Wii U Information For Parents

Nintendo strives to offer fun, unique and innovative video game entertainment for everyone to enjoy. We believe that playing together makes playing even better. Helping children navigate technology wisely is important in today's world, and you are your child's best advocate.  We know that parents care about making the best possible entertainment choices for their family.  Please read further to understand the tools Nintendo offers.

Nintendo also understands that being able to customize personal settings is important for all users of the Wii U system.  All users are encouraged to configure their settings in line with their personal comfort level.  Options are clearly provided throughout the Wii U experience.

Network Features

In the U.S. and Canada, children age 12 and under cannot use the network features of Wii U until parental consent is provided. The parental consent process on Wii U requires a $0.50, non-refundable payment by credit card. Payment is required so that parents or guardians have the chance to see the payment on their credit card statement and object to Nintendo if consent was improperly provided. Parents can revoke consent at any time by deactivating the child's Nintendo Network Account. Information on how to deactivate an account can be found on our support site.

Parental Controls
Nintendo parental controls

Our parental control system lets you customize your family's Wii U experience by tailoring an array of settings to best suit each person's needs.  You can restrict the download and use of certain Wii U content and features on a per user basis.  It's simple – you pre-select appropriate content and block the rest.

Please Note: It's important that you configure these settings for your children. The settings will automatically restrict activities such as user management and system formatting. Remember your PIN or the answer to your secret question you set when configuring Parental Controls. If you do forget, tap "I Forgot," located on the upper right of the screen, and follow the instructions. More information on resetting the Parental Controls PIN can be found on our support site.

Here are the many ways you can manage your child's Wii U experience with our Parental Controls:

For more information about how to set up the Wii U system's Parental Controls, please visit our support site.

ESRB Ratings
Nintendo Shy Guy

Game ratings are another great tool for finding entertainment that is right for your family. All Wii U games carry ESRB ratings to help parents make informed choices about suitable video game content. The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) is a non-profit, self-regulatory body that assigns age and content ratings for video games. ESRB ratings provide concise and impartial guidance about game content in two parts: a Rating Category that suggests age appropriateness, and Content Descriptors that indicate elements of particular interest or concern.

This information appears on the front and back of every video game box available in the U.S. and Canada and also is clearly displayed in the Nintendo eShop prior to purchase.

Please note: ESRB ratings apply only to games, not to non-game applications.

ESRB ratings

Look for more information, including Rating Summaries which provide a brief explanation of why a particular rating was assigned, on the ESRB's website at www.esrb.org and via its free mobile app.

Special Wii U Features

In addition to exclusive video game content, Wii U allows gamers to connect with friends and family in entirely new ways to enjoy other entertainment experiences. Nintendo also offers tools to help you manage your children's entertainment experiences.

Wii U friend registration
Friend Registration

There are three ways of registering Friends on the Wii U system.

  1. Users can exchange Nintendo Network IDs outside of the system and register each other as Friends on the system.  This is similar to how Friends are established through Wii and Nintendo 3DS Friend Code exchanges.

  2. Using the Wii U system, users age 13 and older can send Friend requests to users they have recently encountered in online games.

  3. Also using the Wii U system, users age 13 and older can send a Friend request through Miiverse when viewing a user's profile.

Users have the choice to opt out of receiving Friend requests through both the Friend List and Miiverse settings. Parents may also use the Parental Control settings to restrict establishment of Friend relationships, including the sending or receiving of friend requests.

Once a Friend relationship has been established:


Miiverse is Nintendo's new online gaming community that lets players around the world use their personalized Mii characters to share experiences, discuss games, post community messages, and discover new content. Players who enter Miiverse will see games, applications or entertainment content of interest to them or their friends.

Choose Wii U friends wisely. Friend connections can be restricted by the Wii U system's Parental Controls.  Users can establish a Friend connection in the traditional way that has been done for Nintendo systems in the past— by exchanging Network IDs outside of the system and mutually agreeing to be friends.

Users age 13 and older can either exchange Network IDs to establish a Friend connection or they can send a Friend request to users with whom they have recently played or encountered in Miiverse.

To defriend someone, you simply select "remove friend" within the Friend List. Within Miiverse, simply go to the friend's profile screen, touch "friend" and then select "Remove Friend" under the pull-down menu. You may block users by selecting "Block" from the user's profile screen to prevent the user from commenting on your posts or receiving Friend requests from that user.

By adjusting your settings you can manage your Miiverse experience, including the visibility of your profile information and whether to receive Friend requests. Parents can restrict viewing and/or posting capabilities for open chat in the communities by selecting "No Posting" or "No Viewing or Posting" on the Miiverse Parental Control. 

Wii U Chat

To participate in Wii U Chat (video chat), each player must have a Wii U system and become friends through the friending process.  If a Parental Controls PIN exists, Wii U Chat is restricted by default and you can choose the setting that is right for your family within the application.

Online Safety Tips
Nintendo online safety tips

Play together.  Nintendo designed Wii U as a system for everyone to enjoy.  You can keep your video game system in shared family spaces to stay familiar with how your children are using it.  We encourage you to spend time online with your child. Observe your child's experiences, and make smart entertainment choices together.

Communicate. Make online activity a daily topic of conversation.  Ask your children questions about playing new games, meeting new people online, favorite websites and other interests. Encourage your child to ask questions, too.

Set guidelines. Determine what video gaming and online rules work best for your family, and work with your children to establish technology rules. Here are some general tips to consider:

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