Soapbox features enable our individual writers and contributors to voice their opinions on hot topics and random stuff they've been chewing over. Today, Damien discusses the less-than-ideal timing of Nintendo's announcement regarding its 3DS and Wii U eShops...
Nintendo has just announced that it will be closing the Wii U and 3DS eShops in 2023, shutting off access to countless digital exclusives across both systems. On one hand, this isn't all that shocking; it's perhaps naive to expect Nintendo to keep digital storefronts alive on platforms that are no longer its main focus, but on the other hand, the Japanese giant just sent hacker Gary Bowser to jail for three years for enabling piracy on its Switch console – as well as getting him to cough up $4.5 million to Nintendo of America as restitution, and a further $10 million as "monetary relief".
Only a company like Nintendo is able to create such a jarring juxtaposition in the space of a week. While I'm not for one second suggesting that the two events are connected – Bowser's case has been rumbling on for quite some time, after all – the timing is impeccable. Just as it sends one person to jail (deservedly, I should note – there are currently no obstacles in the way of purchasing Switch software legally), Nintendo makes piracy on its outgoing systems a reality not just for the present, but for the future, too.
You could argue that anyone who desperately needs to own HarmoKnight on 3DS will have done so a long time ago, of course. However, this is not just an issue of convenience, but of preservation. Digital exclusives across both systems – like Crimson Shroud, Scram Kitty, Affordable Space Adventures, Weapon Shop De Omasse, Pushmo World, The Swapper, Mighty Switch Force: Hyper Drive Edition, Attack of the Friday Monsters and Pocket Card Jockey – have never been released in physical form, so when the 3DS and Wii U eShops are turned off in 2023, the only way to experience them will be by downloading them illegally from the internet and running them on a hacked console. Given that Nintendo is a company that places more focus than most on past glories, it's a shame that as new generations of fans join the fray over the next few years, they won't have easy and legal access to some of the 3DS and Wii U's best titles.
Of course, the harsh realities of business are at play here. Keeping the 3DS and Wii U eShops online costs money and Nintendo will quite rightly argue that there's little point in doing this when both platforms have essentially been 'retired' from active service, and the number of digital purchases made each week will be very small. It's also worth noting that this isn't an issue that's in any way exclusive to Nintendo; every week, countless games become unplayable and unsupported on Apple's iOS platform, while Sony has been fighting its own preservation problems for some time now. The only console manufacturer that seems to be making a fair stab at ensuring past titles remain accessible in the present day is Microsoft, and even then, there are still examples that fall through the cracks and cannot be played legally.
It's also worth noting that Nintendo does make efforts to ensure its best games remain in circulation, either by adding them to services like Nintendo Switch Online or repackaging them for purchase on Switch. So, in that regard, one can hardly accuse Nintendo of totally slamming the door on its past. Still, as video games become more and more focused on digital delivery, the topic of preservation is going to become even more pressing – and one could argue that it's Nintendo's job, as the platform holder, to ensure the legacy of its past systems remains easy to access for as long as possible.
While I'm not suggesting the number of people wanting to play Dillon's Rolling Western is ever going to reach the millions, the fact remains that should anyone feel inclined to investigate this and the many other 3DS and Wii U digital exclusives (not to mention the numerous Virtual Console releases across both formats) beyond 2023, they will have to resort to piracy – and Nintendo has just sent out a very firm message that it does not condone such practice.
Further reading: Poll: The End Is Coming, But How Much Will You Miss The Wii U And 3DS eShop?
At this point, if Nintendo won't do anything to help us retain access to all the games we've purchased over the years, and they won't have the store front open anymore, what choice do we have? Just let our hundreds and thousands of dollars worth of digital purchases go? Absolutely not.
Avast, ye mateys.
Funny you mention Harmoknight as I've been meaning to buy it since launch but still not got around to doing so!
Yeah, this all blows chunks, it almost feels deliberate how Nintendo is doing this, after not only thanking the feds for jailing someone distributing piracy tools, but also bringing over Earthbound (Zero) to NSO.
