Reggie: DS to get full downloadable games

The Nintendo of America president reveals his plan to offer games for download onto the handheld.

The DS has long been able to download game demos from game stores, booths at gaming events, and even some airports. Now, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime has revealed that the console maker has plans to extend this functionality to offer full games via download.

Speaking to The New York Times, Fils-Aime explained that in the future, the Wii and the DS will have a lot more interplatform functionality. He gave the example of using the Wii to download games in manner akin to Xbox Live, and then using the wireless connection to transfer them to the DS.

The first Nintendo first-party game to make use of the wireless connection between the Wii and the DS will be Professor Layton and the Curious Village, a puzzle game due out February in the US. Gamers will be able to get new puzzles for the title via Wii downloads.

Reggie also hinted that Nintendo could be looking at bringing over some of the Japanese functionality of the portable--in Japan it is used, for example, to download guide content in museums. He said, "To aggressively drive DS business we need to provide other forms of entertainment to excite the customer."

[UPDATE]: A Nintendo representative has contacted GameSpot to dispute one of the New York Times article's assertions.

"The statement that complete Nintendo DS games will eventually be able to be downloaded into the device via a wireless connection with the company's Wii game console is incorrect," the representative said. "Users can download games to play on Wii, and, in the future, the Nintendo DS will be able to receive demo versions of some DS games from Wii, but not the entire game. The demo will be erased once the Nintendo DS is turned off."

While the New York Times article has been corrected twice since its publication, the changes were made to correct the spelling of Fils-Aime and an "editing error" that suggested the DS was capable of movie playback. The statement about players being able to download full DS games via the Wii remains in the article.

Written By

Want the latest news about Professor Layton and the Curious Village?

Professor Layton and the Curious Village

Professor Layton and the Curious Village

Follow

Discussion

159 comments
Wii60Joe
Wii60Joe

its already a fact that this channel will be avaible because JAP has it But i might be wrong..

Lafuigi
Lafuigi

In geometry wars: galaxies on the Wii you can download the original geometry wars: retro evelovled game from the Wii to your DS

ert47
ert47

@ iamBenG: What internal hard drive on the DS?

ImSwordMan
ImSwordMan

I would also like wii demos please...

iamBenG
iamBenG

The DS is great, and while fully downloadable games would be nice, the only way they could do it is if they made 'nintendo brand' blank SD cards you can put into the DS that will only allow save from a DS, and then take that throught he Wii. But I'm not sure if it's possible, you certainly couldn't store anything in the DS's internal hard drive. Another thing they could do would be, basically, a variation of a Wii memory card (which is an SD card) and download the game onto that, then when you put it in your DS and play, it would probably do something like lock after that so you couldn't get more, so downloadble games probalby isn't impossible for the DS...but probalby wont happen until another nintendo handhel, which wont be too soon, because the DS is just now getting games that really touch it's limits.

padouke
padouke

this could be a good direction that the company is moving in. i for one am very excited to see what becomes of the original games in the Wii Ware channel, and i feel that this is a similar counterpart to Nintendo's handheld. this opens up new possibilities for the DS

xanst
xanst

It' just like DS download play. I don't undertand why people don't understand how this works. Sure, it can't hold much, but thats not the point. It's not permanent. When you're done with the demo you turn off - nothing is saved. The wii has SD cards and internal memory, and these things aren't going to take up that much space.

nestea_king
nestea_king

@ powerframe "Screw nintendo. Oh wow, demos online?! Didnt see that one coming. And go figure you can't download the whole game, can the DS even hold memory aside from the date and time..." Didn't see that one coming? That was clearly sarcasm, but it was announced while the Wii was still known as the Revolution. They're only just now integrating it apparently. And no the DS can't hold the full games. Some DS games are rather large, for it to be able to hold any game size it would need an extra 64 MB of SRAM or something. SRAM is rather expensive and large too, I'd rather not have it if it means the DS will go up 50$. The DS is freakin awesome as it is now anyways. Be grateful that you can download a demo without going to EBgames.

powerframe8
powerframe8

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

GreenGoblin2099
GreenGoblin2099

lol such excitement over some d/lable demos... give out the full games Nintendo!!!

