The 3DS’ network function will undergo maintenance very soon. In fact, by the time you are probably reading this, the Nintendo eShop will be offline. Once the maintenance ends at around 5AM for the UK, or Monday night for the US, an update for the 3DS will go live shortly after.
This update contains two major features. First, it allows you to create a Nintendo Network ID (NNID) similar to that of the Wii U. Second, it will allow you to post to Miiverse communities using a specialised app contained within the system update.
If you have a Wii U, you can register your existing NNID on your 3DS. Be warned that only one NNID can be coupled to a 3DS. If you don’t have a Wii U, you can choose your new moniker on the 3DS itself. The NNID will eventually replace friend codes, with details yet unconfirmed. It is currently unknown if you still have to exchange friend codes or that your NNID will be linked to your friend code. Older games will also still probably rely on friend code interactions when viewing your in-game friend lists.
Miiverse is like Facebook for games, giving you to chance to share drawings and screenshots (for supported games). You can browse people’s timelines and ‘Yeah’ (like) them as you wish. Major games will feature a community in which you can discuss everything related to that game. It is expected that Pokémon X & Y will receive their own community. Even if you are in-game, you can always go to Miiverse by pressing the Home button and clicking on the Miiverse icon.
This updates will also merge your Wii U and 3DS eShop wallet. However, know that this still doesn’t count as a real account system and your purchases are still tied to your console instead of your NNID. This may change in the future however, with this update laying the foundation.
So, once you wake up tomorrow (or if you stay up late), check your 3DS for the new system update! Let’s hope we’ll still see you around here then :).
Note: I’m not responsible for you waking early and the update still not being available. I have no idea of when the update will really hit. It may face a half day delay. Blame Emily Rogers in case that happens.