It especially stings when they had a section explaining themselves where they basically said "lol u aren't getting anything like the virtual console again buddy ", it's like they're actively wanting people to pirate their games.
it's not Nintendo's job to preserve other devs games. everyone knows when they buy digital its not for keeps.
people choose to consume digitally (I dont,) so please dont moan about preservation if you aren't supporting the physical market.
This is utterly ridiculous. The sheer audacity of only giving us a full year to make our purchases for consoles that we've mostly already replaced. Sickening. What will Nintendo do next? Make it so I can't nip into town and buy a new NES game? For shame.
I don't mind throwing Nintendo or Sony or Microsoft cash in order to play old games. But when they don't sell them...
yo ho yo ho
@CharlieGirl You can still download purchased games after March 2023, just not buy new ones. Even the Wii Shop channel hasn't fully shut down yet, so I wouldn't worry too much about this.
Removed - trolling
Nintendo just take my 8 - bit heart! 😭
I've never experienced this fear before since I've always been a physical game kinda guy. But the 3DS was different...I have over 60 games downloaded on that beast with about 10 others I own but have no space to re-download. What to do?? 😬
And who doesn't tell me they do this with other games?
It's Nintendo we are talking about, and yes I know they (Nintendo) claim you can re-download your games after the stores close, but I rather believe in talking unicorns than that going as smoothly.
I dunno seems like a lot of hyperbolic reactions. Sony's plans to shut down PSN for PS3/Vita were delayed at best and Nintendo already shut down the Wii Store about half a decade ago and I can still download games there. The thing is will there be games lost to time? Oh yeah! But, this was also a thing in the 90s with the Sega Channel and the Nintendo Satellaview with cable and satellite downloads. If you want to learn more I recommend checking out old 16bit Gems or Hard4Games videos. But, a lot of content on both services are just lost to time.
As for Nintendo shutting the door on history? I call NAH! I'm more concerned about losing services than games. That and a lot of PS4 and Xbone games are just unplayable due to either closed-down servers or lack of players. Try getting a game of Evolve going.
As we move more to the digital age we have to be more aware of these limitations. There is always the possibility of Steam shutting down or having a situation like OnLive where it gets absorbed into a larger company and your purchases are gone forever.
Do your best practice. I have said this once and I will say it again archive your purchases. You can store 3DS games on PC just simply using an SD card and back up your physical games. If they are on disc a lot is as easy as just simply ripping the contents using a disc burner (Blu-ray games are a bit harder). That is the only true way to archive your purchases. As for Nintendo's part? I see Nintendo Online and the Expansion Pack as a way for Nintendo to always offer legacy titles without the need of repurchasing. And, Microsoft even admitted they have reached the limit to how many original Xbox and Xbox 360 games they can bring forward to Xbone and XSX. So, it is not just Nintendo starting to face issues of legacy support. That and physical games are not immune to damage and being lost. Batteries can leak in Gameboy and SNES games, disc rot is a real threat to PSOne, PS2 and Gamecube games. The problem is media is temporal and companies will have to eventually shut down servers or stop manufacturing games. Back up your stuff is all I'm saying.
AND NO... Team Xecuter was not trying to archive games or allow people to archive their stuff. That was a happy accident to their real goal which was selling jailbroken consoles to play pirated software. I will always respect groups like Citra more who made their emulator for the 3DS have a high threshold for entry to help minimize piracy.
This video is 12 years old but still super informative about the Sega Channel https://youtu.be/ia14n1QR-NY and Satellaview https://youtu.be/BDVxSm-_iM4
@piecez Finally, someone says what i've been thinking!
You’ll still have the digital copy of the game that you originally bought and downloaded and you’ll still be able to redownload games if you need to. If you are short on memory get a few back up memory cards for peanuts and re-download your games to those. Keep them safe like your Physical games and you’re good to go.
The games are literally still on sale and you can still buy them for over a year. If you didn't get them in the last 10 years and you don't get them within the next year, then that's on you. We've all had adequate time to get these games and still have adequate time to get them as well. After you buy the games you want, you will still have access to redownload them after the shops close.
@invictus4000 no space? a microSD card that you will never fill all the way up on a 3DS will cost at most what? $20?
