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The Best Discontinued Nintendo Console Features

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Nintendo’s consoles are always among the more fascinating products in the video game industry. From the original NES all the way to the Nintendo Switch, every console made by the industry giant has its own unique features & gimmicks that are hard to find anywhere else in the gaming world.


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Over the years, Nintendo consoles have changed drastically, with every new generation bringing something completely new to the table for players to try. But while Nintendo continues to find interesting ways to innovate their devices, there have been some features that have been left behind & even forgotten about.

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7/7 Console-Specific Start-Up Music

GameCube Logo as it is created during the start-up of a game

Nintendo has a history of producing iconic music, & that is not limited to a game’s soundtrack. It also includes music that players associate with a console’s ecosystem, with a more recent example being the Wii Shop Channel theme.

But ever since the Wii, Nintendo has not had console-specific start-up music when launching games on its hardware. The last time there was anything like that was the GameCube, which had the memorable theme as a block moved around the screen to form the shape of the GameCube logo.

6/7 Everybody Votes Channel

The menu for the Everybody Votes Channel

There are not many instances of current Nintendo Switch owners interacting with each other on the platform outside the various games that allow for online play. Back on the Wii, when Nintendo was first getting its feet wet with online compatibility, there was the Everybody Votes Channel.

This silly concept brought many users together from around the globe to poll them on trivial matters such as “Which are better: dogs or cats?” or “What is the better Valentine’s Day gift: chocolate or roses?” There was a worldwide poll & a nation-specific fun. After some time, the channel would release the results & tell the player how tuned in they were.

5/7 Multiple Screens

An image of the Wii U

While the idea of multiple screens initially came from the Nintendo DS, the company’s console saw the first & only dual-screen setup with the Wii U. While players would be able to play their games on their TVs, they would have a separate screen in their h&s.

This concept was left behind with the Nintendo Switch, with the console only offering one screen but allowing players the choice to either play it on their TV or in h&held mode. While this was a welcome change between the systems, some Wii U exclusives that utilized the dual-screen well have been left behind, having not been ported yet.

4/7 Check Mii Out Channel

The Check Mii Out Channel menu on the Wii

There’s another discontinued feature of Nintendo consoles that came in the form of a Wii channel. It was called the Check Mii Out Channel, with its main focus being on the creativity around the avatars made famous by the Wii.

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This user-curated service allowed players to search for a Mii that someone uploaded & add them to the Mii Plaza. In addition, there were unique contests that all players could participate in. Each one had its own theme that creators needed to stick to. At the end of the contests, which lasted two weeks, creators will find out how well their Mii performed in the contest.

3/7 Connecting H&held To Console

Kapp'n at the dock in Animal Crossing (GCN) about to depart for Animal Isl&

The Nintendo Switch marked the end of an era where the company would have a h&held device along with a console. This was thanks to the Switch’s hybrid nature that catered to both h&held & console players. But with the Switch’s presence came the end of unique compatibility between the current Nintendo h&held & console of note.

For years, dating back to the Nintendo 64 & the GameBoy Color, there was a way for players to connect devices together to either transfer data, earn unique prizes, or unlock a mode that would otherwise not be available without having both devices connected. A great example of the latter is the original Animal Crossing on GameCube, creating an isl& on a GameBoy Advance.

2/7 Miiverse

The promotional art for MiiVerse

As noted earlier, the Nintendo Switch doesn’t have too many tools that allow players to communicate outside of games. The Nintendo Online app does have a voice chat feature, but that isn’t built into the console itself. This differs greatly from the Wii U, which had its own social media platform.

Miiverse was an exclusive network for both Nintendo 3DS & Wii U users. It allowed players to post anything that came to mind through text, in-game screenshots, in-game videos, & more. Notably, Miiverse was famous for allowing players to draw as a post, which led to many viral moments.

1/7 Virtual Console

Scrolling through Newest Additions on the Wii Shop Channel's Virtual Console section

Nintendo has a long history of great games but has struggled to port games for players to experience on newer consoles. The Nintendo Switch does have a component to its Online services that allow players to experience a h&ful of NES, SNES, & N64 titles for free with a subscription to the services.

But this pales in comparison to the Virtual Console, which allowed users to purchase older games & play them on newer hardware. This was introduced during the Wii era & extended to the Wii U, allowing buyers the ability to buy plenty of games from the NES to GameBoy Color to Nintendo DS.

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