How to Download Games From the Nintendo DSi Shop

Nintendo DSi
The Nintendo DSi plays games and takes video. Photo courtesy of Nintendo

The Nintendo DSi was engineered to take the Nintendo DS gaming experience beyond plug and play. If you have a Wi-Fi connection, you can use your Nintendo DSi (or DSi XL) to go online and buy "DSiWare"--smaller, inexpensive games that can be downloaded to your system. Visiting the Nintendo DSi Shop is easy, and downloading games is a snap. Here's a step-by-step guide to accessing, browsing, and purchasing titles on the Nintendo DSi Shop.

Here's How

  1. Turn on your Nintendo DSi.

  2. On the bottom menu, select the "Nintendo DSi Shop" icon.

  3. Wait for the DSi Shop to connect. Make sure your Wi-Fi is on. Learn how to enable Wi-Fi on your Nintendo DSi.

  4. Once you're connected, you can see which apps and games are being showcased on the DSi Shop under "Recommended Titles." You can also view notices and updates under the "Important Info" header. If you'd like a more personalized shopping experience, tap the "Start Shopping" button on the bottom of the touchscreen.

  5. From here, you can add Nintendo DSi Points to your account if you'd like. DSi Points are necessary to buy most games and apps on the DSi Store. Learn how to buy Nintendo Points for the Nintendo DSi Shop. You can also adjust your shopping settings, view your account activity, and look back at your purchase and download history. If you had to delete a game you bought and downloaded in the past, you can re-download it for free here.

  6. If you'd like to continue shopping for games, press the "DSiWare Button" on the touchscreen.

  7. At this point, you can browse games according to price (Free, 200 Nintendo Points, 500 Nintendo Points, or 800+ Nintendo Points). Or, you can tap "Find Titles" and search for games according to popularity, publisher, genre, the newest additions, or simply by entering the name of the title.

  8. When you find the game or app you'd like to download, tap on it. Note the number of Points that are necessary to download the game, as well as the game's ESRB rating. You should also make note of how much memory the game download will require (measured in "blocks"), as well as any additional information the publisher would like you to know about the title.

  9. When you're ready to download, confirm by tapping the "Yes" button on the bottom screen. The download will commence; don't turn off your Nintendo DSi.

  10. When your game is fully downloaded, it'll appear at the end of your DSi's main menu as a gift-wrapped icon. Tap on the icon to "unwrap" your game, and enjoy!

The Nintendo 3DS's online market is called the "Nintendo 3DS eShop." Whereas the Nintendo 3DS can download DSiWare, the Nintendo DSi can't access the eShop or its library of Game Boy or Game Boy Advance games on the Virtual Console. Learn more about the Nintendo 3DS eShop and how it differs from the Nintendo DSi Shop.

What You Need:

  • A Nintendo DSi
  • A working Wi-Fi connection
  • A valid credit card or Nintendo Points Card for purchases.