Nov 19th, 2012

The first thing many people noticed when first plugging in their shiny new Nintendo Wii U and powering it on was how long the initial software update took. Many people waited 1 to 2 hours for the download to complete. This is no surprise as launch hype was high and Nintendo’s servers were likely being pounded.

Public service announcement: do NOT restart or turn off your WiiU during the initial software upgrade. Many users did exactly that, probably assuming their system froze, Wi-Fi was messed up, or something else, but apparently these users are now enjoying a very heavy paperweight: their WiiUs are bricked.

Patience is a virtue, people. Whether you’re downloading updates to your phone, updates to your PC, or updates to anything else… we always see the, “Do not restart or power off your device during the installation/upgrade process.”?  It’s pretty much common sense, but I guess the anticipation and excitement has gotten the best of many Nintendo fans.

Just wanted to share this experience with you in hopes that I can save the lives of so many WiiU consoles that may find themselves endangered due to unknowing or incompetent owners.

[WiiUForums via vr-zone]

local_offer    Nintendo  wii u  
  • Colton

    I wonder how many people aren’t “impatient” but simply there’s a power outage/flicker, or a kid/pet hits the power cord and knocks it out?

    I mean, power outages this time of year are hardly unheard of.

    • onegreenbanana

      The gamepad rage is amazing, you can take it 40-60 feet away from the console with it still working!!!

      • ProppaT

        That’s funny, I can’t even get reception 15 feet away in the next room (wood frame house, not even cinder block).

        • Madmagican

          It really depends on both your house/apartment and how you hold it; I can literally take a dump a floor above my Wii U and still keep playing without a flicker of the screen

          • Kevin

            OMG best comment ever.

    • FabulousKing

      I don’t know WTF is wrong with Wii U Daily!
      “Due To Impatient Updaters”
      “Incompetent owners”
      Those “idiots” (as you call them) bought a Wii U, they gave their money to your beloved Nintendo, b!tch.
      Nintendo must be responsibnle of their products (updates and stuff), Colton already wrote some examples.
      People here bashed Sony, Michael Pachter and now Nintendo fans? .I.

      • Anon

        I know WTF is wrong with FabulousKing. He’s too impatient to use correct grammar and spelling, too incompetent to understand the article and the message, and an idiot for posting support for idiots who are too stupid, incompetent, and impatient to wait for a required update.

        • FabulousKing


      • dojo

        you bbricked your wiiu didnt U? and now ur angery and wiiu daily cuase u did exactly wht they said most the impatient idiots out there did didnt you ?

        • FabulousKing


    • Mida

      But to those people who were really impatient, they got what they deserved. I feel sorry for those accidental ones though

    • edward montgomery

      Wow only took 24 hours to see the crying start lmao

      • immallama

        Who exactly is crying? Get off this website you retard.

      • Nko Sekirei

        like u douchebag

    • Yamiryuu Zero

      I live in Brasil. Almost everyday there’s a power outage (like a blink of energy). I’m worried about uploading a Wii U here.

      • Yamiryuu Zero


    • Captain Potato

      Can’t Nintendo supply a USB flash reboot file download on it’s website for anyone who’s system is bricked? It could be encrypted so that nobody can read it and after it’s installed in the Wii U, erased afterward? Easy fix!

    • Chris

      I bricked mine that way. Sat down with some coffee and a book while it updated. Lost power. Brick. Sucks, but the wife was sympathetic, made me pancakes 🙂

  • DerikGotro64

    Talk about not reading the “enclosed instruction book”.

    Some people, so eger to play a brand new console and can’t wait for a system update that they knew would take time to go through. Like they say “patience is a virtue”; watch a movie or go out while waiting for it to download.

    • Nintenlord

      the funny thing is that it is said it in big letters on the screen

  • Indirect

    Yeah, the update was about 45 minutes for me. It was annoying, but I was able to deal with it.

    • Yodin

      it took me about that too 45 mins i am patient because PS3 does the same thing you had to wait for updates as well why should you be, i always follow directions.

