Do you believe in Karma?
Fighting 'ROM culture' needs more than 3 NES games a month
Soapbox features enable our individual writers to voice their own opinions on hot topics, opinions that may not necessarily be the voice of the site. In this piece, Nintendo Life Editor Damien McFerran laments the fact that Nintendo still doesn't seem to know how to exploit its amazing retro...
If you can't beat them, hire them
Given Nintendo's recent crackdown on emulation, piracy and hacking, it comes as no surprise the company is now seeking an individual who specialises in tightening up security and identifying any vulnerabilities. Nintendo Technology Development - a known hardware division of the company - has posted a new job listing...
Is gaming history in danger of being lost?
The recent news that Nintendo is taking legal action against two sites which illegally distributed ROMs has been met with an overwhelmingly positive response, and rightly so. The individuals sharing these files online care little for the intellectual property rights of the developers who slave away to make...
Do you believe in Karma?
Success in the video game industry is normally followed by rampant piracy, and it’s unfortunate to say the Switch’s current situation is no different. We’ve heard plenty about Nintendo taking legal action in recent times against websites committing copyright infringement, and now there are reports circulating about...
The very definition of irony
There's been a lot of chatter about Switch piracy in recent months, with various groups releasing code which cracks open Nintendo's security measures and allows users to run homebrew programs on their machines, as well as play emulators and run pirated Switch software. One such program, SX OS, has recently been...
Shiver my timbers
For those of you who don't know, Freeshop is homebrew software tool which is designed to allow you to download 3DS games you already own. However, as you might expect many people are abusing this tool by downloading games they don't own - and that's something Nintendo is naturally unhappy about. So unhappy in fact that the company...
Still limited to old firmware and requires Cubic Ninja
Over the past months we've kept track of some of the major developments in the 3DS hacking community, as they illustrate just how determined some are to access ROMS and / or homebrew, and likewise reinforces Nintendo's effectiveness at shutting down piracy through its security firmware. Hacks...
It's slightly amazing that it's taken this long
Nintendo's system updates for the 3DS are relatively frequent, and often simply cited as bringing 'stability' and 'minor adjustments' to the portable; this is often jokingly referenced - by us, anyway - as code for 'trying to lock down an exploit or hack'. The latest update, for example, appeared to...
Japanese giant trying to change the minds of the US government
Nintendo has had a long history with piracy, perhaps more than many other companies in the same situation. Back in the days of the Nintendo 64 the company decided to use the cartridge system rather than the easily-copied disc formats that Sony opted for with its PlayStation console...
Hack intended to attract bedroom coders to the 3DS, not stinkin' pirates
Today marks the launch of the much-hyped NINJHAX exploit, which allows 3DS owners a backdoor to run unofficial software on their consoles. The hack is the work of 22-year-old student Jordan Rabet, and is so called because it requires a copy of the obscure puzzle platformer...
"I do still love Nintendo even after being sued"
Those of you with especially good memories may recall the story of Australian gamer James Burt, who was successfully sued by Nintendo in 2010 to the tune of $1.5M AUD (around $1.3M USD, or £839K) for illegally copying New Super Mario Bros. Wii and making it available for download on the web. It...
Donkey Kong Country HD, anyone?
Smartphones may be a growing market when it comes to gaming, but the companies running these platforms seem to have a real problem controlling what kind of content goes up. Android's Google Play market is probably the worst offender, with Google seemingly content to allow developers to sell whatever apps and games...
Continuing the fight against piracy
The Wii U and 3DS have so far maintained robust security, against flashcards and illegal modding, in comparison to the DS family of systems and the Wii. Both of the last-gen systems were easily cracked, and to date both current systems have stayed secure, which is perhaps particularly impressive in the case of the...
It wants Mario to be free, apparently
Ouya - the Android-based, open source console that has the capability to run emulators - is now available to buy and has already whipped up a storm of controversy. Naturally, piracy is an issue that has surrounded the new console ever since its inception and will always swarm around it, but Ouya hasn't exactly...
It didn't take long
A short while ago a functional 3DS flashcard emerged into view that gave people the opportunity to play ROMS on their 3DS. ROMS are a particularly touchy subject as many do in fact use them as a means of backing up legally owned content. However, the Nintendo DS suffered greatly because of them as many flashcard users downloaded...
Brazil, Mexico, China, and Spain are the biggest culprits
Every year copyright holders get the opportunity to make anti-piracy recommendations for the US Trade Representative’s Special 301 report. The report gets published on an annual basis and identifies countries that, in the eyes of the US, are not doing enough to put a stop to copyright...
"If we cannot make money from developing games we can no longer develop games"
Recently Renegade Kid co-founder Jools Watsham sparked off a conversation about piracy on the 3DS. In a blog post he stated that if piracy was to get bad on the handheld he would have no choice but to pull support for the system. In a second blog post on the topic,...
