Shutting Off Wii U During Massive Update Bricks Console

Though the Wii U's only been out for mere days, owners are already reporting problems with bricking their console.

This issue's caused by turning off the Wii U during the middle of a massive update—reported 5 GB according to GTTV's Geoff Keighley—required to access all of the Wii U's online content. Considering that this update would take most anywhere from an hour to five hours to download, it's understandable as to why some users would apply the update, see that it's taking longer than expected to apply, and decide to ignore the warnings of not shutting off their console during an update. After all, shutting off most consoles during an update is usually harmless, since the changes can usually be rolled back and the update can be re-applied.

LA Times's Ben Fritz was apparently one of the victims of Wii U bricking. After shutting off his console in the middle of the massive update, he found that he was unable to reset or reverse the damage.

"So is there some secret way to hard reset a Wii U? Cause mine is totally busted," he tweeted.

"Warning: don't unplug your Wii U during the 2 hour plus software update or the console stops working," he added, later complaining that the Wii U never warns the user of the long update.

For now, it doesn't seem like there's a way to reverse the issue. According to Venturebeat, the issue isn't something that Nintendo can resolve remotely. Bricking your console means that you'll be forced to send it into Nintendo for repair.

So if you recently grabbed up the Wii U, but haven't applied the update just yet, be sure to apply the update when you're absolutely certain you won't shut off the console or lose power to the console. Otherwise, you may just end up with a glorified paperweight.

Contact Us for News Tips, Corrections and Feedback

  • 5 GB? That is huge, twice more than downloading Windows 8 RC.
  • assasin32
    Seems like Nintendo had a bit of an oversight on what happens when you turn off the console during an update. Hopefully they get together and fix it so you don't brick the thing when you turn off the console during update. Preferably a small quick solo patch before any other update so this happens less.

    Beyond that all I have to say is I am happy I haven't gave my family member wifi to their Wii U yet or else were probably be one of these people with a bricked Wii U. Little kid + probably 7 hour update on our connection, yeah I can guarantee you he would probably turn off the console thinking it was broken. Heck I would if it didn't tell me how much was being downloaded i would assume it just froze.
  • house70
    Nintendo should warn users if unusually large updates are pushed. Windows always warns about the same issue during updates, and for a PC there is always a way to restore it without having it sent in to the manufacturer.
  • igot1forya
    LOL 5 GB would take over 12h to update on my internet connection.
  • j2j663
    So this is a report from one guy?
  • sliem
    That's a stupid move by Nintendo (5GB update). Also bad design (power failure during update = bricked? that's a big fail)
  • theconsolegamer
    Welcome to yesterday

    Those who bought the 8GB version because they though it was the cheaper option are up to some serious butthurt LMAO
  • guess who
    "absolutely certain"?

    There is no such thing, even on the grid.
  • DRosencraft
    Do think it's bad that this happened to anyone, but at the same time, you are willingly taking a risk ignoring the warning. You're not supposed to speed. Everyone speeds and no one seems to ever get caught. Can't really be mad if you speed though and are the unlucky one to get caught. Not a one-to-one example, but the warnings are there for a reason. Beside, isn't there usually a way to cancel the update before just shutting the system off? Or just show some patience and let it finish updating. It's not like a computer that you likely have a dozen other things you can do o it. Do feel bad for those who now have shiny new bricks, but like I said, ignoring warnings is a gamble you take at your own risk.
  • TheViper
    It's only 1 GB (882 MB to be exact)

    And removing the power from any device while installing a firmware update can render them bricked. This is not a Wii U problem but an electronics device problem.

    That's why they have warnings on all of them.