It looks like this could be the beginning of the end for the online support of the old eShop store. Nintendo has announced on their support page that they will be officially closing the online store for the Wii U and the 3DS in select countries located in Latin America and the Caribbean. In total, 42 different countries will lose the eShop on July 31, 2020, which includes being able to redeem codes for games, re-download software, and update current software.
— Nintendo Life (@nintendolife) April 28, 2020
While this seems like an alarming situation for everyone else, it’s important to note that these specific eShops in Latin America and the Caribbean are currently operating in a limited capacity. The only real accessibility that players have on the shop is to download and update software, as everything else that the majority of regions across the world enjoy are not available. On the support page linked above, Nintendo has outlined all 42 countries that will have the eShop on their Wii U’s and 3D’s shut down. It’s also important to state that Mexico and Brazil are not one of the 42 countries affected by this as they have access to the full eShop on their devices.
As for why Nintendo is shutting down these limited eShops, their reasoning was a bit on the vague side: “We constantly re-evaluate our business and make decisions based on a variety of factors.” Nintendo is encouraging anyone in the 42 mentioned countries to re-download any software that they own, check for any and all updates for any type of software on their system, and to redeem any codes that have yet to be used as they will no longer be usable past July 31.
Any way you want to splice this, it’s very apparent that Nintendo is slowly but surely starting to phase out the older online store to focus completely on the newer version for the Nintendo Switch. They already ceased production of the Wii U itself around the same time that the Switch launched, and the production for the 3DS family lineup has been rumored to be ending at some point as well. As we said earlier, the eShop for the Wii U and 3DS systems in the affected countries of Latin America and the Caribbean will be shut down on July 31, 2020.