Indie developer says plenty of other factors contribute to poor sales
Over the weekend Jools Watsham, co-founder of Renegade Kid, wrote in a blog post that he felt hacking into the guts of the 3DS would result in an increase in piracy - something that could force developers to stop supporting the system. Watsham pointed to the DS which suffered...
Hacking could cause developer to stop supporting the system
It has recently been reported that a couple of hackers have broken into the 3DS, allowing them to run custom code on the device. They claim their motives are good — getting around the 3DS region lock for example — however games developers, as you can imagine, are less than pleased with...
Crime really doesn't pay
Last month we reported that the ironically-named Justin Success Brooks was accused of selling thousands of counterfeit Wii, DS and DSi Nintendo games between 2009 and 2011 - pocketing himself up to £600,000 in the process - and that pleaded guilty to all charges. His court case was scheduled for November 9th, in which he...
Made a small fortune pirating software
Justin Success Brooks has been charged with selling counterfeit Nintendo games according to the Croydon Guardian. The 41 year-old's middle name proved to be innacurate as he was caught in an investigation supervised by Nintendo and the UK Interactive Entertainment association (UKIE). The two groups purchased...
Most will agree that, when it came to online functionality and security, Wii and DS were both below par. Hacking and modding on both systems appears to have been widespread, which not only led to issues with some online games but, most importantly for Nintendo, cost the company money due to the extensive number of pirated games on...
Mario left all at sea
The Wii may be in its twilight years, but a large number of its retail titles are still being being downloaded and played illegally. Website TorrentFreak compiled figures of downloads in 2011 from a number of sources and trackers, providing results for three major formats, though these are estimates rather than official...
Stern words indeed
Remember when Nintendo warned using piracy devices may disable your 3DS? The latest 3DS system update may well have started that process. The update arrived yesterday with little fanfare, but here's the official description from Nintendo: System stability improvements and other adjustments Further improvements to overall system...
So don't do it
Nintendo has spoken before about the strong anti-piracy measures in 3DS, but there's been little more specific said. Now a rumour has surfaced that using a flash cartridge or similar device will actually render the console useless through a firmware update. A rough translation of a poster outside Japanese retailer Enterking reveals...
Vuvuzela: The ultimate anti-piracy tool
Piracy on the DS is a big problem for Nintendo as well as other developers, and if they can't beat the pirates, they might as well have some fun with them. If you're a software criminal, Ubisoft isn't making things smooth for you. One thing about this year's World Cup tournament that people won't forget is the...
Company will still bring big games to DS
If you're not caught up in the whirlwind of excitement surrounding the 3DS and want to stick with your trusty DS, you'll be glad to hear that Nintendo still wants to bring major titles to the machine even after the 3DS is available. Satoru Iwata stressed the importance of quality software for the machine's...
Blame must be divvied out more evenly
We know that the DS has suffered a great deal from the impact of piracy, with many titles failing to gain the sales they deserved, in part due to the ease with which software is pirated on the device. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata isn't convinced the blame lies squarely at the feet of pirates however, acknowledging his company has a part to play in promoting..
Piracy? But that's not all they R4!
The R4 flash cart has been the bane of Nintendo's handheld existence for years now, with the device widely being used to play illegally downloaded DS ROMs. Rampant piracy has made it especially difficult for third-party developers to reach projected sales marks, and is also the reason non-Japanese-speaking gamers...
So says THQ man
Nintendo's suffered badly at the hands of piracy this generation, although it's done its best to stem the flow with a series of court cases and lawsuits. With its next-generation 3DS handheld the company's keen to combat the problem still further, employing more preventative technology than before; technol
What modern tools can be utilised for the latest member of the family?
Nintendo has always made efforts to combat the various forms of piracy its consoles has had to endure. From sales of illegal flash carts to the copying and distribution of retail games, individuals have been known to pay upwards of US$1.3 million should they get caught. The c
Not a story from The Onion, we promise
It may not be a huge deal but Japanese police have arrested a 52-year old man for selling modified Wii consoles and copied games after he made over £20,000 (about $28,000) selling the units over a two-year period. Selling the consoles for around ¥32,000 – ¥12,000 more than a standard Wii – the man reportedly made over ¥3,000,000 through the sale of..
After giving them fair warning, too
Nintendo filed a lawsuit on May 11th against the owner of Queens-based NXPGAME, the company behind a website that gave its customers access to illegally copied DS and DSi software. Not that the Big N didn't give them a chance - after repeated communications between their legal department and the defendant, the crooks shut down their website, only to swiftly..
