How I transferred game save files from my Wii to Wii U without doing the whole System Transfer

What you'll need:

  • Two SD cards, one for the Wii and one for the Wii U
  • A PC with an SD card reader

On the Wii:

  • Copy Save game in question to SD card

On the Wii U

  • Go into Wii emulation mode
  • Insert the game you want to swap saves for, and launch it
  • Quit the game
  • Go to the Wii menu and click on the "Wii" button in the bottom left corner
  • Go to Data Management
  • Copy the Save game file from the internal memory to the SD card

On your PC

  • Insert the Wii SD card using a cardreader
  • Copy the Wii folder inside the private folder to your hard drive somewhere you can find it
  • Eject the Wii SD card, and mount the Wii U SD card
  • Open the private folder -> wii -> title
  • Look at the code for the game, a four letter code
  • Find the corresponding folder in the copied
  • Wii save game data
  • Copy the contents of that folder into the Wii U SD card folder with the same name
  • Eject the Wii U SD card

Back on the Wii U:

  • Insert the SD card
  • In Wii emulation mode, go back to the Data Management screen
  • Erase the save game information from the Wii U internal memory
  • Copy the save game info from the SD card to internal memory

Voila! Launch the game and you should see the save game data from your Wii, now on the Wii U. It worked for me for Zelda Skyward Sword and Xenoblade Chronicles. I'm very happy I figured this out, because I didn't want to move my Virtual Console games over from the Wii, but I did want to free my save game files for these two long games that I had already put 20+ hours into. Success!

Posted on February 15, 2013 and filed under Article.