Topic: GamePad 'unstable connection' issues - but only while playing Most Wanted U

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Hello everyone,

I realize this might be a long shot because who the hell still cares. But I was late to the Wii U party and I'm playing through one of the last games in my backlog: Need for Speed Most Wanted U. Now I'm finding myself with the strangest issue I've ever seen with this console.

I'm loving this game, which comes as no surprise as I grew up on this franchise and this is basically the last truly great entry it ever had. Most of my playtime has been on the TV, while I occasionally use off-TV play with the GamePad.

First off, my GamePad's connection has always been great: for some reason I can use it throughout my entire house with no problems. Even in the bedroom, which is multiple rooms away from the living room where the Wii U console itself resides. And thus is also separated by multiple walls. Always applauded this connection.
But recently I started getting trouble: during NFS MWU sessions in bed, the GamePad feed started having hiccups and freezes all the time. Sometimes showing the 'unstable connection' error. Obviously, this renders any racing game unplayable.

It has to be said that this only started occuring later on. I must've played tens of hours off-TV in bed without trouble. However, now that this problem has arrived, I thought something new in or around the house must be messing with the connection or the hardware itself is just aging and deteriorating.

But those things are not the case. And I know this because I noticed something very peculiar: while playing a different game in bed I was suddenly having no connection problems at all. Just to be sure there's no new signals interfering in the living room, I moved my console to the bedroom right next to me. To my surprise this did not help. The GamePad feed is still showing hiccups and connection problems all the time, even though the GamePad is now right next to the console.

Strangest thing of all is that these problems vanish as soon as I press the home button. I can use the browser or any other app, or play any other game without any problems, even if the console is multiple rooms away from the GamePad. But as soon as I try NFS in off-TV mode, the connection will become unstable and eventually lost.

Has anyone ever had such an issue before? GamePad connection issues that are only present in one specific game? I mean, how weird is that? I cannot for the life of me find anything about this through Google.

If anyone has any tips or tricks about this issue and how to deal with it, they'd be greatly appreciated!

Have a nice day!



@Sculptor I've noticed controller sync'ing problems with specific Switch games, granted not as severe as your NFS MWU issue. So, I don't think your scenario sounds that crazy. Do you ever get an error code? You can plug error codes into Nintendo's support search bar, and many codes have a support page explaining the code, and potentially solutions.

Even though your issue seems game specific, and this is really basic, for troubleshootings sake, it can't hurt to look through the list of possible sources of connection problems. What caught my eye was removing smartphones, wireless phones from the area. Disregard if you already knew this stuff. I just know, every once in a while, something dumb can be the problem I could have sworn there have been a few occasions where my smartphone may have been the root of some controller connection issues with the Switch, and the problem stopped when I took the phone out of the immediate area. I know you have a Wii U, but the Wii U connection troubleshooting looks virtually identical to the Switch.

Edited on by WoomyNNYes

Extreme bicycle rider (<=click for great video<3)
'Tendo liker


Thank you a lot for going through this for me! I'll be sure to check that support page and try your other suggestions.

I haven't had any error codes yet. It's just giving me the "Connection with the Wii U console has become unstable -> connection lost" message. Funny thing is the max range should be 8 meters while I am using it at around 12 meters distance + two walls in between, no problem. And here comes Most Wanted with connection issues even if the GamePad is literally on top of the console. Issues that disappear as soon as you're not in-game anymore. So I suppose it's game specific. Maybe it's extra sensitive during this game for whatever reason. Removing any interfering devices should still help in that case.

I'll just try some things and keep you posted. Thanks again!



Alright, I tried a few things and they didn't work, but the issue still resolved itself. O_o

Weather was nice so I moved the console outside to my backyard, where I supposed signal interference would be at a minimum. Didn't take any smartphone with me or anything else. But the problem still persisted. Sigh.

I tried some stuff from the article you linked, like resetting/resyncing the GamePad and still no dice. I gave up and put the console back to its usual spot inside. Same spot where all the trouble started in the first place. Gave it another go and still got Most Wanted exclusive connection problems. And then it happened: after a few minutes I noticed I was able to drive without stutter slightly longer than usual. This kept on improving and improving and after ten minutes or so the issue simply disappeared into thin air! I tried taking the GamePad with me to the bedroom and yep, like any other piece of software it still works fine even that far from the console.

I'll never know what the hell this problem was and why it just resolved itself, but I'm glad nonetheless. I do know that this wasn't a normal unstable connection; the GamePad usually cuts the connection and shows the error message immediately after the signal becomes unstable. It normally doesn't do all the lagging and stuttering first, like it did with this game. But whatever.

Time for a GamePad that doesn't need a main console attached to it. Oh wait...

Thanks again for your time!

Edited on by Sculptor


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