News Article

Nintendo of America Offers Free Wii U eShop Credit If You Splash the Cash

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Reward depends on spend, naturally

While Nintendo of Europe is encouraging retail downloads on Wii U by offering a 30% discount on The Wonderful 101 if Pikmin 3 has also been purchased on the eShop, Nintendo of America has now stepped in with its own offer for residents of the U.S. and Canada.

In a bid to tempt you into abandoning discs for a hard drive install, the North America deal encourages you to add plenty of funds to your Wii U eShop account before 28th July. If you add between $50-99.99 you'll be emailed a code for $5 of Wii U eShop credit on 2nd August, two days before Pikmin 3 is released in the region; if you add $100 or more, meanwhile, you'll receive $10 in credit.

Important things to know are that you need to have a valid email address tied to your Nintendo Network account, this applies to the Wii U eShop only, and only funds added between 22nd and 28th July (closing at 11:59 PST on the final day) will be eligible for the promotion. While it may seem like a lot of credit to add, it actually adds up to the value of a couple of retail downloads, and may make sense if you were planning to download a couple of upcoming releases anyway. For those that have a 32GB model, meanwhile, Wii U eShop purchases also make you eligible for $5 vouchers for roughly every $60 spent, as part of the Nintendo Network Premium promotion.

Are you planning to pick up some retail downloads, or are you thinking about it now with the possibility of picking up some free Wii U eShop credit? Let us know in the comments below, and if interested check out the official promotion website.


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User Comments (78)



Moganus said:

I'd like to do this, and I have a 32GB. But honestly that's like no room for anything. I might just use that all for Virtual Console stuff. Can anyone recommend a good external hard drive to use for the Wii U? Thanks.



WingedSnagret said:

Why would we get a code for 5 Euros?

And this deal isn't nearly as good as the 30% discount one.



Cipher said:

Didn't think this promotion would leave Japan, great news that it is.



RedYoshi999 said:

Cue the angry responses that say Europe's promotion is better. But if you think about it, this one might be better if you don't want to download Pikmin and W101, but instead enjoy the freedom of buying whatever you want.



erv said:

I'm in europe going the promo route as wonderful 101 is on my wish list anyway. Tied with the 5 euro essential purchase discount the premium membership offers you can't be fooled there



New_3DaSh_XL said:

Well, this is frustrating.

The day Earthbound came out I put $50 in my Wii U eShop account. Shoot...



rjejr said:

"Add $50-$99.99 to receive a promotional code for $5
Add $100 or more to receive a promotional code for $10"

So, 10% for $50 or $100, less than that in between? Why not just do a straight 10% like w/ the Premium plan? Silly Nintendo.

I do like the page w/ the 3 games - Pikmin 3, Rayman, W101 across the top. And Game Informer mag has a full 2 page inside cover spread for Pikmin 3. The alarm clocks finally woke up Nintendo's advertising dept.



SkywardCrowbar said:

I just now realized (thanks to this story) that since I have a deluxe set, I can log into the Deluxe Digital site and get discount codes. Derp. Oh well, time to cash in!

I'll use this promotion since I was going to put $50 in anyway. I wanted to snag Puddle and other VC titles I have missed out on so far.

Also, I don't like buying retail games on the eShop. I like buying those in hard copies. Then again, I have about 500 CD's as well. I guess I'm just an old school collector.



ThomasBW84 said:

@rjejr I'm not following you, what are you talking about? Add over $50 but less than $100, get $5, add $100 or more for $10. It's pretty standard stuff!



ricklongo said:

I don't do retail downloads, but there are many eShop exclusives coming our way that interest me. This might be a good idea to prepare for the near future.



SkywardCrowbar said:

@ThomasBW84 Glad to hear I'm not the only one, haha. I remember being told about it when I was picking up my Wii U on launch morning at Gamestop, but I just completely forgot about it.



tchaten said:

I may do this, but will use the funds for VC titles and eShop only releases - for retail releases I'm physical only as I want to own every Wii U game at some point to have a complete collection.



GuttaBunny said:

I wouldnt dream of downloading anything until my purchase is tied to my account and not the console.



Peek-a-boo said:

@TruenoGT Hope nothing goes wrong with your Wii U in the foreseeable future!

... if it does, you lose everything.

It's that 'Nintendo magic'.



Yorumi said:

@Peek-a-boo their tied on to your club nintendo account so you can prove you purchased them, plus nintendo has to be keeping a database of this so they know. This is just scare tactics. I don't care if someone doesn't like to buy digital but there is so much misinformation and scare tactics being thrown around it's ridiculous.