  • Tobbe

    Advice.. Be patient or u will regret it

  • D2K

    I don’t think my net speed is much faster than anyone else. Roadrunner Turbo 15MBPS. The full downlaod for me took less than a half hour. I’m not sure what all these complaints are about for people claiming the update takes eons of time.

    I there will be a public backlash at Nintendo now. People were impatient, people didn’t follow directions, and as a consequence they bricked their system, but of course it’s Nintendo’s fault.

    That is the world we live in today. People do whatever they want and whenever it comes time to pay the piper, it’s never their fault, it’s everyone else’s.

    • code

      my internet speed is 12mbps and because i live in the city and right about everyone has at&t or xfinity it becomes 10mbps or 9mbps. This happens because a lot of people are active between morning or night but when it is 2am and up it becomes a lot faster and get speed from 12mbps to 13mbps. then people start waking up and it goes back to 10 or 9 and my brothers as well

    • wampdog29

      Actually, 15 MBps is a lot faster than the U.S. average. I believe the average here in the U.S. is about 5 MBps. Not sure about Japan and Europe’s average though. I pay for 50 MBps and get about 58 MBps, so I’m hoping it only takes 15 minutes or less to download and update.

      • wampdog29

        Sorry, screwed up. I kept saying MBps instead of mbps…. that’s megabits instead of megabytes. Also just food for thought, this year, the U.S. average is 6.7 mbps and Japan’s is 10.9 mbps.

    • Yodin

      Not Nintendo’s fault i disagree same goes with PS3 when doing system updates never turn off the console or whatever you do.

  • Bb

    I started at night woke up and ready to play

  • Hogybear

    Well what do you expect. When something is updating, especially when its as big as a WiiU, you let it finish updating. If you bricked your WiiU on the first day, i think you deserve it 0.0

  • shroomforce

    It must be horrible to buy the WiiU at launch
    and not being able to play on it

    • Kyle1981

      Mine was actually broken out of the box. Nothing would appear on the tv screen tried 3 different cables. Couldn’t even sync the gamepad! Didn’t get a chance to start the download. Had to take it in for service today and the lady there did a doubletake when she saw it was a Wii U I brought in. Not sure how long the wait will be, but it was a very frustrating day yesterday.

      • Theninwii

        thats unfortunate. hope its not red ring of doom all over again

      • fam monkey

        bull shit you would get a replacement take your viral anti nintendo marketing elsewhere

        • fatherb

          yea cause replacements of a sold out system makes total sense.

        • argent

          First generation systems are always more likely to have defects. It’s not anti Nintendo marketing. I love my Wii u but sometimes the system freezes. Can’t even power it off, you have to unplug it. Likewise when I sat out in the cold all night waiting for a Wii five years ago I brought a system home that wouldn’t load a disk. Had to wait one month for that to get fixed. Don’t assume everyone who comes on here with problems is a troll.

  • The Island Of Misfit Toys

    Bricked Wii U’s end up on The Island

    • Madmagican

      woah, I didn’t realize what you meant until I read your username…classy.

  • wiiuland

    yeah i get wii u 24th december. First by the way

  • Mac

    daaaaaaaaaaang lol sucks for them 300 and 350 down the drain

    • TheUNation

      At least you can contact Nintendo and I’m sure they will help you sort things out.

  • Nintendpatrick

    First comment thanks for warning

  • MrOwnership

    What if you internet connection dies during the update? Does the WiiU get bricked then, or is it only when the system looses power?

    • JG

      @MrOwnership while I was doing my update my internet went out. My system seems fine I didn’t turn off the power at all just fixed my connection and started the download again. Unless I’m one of the lucky ones that avoided being bricked I’m thinking its ok to lose internet.

      • Theninwii

        it probably saves some crucial files in the RAM. if the Wii U loses its connection, it probably puts the files back in the drive and deletes the files from the unfinished download. if the power goes out, all files in the RAM disappear instantly. leaving the system with unfinished or no operating system at all

      • Kreft

        My internet went out while updating it and it actually left off where it was (which was about 60%).

    • PSWii60

      If you lose internet connection it will try to re-connect for the update a few times then just shut down the update.

