how to expand wii u storage

Nintendo Wii U Expanded Storage, Explained

If you still have a Wii U, you will eventually run out of storage space. The Basic model has only 8GB of storage space, while the Deluxe model offers 32GB.

Even if the Wii U does not have an extensive library of games, you do not want to delete a game every time you require space for a new one. If you’re running out of space on your Wii U, this article will explain how to add additional storage.

Using a USB Flash Drive With Your Wii U

The Wii U’s first external storage option is a regular flash drive. These are available online for a reasonable price and can easily quadruple the storage capacity of your Wii U. It appears to be the obvious decision, so what’s the catch?

As it turns out, Nintendo discourages the use of USB flash drives with the Wii U. Because these devices have a limited number of read/write cycles before they wear out, they are not intended for frequent use, such as that required by a game. A flash drive, especially a low-quality one, could fail and cause data loss.

Even though your existing flash drives will function with your Wii U, it is not advised. Therefore, their use is at your own risk.

Wii U SD Cards

The Wii U features an SD card slot on its front panel. However, an SD card cannot be used to store Wii U games. SD cards can only be used to store images of Miis, hold Super Smash Bros. for Wii U screenshots, and transfer data from a Wii to a Wii U.

If you wish to utilize an existing SD card to save games, you can circumvent this restriction by employing a USB card reader. Simply insert your SD card into the reader’s slot and connect the USB end to your console. The Wii U will recognize the device as a USB drive rather than an SD card.

Unfortunately, the same problem that plagues flash devices also affects SD cards. These devices were not intended for the frequent reading and writing required by video games. You can thus try this method, but don’t be surprised if your SD card expires rapidly.

Nintendo adds that the Wii U supports SDHC memory cards with a maximum capacity of 32GB, but not SDCX cards. This restriction does not apply when using a USB adaptor, as several internet sources have indicated that bigger cards can be used without issue.

Keep in mind that SD cards put into the front slot of the system can save specific Wii game save data, suggesting that SD cards have some utility when playing Wii games on a Wii U.

External Hard Drives for Wii U

The company recommends using an external hard disk that is wall-mounted (using AC power). The Wii U’s maximum storage capacity is 2 TB, however you should never require that much. Devices with larger storage capacity will function, however the Wii U is limited to 2TB. Additionally, Nintendo discourages the use of external SSDs.

The website of Nintendo contains a list of external drives that have been confirmed to be compatible with the Wii U. It should be fine to use any of them, however notice that the majority of them are outdated models. We elaborate further below.

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