Today we will discuss how to softmod your Wii, install a Wii USB Loader and a hard drive so you can load games on the drive and play them without the DVD. This modification is a must for anyone that has lots of games and wants to have quick access to all of them. After this mod, you copy your games to your Wii and then you can store them away for safe keeping. Below is a screen shot of one USB Loader with games on a hard drive.
We get many questions on how to put everything together on hacking your Wii and downloading games for your Wii. First, I must say that you should ONLY download games that you own and use it for backups of these games. Don’t steal (please). Ok… Now that’s out of the way… I will try and help you straighten out what you need to do or at least understand the process to unlock you wii so you can load games on it and play them off of a hard drive connected to your Wii using a Wii USB loader. This process is called a Wii Softmod with a USB Loader (to load games to a USB hard drive). Even though you will be connecting a USB hard drive on your Wii, it is still a softmod in regards to the modification to the code on your Wii. You are not adding a chip to your Wii allthough, you get the similar results!
There are many Wii menu versions out there in the world so the process may be slightly different on your system. But, it’s basically the same across the board. Many people are searching for the Homebrew software and think that when it is installed, they can download and play Wii games. Well, that’s partially true. You can download the freeware games that have been designed by the community and play them on your Wii within the Homebrew channel. Games like Doom, pong and literally hundreds more. There are lots of them and it’s really worth it setting up homebrew for just these Homebrew games. If you want to play Wii game iso’s (copies of the games) or if you want to store your game collection on your Wii hard drive so you don’t have to always put the DVD’s in the Wii, then you must use a Wii USB Loader after you’ve installed the Homebrew channel and hacked your wii with an ISO loader. This process has many steps to it and give yourself a few hours of dedicated time to do it. We tried to find the instructions by searching the internet and the free ones we found left us with a Wii that wasn’t modded correctly and it kept crashing. Most of the instructions were incomplete or were confusing. You can easily “Brick your Wii” if you don’t do it right. We do know how to this correctly now!
Here is the basic process:
First, you need the following hardware:
- A Wii (Menu version doesn’t matter)
- A 2GB SD Card (use sandisk as they work best)
- An USB external hard drive (Use a Western Digital)
- A Game Cube Controller for using Bootmii. This may not be required but was for us (may not be necessary)
Now that you have the correct hardware, you need to follow the steps below to add a hard drive to your Wii. Then load and play backup games off the hard drive. Just so you know, playing games off the hard drive is much faster than using the DVD’s. These are very high level steps so you understand the process from end to end. This is because there are different methods you need to follow depending on your Wii menu version you have installed on your Wii. To do this correctly, I do recommend getting a guide to do this modification. These guides have been written to help you through the install process and will help you prevent you from bricking your Wii (breaking it). Just so you know, the software you need is free on the internet but when we started out modifying our first Wii in our lab, we couldn’t find reliable and complete instructions (by searching) to complete this software modification. On the right side ( => over there =>) of this site, there is a list of Wii Unlocking guides to follow. Take a look at them and decide which one is right for you. They are all supported so if you have any questions, you can ask them and you will have the help you need. So, the software is free, but having the instructions to modify it is where everyone has problems. We did. The sheer volume of emails we receive indicates that you may have the same problem as well. That’s why you’re here now reading this post (I’ll bet).
Steps to follow:
- Get the hardware listed above.
- Install Bootmii and Homebrew channel.
- Backup your Wii Nand (recommended but optional) so you can recover from bricking your Wii.
- Install the correct CIOS.
- Update Your Wii System Menu version.
- Install the USB Loader application of your choice.
- Backup games to the hard drive.
- Load and play games off the hard drive.
Again, the steps above are an outline of what you need to do. We’ve found that if you go to My Wii Downloads, they have EVERYTHING you need to do this correctly along with software and instructions to get backup games from the internet as well. We’ve reviewed their Wii Downloads package here and we still believe that this is by far the best method you should follow to unlock your Wii, add a Wii hard drive, play downloaded and backup games on your wii (off the hard drive). You can also play DVD’s, movies and more (See our full review). It’s really outstanding and an easy method.
Hopefully, this will help you understand what you need to do to fully unlock your Wii and play your games off a hard drive attached to your Wii. You must know that when you purchase My Wii Downloads, you’re not paying for the software, you’re paying for the correct instructions on how to modify your Wii along with their professional support so you don’t have problems or brick your Wii. Their instructions have successfully modded tens of thousands of Wii’s.