Anyway I'll definitely take advantage of this with $100, I'm planning to get pikmin 3, mario kart and smash bros. That's more than $100 right there.



rjejr said:

@ThomasBW84 - If you add $50 you get $5, that's 10% back. If you add $100 you get $10, that's 10% back. If you add between $50.01 to $99.99 you get less than 10%. Anybody who added $99.99 would get $5, that's only 5% back. Rather than having that split they should have just said - spend over $50, get 10% back. That's how the Premium digital promotion works. I mean, it's only good for another 5 days anyway, they'll hardly go bankrupt. Plus, anybody who waits to actually buy Pikmin 3 misses out by 2 days. That doesn't seem right.

Either way, it's not as good as buy Pikmin 3 get 30% off W101. Of course the US has about 8% unemployment, I think France and Italy are over 10% and Greece is about 25%, so those countries deserve better deals.
(I'm a big fan of the working man.)



ThomasBW84 said:

@rjejr That's fine, I see what you mean. The structure Nintendo's using is pretty common for promotions, and will never be perfect for everyone. Ultimately, for those that want it and were planning to buy a couple of retail games (or whatever) anyway, they can add the funds ahead of time and get some free credit. It's not a bad thing, even if deals elsewhere are perhaps more favourable.



TruenoGT said:

@Peek-a-boo Yeah I hear you, but I look at it this way. Even with retail copies, if the system breaks, I still can't play the games until Nintendo fixes it or I purchase a new system. With digital only, I indeed lose the ability to play on a different system. However, this really only matters when Wii Us stop being sold and Nintendo no longer repairs them (probably many years from now). By this time, Nintendo will have released a new system that may or may not be compatible with Wii U discs, but will hopefully allow me to transfer digital games to the new system. Additionally, I'm banking on by that time, I can register my games with a transferable Nintendo account (and either way they are on file with Club Nintendo). Even if none of this happens, let's say that in 10-15 years my system breaks and Nintendo will no longer repair it... WORST case scenario is that I will purchase a used, replacement Wii U and turn to piracy to install the games I purchased legally. Discs can fail too and eventually degrade over time, and I'm not so sure that in 20-30 years they'll still work as intended. It's a risk either way in my opinion, so I'm going for convenience today. I should note that conversely, I'm physical only for 3DS since I like cartridges in general and there's much greater risk of my system being lost/stolen on-the-go meaning I would definitely lose everything.



Peek-a-boo said:

@Yorumi ... but would you prefer to flaff about with Nintendo and their customer services (over the phone or via e-mail) to get ALL of those digital games back, or instantly re-download them off your downloads list within their respective stores on the PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360?

Nintendo are still, ridiculously, so far behind with their online infrastructure.



Ernest_The_Crab said:

@Peek-a-boo I don't know what you're talking about the case of a BROKEN system I've always had them just transfer over the games and ownership anyways (I've replaced 2 3DS's).

You should really adjust your post since the only time which it would be a concern is if you LOST your system or it was STOLEN.



Yorumi said:

@Peek-a-boo I would absolutely prefer them tied to an account, and tied in a way that I could just plug my HD in to another wiiU and log in(just authenticate with a server and only allow an account to log in from one location at a time). I'm just saying that all the scare tactics going around regarding digital games are ridiculous.

People are absolutely safe buying digital games, and while it would be annoying losing a system it's not a common thing. From the NES to today I've not lost one single nintendo system through failure or being stolen or whatever. If someone does lose a system it's probably a one time thing. And honestly if your physical games get stolen, broken, or lost you don't get them back at all. At least there's some way to get digital games back.



hYdeks said:

So, 10% back basicly? Mehh, the Deluxe Program is basicly the same I got $5 in credit back for getting Nintendo Land, and they added the $10 extra (takes $50, or 500 points to get $5 credit) to my next $5 credit.



Yorumi said:

@hydeks you're essentially getting the digital promotion twice with this. 10% when you add the funds, and 10% when you spend them.



rjejr said:

@ThomasBW84 - No, not a bad thing, it's a good thing, they are really trying and I give them credit for that, just seems like for an all DIGITAL promotion they made it more like an old fashioned clipping coupons ad when they've already established the straight 10%.

Ok, enough chit chat, I'm sure you have a an opinion/talking point piece to publish and I need to go pick up my car at the garage. Say hi to the new Prince for me. (Maybe you should hurry up and send him a 3DS before he gets an iPad.)



ThomasBW84 said:

@rjejr I think I read a stat that over 1000 babies would have been born in the UK yesterday. I wish them all well, but why I'd care about one wealthy baby over all the others is beyond me. Safe to say I didn't view the media and public delight over yesterday's 'events' with much fondness, plus I'm sure his Highness can afford his own 3DS.



ULTRA-64 said:

@SkywardCrowbar I just got reminded by your post too, remind me again where I check for I don't have a clue where. On web browser I presume and on the console itself?!?



