Can You Play Wii Games On Wii U? Here Is What You Should Know in 2021!

There is always something special about the Nintendo franchise. 

One of them is the backward compatibility that allows you to play the older game on the current generation console. 

But, how about Wii U? 

Because Wii U has better engines, this question is surfacing quite a lot.

In this case, can you play Wii games on Wii U? 

It is not a surprise anymore, but yes, you can play Nintendo Wii games and use some of the accessories. 

Interested? Before you try the game, here is what you should know beforehand. 

Do All Wii Games Work On Wii U?

As you know that you can play the WII games on the newer consoles, this particular question will most likely follow the idea. 

What are the games that are playable in Wii U? 

Surprisingly, almost all the Wii games are playable in this newer home console. 

Nintendo states this fact on their official site.

Along with the games, the Wii accessories are also compatible with the newer product. 

Including the Wii Remote Plus, Wii Nunchuk, Sensor Bar, to the Balanced Board. 

That is why there are no reasons to shelf your older Nintendo games because you buy Wii U. 

It is also possible to transfer your Wii data, including your data save, Wii Point, and history. 

So, it is clear that the answer to the “Can you play Wii games on the Wii U?” question is a big Yes. 

All you need to do is sync up your Wii Controller and insert the Wii games, then start playing! 

You can either transfer the data, use older games, or buy some Wii games on the Wii U eShop. 

Another interesting fact about the Wii U is its backward compatibility also covers older consoles. 

GameCube, NES, Neo Geo, Sega Master System, Nintendo 64, and Super Nintendo are available through the Virtual console. 

You can download older games such as Super Mario 64 or even Super Mario Sunshine and play it with Wii U. 

Do Wii Games Look Better On Wii U?

Since you got the better console, there is no doubt that a question about the picture quality will surface quite a lot. 

It is especially for those who are expecting an upscale look from the older Wii Games.   

In this case, it’s worth noting that Wii U compatibility doesn’t upscale the game. 

If the original game doesn’t support 16:9, then there won’t be a 1080 display. 

While the answer of can you play Wii games on Wii U is yes, but playing Wii in your Wii U will not add too much difference. 

The official Nintendo Reps stated that Wii U doesn’t Up res or upscale the Wii games to the HD resolution. 

It is because the WII runs different hardware, and Wii U will not change anything.

Yet, if you use the old RCA cable on the Wii then you will find the difference when using the red, blue, green component cables. 

It explains that the use of RCA cables only provides 480p, while the Wii U will use the newer component cables with the better display quality.  

The display is not boxed, stretched, or washed out.  

Along with it, the display looks crisper and a little bit sharper. 

It is also worth noting the TV and the connector gives a big effect on the games’ look. 

If you use HD TV with HDMI cable, the screen resolution will upscale the game up to 720p or 1080p. 

So, can you play Wii games on Wii U and get a better look? The answer is not really. 

The engine will not do anything about the up rendering that makes the picture crisper, clearer, and better. 

But in this case, the Wii games will only look bigger with the 1080p.

It will make some texts look more visible, even though there are some blurred and jaggies in the game.

But, it is different when it comes to performance. 

The Wii U engines allow some older games to play even smoother than before. 

Along with it, you can still play it on the gamepad. 

Playing the older games on your gamepad is the solution to hide some of the graphic flaws in the game. 

With all that in mind, you can conclude that there is no much difference between the Wii and the Wii U graphic. 

Some of the definite distinctive looks are the bigger resolution (depending on your TV resolution). 

How Can I Play Wii Games On My Wii U On My TV?  

The previous explanation keeps on underlining the idea of using TV or HD TV for playing Wii U. 

But how can you play Wii games on Wii U with TV?

Well, you should connect the Wii U with your TV. 

You can use HDMI cables or other component cables. 

After you connect the Wii U to the Tv, you should start with Syncing the Wii Remote with the Wii U console. 

Starting with inserting Wii disc to Wii U or you can use the Wii menu. 

And then, navigate the Wii remote and select the Wii menu. 

After that you will find options, using TV only or Tv and GamePad. 

Choosing the TV only will make you play using your Wii remote and any other Wii accessories. 

But if you choose the latter option, you can play Wii games with a TV while the gamepad also shows the same graphic. 

But worth noting that you will always play with the remote, not the gamepad. 

If you don’t want to waste your Gamepad battery, then choose the first option. 

That is all the explanation of the “can you play Wii games on Wii U?” question. 

You can play almost all the WII games and use your tv to get a more prominent display, not better. 


All in all, this backward compatibility is one of the attractiveness of the Wii U. 

You can play Wii games just fine in a Wii U as the console is backward compatible, as stated on Nintendo Official Website.

Popular Wii games like Wii Sports, Xenoblade Chronicle and Wii Party can be played just fine in your Wii U.

This feature Nintendo players have many ways to access and enjoy the older games. 

Not only from the Wii platform, it even ventures to the older Gamecube games. 

Even though you should download some older games, but Wii U backward compatibility will work just fine for you. 

About the Author
Hi, I'm Steve. I'm a proud gamer. I have been active within the gaming sphere for 30+ years. As gaming is something I enjoy very much, I want other people to enjoy it also. That is exactly why I started this blog.

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