In true Nintendo fashion, the company has now launched a storefront for its games with the same limited interface as its other online ventures. There are multiple parts on the Nintendo eShop, focusing on different items.
Under the banner of “Get the games you want, when you want them,” the browser store splits off into a few basic categories. There are the mandatory newest games, then Nintendo’s classic line and a surprising big spot for indie releases. Further on, the list is separated between Wii U and 3DS platforms.
To purchase games, however, Nintendo doesn’t join the same facilitating online possibilities of the present day. Opting to buy a game will either prompt a separate window for its eShop release or go to a page to locate a retailer.
Worse yet, the eShop version still restricts purchases to either credit cards or the use of eShop gift cards, which also aren’t accessible on-site. Heavens forbid it should add any standard electronic payment method, like the popular PayPal banking tools, to keep customers on their own network.
Still, it’s definitely a step in the right direction, in the Nintendo way of handling online transitions. It’s possible to scan a code with the 3DS to be taken to the handheld’s shop, for instance.
In addition, being able to connect to retailers off-site at least points customers into a more user-friendly direction, but it sort of defeats the purpose altogether. Maybe the browser version of the Nintendo eShop would be better if it renamed itself as a hub, as that’s what it is.
Points for effort though, Nintendo. We’ll get there.