I'm just glad I've purchased most of my Switch games physically.
I don’t know why this surprises people. We’ve been mentioning it since the dawn of digital purchases. Don’t act surprised now.
Plus having over 13 months is a big heads up.
That count is actually, unfortunately for us, very small.
Maybe we should stop crying about this and just play games we already own. It is not like we are lacking good content on every console available, as well as PC.
An honest non-topic, seeing as romsets and disc image collections have always existed in plenty of spaces that exercise enough discretion (or root themselves in too much P2P type file exchange to be easily weeded out). But I had a feeling such a soapbox would pop up, and I had a feeling it would precede - or, at worst, come instead of - something arguably more useful like a big informative list of at least exclusive 3DS games (although I'd appreciate the ones only available in portable form on 3DS, too) which IIRC someone else actually suggested in the comments earlier today. Since 3DS eShop doesn't [seem to] have a way to view all available games alphabetically to this day, this would have been very handy - Wikipedia can be lackluster in this regard as well. Or is there still hope, @Damo ?
Fact. Piracy is wrong. And it harms future game development financing
And this same thing is going to happen to many people in 15-20 years time on the switch, this is why I try and get physicals
I wonder if this will impact the ability to get updates to the software whether the software was a digital or physical purchase.
Please at least be honest in the reporting. Nintendo didn't send anyone to jail. The Department of Justice convicted a person of two felonies and a judge sentenced him to jail.
@Yorumi Different situations. Steam and GOG have old games up, but they can be removed. The PC version of Soul Reaver was removed from Steam a while ago and had no timeline on when it'll be back. The Last Remnant is no longer on Steam either (at least to purchase) due to Square Enix not renewing their UE3 licence for the game. And have no plans to port the version running on UE4 currently on PS4 and Switch to PC. Games vanish from Steam and GOG daily, and you never hear about it because some are super obscure. You cannot even buy the original version of some games like Dark Souls, and some games don't even have all their DLC available on Steam due to odd licensing agreements with the publishers.
Such false equivalents don't really help the argument. This situation sucks and I mean suck! But, even physical games will eventually rot out due to leaking batteries, back capacitors or just disc rot (this is already an issue with PSOne and Gamecube collecting. This video is only the tip of that iceberg https://youtu.be/wQBBZ81urak). That and Steam and GOG are current storefronts with large active users bases where on 3DS and especially Wii U most of the userbase are gone. So, to Nintendo, it costs probably more money to keep those storefronts open than the return they get from them.
Luckily it seems redownloading will still be a thing, but I repeat myself. If you love your digital games BACK THEM UP! It is not that hard and you should do it.
@dBackLash Sorry to burst that bubble but they do absolutely nothing of the sort. An NFT is just a unique 'smart contract' (that's what they are ironically named) on a bit of data that proves that a specific person 'owns' it by checking the blockchain. It doesn't contain the item itself, it doesn't do anything to preserve the item, the item remains in the same place it always was and that place is as susceptible to being taken down or copied or hacked etc as it always was.
If they could guarantee preservation of a digital item, we wouldn't have had any of the scams of people investing in generated avatars only to have the seller close down the server and run off with the crytpo currency, leaving the buyer with nothing but a token that says they own a broken link and the seller with a crypto wallet that the blockchain with verify as their 100% fair and square.
@Ogbert shhhh don't argue with NFT bros. They don't get that part and it will only bring them out of their hive of techbros who really don't understand how tech works.
It's not a surprise, but it is still disappointing. I know people are stating that there has been plenty of time to have bought and downloaded games. What about people barely getting a 3DS or Wii U?
You've got kids who are finally old enough to play games. They might be trying out their parents' or older siblings' console for the first time.
There are Xbox/Playstation fanboys who finally tried out a Nintendo system and were hooked.
There are also people whose taste in games have changed and realized that game they never considered is suddenly appealing. I just got into Etrian Odyssey and Shin Megami Tensei games, so I speak from experience. I got lucky that I can still pick some up before the shop closes.
It's a shame that consoles don't have a digital shop similar to Steam. You get a new console but you can still play games from older consoles.
