Nintendo Network ID (NNID) is the equivalent of a Nintendo account but on Wii U and 3DS family of consoles only. In the past, the two were interchangeable, and you could use NNID to sign into a pre-existing Nintendo account or to create a new one. The company discontinued this feature, likely because it was a security risk, and the accounts now operate separately. However, the two accounts can still be linked to share funds for the Nintendo eShop. That means there’s also a chance your payment history on one or both can help you authentication, especially with the last method. With that said, here’s how to recover a Nintendo Network ID.
1. If you linked and verified an e-mail address
To have Nintendo send the Nintendo Network ID to you, follow these instructions:
- Visit the Nintendo’s Network ID Search page in your browser.
- Enter the e-mail address and select an option – Birth Date or Nickname.
- Enter the required details and click the Send button.
2. If you are still signed in on a console
This applies to both regular accounts and those for children. Here are two ways to find your Nintendo Network ID if you are signed in:
To see NNID on Wii U
To view Nintendo Network ID on Wii U, do this:
- Tap on the Mii character of the current user in the top left corner of the main Wii U menu.
- You’ll see a user selection screen.
- Tap on the user you want to check NNID for.
- You can see your Nintendo Network ID in orange letters.
Finding NNID on 3DS consoles
Here’s how to view Nintendo Network ID on 3DS:
- Go to the HOME menu.
- Open the System Settings menu on the left.
- Tap on Nintendo Network ID Settings.
- You’ll see it in grey text on the top screen (right next to the word ID).
Steps to retrieve Nintendo Network ID password
You now have your Nintendo Network ID, and that’s wonderful. However, you still need a password to either sign in for the first time or to log out on the console, then log back in. The pre-requisite for this is an e-mail address that was verified in the past.
Logging in to the console for the first time
Follow these steps to get a short-term password:
- Visit Nintendo’s NNID Temporary Password page.
- Enter your NNID and e-mail address.
- Click on Send.
- You’ll receive a temporary password from Nintendo, which is valid for 24 hours, and you can log in.
- Change the password immediately for security reasons. Here’s how.
Changing password on the Nintendo 3DS family of devices
If you are already logged in, follow these instructions update the Nintendo Network ID password for 3DS:
- From the HOME menu, tap on System Settings.
- Go to Nintendo Network ID Settings.
- Select Password Settings.
- Select Change Password.
- Enter your temporary password once.
- Enter the new password twice and save changes.
Changing password on Nintendo Wii U
Assuming you are already signed in, here’s what to do to pick a different password for Wii U:
- Tap on the Mii icon of a user you want to change settings for.
- Go to User Settings.
- Select Change Password.
- Enter the temporary password you received and select OK twice.
- Enter a new password twice while tapping on OK in-between.
Finding Nintendo Network ID for children accounts
Children’s Nintendo accounts cannot use their e-mail address to create an account. Luckily, you, as their parent or guardian, can, because entering your email address was mandatory. Unless they are logged in to the console and can view their NNID in the ways we mentioned, follow method 1 above. Enter your e-mail address, but the children’s account nickname or date of birth.
Get in touch with Nintendo Customer Support
If everything else fails, your only option is reaching out to the Nintendo Customer Care team using a method of your choosing. We described them in our guide on how to recover a Nintendo account. If you want to retrieve your children’s Nintendo Network ID, follow the instructions listed under the Forgot the password for your children’s Nintendo account? headline. There’s a chance you’ll see it under Sign-in and security settings.