rest of the classic's since M$ only need's them for such nonsense like kinect sports.

PinkSpider

#98

PinkSpider said:

This is awesome news, this will be the closest to having a portable SNES as I could wish for. I am very happy

PinkSpider

#99

PinkSpider said:

Heres what I think they will do, put the VC games into the e shop and at the worst your have to re download them so that the gmepad has the coding to to read them. I don't think Nintendo would be that stupid to charge people again for games tey have already paid for as they know they would alienate so many of there loyal followers. Nintendo can be stupid but.surely not that stupid. I'm sure they will give you the tv option a, but s well otherwise whats the point. You won't ever see normal Wii games though awouldn't work on like 85% of them as you need the wii remote, but I would like to see them get rid of the.horrible wii emulation and have everything on the same menu as it feels like I'm playing two consoles sometimes

DerpSandwich

#100

DerpSandwich said:

Then the last step is to release Gamecube games on the VC so I can play Pikmin 2 and achieve perfect zen.

Sean_Aaron

#101

Sean_Aaron said:

They really need to make all Wii download titles playable from the Wii U menu, not just VC. I also hope no re-purchase is necessary, just a migration process a la Miis from the Wii channel.

Whatever happens VC content needs to be cheaper. I cannot see paying the kind of money we were on the Wii when content providers are making entire libraries of software available with emulators for fifteen quid in the iTunes Store.

MarioKenny1992

#107

MarioKenny1992 said:

I agree with everyone saying that Nintendo better not charge consumers again for the same games we already got off the Wii virtual console

SparkOfSpirit

#108

SparkOfSpirit said:

I just think that because the VC is a pretty big chunk of the Wii shop, that if those are playable on the U's pad, that must mean they're looking to combine them. I could be wrong, but I think that's what they're trying to do.

I also doubt they'll make users re-buy their games.

RaylaxStaff

#111

Raylax said:

Excellent. Just so long as:
a) We don't have to re-buy all our Wii VC titles
b) We don't have to wait for Nintendo to drip-feed Wii U VC titles onto the service that are already on Wii VC

UnseatingKDawg

#112

UnseatingKDawg said:

Well, I now see a more significant reason to import my library of VC games once I get a Wii U. For the record, I'm one of those who doesn't want to play the game pictured above...

CharbroiledEwok

#114

CharbroiledEwok said:

Sounds great - just PLEASE don't make us re-purchase them for the Wii U, if we already own them for the Wii...

StarDust4Ever

#116

StarDust4Ever said:

I kinda always felt like it was a little half-donkey of Nintendo to do a compatability mode with Wii system menu and all just to access Wii VC and Wiiware titles, especially seeing how Dsi and 3DS apps coexist side by side in the eShop and on the 3DS home menu. Oh well, at least we didn't have to wait 3 frikking months for an eShop or transfer app like with 3DS. For right now I can live with it, but playing certain games on the Wiimote D-pad just really sucks ATM. I've got to dig the Classic Controller Pro out of the bin since the new Wii-U Pro controller won't work in Wii mode. VC games on Wii-U pad would be awesome. Mario Sunshine on Gamepad would be even better! Let my mom watch her Food Network and HGTV on the big screen.

Moshugan

#117

Moshugan said:

@Yosher #48 ''The only thing I want is for Nintendo to finally find a way to not have to delete everything from my Wii while still putting everything I have on that onto my Wii U. Including the VC games.''

Find a way? I'm sure they made a conscious choise in limiting the files to one system.

Sun

#121

Sun said:

Great news!! Can't wait to play my Wii VC games on the Gamepad.

FonistofCruxis

#124

FonistofCruxis said:

I think they should add Saturn and Dreamcast games to the Wii U's VC as well as newer arcade games.

I also think that all Wii downloads should be available on the Wii U eshop. I also think that you should be able to play Wii games on the same channel as Wii U games. If Nintendo do all this, then there won't be any need for a Wii mode on the Wii U.

Obywan

#125

Obywan said:

@Raylax This!

If A happens I will be pissed. I wouldnt mind B just as long as A doesnt happen.

If both A and B happen, I wont be spending a dime on any more VC games.

Peppy_Hare

#126

Peppy_Hare said:

I refuse to pay for VC titles I've purchased on the Wii for my 3DS. It's ridiculous and, I believe, the harm done to consumer loyalty is greater than the benefits Nintendo receives in extra digital sales. Forcing Nintendo-philes to redownload these games only injures the brand we've known and loved throughout the years.

While I'm on the subject: it shouldn't have been a hassle to transfer VC games over to the WiiU but it was. I would've preferred a Club Nintendo to Nintendo Shop link that would've allowed for me to simply redownload purchased VC titles.
I appreciate that on my iOS devices I can redownload apps that I've paid for on other iOS devices. My PS Vita allows me to play PSX titles (such as Klonoa, Symphony of the Night and Metal Gear Solid) I've purchased years ago from the Playstation Store (titles which were originally purchased and played on my PS3). Nintendo's strict "walled-garden" approach regarding digital content frustrates the loyal fan, nickel-and-dimes already-paying consumers and drives some to hacking and emulation.

baker4201

#128

baker4201 said:

love the system down fall no virtualsystemgames just today playing windwaker and get kicked off the tv come on nintendo think of all the money ull make on resales and plz dont forget tales of symphonia

g_reg

#130

g_reg said:

WHEN is this going to happen???!!! I don't mind paying a small fee to play my old vc games on what is technically a different console but please just let everyone know when it is going to happen!!! 1 game a month definitely doesn't cut it..

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