Not that long ago, Nintendo opened their developer program for access by anyone who registers a Nintendo Developer account, giving equal access to indie and commercial developers. Or, at least thats what the linked page says.

The tools page lists Unity and a HTML5 framework for game development, as well as the "Nintendo Dev Interface (NDI)." Since I am not really interested in developing using Unity (or HTML5, for that matter) I want to know what the NDI contains, at least in general terms.

(I don't doubt that at least some of that information is covered by an NDA, but I'd like to know as much as possible, since I can't register for a while)

I'm especially interested in what sort of compiler/languages are supported, what graphics APIs (and/or abstraction layers, like SDL) are allowed and how play testing works (some sort of compatability layer? Nintendo sanctioned emulation?).

  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ Just checked; Google legitimately returns no useful information. My Google Fu is quite strong, too. \$\endgroup\$
    – Krythic
    Nov 2 '16 at 16:47
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ From the description on the site, it sounds like the NDI client is just a tool to help set up your development environment (downloading & installing relevant SDKs, environment variables/configurations, documentation...), not an engine or framework itself. The details of what SDKs etc installs would depend on which Nintendo platform you're targeting, and are very likely protected by NDA. \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory
    Nov 3 '16 at 5:24
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I know someone who's signed up for the program. He hasn't done jack with it, but he did sign up. I'll poke him and see if he'll let slip. (Old question, but still no answers) \$\endgroup\$ Jun 23 '17 at 15:55
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ I don't really think it's possible to answer this question, since all of this stuff is under an NDA. I suggest signing up, the documentation states what tools / compilers and middleware are available, it's free afterall. The only downside is that you need to sign the NDA aswell. \$\endgroup\$
    – Bernd
    Jun 23 '17 at 16:41
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it can not be (legally!) answered by anyone and is thus unanswerable. Nintendo is also really strict about not telling anyone the details so I suspect no amount of editing will make this question answerable without being in a legal gray zone. \$\endgroup\$
    – Charanor
    Dec 21 '17 at 17:36

The following is my understanding of the NDI based on the sources linked below.

The NDI, is a client software that will allow the user to connect to Nintendo servers to download SDKs, samples, drivers to connect to Nintendo development consoles, and Visual Studio extensions that provide built targets, debug interfaces and emulation environments.

Note: I am unaware whatever or not the NDI provides similar tools for a different IDE, other than Visual Studio. It also makes sense that if such tools exist, they would exist for Visual Studio given that Unity is part of the package. In addition, I have no idea of the extents of the debugging and emulation capabilities.

The NDI will allow you to manage different your packages depending on the target console of your projects and keep them up to date.



  • By making this post, I am not copying or distributing copyrighted content.
  • I am currently - at the time of writing - not under a NDA with Nintendo, and I have not been part of their developer program.
  • I am not and have not been - at the time of writing - an employee of Nintendo.
  • The information in the linked sources did become available NOT at my fault.
  • I receive no economic profit by making this post.
  • My understanding of the NDI described above is the result of my own personal conjectures based on the information available on the linked sources.
  • This post should NOT be considered a replacement for accessing Nintendo developer program or contacting Nintendo.
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ That sure are a lot of disclaimers to not be helt liable ;) I don't really know but I guess this is still a very gray area and distributing these informations, even if they are available not because of you is not legal. Technically you are helping in distributing it and making it more popular/available. I won't downvote though. \$\endgroup\$
    – Nico
    Jan 31 '18 at 14:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Nico I'm linking and... law about linking is not homogeneous around the world. Which is why I made sure to have enough grounds to claim fair use. \$\endgroup\$
    – Theraot
    Jan 31 '18 at 15:12

This is impossible to answer. Since if you have access you are not allowed to tell these details. But what I would recommend you is to call Nintendo directly if you are really interested in developing for a Nintendo system. They might answer your questions.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ This sounds more like a comment but it's close enough to an answer given all the other comments I've seen on the question. So, I'm not going to upvote but I don't think this answer deserves anything negative either. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 21 '17 at 5:21

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.