Maybe Nintendo will be announcing a Nintendo Streaming service at E3 this year, independent of dedicated hardware. Wii U and DS games can use the Switch(or mobile) as the second screen, while it streams to TV. Or you can lump it all on your 1080-2160 fancy panel. They have probably already discussed the idea with Nvidia and their streaming service, which is excellent btw.
@mattesdudeIt feels more like 2 months since there'll be no way to purchase any of them after August.
@Wexter Ha! Yeah that's true, but sometimes they're not NFT bros and they're just regular people who've read some lies and can be saved from a scamming.
Hopefully Nintendo follows through with their intention of sustaining the current Switch playerbase with future hardware platforms via backwards compatibility so this isn't (as much of an) issue anymore.
Because people are still actively using Steam and GOG, while the 3DS eShop is dying and the Wii U eShop has been dead for years.
@Ogbert I'm talking about putting the actual games on the blockchain, the NFT would act only as acces keys.
@Royalblues After the passing of Iwata (rest in peace), and the retirement of Reggie, Nintendo has become a cruel parody of its former self.
The games are still good, but everything else about the company is yikes.
What in the world makes you think they intend to do that?
Always fun to see people invoke a dead man's name to criticize a company decision (as if things wouldnt have been any different if Iwata we're still alive?).
Removed - unconstructive
Hot take: The responsibility of preserving video games falls on the games' publishers, not on the company of the system they happened to live on.
It was Square's responsibility, for instance, to release some kind of port of My Life as King before the Wii went belly up. It's not Nintendo's responsibility to keep ancient, unplayed games on their servers indefinitely.
@Yorumi Well said, I welcome the competition, not just for Nintendo, but for all consoles.
PC platforms are competition for consoles, and it seems to becoming more and more apparent in recent years. Whether it does well or not, I'm happy Steam is stepping into the portable console market with the Steam Deck - this hopefully puts some fire under Nintendo to be more competitive with regard to preserving game libraries for more than just 10 years of a single console's lifespan, in addition to other oddities PC has advantages over like customization. PC platforms like Steam and GOG also don't require any kind of internet subscription, which is prevalent in all current popular consoles.
It used to be different ballgames because PCs were typically massive towers and required a desk of some kind, but now they can be pretty compact and hooked up to a TV just as easily as a console. I'd like to see more competition of PC platforms reaching into the console space, it's great for consumers.
@nhSnork We're working on some lists as we speak!
@Grimley141 Who do you think instigated that process?
As a system ages and emulation improves old consoles will fall into the "open for piracy" category. It's an ever advancing line.
@Damo he broke the law. That's what instigated the process.
Y'all are a bunch of babies. Seriously. Do you want a game that's going to disappear from that shop? Then go buy it now. Problem solved.
@Damo now that's good to hear, thanks!
These game companies (well, Sony and Nintendo) really need to make it so the digital infrastructure between consoles/hardware remains the same. In that way surely they can just keep them running at minimal incremental cost as their new/current hardware will still be using the same digital platform?
Maybe not the online gaming servers, but at least the store fronts. No need to have separate store fronts for every console.
Look at Steam or Apple, they have just had one continuous store front since day 1. And Apple release way more new hardware than Nintendo and Sony combined. I just don’t get it.
It doesn't concern me that much since I never used online functions on my 3DS and have all the VC games I could ask for on Switch, but not being given the option to purchase them individually for those who do want to own them on Switch? Bleh. Just bleh.
@Yodalovesu Yes! I'll remember to do that in 2023 and beyond.
Or maybe these people who need to pirate these games could just buy the games they want. The store isn’t shut down yet.
@Yorumi Hey look it's the trees! No, it is a false equivalence. Steam and GOG have licensing agreements with the publishers and remove old games like the examples I listed. Either a new version is out so licencing the old one is pointless or the game just simply is not being renewed for whatever reason. Either porting the new version or just simply the publisher does not care. They carry their own unique problems.
