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Problems with Download Codes (Software, DLC, and Themes)

The information in this article can help you when:

  • The console displays the error message: "The code could not be recognised."
  • The console displays the error message: "The item corresponding to the code you entered is not currently available."
  • A game or theme download code is not working or invalid (including scratched, damaged, or illegible).

Additional Information:

What to Do:

  • Verify that you are entering your download code correctly.
    • The download code is a 16-digit code that is printed on the receipt or available in the email body.
    • Themes: The download code must be redeemed within the Theme Shop on a Nintendo 3DS family system.
    • Games: The download code must be redeemed on the Nintendo eShop for Nintendo Switch, Wii U or Nintendo 3DS family systems.
    • If some numbers are hard to read, try entering similar numbers. (For example, a 0 may look like an 8, a 5 may look like a 2, etc).

  • Verify that the country setting on your system is correct on your Nintendo Switch, Wii U or Nintendo 3DS family system.
    • A download code can only be redeemed on a Nintendo eShop set to the same region as the game. (For example, a code sold for use in Japan can only be redeemed with a Nintendo Account and/or Nintendo eShop also set to Japan.)
    • If you are attempting to use a download code or system from a different region (a European download code with a North American system, for example), the download code will not work.

  • Check your previously downloaded titles in the Nintendo eShop. If you already redeemed the download code, you can re-download the game on your Nintendo Switch, Wii U or Nintendo 3DS family system without re-entering the code.
  • If the download code is still not working, it may not have been activated correctly at the store. Please check with the retailer that provided the code.

Situation Not Resolved:

If the download code is still not working, please contact us for additional support.