Security tougher than a chastity belt... maybe
Nintendo takes a hard stance on piracy, using cartridge-based games for its systems way past their use-by-date. Whilst more difficult to produce illegal copies of their intellectual products, it also imposes a certain limit to how much data the console had access to. With the upcoming 3DS, Nintendo is...
Massive fine for Mario bootlegger
Nintendo have won a court case where they took action against the James Burt, an Australian who illegally copied and uploaded for distribution the first pirate copy of New Super Mario Bros. Wii, a whole week prior to its official release in Australia. How was Burt able to get it so early? Well, blame that on an...
Guilty plea nets 12-month sentence
Don't mess with Nintendo. British resident Yun Can Meng clearly didn't get the memo when he was busy importing approximately 26,500 R4 cards, as GamesPolitics reports that Meng has been sentenced to 12 months in prison for pleading guilty to the charge. Meng was sentenced in Hull Crown Court. R4 cards can be used to illegally download and play DS titles. They can..
Plumbers, boxers, islands and zombies top the list
BitTorrent news site TorrentFreak has compiled a list of the most pirated PC, Xbox 360 and Wii games of 2009. Modern Warfare 2 takes the overall scurvy cake at over five million downloads, with four of those on the PC side. But how about Wii? Unsurprisingly, the biggest Wii game of the year happens...
Company "extremely disappointed" with ruling
DS flash card manufacturer Divineo won big in France earlier this week, and Nintendo is not happy about it. A lawsuit filed by Nintendo against the company was thrown out in Paris’ Criminal Court earlier this week, with the judge saying that Nintendo should adopt a more open development system to allow anyone to create applications – like a PC, where..
A very un-Harry Potter like snitch website opens to combat R4 and their brethren
A while ago Nintendo won a lawsuit against retailers that sold and distributed R4 and R4-like devices. In case you didn't know, these are essentially carts which allow consumers to pirate DS games. Since then, those retailers were sent notices updating them on the situation and were told to immediately stop selling..
It looks like hackers have already bested the new DSi update
DSi Firmware 1.4 was released a week ago with the intention of stopping pirates from running questionable programs on the machine. However, it already looks as if someone has got the R4i running on a DSi system with the new firmware. The video below seems to show it all running perfectly:...
30 months prison and a whopping big fine
Captain Jack Sparrow's popularity proves that everybody loves a good pirate, but not when they're stealing money from hard working developers and gaming companies. A 38 year old man was found guilty of breaking Copyright Law by the Kyoto District Court on Monday for using the internet to distribute pirated...
More naughty-type goings on in the world of Wii homebrew
Although the recent ability to run Virtual Console and WiiWare games from your SD card has stopped people moaning about the previously thorny issue of internal storage space, it hasn't stopped industrious hackers taking the concept to the next level by enabling users to hook up a USB hard...
Early reports suggest that dodgy DS fakes are unplayable on the new machine
If you’re keen on sailing the seven seas of piracy then you might be interested to know that early reports are suggesting that fake DS cartridges fail to operate on the shiny new DSi console. It’s still not known whether or not this is down to improved anti-piracy technology inside the DSi itself, but it stands to..
Special memory cards for copying vastly outsell actual games in South Korea with little sign of slowdown.
In case you’ve just dropped onto planet earth and somehow ended up on here surfing a Nintendo website there is very popular phenomenon called a Nintendo DS. In South Korea it’s sold about 2 million console units since 2007, but software piracy has become a rampant problem in the region..
Thousands of Wii chips seized in thrilling swoop on criminal HQ
A Wii 'Fraud Factory’ has been raided in Leicestershire, with over 2,000 chips recovered by Police. The factory itself was actually a house in the town of Coalville (which, incidentally is a five minute drive from the offices of NintendoLife – although we’ll point out that we had no involvement with this!). Police worked in..
Reports surface that Super Mario Galaxy has already been pirated, two weeks before its scheduled release of November 12th.
Rumours and hearsay surfaced over the weekend which eventually led to the discovery that the game had indeed been leaked onto the internet. This comes just over a week after Nintendo raided a huge warehouse in Hong Kong, seizing over 10,000 copy units for DS and Wii. Pirates..
Nintendo go Kung Fu Hustyle over "Supreme Factory Limited" in Hong Kong, seizing over 10,000 products in one go.
At Nintendo's request, the Hong Kong High Court has intervened to help stop a global distribution operation involving game copying devices and modification chips ("mod chips") that violate its copyrights and trademarks in the Nintendo DS™ and Wii™ systems. On Oct. 8th, the court..
Nintendo have introduced a new motherboard into the Wii production to combat recent "mod chips".
Reported recently by a number of sites, including technology magazine T3, it seems Nintendo have tried to block the gaps and stop the pirates. "The games giant has quietly slipped new motherboards into its consoles, narrowing the gap between critical solder points to less than a millimetre. It means..
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