Ever since Nintendo announced the price drop and the consolation prizes for Nintendo 3DS early adopters, I’ve been getting pinged with emails, text messages, phone calls and comments involving the same question: “How do I know if I’m a Nintendo 3DS Ambassador?”

Before I get to the answer, let’s run down exactly what being an Ambassador means and what you’re entitled to. If you purchase the 3DS before August 11th and perform a system update or sign into the eShop at least once by 11:59 PM on the 11th, you’re a Nintendo 3DS Ambassador. However, that also means that you bought the system at the full, original price (unless, of course, you scored it at a Walmart within the last day or so). To thank and console users like you, Nintendo is offering 20 free games starting September 1st. Only Ambassardors will be able to download the games for free, and 10 of the titles will never be offered to anyone else.

Here’s Nintendo’s full description according to a press release sent out a few weeks back:

These free games are available to anyone who owns a Nintendo 3DS system and uses a wireless broadband Internet signal to connect to the Nintendo eShop at least once or performs a system update before 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on Aug. 11. These users will automatically be registered in the Nintendo 3DS Ambassador program. The program contains two elements:

  1. Starting Sept. 1, Nintendo 3DS Ambassadors will be able to download 10 NES Virtual Console games at no charge and before they are available in the Nintendo eShop to the general public. These games, including Super Mario Bros.Donkey Kong Jr.Balloon FightIce Climber and The Legend of Zelda, are slated to become paid downloadable games, but Ambassadors get them early for free. Once the paid versions of the games are posted to the Nintendo eShop later in the year, the updated versions will be available to Ambassadors for download at no cost.
  2. By the end of 2011, Nintendo will provide Ambassadors with 10 Game Boy Advance Virtual Console games. These include games like Yoshi’s Island: Super Mario Advance 3Mario Kart: Super CircuitMetroid FusionWarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$ and Mario vs. Donkey Kong. These games will be available exclusively to Ambassadors, and Nintendo currently has no plans to make these 10 games available to the general public on the Nintendo 3DS in the future.

So, how do you check whether or not you’re a 3DS Ambassador? Here we go…

How to see if you’re a Nintendo 3DS Ambassador

Turn on your 3DS. Open the eShop. You may be prompted to update your device; if so, update. Once in the eShop, scroll to the news button on the left. Open the news section and you should see an option labeled “Ambassador Program.” Open that up and, boom, it will tell you you’re an ambassador. Your note should look something like this (without the $14.01 balance…):

If you do not have an eShop, that means you need to perform a system update. Do that by entering the System Settings, tap “Other Settings,” scroll all the way to the fourth page and select System Update. Follow the directions on the 3DS and then check your Ambassador status by following our directions above.

How to download your free games

This is the bit that’s still a little fuzzy. Nintendo indicates that Ambassadors will be given game download instructions as they become available. Well, they aren’t available yet. However, this free download period is supposed to begin on September 1st. Check back on or around that date and we’ll post download instructions then.

There it is, how to make sure you qualify for the Nintendo 3DS Ambassador program. If you have any other questions, try checking Nintendo’s official guide for this program.

REMEMBER: You have until 11:59 PM on August 11th, 2011 (tomorrow night) to complete everything above in order to secure your Ambassador status. Do not forget to do it!