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experience buying a used/refurb wii


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#1 ajumbaje

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 03:54 AM

I was thinking of getting a wii at gamestop since they're dirt cheap right now($80). I was either going that route or getting the blue wii at walmart if its still 100 new.

Has anyone run into any issues with buying a used wii from gamestop? I know to look for motion plus, first party peripherals, etc.

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#2 Twilight Sparkle

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 03:44 PM

I got my Wii used from GameStop years ago when every store around me was literally sold out (/RobLowe'd). Have never had any problems with it. Nintendo makes reliable hardware.

#3 Cyborger

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 08:13 PM

I too am thinking about getting a use Wii from GameStop. It's cheap and I have credit which will make the purchase even sweeter.

I got my Wii used from GameStop years ago when every store around me was literally sold out (/RobLowe'd). Have never had any problems with it. Nintendo makes reliable hardware.


I can't speak for ajumbaje but I think he was asking if there could be any issues that the previous owner may have left. That's the reason why I'm cautious when buying used consoles. They could be hacked or banned or perhaps some of the things within the harddrive could have been erased.

#4 dmaul1114

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 08:13 PM

Wii's have had some problems with the graphic's card overheating and failing.

That said, the new cheaper Wiis are not backward's compatible with Gamecube games or controllers if you care about that. And it may be tough to find an old model Wii new.

So it may be better going used, and hope that if it has any problems they happen within the GS warranty period.

I can't speak for ajumbaje but I think he was asking if there could be any issues that the previous owner may have left. That's the reason why I'm cautious when buying used consoles. They could be hacked or banned or perhaps some of the things within the harddrive could have been erased.


The Wii doesn't have a hard drive, and the system memory isn't user accessible, so there's not much to worry about there.

GS should catch whether a console is modded or not when testing them out I'd think. If not, if you have any problems like that, those are something you'd notice right away and could take it back for an exchange.

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#5 ajumbaje

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 02:47 AM

yea, Im looking for a black one. There is a kmart 30 minutes from me that has the mario kart wii bundle for 150 still. Maybe they'll still have that friday(payday)

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#6 UncleBob

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 04:17 AM

I'd recommend a new one.
1) You're guaranteed a Wii Motion Plus controller. Not a huge deal, but I'm guessing if you're wanting one at this point, you're wanting Zelda - which requires Motion Plus.
2) It's $70 more, but you'll get Mario Kart or New Super Mario Bros. - both $50 games and both worth it. Keep in mind, though - the NSMB bundles aren't backwards compatible with the GameCube games - so don't get one of those if you care about that. If you do get one of those, you can probably sell the Mario soundtrack that comes with them. Hell, I'd give you $7/shipped for it. If you don't want either of the games, they'll get you $20-$40 on eBay.
3) A brand-new unit with a 1 Year/15 month warranty through Nintendo. Not a huge deal, as has been mentioned, the Wii is pretty reliable... but still, a good thing to have.
4) 160 Club Nintendo coins. If you don't care at all about the various Club Nintendo prizes, they now offer downloadable games. 100 coins gets you Super Mario Kart ($8 value) and 150 coins gets Fluidity ($12 value). Or you can just sell the PIN code to someone who wants the coins.

I wouldn't suggest getting a used Wii for more than $50 at this point. $150 for a new unit is a pretty good deal - heck, if you're not in a hurry, it seems like someone is *always* running a Wii w/Gift Card promo.
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#7 dmaul1114

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 04:57 AM

Hell, I'd give you $7/shipped for it.


I'd sell you my copy of the Mario Soundtrack for $7 paypal shipped as I don't care about game soundtracks.

PM me if interested.

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#8 Blade

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 04:38 AM

The Wii doesn't have a hard drive, and the system memory isn't user accessible, so there's not much to worry about there.

GS should catch whether a console is modded or not when testing them out I'd think. If not, if you have any problems like that, those are something you'd notice right away and could take it back for an exchange.


This is wrong. People who own a Wii and a Wii copy of Twilight Princess are able to hack WW/VC games onto their system. A console that has been hacked with Shop channels this way can't download those channels again, and they can't play them after they do a system update. I had this problem when I bought my Wii used. The game values are hacked into the registry, and Nintendo support said that I'd have to send the system in if I want it fixed. I guess it can't be solved through a reformat. GS would have no idea if this has happened to the system.

They can also install homebrew OS software and roms outside of the Wii spectrum. If this happened and you connect to the internet to update, your Wii gets "bricked" and can't function at all. But I highly doubt GS would accept these in for trade.
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#9 SaraAB

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 05:35 PM

There are a million different ways to mod a Wii these days, I think it can even be done without a copy of Twilight princess now. GS takes in pretty much anything as far as systems go, I am not even sure if they test them before they are taken in. But if you found out you had a modded Wii, it would probably be evident right away and you could just take it in for an exchange.

