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What are Wii Points®?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 16, 2024
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Wii Points® are a type of virtual currency used to purchase items for a Wii™ gaming system. They can be bought on physical gift cards or online directly via the Wii™ console. Users can redeem the points for older games, including classics from Nintendo®, Coleco® or Sega®. It's often cheaper to buy old games with Wii Points® than with currency, but there are limitations on the way the points can be used. Additionally, many of the games available for download have different standards of graphics and game play than newer games.

How to Get Points

Electronics and gaming stores sell Nintendo Points and Wii Points® in the form of gift cards, usually starting with about 2,000 points per card. Nintendo Points can be redeemed either for use on the Nintendo DSI™ or on a Wii™; once they are redeemed on one system, however, the points are tied to that system and cannot be used on the other. Wii Points® are also available for purchase on the Internet via the Wii Shop Channel on the console.

Internet Connection Required

Wii™ owners can only access Wii Points® when the system is connected to the Internet — if the owner does not have an Internet connection, then there's no point in purchasing points. Those buying points for someone else as a gift should make sure that the recipient's Wii™ is connected to the Internet or they will not be usable. Games bought with points are stored on the Wii™ itself, however, so once they are downloaded, they can be played without an active Internet connection.

Points can be used to purchase games that can be sent as a gift directly to another user via the Wii™ console. To do this, both the giver and receiver's systems must be connected to the Internet, they must be in the same country, and they must have each other's Wii™ numbers in their address books. Gifts given in this way can also be declined or returned.

Redeemable for Old Games

Gamers who are connected to the Internet can visit the Wii Shop Channel, which allows them to look at a variety of games available for purchase with points. There are several ways to search for games to purchase: by system, by new titles added to the queue, or by looking through the entire list of available games. The oldest games cost about 500 points, and newer ones may be between 800 and 1,000 points. The Wii™ also needs to have enough memory to hold the games before they can be downloaded, so those who plan to buy a lot of classic games may need to add extra memory to the system.

Playing Old Games on a New System

Though the graphics of the old games are often inferior to modern ones, those classics are often sought after by those who remember the old racing, adventure, sports, or run-and-shoot games. They are sometimes more popular with the parents of young Wii® owners who want to revisit the classic video games they played when they were younger. It may take some adjustments to figure out how to use the game controller to get the best results, but most games offer instructions on how to work the newer controllers to play older games.

EasyTechJunkie is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a EasyTechJunkie contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
By anon76612 — On Apr 11, 2010

I want wii points but i don`t have money for them. do you have any codes? I`m looking to buy pokemon rumble.

By anon71138 — On Mar 17, 2010

Is it possible to buy wii points online. (they send points code to your email and you pay it later)?

By anon67470 — On Feb 24, 2010

Don't bother with the WII points. I just spent half of my 2,000 points buying two games that were frustratingly boring for my four-year-old, who turned them off after three minutes. When I look for a game for myself, I see fewer than a dozen titles available, unless you pony up for a classic remote control, which the gaming stores say is out of stock in most places.

By anon54823 — On Dec 02, 2009

just get an emulator made for wii and load all those games for free.

By anon43436 — On Aug 28, 2009

how long does the wii channel last?

By bubbles — On Mar 19, 2009

hi, I'm looking to send Wii Points to a friend for their birthday and I was wondering how I would go about gifting points to them instead of the games themselves? Also, is it possible to get the Points sent on his birthday, or do I need to send them on the actual day for that?

Thanks for any help you can give me!

By anon25452 — On Jan 29, 2009

Thanks! My wife's been bugging me to get a Wii, and you've helped me get oriented.

By anon23665 — On Dec 30, 2008

do you get to keep the game forever or does it go away after a certain amount of time?

By eastwest — On Aug 09, 2008

It's interesting that I never cared about video games at all until the Wii came out and now I'm so into my little avatar and seeing other people's, and the polling, and the points... they really know how to hook you!

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a EasyTechJunkie contributor, Tricia...
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