The Nintendo eShop on Wii U and 3DS is designed to run on those dedicated systems. And Nintendo can track how many are being purchased and downloaded. Outside of the odd indie game like maybe once a year on Wii U there is nothing enticing people to purchase a console to play games on that are well... going to run better on newer hardware that has a separate eco-system. On PC for Steam and GOG, you can still buy old games because for the most part, they run on new hardware and OS, there is an incentive to keep them available on the same storefront and you have no incentive to create a new storefront as it is the same eco-system with slight variation in hardware. When they no longer be run Steam removes them. If Nintendo was seeing strong 3DS sales still do you think they'd close the eShop if it was at parity with the Switch? Or if 3DS games could run natively on Switch Nintendo would not make them available? They can be compared, but GOG, Steam, Origin etc run on a completely different ecosystem from consoles as consoles require a dedicated storefront for that system which for the most part is stuck on that dedicated hardware.
And before you go "but Microsoft" remember that the OG Xbox is basically a PC, the Xbone is basically a PC and the XSX is basically a PC. It is far easier to move software forward to newer systems and even then they are stopped by licencing issues. They don't need to worry about radically different control schemes like the Wii Remote and nunchuck or optical discs on hardware that does not support it. That and Microsoft as well has been slowly stripping the OG Xbox, and Xbox 360 of storefront features and online play for YEARS.
I brought up physical hardware because they are not immune to degradation. So, if you do not take care of the games they will fail some retro consoles already have that problem and Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft are not printing freshly minted copies on older hardware. That and for the original hardware to run burned backup versions require hacking or modifications... the same method that can be used to run digital games.
My point make more sense now?
@blindsquarel The point here is that new fans are constantly joining the ranks. For example, someone hands down their old 3DS to a sibling in 2023 and beyond, they're going to miss out on a lot of digital exclusives and DLC. That's the point being made here.
People say all digital is the best way to go, then complain when the consequences of going all digital happen. People really don’t think ahead these days do they.
That’s the problem with digital games. If developers don’t make it physical than it will go away at some point.
I agree it is sad, but it is not Nintendo’s job to preserve other developers games. If they wanted them to stay forever make a physical cartridge.
@Yorumi Excellent point, that's just one more reason for consoles to fear the Steam Deck or even PC in general. The customization factor is massive regarding what you can get a PC to do while consoles are still very limited without resorting to illegal jailbreaking.
Sure, there are other dedicated portable emulators out there, but none with support from such a well known and well supported company like Valve. I love Nintendo games, but their service as far as the console experience, from the menus to the store, is so very limited and compared to Steam. I know this is off topic, but I still find it hard to believe we only have a light and dark theme when the 3DS had hundreds of themes. We also had music players and access to Netflix. It's hard to forget these things when the same company made a more flexible yet weaker portable console just over a decade ago.
We legit dont have an option not to pirate. we have to do it now lol
The point this article makes is weird.
I agree, a lack of game availability leads to piracy. The answer is to make them available, the next problem is how.
But that guy was pirating brand new, readibly available games. That's completely different.
Copyright laws need to be reformed, to make it fair use to pirate media that is not available through legal means, or even make the copyright expire.
If a game is only available through piracy, or has physical copies around but they cost a fortune, downloading the game for free should be legal, in cases where the company doesn't even exist anymore and it's hard to find who owns the copyright to them, making all their games public domain should hurt no one.
"it is inicciptible ind iltimitly mins i lit if list gims" Hahahaha. When the Wii U came out, no one wanted to pay for classic games. Now that the Eshop is closing, NOW they want to buy those games. Grow the hell up. Nintendo offered that service back in the day, and even before with the VC on Wii, they were always on the forefront of legacy content availability. And, old news, the Wii U is highly hackable. At the end of the day, Nintendo only cares about the console being sold everywhere. So go ahead and grab a Wii U while you can.
@Edu23XWiiU What are you talking about? People paid for and enjoyed classic games on the Wii U shop, and there's tons of video proof on YouTube and Twitch to prove that.
@cfgk24 Fact. Piracy is wrong, sometimes. Piracy does not always impact future releases. Think of every successful major game that has been pirated, with Metroid Dread being the most recent example. Even amidst people freely sharing it, Dread is on it's way to becoming the best selling Metroid game in the series. I would hardly say that piracy even put a dent in it's success.
