Is It True That Nintendo Won't Be Selling Digital Download Codes Anymore?

Nintendo won't be selling digital download codes for Nintendo Switch games anymore? Does that mean you can only buy games digitally from the Nintendo eShop? Find out the facts here.

Nintendo Switch logo with Min Min from ARMS
(Photo : Nintendo)

It has been like this for years at this point, Nintendo's fans had a variety of methods of buying the games they were interested in.

There were three notable ways, which was grabbing a physical boxed copy from a retailer or from online, downloading the game from the Nintendo eShop, or you could even purchase a download code for numerous games from retailers that often sold it for cheaper.

However, the third method won't be available to those in Europe. But those in other places are still free to buy digital download codes. It's unclear whether it will stay that way, though.

A statement from Nintendo to NintendoLife states that they won't be permitting European retail stores to sell digital download codes for its first-party Nintendo Switch games starting on July 1. This announcement means that you will only be able to purchase first-party titles for the Nintendo Switch on the Nintendo eShop.

What Did Nintendo Say?

Read on for a quick summary of the announcement made by Nintendo.

Nintendo conducted a thorough examination of the European marketplace's evolution over a few years, which led to the company deciding to end the availability of retailers having download codes of Nintendo's published software. This decision becomes effective on July 1, 2020.

Retailers can still sell Nintendo Switch Online memberships, Nintendo eShop funds, as well as downloadable content like the Pokemon Sword Expansion Pass and Pokemon Shield Expansion Pass at retailers all over Europe. Other publishers' Nintendo Switch titles can still have their download codes sold by retailers.

Nintendo is constantly looking into new ways of selling download codes of titles that they published, and they'll keep on working on new avenues to bring the content from the Nintendo eShop to the most players they can get them to.

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What Does This Mean?

As stated by Nintendo, you'll still be able to purchase download codes for third-party titles along with Nintendo Switch Online memberships and DLC. You won't be able to buy titles that Nintendo published, like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe or Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

For some time now, retailers were allowed to sell digital download codes of Nintendo-published games, which had retailers selling for a large discount frequently. The retailers sold these digital download codes on the side with the physical copies, but it won't be like that for any longer.

The United Kingdom online retailer was the first one to break the news to its customers in a tweet, and they confirmed this statement as stated above. Nintendo will affect these European online retailers greatly, and it seems like the company will want to accommodate people that relied on the digital download codes they could get from online retailers.


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