FLEEBS
FLEEBS

Nintendo is awesome.

smfes
smfes

I would love to be able to download games for my DS in the future. I LOVE NINTENDO DS!

NdsGuru
NdsGuru

VC games to DS VC games to DS VC games to DS VC games to DS

black_ice23
black_ice23

its great to be a DS and Wii owner, Nintendo doing big things in 2008 glad i got them both , big ups to nintendo cuz thats whats up

Banjotron
Banjotron

Nintendo does a lot of things behind the scenes. Here's the straight dope for those of you wondering where this stuff will be going. There's a massive gray market for flash carts out there right now, mostly coming out of China. The homebrew software available for them gives the DS the ability to carry around and play a huge MP3 library, watch videos, function as a PDA, etc. Mostly, though, it's used for piracy, as they can be used to play roms on a DS. You would think that Nintendo would try harder to crack down on this stuff, but they've turned a blind eye until now. It might seriously hurt game sales, but you can bet it helps to move a lot of DS units, and Nintendo is very much a bottom line company when you look at its upper management. They only very recently started to take substantive legal action against the manufacturers, claiming the carts use some obscure patented tech belonging to Nintendo. This will have no effect, since the claim is specious and Chinese courts would ignore it even if it held merit, but the point is that they're trying. They've also been working a lot harder to shut down distribution of these things, which has had some very tangible effects. Why? Nintendo has their own official, Nintendo-branded alternative in the works. It's a win-win for them. They know the technology is proven, and most of the engineering work, both on the hardware and software side, has already been done for them. From everything known about the new official cart, it will be very similar to the current generation of unofficial carts, probably an outright copy of one of the better ones. It will be a cart shell, the same size as a normal DS cart, which houses a tranflash chip that is used to store the data used by the DS. For those of you wondering, transflash is a removable, rewritable storage medium which is typically used for digital cameras. It's used for flash carts because it's small, small enough to fit in a shell the size of a DS cart. It costs $10 to manufacture a flash cart shell, transflash chips cost next to nothing ($10 for 1GB), and devices allowing you to hook up transflash chips to your PC as regular removable drives are super cheap, meaning the whole solution is inexpensive enough to have very wide appeal. The only limitation is the 4GB storage cap on the non-HC transflash format, but that's more than enough for most users. If Nintendo decides to get fancy, they could make their unit support SDHC format transflash, which has a theoretical storage cap of 32GB (current units cap out at 16). Now, Nintendo has been burned by their past attempts to use exotic rewritable media on their systems, but now that they've decided to take the plunge, it won't stop with just games, especially since they've seen what else is possible. Expect a Nintendo-branded MP3 player DS solution almost immediately after the official cart is released. They might even license somebody to make a commercial PDA program for it.

Ozzie234
Ozzie234

Nintendo should focus on their most important market; the DS. I'm not so sure attention should be divided too much on the Wii. Nintendo has a long going almost complete monopoly on the handheld market. If that breaks, Nintendo breaks. The DS Nintendo, the DS!

madogmgd
madogmgd

bleach sucks.... WOOT NINDY! :D nintendo

Mattyrock
Mattyrock

Impressive, I think for many years Nintendo knows the true meaning of fun in video games to many gamers.

azone12
azone12

now nintendo needs to buy something

yourbeliefs
yourbeliefs

God... the Wii and the DS are slowly taking over the world.....