      The downloading part of the update is not whats bricking the WiiU, its when its on the actual install of the update. Alot of many impatient people shutting off their WiiU during the install portion, even though on the screen it says “Do not turn off the Wii U during instillation”

      • fatherb

        but the install portion takes very little time comparitive to the download. im sure the idiot Fritz did what he said and killed it but most people get a hung up system. like mine froze on the transitioning screen between download and install and the only remedy is unplug as nintendo support will tell you.

  • Astro Black

    I can’t even imagine how ‘disappointed’ I’d be.
    If this happened to you, how did you contain the rage?

    • marioU

      how? punch a hole in the wall.

  • afroninja

    i cant wait for christmas to get mine and hopefully i wont have to do the firmware update

    • shroomforce

      If you want Miiverse and other stuff you will HAVE to

      • Ikari-pt

        He means maybe its already updated.

  • NinTobias

    I’m probably not the first one but it sure as hell looks like it.
    Anyways-what can you expect-I guess that’s the disadvantage of purchasing on launch day-everything’s new, untested…and of course servers are being used by practically everybody. But it could be seen as a mistake to Nintendo-having a first-day update. Whilst this bricking cannot be blamed completely on Nintendo, many ignorant people will of course ignorantly blame Nintendo and use people’s impatience as an excuse to rip on them.

    • Britton

      Such is Nintendos luck. It’s unfortunate but this is only a minor setback. I still love Nintendo and this does not change my mind. 🙂

    • jcb411abuser

      this is ridiculous, no way should anyone be expected to wait upto 2 hours for an update, what would happen if someones power turned off unexpectedly, 2 hours is just too long. if i was waiting for 2 hours i’d also think it was frozen

      • code

        it takes and average of one hour. it took me about 45minutes and then 30

      • TrueWiiMaster

        Some games will take far longer than this update if bought digitally. Welcome to the digital age.

      • TheShmow

        That’s not an argument. You can have a power outage during a 10 second update.

        I cannot remember when I last had a power outage. Must have been last year, or earlier. Not even during the bad thunderstorms this summer did the power go out.

  • Superstick

    Who cares? Wait a while then dive headfirst into those delicious Wii U games! 😀

  • NintendoWizard

    Madness. Its a massive download, so its bound to take a while.

    Thank god we know about this now, at least the UK launch will go down without many problems (fingers crossed); we might even have a preliminary patch by then to fix the reported issues.

  • Superrty

    They got bricked?!?!? When mine comes in the mail sometime this week i’m gonna sit infront of my wii u and guard it.

  • Eddy120876

    No issues on my end because I knew the servers were going to be swamp. Thats typical of any mass produce piece of technology. Same thing happens with the Apple servers once you try to log in during launch day so no biggie . So I let it run while i went to bed and woke up and the update was done. So i was playing as soon as i was up on sunday. ZOMBIU FTW!!!!

  • Zhenya

    glad i wasn’t the one to restart it, but wow, excitement got the worst for them

  • ssb4 3dsFC 3007 8585 6950

    now i know to wait when i get my wii u on christmas. PASS TIME ON 3ds with KIU, MK7 and Sonic All Stars Racing Transformed 3D!

  • Dannie

    it also didnt help that mercury is in retrograde which means hell for electronics

  • nintendofreak


  • Nintedward

    SPBOD – Stupid people brick of death/

    • nintendofreak

      goood one

  • pierpaolo

    I have not bougth a wii U yet, but this is sound crazy.

    While I can accept that people should not reboot during a firmware update, they still should be allowed to turn the wii U off when the software is being downloaded from the internet on the local machine.

    You cannot expect people wating few hours for a high risky software update.
    The firmware update should take only few minutes if not seconds.

    I have uplaoded motherboard and cameras firmwares. In all of them, the sofware was first downloaded locally on the pc, and then in olny few secs the firmware was updated.

    • Anhell

      The update is gonna depend on your Internet connection. I got my update and about 25 minutes…

      • LyingTuna

        Yeah, I’d say mine was about 30 min.

  • Dronch

    what does bricking even mean? Could someone answer my question.

