In the last couple of years, retro game prices have continued to spike overall and it’s become more and more difficult to enjoy the experience of playing legit copies of games on original hardware. This is where major console manufacturer’s digital storefronts have been extraordinarily helpful by providing a clean and straightforward way to play and enjoy retro games on modern hardware.
It’s never been a perfect system due to the limitations of the libraries/licensing, but it’s still a welcome option due to the support of the console manufacturers and the general testing/quality control involved in submitting games to their platforms.
Sadly, I’d argue that Nintendo is doing themselves a huge disservice by shutting down a legit option for playing retro games when they’re known for fighting ROM sites and not seeming to care much for game preservation as a whole. The Wii U and 3DS eShop has a good selection of games that aren’t available to own anywhere else outside of their original hardware and shutting down the storefront on their older hardware seems like it’s only bound to push people towards the sites that they’d like to see shut down.
On August 29th, 2022, Nintendo is removing the option to add funds to your wallet on the Wii U and 3DS eShops. While this might not seem like a big deal, if you’re someone who prefers to keep legit copies of games and/or support developers & publishers by voting with your wallet, there’s actually quite a few things on the eShop you should consider adding to your game library before it’s too late.
I’ve compiled a list of some of the games that are on the more expensive side when it comes to original hardware or might just be unique in some way. So, before it’s too late, I hope you’ll consider adding some of these games to your library.
The eShop price is listed first followed by the current going rate for a loose, North American copy (with the exception of a couple Wii U digital exclusives/PAL games).
- Kirby: Canvas Curse – $9.99/$50.00
- The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks – $9.99/$49.66
- Car Battler Joe – $6.99/$140.06
- Drill Dozer – $7.99/$127.63
- Fire Emblem – $7.99/$74.03
- KLONOA: Empire of Dreams – $6.99/$54.65
- KLONOA 2: Dream Champ Tournament – $6.99/$84.35
- The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap – $7.99/$85.51
- Medabots: Medabee (NOT AX Version) – $6.99/$70.61
- Medabots: Rokusho (NOT AX Version) – $6.99/$69.50
- Metroid: Fusion – $7.99/$69.99
- Metroid: Zero Mission – $7.99/$82.10
- Pocky and Rocky with Becky – $6.99/$229.85
- Super Mario Advance 4 (Wii U version includes GBA e-Reader levels) – $7.99/$20.65
- Donkey Kong Jr. Math – $4.99/$187.80
- Gargoyle’s Quest II: The Demon Darkness – $4.99/$130.78
- Little Ninja Brothers – $4.99/$86.66
- Mighty Final Fight – $4.99/$306.15
- Ninja Gaiden III: Ancient Ship of Doom – $4.99/$93.50
- Ufouria: The Saga (Unreleased in North America originally) – $4.99/$97.49
- Axelay – $7.99/$97.78
- Castlevania: Dracula X (Also available on the Castlevania Advance Collection) – $7.99/$338.57
- Final Fight 2 – $7.99/$67.99
- Final Fight 3 – $7.99/$182.93
- Harvest Moon – $7.99/$461.00
- Legend of the Mystical Ninja – $7.99/$58.37
- Super Mario RPG (Also available on SNES Classic) – $7.99/$90.10
- Uncharted Waters: New Horizons – $7.99/$92.19
- Bonk 3: Bonk’s Big Adventure – $5.99/$432.50
- Shockman – $5.99/$251.87
- Metroid Prime Trilogy – $19.99/$84.99
Wii U (Digital eShop Exclusives)
- Affordable Space Adventures – $19.99
- Dr. Luigi – $14.99
I hope you found this list helpful! Be sure to let us know if you’ll be picking up anything before it’s too late!
[Prices from PriceCharting.com on 5/21/22]