Peek-a-boo said:

@Ernest_The_Crab I do not feel like I need to adjust my post because the subject matter is still the same; you can happily instantly re-download your digital collection on a PS Vita, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, heck even on an iOS or Android phone/tablet!

... with the Wii U, broken or stolen, this simply isn't possible because Nintendo and their online infrastructure is a decade behind everyone else.

You shouldn't have to send your console or handheld away for Nintendo to do this.

It is not 1999 anymore.



rmeyer said:

For those that have a 32 gb model? I have a terabyte drive, Nintendo devices let you use your own hard drives.



ultraraichu said:

darn it, I added a $50 point card three days ago (brought it seven days ago) bringing my total to 71.27. I guess I can buy 2 $50 point cards before the offer ends.

I may not need it all now but I will later on down the road piece by piece and the extra $10 is better then none at all.



Ryno said:

Not bad, was just about to load up some funds this week anyway. Was tempted to buy Earthbound right away but glad I waited.



FineLerv said:

@rodricci @Moganus "Seagate Expansion Desktop drive 2 Tb STBV2000100,has an external power supply."

That's the one I use. It's served me well so far so I second the recommendation.



OptometristLime said:

TBH @rjejr already summed up my disdain for this offer.

Surely @ThomasBW84 is playing coy? The tiered offer may be bog standard fare, but when viewed as a dollars to donuts proposition there isn't an incentive until you add WAY more than the first tier. IMHO the consumer should feel rewarded for each and every dollar they put in past $50; tight wadded fists do not engender contented feelings, lol

Anyway perhaps there is some practicality you are considering, I just wanted to establish another viewpoint.



theblackdragon said:

@OptometristLime: I think the 'practicality' being considered is that this is exactly the same sort of promotion retail stores IRL provide — hell, i work at a retail store that does one of those 'for every $50 you spend, get a $10 off coupon blah-blah-blah' things once a month or so. The store chain doesn't do percentages either, and people regularly grab something small on impulse just to hit the tier so they can get their coupon. It's nothing new to the average consumer.

Sure, it'd be great if it was done as a percentage, and yes, it's not good if you only wanted to spend $90 in the eShop or something, but it's an incentive to get people to spend enough to hit those tiers if they hadn't been going to do so anyway where there'd been perhaps no incentive at all before. If you don't like it, no one's forcing you to put down your funds — and for those Pikmin 3 people mentioned earlier, perhaps they can buy the funds a little earlier than they would've otherwise :3



sleepinglion said:

I use a 500GB Western Digital external with my Wii U and it works great. I did purchase a OEM UTStarcom USB Y Adapter Cable for HTC HD2 - YC150B just in case. My external is USB powered so I'm playing it safe. Works flawlessly and it's that pricey (Amazon it). I keep my VC titles on the internal. I use save points and the menu just seems to react a lot quicker if the VC games on ON my Wii U. Besides, they're small. I've yet to purchase any retail downloads aside from the Luigi DLC but have earned a few 5-dollar credits just from regular eShop purchases and such.



b23cdq said:

Whatever, Club Nintendo still isn't available here in Northern Europe.



daveh30 said:


Don't know about your math, but your "modest" 10% yield can be obtained at $50.
Just throw in a hundred bones and take your free $10. We're all gonna spend that much eventually anyway....



Edwin said:

Has it been confirmed that the big games coming out this fall (Wind Waker HD, Donkey Kong, Mario 3D World) will be available on the eShop?

Also any guesses on how many GBs they'll take up? People with 32GB many retail games can you fit? Thanks!



daveh30 said:

lol, it's not "bogged down", its just wrong. You're misrepresenting facs because you dont like them. You stated, and I quote, " You will notice that the offer presented requires significant pay in (an astonishing $100) before the consumer can attain a modest 10% yield on their dollar." That is not true. you can add $50 to your account and get an extra $5 credit. thats 10% by any math.

The problem is, you need to forget about percentages because thats not what Nintendo offered you. They offered you a $5 bonus credit if you add $50 to your account, or $10 if you add $100. Period. Not a 10% bonus. Crying because you won't get $7 for adding $70 or $9 if you add $90 is just being stupid . Take whats offered or don't.



OptometristLime said:

Hey, stand down; you're welcome to disagree, but I would encourage you to do so politely.

What I have been trying to express is the some what peculiar situation that befalls those who pay something more than $50, yet less than $100. A percentage based approach would compensate any dollar amount, greater than $50 in this case. Perhaps being slightly more attractive to someone who can afford to put in $60 or $70, but may fall shy of the full amount.

Also "bogged down" was a reference to my own ineptness at expressing a point, rather than some dig at you...