    • DerikGotro64

      Bricked – when a console takes longer than expected to download important software and the player becomes impatient and trys to restart the console while undergoing downloading and the console will not come back on. The console has become a useless as a brick. Much like the “red ring of death” for the xbox 360 back in 2005, only difference is it the players fault for being impatient and not following the instructions.

      • Waddle Dee

        Which means you can’t play games or even use the Wii U.

      • Dronch


      • Madmagican

        Makes me wonder if the Wii U can be “Unbricked” I didn’t have the problem though (lucky for me I was patient with it)

    • smashninja22

      Can’t go on and basically as useful as a brick. Can’t do anything besides maybe use as a deadweight

    • Theninwii

      the gadget`s crucial files are deleted or damaged.making it impossible for it to boot or do anything. basically turning it into a useless brick. this usually happens when replacing firmware. when a console updates, it often deletes all its old firmware and replaces it with the new one. the firmware is basically the systems soul laying groundwork in the system. without, the machine is just a piece of metall. if the process is interupted, the firmware may not be completely replaced.

  • TheDavyStar

    I wouldn’t blame them. If you had to wait 1-2 hours what would YOU do?

    • smashninja22

      you can download in the background as of what i heard while doing other stuff

    • TrueWiiMaster

      Switch inputs and watch TV? Read? Play a 3DS? Sleep?

  • dr scoobie

    people really should be patient.
    always driving through red lights and such.

    but what if there is a power cut?
    in certain countries this happens regularly.

    in some countries the power is cut on purpose
    as there is not enough energy to go round.

  • James Bowserman

    Typicaly everyday people.

  • Levian VII

    Thanks for letting me know. I’m from NZ so we still have to wait another 10 days. But being in NZ the update will hopefully be quicker as less people will be buying it and updating it.

    • Jacro

      I know how you feel as I’m from new Zealand as well. We’re I preordered they had heaps left (preorders). So yeah I don’t think it will be chaos down here.

      • Fenberry

        Completely agree. Mightyape for the win.

  • Max Lazy 10 / NNID: Max_Lazy_10

    I feel bad for those people now. (worse off because one of my friends got that to happen to his Wii U)

  • seth

    my update took 40 minutes w/install. did it yesterday morning after I got mine from Gamestop. Thought it would take forever in the dead of launch day but it was fine.

  • Dan

    Wow im one lucky dude,, i was making room fro my gamepad charger when I accidentaly turn off the extension cord this turning off my wii u, i restarted wii u and everything is fine, i did erase all data first though jist to make sure ots a clean 32 G flash drive

  • Xarret

    I waited 2 hours for the update then 20 minutes for the installation. In the meantime I watched Amazing Spider-Man. 2 years waiting, 2 hours was nothing. People be patient and enjoy the gift of gaming.

  • Adam Fox

    I wonder how many of the folks actually turned off/unplugged the Wii U during update…..I know power outages could have caused some of ’em, but still, its common sense…..let it run….if you want to play the system when you first get it, don’t connect it to the internet, i’m sure it will play games out of the box w/o the update… a game and then do the update while you are sleeping

    • jcb411abuser

      i wonder what the story would be if you have a router that might disconnect in the middle of the download, what happens then?

      • Fanboydestroyer

        See my rant below

  • Nintenjoe

    It does seem a little bit stupid to complain about a brand new service not being instantly available when millions of people are joining simultaneously. I’m amazed that reviewers managed to even load the miiverse yesterday!

    Having said that, Sony came in for some of the harshest launch criticism I’ve ever seen with the PS3 so all that fanboy karma that was thrown around has finally caught up with us!

  • Linskarmo

    I don’t even know if this day-one upgrade is possible with my internet. 🙁 You’re right, it always says not to power off during updating. You never really think about those things, though. I never would have guessed what that could do… I guess there are advantages to not buying on launch day. You get some heads-up info.

  • Robtopia77

    Thats not always the case because my hardware update was complete and it messed up my Wii U. I had to ship my Wii U back to have it repaired. It had all the online features except my wii u wasn’t reading any of my wii u or wii games. And yes, I have tried flipping the disc on both sides while inserting it into the console; as well as, trying vertically and horizontially and unpluging it for ten seconds, but nothing worked. The company had no idea what was wrong with mine, but at least I get free express shipping and free repairs. My launch was a real tragedy.