Heh if I got a modded Wii I would probably be pretty happy as I want to play the Just dance series in japanese and I don't really want to risk modding my own WIi system especially since you can't get backwards compatible units these days unless you buy used.

GS may have some way of formatting the consoles too before they resell them to the public.

Buying a Wii off another person is a little more risky unless you are able to see it work first hand.

#10 Scorch

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 05:48 PM

Stop buying systems used. You don't know what the last owner did. I don't know how to stress this enough.

Save up, wait a few weeks and buy it new. If you've waited this long to buy one, waiting a little bit longer won't kill you.

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#11 dmaul1114

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 06:25 PM

This is wrong. People who own a Wii and a Wii copy of Twilight Princess are able to hack WW/VC games onto their system. A console that has been hacked with Shop channels this way can't download those channels again, and they can't play them after they do a system update. I had this problem when I bought my Wii used. The game values are hacked into the registry, and Nintendo support said that I'd have to send the system in if I want it fixed. I guess it can't be solved through a reformat. GS would have no idea if this has happened to the system.

They can also install homebrew OS software and roms outside of the Wii spectrum. If this happened and you connect to the internet to update, your Wii gets "bricked" and can't function at all. But I highly doubt GS would accept these in for trade.


Well, like I said, that should be readily apparent when you hook it up and presumably you could take it back to GS and exchange.

I generally agree with the above post about not buying used consoles. But the Wii is a special case if someone wants backwards compatibility since the new models don't have it. Buying used may be the only option if they can't track down an old Wii console new locally.

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#12 rlse9

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 06:35 PM

I'd buy new. While the Wii was solidly built, I have noticed a fair number of people on other problems starting to have problems with their Wiis. It has moving parts, after time it's gonna wear out. For what's really a minimal price difference (assuming you want Mario Kart anyway) figuring in the included game and Wii points, it's better to have hardware that has a warranty, and should last for several years, as opposed to buying hardware that may appear fine but could be a few months from developing a problem.

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#13 SaraAB

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 12:48 AM

This is a problem because a brand new, backwards compatible Wii is very hard to find, so IMO you are better off going used. Its a big PITA to hook up a Gamecube especially if you game mostly on a HDTV, you can get component video through the Wii but I don't think there is a way to get component cables for the Gamecube. Playing on a CRT isn't the same either, for the gamecube, works well for other systems though.

There are ways to get warranties on used products too. I wonder if you could squaretrade a used Wii from Gamestop. I know gamestop gives you 30 days at least standard with any used system, just make sure you don't neglect the system in those 30 days.

I think you have a good chance with a used Wii, a lot of people who bought the Wii hardly even played it.

#14 UncleBob

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 12:54 AM

[...]I don't think there is a way to get component cables for the Gamecube.


There are. First, you have to have one of the first model GameCubes (more common than it sounds by stating it that way). Then, you have to conjure voo-doo magiks to find a set of the elusive Game Cube Component Cables (usually ~$50 used on eBay).

But it can be done - four of my GameCubes and my Panasonic Q are proof. :D
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#15 SaraAB

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 04:23 PM

The cost of component gamecube cables is making the cost of a used Wii sound very cheap now!

#16 rlse9

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 06:05 PM

Isn't the black Mario Kart bundle the OP mentioned one of the backwards compatible ones?

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#17 ajumbaje

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 12:41 AM

Isn't the black Mario Kart bundle the OP mentioned one of the backwards compatible ones?


should be, I'm getting one tomorrow morning, they're on amazon for 150

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#18 UncleBob

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 04:40 AM

The cost of component gamecube cables is making the cost of a used Wii sound very cheap now!



Ah, but Game Boy Advance games via Game Boy Player + Game Cube + Component Cables is pretty sweet. :D

If you are really, really lucky, you can score a set at Game Stop for $5. Haven't heard of anyone managing to do this in awhile though.
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#19 screwkick

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 06:58 PM

Just bought a used Wii at Gamestop a few days ago. All systems are guaranteed for 30 days no questions asked. Black console with Wii motion plus built-in.

Homebrew channel installed with all the classic emulators.

You can mod a Wii without software anymore.

#20 Laglace

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 02:58 AM

I bought a Wii from Ebay for $50 total. It came with everything in good condition, and it had a bunch of VC games on it. I realize that each transaction on Ebay is different, but I got a pretty sweet deal over all.