Handheld Games

How to Troubleshoot a VTech Hand Held Video Game

Change the batteries or plug the Mobigo in if the LCD display does not come on after turning the unit on or if it turns on and then immediately off. The battery power could be low. When changing the batteries, locate both battery compartments on the back of the unit. There is one on each side. Slide the battery covers off and insert two AA batteries per compartment, lining up the batteries for polarity. Replace the battery covers and turn the unit on.

Unplug the headphones from the headphone jack and turn up the volume if there is no sound but the unit is turned on and you can see graphics on the LCD display.

Remove the game cartridge and check it for dust or dirt if the unit says "Please insert a cartridge" after you have inserted one. Dust in the cartridge can prevent a good connection with the game console. When inserting the cartridge, press firmly but gently until the cartridge clicks completely into place.

Reset the Mobigo if the screen is frozen or no picture appears on the screen and the unit does not respond to being turned off. Unplug the unit if it is plugged in and remove the batteries to completely disconnect the Mobigo from a power source. Replace the batteries or plug the unit in, and turn the Mobigo on.

Check the connection of the USB cord if the computer does not recognize the Mobigo. Also, be sure to plug the USB into a USB port on the computer, not a USB hub. Sometimes a hub does not properly recognize the game console. If you have not installed the Mobigo software, disconnect the unit from the computer and download the software. The software can be downloaded from the Vtech Kids website.


When inserting batteries, use only batteries that are the same age--don't mix old and new--and the same type, such as alkaline, lithium or rechargeable.

Vtech V.Smile Troubleshooting

Understand the Process

The V.Smile system is made up of a wired game console, a game cartridge which is inserted into the console, and one or more wireless game controllers. The game console is plugged into a wired power source, and is also connected to a television. Each controller is synced with the console and utilises built-in accelerometers. When a child moves the controller, the controller senses the direction of movement and sends the information to the console, which displays the movement on the television.

The Basics

When troubleshooting the V.Smile, rule out common problems that may disrupt the wireless connection between the game controller and console. Make sure the console is powered on and connected to a reliable wired power source. Alternatively, the console is able to run off of four 1.5 volt AA-sized batteries. If using batteries, check that they are inserted properly and that the battery cover is locked into place. In addition, check that the wireless controller has fresh, charged batteries. The controller requires three 1.5 volt AAA-sized batteries. When the console is low on battery power, a battery icon will begin flashing on the television screen. Likewise, a small light will repeatedly flash on the controller if its batteries are running out.


The V.Smile game console is plugged into the audio and video jacks on your television. When the console receives signals from the video game cartridge and wireless controller, it sends the signals to the television to be displayed on the screen. A faulty or incorrect connection may cause common problems such as static, funny colours and distorted sound.

Check that each of the plugs on the V.Smile are connected to the appropriate jacks on the TV. Use the included audio and visual cables that came with the V.Smile. Connect the red and white wires to the red and white audio input jacks on your television. Similarly, plug the yellow wire into your TV's video input jack. Ensure that each wire is pushed firmly into each jack.


The V.Smile employs basic wireless technology to transmit the movement of the controller's built-in accelerometer with the wired console. Thus, children should use the controller within 15 feet of the console to ensure that the controller and console are within broadcasting range of each other. Game responsiveness will drop the further the controller is from the console.

Product Support

All V.Smile products come with a standard one-year warranty that covers repairs and replacement. In addition, users can call V.Smile's telephone support line at (800) 521-2010 in the United States or (877) 352-8697 in Canada. Both hotlines provide support, warranty information and professional troubleshooting advice. When you call, you will need the V.Smile's specific model number found on the white label on the back of the console.

VTech V Smile Instructions

Plug the 9V adaptor or batteries into the V-Smile. Connect the power adaptor to the wall and the power socket on the device. If you are using batteries, flip the console over and remove the battery hatch cover. Insert the three C batteries according to the diagram on the inside of the compartment. The middle battery should have the minus terminal pointing toward the hatch clasp, and the other two should face the opposite direction. Return the cover and flip the unit upright.

Plug the A/V cables into the A/V ports on your TV or VCR. The coloured cable end should match the colour of the port into which you have inserted it.

Plug the controller cable into the controller port on the front of the console. The first player console is plugged into the left-hand port, and player two is connected to the right-hand port.

Insert the Smartridge into the front of the console. The label should face outward.

Power on the TV and the console. If you're using a VCR, switch that on as well. Change the channel on the TV and/or VCR until the V-Smile screen appears on the TV.

Press the "Enter" button on the controller to make a selection or perform certain in-game actions. Use the joystick to select options and move characters and cursors. The coloured buttons perform other in-game actions or make choices in questions and activities.

Press the "Help" button to receive helpful hints in the game. Use the "Learning Zone" button when you want to enter the Learning Zone.


You can store up to six Smartridges in the compartment on the top of the console. If you want to use the controller left-handed instead of right-handed, flip the controller over and pull the locking knob. Rotate the controller 180 degrees toward the front of the controller until it clocks into place.