  • Ryu No Hadouken

    you have to be an idiot to brick your Wii U

  • microsia

    I feel it would have been easier if they had put the update on the disc for people if that was possible.

  • victor

    whats up with all the biased comments blaming on the ppl? this is pretty fucked up from nintendo. i know about the warnings and blah blah blah, but come on, imagine you wait forever to get your brand new pre ordered nintendo wiiu and end up with a bricked console without even playing it? there should be at least a complete oficial statement from nintendo before release, warning that this could happen, or even more, avoid it from happen before release. i mean, the entire life we see the “do not touch the power button while whatever”, but it never destroyed nobodies console if you did…
    p.s.: before the fanboys hating on me, i am nintendo fanboy aswel lol

    • TrueWiiMaster

      Hey, Nintendo gave instructions, people did the opposite of what was instructed and broke their Wii U’s. Though it would be nice to have the update on the system before you get it, people’s own impatience and/or incompetence can’t be blamed on Nintendo.

    • Robtopia77

      Exactly; my was system was defective as claimed by a nintendo represenative. Yes, Nintendo is one of the greatest gaming companies around; perhaps the best and yes people do need to be patient about updating. But don’t let being a fanboy blind you of thinking that Nintendo couldn’t send out defective systems because that is just plain stupid. Mine was officially defective; which is why the actually gave me a free expedited shipping and handling process; as well as a free repair.

  • Scorpion

    well at least we know it now 😀

  • Hibill18

    That sucks, but I guess it just shows that everyone needs to be patient at times.

  • BloopbopBeepbop

    Honestly, i feel bad for them. I don’t have a console yet, but they have it right in front of them but are completely unable to use. :/


    “I wouldn’t blame them. If you had to wait 1-2 hours what would YOU do?”

    Do you wear a bicycle helmet to check the mail and tie your shoes? (if they have laces)

  • prettypinkpanacea

    When I finally receive my wii u unit, I am going to set it up right next to my router with the lan adapter and a small ethernet cable. This way my console has a direct wired connection for the first download. 10 days!

  • Fanboydestroyer

    I wish sites like this would stop painting those of us with bricked systems as idiots that that “should have used common sense”. My Wii U lost the internet connection, disconnected from the gamepad and froze. The gamepad gave me the error message, but the Wii U stayed frozen on an empty white screen, I tried to get the gamepad to reconnect, but it would not. I then left my Wii U running for a few hours, hoping that it would “wake up”, but it didn’t. At that point I had no other choice but to cut the power, but it is obvious that it was already bricked. A lot of us paid a lot of money for these paper weights, we are having a hard enough time without being called incompetent because of Nintendo’s failure to include a a fail safe protocol for updates.

    • TrueWiiMaster

      If your bricking happened by accident like you say it did, n one’s calling you incompetent or an idiot. They said that people who unplugged their Wii U’s due to impatience or sheer stupidity were incompetent idiots. Based on your story, that doesn’t include you.

      Also, are there really a lot of people in your position, having a bricked Wii U by no fault of their own?

      Also (again) there’s still a chance you could send it in and get it back before Christmas. My Wii had the problem where it couldn’t connect to the internet, and Nintendo received, fixed, and returned the system in about 2 weeks total. It’s still annoying since you should be able to play it right now, but at least it shouldn’t take long.

    • jcb411abuser

      this is ridiculous, like they’ve had 17months nearly since it was announced to get this thing right, could they not have shipped it with a disc with the firmware update on it? i love nintendo but how can i spend 400euro on something that might destroy itself before i can even play it online or get any online features. i live in ireland, we have terrible internet quality, you’re talking an average of 3mbps, but you’d be lucky to pull 250kbps actual download on average. my net is 3g mobile internet, it messes up all the time, HOW CAN I POSSIBLY BUY THIS THING NOW KNOWING WHAT COULD HAPPEN!! it’s so depressing because i’ve been waiting well over a year for this console and now through nothing short of incompetency and sheer stupidity on nintendo’s part, i’m probably going to miss out on this thing.

