Why you should care that Nintendo’s social network Miiverse sunsets in November

We’ve known for a while that social network Miiverse would eventually be closing, but Nintendo confirmed the news and the official death date yesterday on its Japanese site. For those hoping it may only affect Miiverse in its home country, a second shot has since been fired on Nintendo’s North American site: Miiverse shuts down at 1 a.m. EDT on November 8th (10 p.m. PDT on November 7).

Miiverse wasn’t an MMO, but social-minded MMO players might care about the sunset all the same because of the MMO-like games it effectively serviced and the multiplayer future it could have heralded. While Nintendo cites the reality that users have migrated to other social media platforms as the reason to shut the service down, the fact remains that Miiverse integration made a lot of Nintendo games more multiplayer. Nintendo’s clumsy code system could often be circumvented through Miiverse, allowing people to add new friends by seeing who was active on a game’s Miiverse page, looking through profiles, and requesting to add buddies to friend lists. Miiverse profiles allowed not just text and mentioning of favorite games or personal interests but also custom art, something we still infrequently see in MMOs.

Although the Nintendo Switch has integrated social media options to other platforms, you cannot add a Twitter friend to your Nintendo friend list via Twitter. You can scour Facebook feeds for people who play the same games you do, but that’s a scary place many people avoid outside of work. The Switch still lacks any kind of communication system for console friends, even via text (SplatChat is too limited and too weird).

Miiverse was a reasonably safe and decently integrated tool that brought new life to many games when connected to the internet. Especially for smaller games, it gave people a way to form communities and communicate in ways Nintendo had never previously sanctioned. It gave me hope that maybe, eventually, Nintendo would “get” online gameplay and properly integrate it. So when Miiverse goes away and leaves games like Splatoon 1 without art and Super Mario Maker creators without a built-in feedback system, it won’t just kill those communities — it’ll greatly diminish the essence of many games on the platform.

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11 Comments on "Why you should care that Nintendo’s social network Miiverse sunsets in November"

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Arngrim

They should just have moved it over to the Switch in a new more modern format, it was never a bad thing, and since Switch doesn’t have anything outside the current Splatoon 2 “social space” it would be nice to see this grow on the Switch and its games.

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greyformat

Does this also affect the 3DS? While I haven’t played ACNL since they updated it I do question if I’ll ever get to use it’s online features when this goes belly up.

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kgptzac

Another classic reason not to delve into consoles and stay PC Master Race :)

Oh and I’m a bit salty that Switch basically killed any sequel to NVidia’s tablets production.

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Jack Pipsam

Nintendo is total trash for closing Miiverse this soon.

Miiverse was one of the most inspired features of the Wii U.
Fond memories early on of the Rabbits page being turned into a dedicated Willem Dafoe page.

Splatoon without the Miiverse connection will be surely lacking as it was just such great vibes, not to mention essential for Mario Maker due to Nintendo being scared of a search bar.

At this rate I wouldn’t put past Nintendo to outright close a lot of the online games on the Wii by 2019.
Nintendo has been a terrible company for a long time, yet people still keep defending them, it’s crazy!
I like the Wii U for what it is, even with its many flaws. But closing Miiverse is a mistake, I bet they won’t even have the decency to have an archive mode.

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Schlag Sweetleaf

T_T

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Denice J. Cook

Hasn’t the Switch been as largely underwhelming as the Wii U was?

I question that this heralds a lot more than just the shutdown of an online service: as in, this generation of hardware might well be Nintendo’s last, after which they may pull a Sega and go “software only.”

Don’t look at me like that! Not only does Pokemon Go show that there’s multi-platform interest in Nintendo’s wares, but even more damning is the fact that Mario’s been on iOS for quite a while now! You could smell a “test bed” from a mile away with that one.

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Simon F

The problem with Miiverse was that there really wasn’t much to do there most of the time, and it was never really a key feature of the system, so it was kind of like that kid in class who never says anything, so people don’t realize he’s not present before the teacher says anything. While the kid is smart and kind to others, he isn’t noticed much.
I don’t think losing Miiverse is a huge deal for the most part, but some games had more Miiverse interaction than others, and losing that would make those games feel very empty in comparison to with it. I think Miiverse should’ve been implemented into more games. Still, with Wii U not being successful, it’s not odd that they would shut down Miiverse so soon after Switch was released. Still, Miiverse didn’t really have many users, so it’s not odd that it will get shut down.

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Dug From The Earth

I expected to see something saying, “Because it means all those 8 to 14 year olds will be invading your current mmorpg instead, now that their nintendo home is gone” :P

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