Remember when the Wii was first released? You booted up Wii Sports for the first time, and it was the most thrilling game you've ever played for like 5 minutes. But then you got bored of playing tennis with a computer bot and you lost interest in bowling a fictional bowling bowl over and over again. After that, the Wii seemed kinda pointless except for the great new sequels that came out for it like Twilight Princess and Brawl. Well believe it or not, but the Wii can be utilized for a greater purpose than playing fictional sports with your TV. People call it soft-modding your Wii console, but its much easier than it sounds. All you need is a few things and you'll be on your way to giving your Wii new life and throwing out that dusty Wii Sports disc underneath your games pile. But first lets go through some of the benefits of soft-modding your Wii.
A Wii that is soft-modded can be achieved simply by added another app/channel onto your Wii Homepage. You'll be able to access your console through the normal method of turning it on, pressing A with your Wii-mote to get through that annoying Safety Page, and then browsing through all your files, apps/channels, games, etc. But this extra channel basically unlocks your console and allows you to add a bunch of new features you never would have thought a Wii console could process. You can play games without even inserting a hard copy, you can play any kind of emulator for older SNES, SEGA, N64, etc. games, you can play a different version of Smash Bros. only available for a soft-modded Wii, you can even watch DVDs and the list goes on and on. But before you run to your console tower and pull the Wii out from the bottom of the stack, you'll need to do a few things in order to unlock your Wii's potential.
What you will need:
A Wii console
An SD card (SD or SDHC)
An SD card reader for your computer
First things first, you will need to download the Homebrew Channel for this link: http://please.hackmii.com/ This requires you to know your Wii console info. Go onto your Wii, go to the bottom right corner of the Homepage to settings, select Internet, select Console Settings, and remember your MAC address. You need to input that before you can download the files. Make sure you select the correct language aswell. Copy the downloaded files onto your SD card and load the card into your Wii. Start up the console, press A to that annoying Safety Page (it annoys me just thinking about it), and go to the bottom task bar of the Hompage with your Wiimote. You should see that Red Envelope with the bomb inside that you just downloaded, select it. Wait a few minutes then press 1 for the scam warning, then install the Homebrew Channel and Bootmii. Bootmii is great, it allows you to start up your Wii to a preliminary page where you can chose what you want to boot up. And you can select with a GameCube controller. I don't have Wiimotes anymore so I go straight from Bootmii to Homebrew with a GC controller.
That's the basics to soft-modding your Wii, after that you can explore all the possibilities your console can achieve. There is a ton of stuff to do to it and a ton of tutorials for installing all this stuff. Some things require actually modding your console and changing the OS, but that's for you figure out. As for playing PSO with your Wii console, I will explain how the Homebrew Channel gives you benefits and security after I explain how to load and play GC games via Homebrew.
What you will need to play PSO and other GameCube games via the Homebrew Channel:
The SD with the Homebrew Channel on it (the card will need alot of free space for the games, they are about 1.4 GB each)
The Devolution app https://sites.google.com/site/completesg/backup-launchers/gamecube/devolution
The GC games you wish to play (hard copies)
The CleanRip app http://wiibrew.org/wiki/CleanRip
A Wii console
Download the files/packages from the links above and copy them onto your SD card. You will need to organize your SD card properly in order for your Wii to recognize and load everything. Below is a picture of how my card is organized.
If you're having trouble just look up a tutorial. --When tutorials say put the files onto the root of the SD card, they mean placing it by itself not in a folder (best way I can put it).-- DEVO will go into a folder labeled "apps" along with CleanRip. Next load the card into your Wii, go to Homebrew, and load CleanRip. Insert the PSO disc (or whatever game you want to rip the ISO from) and wait for it to rip the ISO. --If your game is scratched, it might not be able to rip the ISO. Try it and if it doesn't work then browse the interwebs for a ISO file of the game you want.-- Cleanrip will dump the ISO files onto your card. Insert your card into your computer and organize the files. Put all the ISO files into a folder labeled "games" (Cleanrip might do that for you, not sure though its been awhile since I've done this). Now load your card into your Wii, boot Homebrew, and load DEVO. Press Y to load SD card then scroll left to right using the Dpad to select the game you want to load. Select the game you want and your screen will go black. You need to have the hard copy in your console when you first boot up the game. If you put the correct disc in, it should load in a few seconds. If nothing happens just restart Homebrew by pressing the Reset button on your console and try again this time having the disc in before you start DEVO. After the first time loading the game through DEVO, you no longer need the hard copy in your console. Its a precaution to make sure you have purchased the game. If you got an ISO file from online, your scratched disc should work for DEVO to load the file.
Benefits of playing GC games on Homebrew channel:
No longer have to insert the hard copies to play the games
Games run much faster with less wear on your Wii's disc reader
PSO is actually playable because you can use a USB keyboard when playing online
You can backup your Memory card files to your SD card using the GCMM app http://wiibrew.org/wiki/GCMM
You can improve PSO by patching the ISO file http://psopalace.forumotion.com/t693-gc-patch-batch
You don't have to spend a fortune on the BBC adapter for GameCube, you can buy the ethernet adapter for Wii instead https://www.amazon.com/Nintendo-Switch-Ethernet-Adapter-Network/dp/B06XSDX2LR/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1504917491&sr=8-9&keywords=wii+ethernet
Connecting to a server is the last step for playing PSO online through Homebrew. This is a very simple step. -- First you will need to register your serial number and access key with the servers you are planning on joining. You can find that info in Options on the homescreen of PSO.-- Plug an ethernet cable into your Wii, boot up PSO via DEVO, press start, go to Options/Network Option/Provider Option/Yes. Have the memory card with your characters that you want to play in Slot A and select Yes to the first and second prompt (you can move that cursor around with your GC controller's analog stick). Select Network Setup --Now you can name 3 different servers and save their information. You will need to know the specific phone numbers and DNS addresses for these servers. You can find them on the servers' webpages or through this forum as the DNSs can change from time to time.-- then select Edit Menu (you can change the name here) then select Next/Next. Here you input the ID, password, and phone number. For DEVO the ID is: DEVO password is: gc the phone number is: 1. The only server where this changes is Slyverant (go to their website to get there info). Select Next then select the bubble for Manual DNS. Input the correct DNS (most times you only need a primary) then select Next/Next/Save/Return to the game/Yes. Now go to Online Game, select your character, and select Agree. Now it should load the server, if it doesn't and you get an error code then the server is either down or the info you entered is incorrect. Join the discord server and we will help you connect or troubleshoot error codes.
Hope this tutorial helped and you give your Wii new life. But most importantly, hope to see you online playing PSO with us.