  • Chrono

    Apparently if you click cancel while downloading the update, it will download in the background while you play on the system. No idea why Nintendo didn’t just put a “Download in Background” button though.

  • Dereq

    Hmm, that’s strange. I had to unplug my Wii U during the installation because it froze up on the white screen with the Wii U logo in the corner. Turned it right back on and it only took five minutes to complete.

  • verymetal

    Good to know! I am guilty of not having much patience.


    “I wish sites like this would stop painting those of us with bricked systems as idiots that that “should have used common sense”. My Wii U lost the internet connection”

    Did you bother reading the entire article? It did not disparage anyone that lost an internet connection. It said people that didn’t have patience and clearly didn’t follow a basic set of instructions. During update don’t power off. You lost your Internet. That’s a tough blow.

    What im tired of hearing is people blaming Nintendo for making a bad move and not taking responsibility for it when it was spelled out just because they got antsy and wanted to play ZombiU.

  • wellsberg

    I thought someone told me that theres default settings where the console will turn off after being left inactive for a certain amount of time

    • Madmagican

      Yeah, it’s 1 hour if you don’t change the default first; that setting should definitely be the first thing you change on the Wii U… TURN IT OFF.

      • MsDamiao

        actually when downloading on the wiiU it automatically turns that feature off until the download is complete

  • Jetty

    Easy prediction. Everybody forgot the Resident Evil 6 DL already? Miiverse wasn’t running properly until the 19th. It’s like diving in cold water, absorb the shock, then it’s smooth.

  • Lozeot

    Actually, I’m on here with the Wii U right now, and I’m glad to say that I did not make this mistake. Also, the upload took between half of an hour and an hour, and I’m good with that! Anyway, I hope this will prevent U from having what Wii like to call an “Epic Fail” in the U.S.A.

  • The Plague

    Man. That is sad. After all these months waiting patiently, patience is what faltered at that critical moment….

  • Mommalion

    So we just bought our wii U, started the update and after waiting awhile we came back and the system said the update had failed the next button had taken us to a systems page to where it let us program the settings but now after creating a mii it’s on a white screen with the logo in the bottom right corner of the screen and its playing music it’s been on this screen for about and hour and a half now. So I was wondering if anyone had any advice to what’s going on with it? We would greatly appreciate it.

    • Momma lion

      We unplugged it and plugged it back in and it corrected itself. Maybe this post could help some one else. I’m sure we’re not the only ones.

      • kman2495

        I actually needed to do this as well. My internet connection failed multiple times, then it froze while loading the Wii U menu screen. I unplugged it, then when I turned it on, it wasn’t bricked. I had to restart whatever progress I had on the download before my internet died, but now its working fine.

  • ndefalco

    What about console freezing? I’ve heard some people had an issue with it. Mine froze up while playing AC 3. I couldn’t even power it off. Had to unplug it. It’s only happened to me once, but it’s pretty disconcerting.

    Anyone else have this happen to them?

  • Magua

    It’s been three days and I’m still trying to download this stupid update. I keep getting kicked off the server. Shame on Nintendo to not have foresight to anticipate that a lot user would have to download this update. If this problem isn’t fixed soon, I’m returning this console!

    • Shane

      Is your internet connection good? You shouldn’t have that much of a problem, or maybe your location?

      • Magua

        My Internet connection is good. Finally downloaded the update and it seems to be working fine.

  • Shane

    Mine actually did freeze, so I HAD to unplug it. I know the difference between long pdates, and a froen console. Mines frozen 3 times already, even after the initial update, but I still don’t see that much problem. It works fine otherwise, and is probably just trying to grow into it’s clothes so to speak.

  • t_vo

    Thought. The reason for the update is because most of these consoles were built over the last 3 months before OS was finalized. I’m assuming any consoles that were built after launch, will now have this huge update already installed and may only require a smaller update for any tweeks added since launch. You would think? No?

  • stelios

    can nintendo fix it?


    It took me almost a hour to update the Wii U

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  • DevaGolgotha

    My update disconnects, but slowly inches towards complete.  Really annoying…