Sometimes, games are just no longer available, such as Castlevania Adventure - Rebirth. Only way to play it is to either pirate it or happen to have it on your Wii. In that case, piracy is a good thing, because it enables people to play a good game that the publisher is failing to bring forward.
The conversation is a lot more nuanced than you may think!
Ok, I will say it. Emulation of old systems is ok.
Hacking and pirating current systems it is not. Is that simple.
@Wexter The mention of licenses expiring and games getting removed from store fronts is not really a Steam or GOG problem is it? The same also happens in the eShop of the Switch for certain games like Jump Force.
Then port them to new hardware. Like it or not this is the problem with all digital games.
I don't understand the argument about digital purchases being lost. They're on your 3DS or Wii U. I suppose they could become corrupted or the hardware could die, but equally likely is a physical cartridge breaking or being lost.
And I also don't understand the argument about Nintendo having an obligation to preserve games. You sell something until it's no longer profitable to do so. Once you market something, you're not obligated to keep marketing it in perpetuity. It would be nice, sure, but I take exception to the concept of obligation.
This is why I have CFW installed on both. Everybody should do the same.
@piecez it's not Nintendo's job to preserve other devs games. everyone knows when they buy digital its not for keeps.
people choose to consume digitally (I dont,) so please dont moan about preservation if you aren't supporting the physical market.
If Digital buyers haven't woken up by this point there's no helping them. This is why having Indie and Brand name Developers make games physical as the price they charge cost same as a Physical copy to buy.
@dBackLash That's still not how it works, the blockchain can still disappear. Again I point you towards the numerous scams to do with blockchains and NFT 'art'. They don't work that way, they don't solve these issues, in fact many of the issues they claim to solve are ones the system inherently introduces...and then does not actually solve. In it's current state, it's just a bigger fool scam headed up but some of the finance worlds largest (in many cases previously convicted) criminals.
Torrents, which are not inherently piracy, are probably the best current way without a central authority like Nintendo themselves preserving gaming history. But even then neither of those systems are infallible. As we can see Nintendo can just pull the plug if it decides it does not want to invest in preserving them any more and torrents are less but still susceptible to link rot. There is no absolutely 100% infallible way to preserve anything, digital, physical or otherwise.
Blockchain is actually one of the weakest, least secure and practical ways to attempt to preserve games. And NFTs would not be needed for any part of it if they were, they are simply a way of potentially locking people out by creating an artificial scarcity that can be sold to the highest bidder. Their only value comes from the potential that someone will take them off your hands for even more money that you spent on them. And all that stuff about getting a cut of resales? Well that is also not inherent to the NFT itself, it's optional and needs to be compatible with the marketplace they're sold in to happen. So can easily be avoided by selling it on a different marketplace if it's even there in the first place.
There are so many glaring holes in the logic, so many examples of their claimed purpose and function being completely undermined or easy worked around, so many red flags at every level. Putting the preservation of video games in the hands of this technology, even ignoring the environmental, moral, social impacts and issues, would be a terrible idea all but guaranteed to loose all the history. Or at the very least, lock it all off to the highest bidder.
@piecez there’s literally a list in the body of the article of games available ONLY digitally, and among them Nintendo ones as well.
Just because YOU don’t intend to play them it doesn’t mean they should fade in the wind.
Serioulsy, your attitude is ridiculous.
You are a customer, why do you justify unfriendly conglomerate politics?
It’s like acting as if your filthy rich boss is totally justified in not giving you comfortable work conditions brcause money.
If I ever make something and then decide that I want to put it in the bin then that is my choice. I don't need anyone to tell me I have to preserve it because they say so.
The article seems to think their opinion is the way the industry should be doing things going forward.
@blindsquarel Like @Medic_Alert said, most games these days release with vital patches and half the content missing from the media. Even with Nintendo, most of ACNH is inaccessible without the online component, on the cart you get an empty shell of a game, and it's becoming normal. Look at Switch and the massive amount of games that half the game doesn't exist on the cart. Even Pokemon XY, on 3DS had a game-breaking save bug without the patch. Physical is becoming every bit as useless as digital. Neither physical nor digital buyers are affected by this shut down for the games they already bought. But both are equally affected by the next shutdown when you can no longer download or patch.