OfficialJab
OfficialJab

That's my question. Where do you keep them? Maybe an empty GBA cartridge.

lostn
lostn

What media will the games be stored on?

japanesegoth
japanesegoth

they need to hurry up with this stuff. they were talking about downloading stuff to the DS via the Wii and interconnectivity before the wii was even released...i wonder when or if we'll actually see wii games that use the DS.

stanley2011
stanley2011

thats really cool. :D:D:DCant wait (I guess):D:D

Dr_Corndog
Dr_Corndog

So, how will the DS store these downloaded games? Will they sell blank cartridges for the DS that function as memory cards to keep them on? Or will you save them to a Wii channel and have to re-transfer them to the DS each time you want to play it?

jch123
jch123

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

KoolEmpty
KoolEmpty

@ godoftheds Alright well if that's true then great I guess, it means that everyone that playes Pokemon and owns a DS and a Wii can use this feature that is highlighted in the article.

godoftheds
godoftheds

@koolempty yep your ds can interact with your wii just play some pokemon ummm... whatever pokemon game is out for the wii (battle revolution i think?) and you can link to it with the ds through pokemon diamond

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

Where will these downloaded games be stored?

KoolEmpty
KoolEmpty

"It also has wireless connectivity that allows it to communicate with the Wii..." - NYT Am I missing something important, my DS can comunicate with my Wii right now? This NYT article is written like a GS article...poorly. "in manner akin to Xbox Live..." - GS WTF are you talking about Emma? Where does Reggie state it will work anything like Live, where does the NYT article state that, I know...you're guessing arn't you? Perhaps GS should start hiring people who went to school for journalism instead of hiring people who know how to re-write other peoples articles. I want to see Reggie's actual quote, something fishy with that article.

markd751
markd751

PLEASE LET US TRANSFER VC GAMES TO DS!!! PLEEEEEEASE!!!!

kwiiboy
kwiiboy

The game saves on the wii, then download it from the wii to the ds and pick up were you left.

akazergling2
akazergling2

They could probably sell a blank DS or GBA cartridge.

bubbles582
bubbles582

Perhaps it Just Writes to the SD Cards. i Don't Imagin they're Each MAde With a Specific Size Limit.

nix6six6
nix6six6

ok but there is no internal memory in the DS so won't you have to redownload the game every time you turn on the DS? That would be stupid as hell.

slayersdeath200
slayersdeath200

make a version of comix zone for the ds that would be cool :D

Dreski83
Dreski83

I would say whats the point... but if Nintendo wants to tip-toe around the online possiblities a little differently than everyone else (which seems to be their ongoing theme) I say power to them! ;)

KingKoop
KingKoop

Nintendo are always thinking ahead, I think this was inevitable ever since the Wii got launched ~ what with them both having Wi-fi etc.

Dan2002sk8er
Dan2002sk8er

that's cool so it works like my PSP and PS3. Castlevania: SotN is sweet to take with me. I wonder If I will be able to play Mario's lost chapters on DS or other vertual console games I already have, I would understand if the 64 games don't work but the NES and Super NES games should work. That would be sweet

Cheeba_puff
Cheeba_puff

I hoped for it and i got it :D now i just hope this isn't dependent on the rumor about the next DS revision already being ready, but not gonna come out until Wii and DS Lite slow down in sales.

kavadias1981
kavadias1981

@murlow12 - Very true. I wish they would hurry up and release the damned thing. Even an announcement would be good.

murlow12
murlow12

The only problem here is the Wii's lack of a hard drive. Nintendo desperately needs to address this before the download idea can be fully realized.

David_Kniffin
David_Kniffin

Do I actually have to go to the airport to get these games though? :P

lewser5
lewser5

Most likely they will use some kind of gba storage size unit for the download games and add ons. But what will be the size for it?

Alaskan_Ninja
Alaskan_Ninja

if nintendo is smart they'll release a 2 gig card for the ds or something along the lines.....but hey i guess nintendo is smart cause look at the sales numbers......any one want to take a guess whos gonna lead 2008 in sales??

MrMartinLee
MrMartinLee

Someone said this would be the best way to add Gameboy and GB Color games to the Virtual Console offerings. I agree; there wouldn't be the screen-size problem of playing on a big TV screen. All things point to some kind of extra storage add-on for both devices... yay!

LordSpleach
LordSpleach

Now all we need is a memory-unit for the DS to store those games.