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I have a 3DS for me, and one that the kids share. I understand that I can't use purchases from my system on the kids' one. Can I at least sign in with the same account? I don't want to have to make a new account for the kids if I can help it.

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Unfortunately, you can't.

As Nintendo's help page about the Nintendo Network ID states:

You can only register a single Nintendo Network ID to each Nintendo 3DS system. It is not possible to register multiple Nintendo Network IDs on a single system.

A Nintendo Network ID registered on a Nintendo 3DS system cannot be registered to another Nintendo 3DS system. If you wish to transfer your Nintendo Network ID and balance to another Nintendo 3DS system, this is only possible by performing a system transfer.

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  • It sounds like this is another situation where Nintendo just won't give us another option. :(
    – James B
    Jan 31 '14 at 22:58
  • Ashley, I dont think thats what shes asking. What shes asking is can she use the same network id on 2 different devices not if she can you 2 network id's on a single device. i think that's what james meant anyways. but i think the answer may still be no james. i just bought a second new 3ds xl today to be able to trade my pokemon between my copies of xy, and oras haha. i don't trust people for trade evolutions and moving megastones. i may get robbed smh. but ill check it out and get back to you.
    – user129646
    Nov 14 '15 at 1:41
  • @NyceHS My answer answers both. You can't use the same ID on different devices, and you can't use more than one on one system.
    – Ash
    Nov 14 '15 at 3:48

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