There's no digital vs physical debate with this stuff. It's everyone.
@icomma How does pirating a game that is literally impossible to pay for or acquire in any legal form wrong and harmful?
Go ask the software developers of the game it's not Nintendo then you can come back and have a fact based discussion.
Here's the same old Video people should watch before making baseless claims.
Digital Distribution Vs Physical Media and True Ownership
The only idiots defending Nintendo still need to have their head checks. Sue the hell out of pirates, the remove legitimate content, making the ONLY way to get old games is...pirating.
Does Nintendo just like to shoot itself in the foot over and over again?
@SwitchForce The fact is..its no longer theft or piracy. when there are zero ways to obtain it legally piracy become the ONLY option. This is when piracy is 100% acceptable.
Imagine if nintendo had a dedicated VC app where you could purchase their whole back catalog. That or put their games on steam.
@blindsquarel You can't just port the whole 3DS library to Switch, not only porting games is hard, but without the source code, which many companies lose, it's pretty much impossible unless it's emulation.
Even if Nintendo made a perfect 3DS emulator that runs all the 3DS games, the next step is legal issues, many games were removed from the store way before this.
@Damo You do realize that there's no comparison in the crimes right? Nintendo isn't going to jail someone for 5 years and sue them for $4.5 million if they illegally download their games. At worst you might get hit with a $50,000 fine and a month in jail. That said most likely you'd just get a lesser fine and no jail-time. I don't condone illegal activity, but this article reeks of hyperbole and clickbait. Most people just want the honest truth, not scare tactics or hyperbole in the news articles that they read. 😡😠😈👿👹👺💀
@earthinheritor Even if the game was released yesterday, it's not theft.
If you make something, and I take it away from you without your consent, that's theft, you don't have it anymore, if you make something, and I make a copy of it without your consent, you may not like it, but you still have the original, nothing was stolen.
Copyright is about making it illegal to make a copy without consent of the creator, which is not considered theft by law, copyright is important to make sure artists and creators can live, eat and pay their bills, but they need a lot of reforms, and most importantly, reduce the duration.
i don't like this decision, and im not sure how much i love spening tax dollars making sure nintendo and other corporations get dubious "reparations" for theoretical losses, but gary bowser was making bank to the tune of millions ripping off currently viable nintendo products. he didnt just download a few roms for personal use.
on that note, has nintendo ever gone after an individual for simply downloading games? i dont remember it. they go after emulation sites and hackers.
He only bypassed the OS so that additional things could be done with it.
Just because some people chose to use it to pirate games does not make him at fault!
For me its more the fact that the virtual console is pretty much gone for good now that the last systems which supported it wont be allowing new purchases.
Its less about the past and more about how they are handling legacy content going forward which is my concern, as mentioned while there is semantics regarding actual ownership of digital content the fact is that people who downloaded games on the virtual console will still be able to play the games they have downloaded after the service goes down, the same likely wont be true when it comes to the NSO classic games..
a subscription model removes many of the "safety nets" in place when it comes to digital content, so while physical will always be the safest bet when it comes to buying games, digital is at least preferable to service based models when it comes to preservation.
Find me a decent price on
Super Princess Peach
Mazes of Fate
Ys books 1 & 2
Both physical and digital!
What about games released only digitally?
@MajorTom I mentioned it because it is a more prevalent problem there. We talk about preservation a fair bit which should include the original vanilla release. it happens on the Nintendo eShop, Microsoft Storefront and PSN, but it is more of an issue on Steam. It is up to publisher discretion about keeping these games in circulation. You cannot buy a copy of DARK SOULS: Prepare To Die Edition on Steam. And the Last Remnant a rather beloved cult classic is nowhere to be found on PC despite most of its fanbase being on PC. That and there is no alternative for PC fans who have been keeping the game alive to access the newer version. It carries its own unique problems of legacy content compared to consoles. I mention this as a unique problem for them to face simply because it runs on a different ecosystem from consoles. I mention Soul Reaver as while it is on GOG it was removed from Steam an eon ago with no clear way of acquiring it or timeline for its return. And let's not begin to discuss how long the original Blood Omen PC version you could only find it on the sketchy fringes of the internet.