EDIT I've removed the offending post, and am comfortable with TBD's analysis really.



Captain_Gonru said:

The Western Digital 2 TB has worked well for me, but I know the Seagate is a few bucks cheaper, depending on where you shop, of course. Just be sure that, whichever one you get, it's the desktop model, not the portable. The desktop has its own power supply, which is necessary for use with the Wii U, according to the research I did before purchasing.



JustinH said:

So, guys, Cloudberry Kingdom, Ducktales Remastered and Pokemon Rumble U are all out in August, and EarthBound just dropped on Thursday. Even if you're like me and you only buy games on disc, there's still enough eShop-only stuff coming before Labour Day that $50 shouldn't be too big of a deal.



CaPPa said:

I'm going to buy the digital version of The Wonderful 101, so I may as well throw $100 on.



tripunktoj said:

At the bottom of the page it reads its only valid for US and Canada, I thought Mexico and Brazil (where eShop and deluxe program are also available, unlike the rest of latin America) would also be elegible since it uses your Nintendo Network ID and email and doesn't looks like it uses club.nintendo. I can just change regions, create an ID in those countries and use an international credit card, but maybe the difference in exchange rates consumes the extra $10, which defeats the purpose of all this hassle.



rjejr said:

@ThomasBW84 - "why I'd care about one wealthy baby over all the others is beyond me."

Sorry TW, didn't mean to upset you. I'ld gladly trade you 1 sexting Weiner or Client #9 for baby talk though, so I can see how I could have hit a nerve. No mas anglophilia, I'll stick w/ videogames.



ThomasBW84 said:

Not at all, I was merely venting. As you can imagine the coverage around in the UK was a bit much!



TheAdrock said:

A 5% discount is about as wimpy as you can get. Even Bed Bath and Beyond gives 20% all the time.



GreatPlayer said:

No, not enough incentive for me to drop the money before making any purchase. 5% is too little.



TheAdrock said:

@daveh30 , $5 rebate / $99 spent = 5%
Now admittedly you could spend $50 and the same rebate would then be 10% which begs the question: why wouldn't Nintendo make it a sliding scale rebate to encourage more spending? But IMO, even 10% is a weak rebate. That barely covers most sales tax.



GreatPlayer said:

@daveh30 What's the big deal when the eshop titles are usually more expensive than the retail version?

If you actually pay in advance, Nintendo probably thinks that you are more likely to spend it (because what you have already paid is already a suck cost to you). You end up spending more money on buying games than if you do not pay in advance.



sinalefa said:

@Yorumi is right. You are getting a discount for adding the funds and yet another one after you spend them, in whatever game(s) you want, not any "selection of games". I also liked that Nintendo was kind enough to advertise this via email.

I usually charge $20 at a time by using prepaid cards, so I am not sure I will take advantage of this. I want Code of Princess, though, and this promo only applies for the Wii U eShop.



daveh30 said:


No one said you need to use it to buy retail games. It's not a discount for a certain game, its bonus cash for depositing to your account. With games like Earthbound, Cloudberry Kingdom, Ducktales, and who knows what else for VC being release, I just really can't take anyone seriously who's gonna complain about free money.



GreatPlayer said:

@daveh30 Free money, bonus cash? They are credits that will be earned back by Nintendo. In addition, not everyone will want Earthbound, Ducktales... This so-called free-money is not really free - you need to pay (at least $50) for this so-called free-money.
Logically think.



DESS-M-8 said:

@Moganus Toshiba Canvio Stor.e 2tb. Listed on Nintendo's website as compatible and recommended, I picked one up brand new for around £80 works perfectly, looks aesthetically good as I got te black one to match my Wii U on November 30th at the same time I bought my wii u. Looks, works perfectly and at 2tb I've all the storage I'll ever need, and all came in for less than a PS4 with 4 times as much storage space, 3 games a controller AND of course the game pad. Better graphics with the PS4 and this bundle will set you back £630.



Wanderhope said:

I love how anti-digital peeps love to forget about the disadvantages of physical when trying to justify their decision with "good luck when your system breaks" and "have fun talking to customer service to get your games back." Like I can say "good luck when your disc is scratched and you can't play" or "good luck when you lose your game," etc. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, so let's not pretend. For me, I prefer digital because the pros outweigh the cons and the chances of my Wii U spontaneously combusting are far less than my kids losing or scratching one of our $60 games. And, even if your Wii U breaks, you can get your games back - even if it is currently a broken and annoying system. It'll get better, especially if we support it.



DarkEdi said:

Why this is not a general thing? I´m from Mexico but i put money in my eshop. I could receive the code in my like the deluxe offer i have. I always download my $5 code no matters i´m from Mexico, but Nintendo does this promo only for USA and Canada, not for America. It is a lame.

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