News Article

Nintendo Removes Restriction On 18+ Content For the Nintendo eShop

Posted by Orla Madden

Adults, now you can browse whenever you want

It seems that the restriction on 18+ content on the Nintendo Wii U eShop — and 3DS eShop, it should be noted — has finally been lifted. Games rated PEGI 18 (USK 18 in Germany) were only accessible during certain hours each day, from 11pm in some European countries until 3am — only giving four hours each day to view details and purchase 18+ titles such as ZombiU. This seemed unfair to a majority of adult gamers who would have no need for Parental Controls, but had to wait regardless.

As Nintendo of Europe's headquarters is based in Germany, this meant it was following a prospective German law - which aims to restrict mature content to certain hours in a day.

Upon lifting the ban, Nintendo is encouraging parents to make full use of the Parental Controls, to avoid young children viewing mature content at any stage during the day. Below is the message that's been posted in the "News" section of the Wii U eShop.

Dear Customer,

Nintendo has lifted the access restrictions to content rated 18+. Adults can now browse and buy all games at any time of the day.

Following analysis of the Parental Controls system on Wii U and Nintendo 3DS in cooperation with USK, the German Entertainment Software Self-Regulation Body, it was deemed that Nintendo's Parental Control system is of very high quality and offers a remarkable level of protection for children. Nintendo's Parental Control system was found to have proved itself in practice.

Nintendo always encourages parents to make use of Parental Controls to control access to content they deem inappropriate for their children.

Nintendo eShop Team

Has this restriction affected you in the past, and will its removal encourage to check out 18-rated games and their DLC more regularly? Let us know in the comments below.


From the web

User Comments (47)



BenAV said:

I doubt it'll really have any effect on me, but it was a stupid thing to have in place, so good news that it's gone.



WiiLovePeace said:

Yeah I've never seen an 18+ game that interests me so it wasn't a big deal in my eyes. I'm glad for all those wanting to be able to buy the games they want when they want though The parental controls were there for a reason, after all.



ultraraichu said:

Lets see if sales will increase since half of the people against the restriction "boycott" the 18+ games and the other half are/were underage.



Chrono_Cross said:

Glad to see Nintendo getting with the times.

Especially considering its console has parental controls to begin with.



Bluezealand said:

As I mentioned earlier (and this news should be prove enough) there is no such German law! How about "Sorry Germany for (literally) blaming you"?



ThumperUK said:

Thank you Nintendo for treating the rest of Europe the ability to be an adult in the daytime & evening! Was frustrating not to be able to even view AC3 download contents.



HeatBombastic said:

@Pichuka97 Nintendo didn't lift the ban from letting kids under 18 buy it in Europe. If you entered your age and it's under 18, you can't buy rated M games. However adults can buy these games any time. There was no ban on when they could buy it (in the States, and now Europe). Try reading next time.



Kifa said:

Nintendo's parental control system always seemed very robust to me, so the limitation was simply dumbness on the part of USK. Real question is - will parents even utilise the tools 3DS and WiiU give them...?



Ryno said:

"Nintendo's Parental Control system is of very high quality"

Woohoo, new selling point for the Wii U!



Ernest_The_Crab said:

@Bluezealand The timeframe of course is not part of German Law, true HOWEVER (and this is a big one) the fact is they "have" to do something until the parental controls pass the USK vote, even it means doing something stupid to appease them until the parental controls pass the vote.

@theblackdragon @Chrono_Cross This is still an issue with how the USK actually works. The parental controls had to pass a vote on their "effectiveness" before this limitation could be removed and quite frankly it would probably have stayed in place if the controls didn't pass the vote (well probably removed later since Nintendo would most likely have made additional changes and then resent the application for voting).



Bluezealand said:

"Nintendo's parental control system always seemed very robust to me, so the limitation was simply dumbness on the part of USK."

Ehh, what? The USK had nothing to do with this! They wouldn't even have the power to command things. All they do is rate video games on demand (!) of the publishers!
The restriction was Nintendos choice.

@Ernest_The_Crab: You're wrong there. It's not even part of the duties of the USK. The Landesmedienanstalten are the ones who actually could demand changes on the parental control setting, but they would only act, after the system is released and when they think, the youth protection isn't working properly. There was absolutely no need for Nintendo to restrict the access to 18+ content from the beginning.



Sean_Aaron said:

Hurrah! It was annoying not being able to so much as add a title to the watch list just because of an 18-rating, though historically I've only had one or two 18-rated games.



Prof_Elvin_Gadd said:

I love Nintendo, but that was them acting like "big brother", which is unnecessary. I'm glad they removed the time of day restrictions and I am also happy for my EU friends who had to stay up until the wee hours of the night to get "18+" rated games. Parents should be responsible for their children's actions, not Nintendo.



AJWolfTill said:

Delighted to see the end of that, plus it's one less thing for haters to complain about.
Still I'm glad Nintendo takes parental guidance stuff seriously



datamonkey said:

This really is excellent news, well done Nintendo for recognizing the unfairness in this law to the rest of Europe and for taking the step to sort it out.

Thing is unless German law changed, how did Nintendo get around this as they are still based in Germany right?



Bluezealand said:

"Thing is unless German law changed, how did Nintendo get around this as they are still based in Germany right?"

As pointed out thousands and thousands times by Germans as myself (not only in this news, but in every news regarding this subject) there never was such a German law!
Nintendo needed a punching bag to hide behind, and because most gamers are (apparently) ignorant and wouldn't listen (including the news-writers of NL!) everyone blamed the Germans.

I'm still waiting for the apologies.



Nintendo-64 said:


There is and never was such a law here in germany. Nintendo was just looking for a scapegoat when their OWN restrictions were discovered and they got heavily attacked by the players. I think the reason why Nintendo is ,,magically,, able to offer the service without these methods is that they finally spoke to german officials and asked if their own method of youth protection is allright and follow the german laws. It was just the lazynes on Nintendos side that heavily backfired on them. I hope i could answer your question.



Dpullam said:

I can't say that the 18+ restrictions bothered me at all. Still, it's good to see that it's gone. It's up to the parents to determine what their kids can see not Nintendo.



marck13 said:

There is no apology needed.
Nintendo was trying to the right thing an it's important for their business to appear children friendly at any point. I'm glad the change comes now.



Morph said:

Good for them, big fuss about nothing, just nintendo wanting to keep their family friendly image intact



Legromancer said:

ok, everyone:
It is insulting that in this day and age it is still possible to distribute false fact in such a grand scale. I read this untrue statement everywhere in the internet.
Could you please check your facts? Or ist it not worth the time? Because...Germany, nobody cares. Right? Right?



RetrogamerFan said:

Started downloading Zombi U as soon as i saw this news on the E-shop yesterday; good discount btw. Looking forward to bashing some Zombies over the weekend.
D/l took just under 4 hours, then 12 mins for install. Zombi U about 5.5 GB so definitely going to look for a disc version of LC:U game if that's really 22 GB.



K1LLEGAL said:

@mch @Morph Forgive me if i'm wrong but i'm going to go ahead and assume you two are the type of kids that support everything Nintendo does. There is a reason they got rid of this restriction so quickly... because it was dumb as balls. No other online digital store has implemented it; Nintendo were just being idiots. Glad to see some other people here realised that too though.

Just to be clear:

  • Stopping kids from downloading 18+ content = Great!
  • Stopping adults from downloading 18+ content = Stupid.


Beta said:

Meh, didn't care back then, don't care now. I mean, yeah, it sucks for people who buy 18+ games from the eShop, but I don't even buy 18+ rated games to begin with, in either forms XD

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