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How to Play Your DS Online - Easy Tips To Get You Up and Running Strong

by: Daniel Kelly ; edited by: Aaron R. ; updated: 5/25/2012 • Leave a comment

Here is your quick guide to configuring your Nintendo DS for Internet play. Don't just sit and play all alone! Hook up your Nintendo DS and play against others all over the world.

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    Breathing New Life Into Your Nintendo DS

    Has humiliating your friends at your favorite DS game become dull? Do they mock your superior reaction time, strategic planning, or overall experience in said game as a “waste of time”? Are you a closeted Pokemaniac desperate to finish your cuddly collection? If so, you are ready to face the global myriad of other game addicts. It’s time to take the Nintendo DS online.

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    How To Get Started

    There are two prerequisites, though. First, the chosen DS game must be labeled on its case with the circular blue “Nintendo Wi-Fi connection” logo. These specific games are the only avenue of accessing the internet. A list of them can be found at Nintendo's Wi-Fi page. Second, you need access to an available Wi-Fi network, and the router regulating the network must either be unsecured or have WEP encryption. Routers with stronger encryptions, like WPA or WPA2, won’t work.

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    Moving Online With Your Nintendo DS

    Given those requirements, it’s time to configure the DS. Once the selected game has loaded, find the Wi-Fi configuration menu. This is typically labeled “Nintendo WFC Settings" (or "Setup"). It is usually in an obvious menu location. Otherwise, “Multiplayer” or “Options” are excellent starting places to find the setup menu. Either way, you should stumble into a menu titled “Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection Setup.” This menu looks the same, no matter which online-enabled game you are playing: a white background, a large blue button, and a slender yellow button on the touch screen. I’d suggest using the stylus from this point out.

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    Visual Outline

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    Getting Into The Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection

    Tap the blue window labeled “Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection Settings.” There, the three small boxes on the screen represent the three different connection settings the DS can store. Tap any one of them. Now, there will be another large blue window labeled “Search for an Access Point.” Once selected, the DS will scan for available networks and spit out a list. Select your preferred network (and input the WEP key, if necessary). The DS will follow with a connection test to ensure its compatibility.If the DS and router get along, the connection settings are automatically saved and used for every other online game.

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    Finalizing The Setup With Your Nintendo DS

    However, there is a final trial, which involves connecting to the game’s online server. Find any menu item that suggests a connection to “Nintendo WFC.” This is usually found in the game’s multiplayer section. Select it. Watch your game slowly connect. Pray, if you must. If you reach the next menu, Congratulations! If you receive an error message instead, it can mean an array of problems. You may just need to move closer to the signal source, or the router may have extra security inaccessible to the DS. There are also some routers that simply don’t work. Information on specific router support can be found at

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    It's Almost Over...

    Go ahead. Venture into Nintendo's Wi-Fi utopia, where innocent eyes and ears are spared the internet's slings and slurs. If you enjoy the semblance of social interaction, you will need to utilize friend codes. That's a subject for an entire article unto itself.

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