Nintendo DSi & Nintendo DSi XL Game Troubleshooting

Please use the information below if you are experiencing trouble playing Game Cards or DSiWare.

Game not working?

Topic not listed? You may find a solution in our system troubleshooting section - click here







"An Error Occurred. Press and hold POWER to turn the system off."
If you have not already done so, power the system off and then back on to see if this resolves the issue. If the issue persists after the system has been powered down, please call our Consumer Department at 1-800-255-3700 to speak to one of our representatives. We offer live agent support from 6:00am to 7:00pm Pacific Time, 7 days a week.






Game locks up or freezes
Occasional lockups with video games can happen from time-to-time and do not necessarily indicate a need for repair or replacement. If you are experiencing frequent lockups, or a particular game always locks up in the same area, please see the information below.

  • Make sure you are using only licensed accessories. Unlicensed products and accessories do not undergo Nintendo's testing and evaluation process. They may not work at all with our game systems, and they may have compatibility problems with certain games or accessories.
  • Check for visible contamination or foreign material on the connector pins of your Game Cards or Game Paks. If you see contamination or foreign material on a Game Card, please click here for replacement information.
  • Does the problem occur frequently with multiple games? If so, it may be difficult to determine if the problem is with the system itself, the games, or a combination of both. Please call (800) 255-3700 so that we may assist you further.
  • If possible, try the Game Card in any other Nintendo DS system (including Nintendo DS and Nintendo DS Lite systems).
  • If the game still does not work in another system, it is likely a problem with the Game Card. Please review our Nintendo DSi Game Card replacement options to determine how to get your game replaced.
  • If the game works properly in another system, the problem is with your Nintendo DSi or Nintendo DSi XL and it will need to be repaired. Please click here for repair options.

If you are not able to try the game in another system, or the above troubleshooting steps haven't narrowed the problem down, it is impossible to determine for certain whether the problem is the system or the Game Card. Please contact Nintendo's Consumer Department at (800) 255-3700 for assistance.





System doesn't recognize a Game Card is inserted
If a game is inserted into the system, but you are not able to get it started, try the following:

  • Make sure the Game Card is is fully inserted by pressing firmly until you hear a "click."
  • How are you trying to start the game? You must select the Game Card's icon from the Nintendo DSi menu to start it.
  • Does this issue only happen with one game? If so, it appears there is a problem with that particular Game Card. Click here for replacement options.

If your system is unable to recognize inserted Game Cards, then it will need to be repaired. Please click here for your repair options.





DSiWare locks up
Occasional lockups can happen from time to time and do not necessarily indicate a problem with your system. If you are experiencing frequent lockups with a particular application:

  • Delete the DSiWare (how to) you are having lockups with from your system, then visit the Nintendo DSi Shop to re-download the item. Once re-downloaded, try the application again.

If you have tried deleting and re-downloading the DSiWare application but are still experiencing frequent lockups, please call 1-800-255-3700 so that we may assist you further.





Game accessories not compatible (e.g. Guitar Hero Grip)
In order to keep the design of the Nintendo DSi and Nintendo DSi XL as slim as possible, the Game Boy Advance Game Pak slot found on the Nintendo DS and Nintendo DS Lite was removed.

Games that require the use of a Game Boy Advange Game Pak slot (like Guitar Hero: On Tour) are not compatible with the Nintendo DSi nor the Nintendo DSi XL.