The day the Mario Kart died: Nintendo’s kill switch and the future of online consoles


flickr user: Andrew Huff Nintendo fans, mark your calendars for May 20, 2014. As Nintendo announced yesterday , that’s the last day you’ll be able to use the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection to play hundreds of online games on the Wii and Nintendo DS. Single-player modes for those games will still work, of course, but any parts of the games that require an Internet connection will be completely non-functional in a matter of months. The shutdown will affect some of both systems’ most popular games, some of the best-selling games of all time. Suddenly, over 34 million copies of Mario Kart Wii and 23 million copies of Mario Kart DS will be severely diminished. The tens of millions of people who own the DS Pokemon games will no longer be able to trade their beasts or battle online. Animal Crossing: Wild World and Super Smash Bros. Brawl will be less functional for over 11 million players each. Sure, as a practical matter, relatively few of these tens of millions of players are still making regular use of online servers for games that are sometimes pushing nine years old. If they were, Nintendo would probably have more interest in continuing to maintain those servers on the theory that it would lead to some more very-long-tail sales for its online-enabled games. On the other hand, Nintendo could be more interested in trying to force more players off its “legacy systems” and on to the Wii U and 3DS, which of course still have active online support. Read 11 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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The day the Mario Kart died: Nintendo’s kill switch and the future of online consoles


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