They are problems that both sides share, but Steam can face them in uniquely different ways from consoles.
Also, I'm not pro-Nintendo shuttering the Wii U or 3DS eShop. I even comment that it is now a free game for those who want to hack their systems. But, I'm also not naive enough to throw the book at Nintendo and go. This would never happen on PC... cough OnLive (eye rolls).. or that physical games don't have these problems... cough hardware failure. Do you know the number of games on the Apple App store that just no longer exist or can be accessed? This is a very complicated problem that people tend to miss the forest for the trees.
I signed up for Netflix, but I know the deal is that I enjoy the content while its available- I know the content is not forever mine, different films can be pulled at anytime. That's the deal and I accept it.
If you really love a game that is only available digitally, sorry but that is the tough reality of digital- its only available to access (legally) for as long as the platform holder provides it.
Just do what I do for digital games I am interested in- pray they get a physical release!
Its not me who is ridiculous, but those who think they are entitled to own something offered temporarily to be forever theirs. If more people supported physical media, maybe the devs would make your beloved titles in a format that is actually yours to keep.
@icomma imo most of the people that hack a current system have the intent of playing its games without paying. Obviously it will not be all of the people but do they really need to do that when there are só many other systems no longer in the market...
@BloodNinja sadly it chalks up for a lot of people to "the law says it's illegal, ergo it's bad"
Remember kids, emulating and pirating is morally justified when it comes to Nintendo games. They prove time and time again that fans have a legitimate reason to do so.
At the end of the day, they're just another company that cares little about consumers and more about the billions of dollars they can make.
@NEStalgia Slow clap. THANK YOU! Digital or physical games rely so much on server connections that people really do not understand. At some point, the patches that make a lot of these games run will just no longer exist. I mention multiplayer-only games like Evolve because... well that game is dead and buried and never coming back. We talk about preservation and that is more a publisher issue. Most of the material that makes preservation important is on their servers, we're talking source code, design documents, original scripts, beta versions, updates and patches. What players actually talk about when they talk "preservation" is access. And thank you for taking down St. Phil Spencer a bit with how Xbox actually does "backwards compatibility" they do it the best, but their method is still flawed when it comes to "preservation and access."
I'm glad someone finally brought this up with the "physical only" army.
@Balta666 you'd be surprised how many people hacked their 3DS and now their switch to have a portable emulation box
I agree with this, Nintendo is very much creating its own demons here. If they had robust support for their legacy content and offered it for a reasonable fee, piracy wouldn't be a must have. I view this as an inadvertent concession from Nintendo though; they're finally just giving these consoles to the community to do with as they will.
@somebread @icomma not denying that there are but which games do they play there? If it is PSOne era and prior you do not need a switch for that.
Nintendo hates their fans.
@Balta666 i know a good friend of mine uses it to play PS1 games at least, although i hear it's a mite bit dodgy (i'm not comfortable hacking my stuff til its near end of lifetime)
3DS is where i played most of my fan-translated snes games, it's the form factor that's appealing over say, an emulator console or a phone
@piecez I understand this and I agree for the most part. I suppose it´s just that other forms of media like movies and music had a more seemless transition from physical to digital, with most things being available in a digital space and only a small amount getting lost in translation. Yes, the gaming industry is more complicated than that, but I think that even games one day will mainly be experienced through streaming instead of owning the games physically or digitally and I think at that point it will pretty much be the same as music industry or something similar. But until then it simply would be nice to have access to games without having to use unofficial methods.
Below is the common Pirate reply Trolls when they have nothing better to say aka pay the Software Developers to buy and play the game.
@icomma Your response doesn’t make any sense
Ask yourself that when the Software developers aren't getting paid for stolen games they created.
@earthinheritor The fact is..its no longer theft or piracy. when there are zero ways to obtain it legally piracy become the ONLY option.
So did you go and pay the developers for the rights to buy the game?
@SwitchVogel Nintendo Publishes the game the content creator still owns the rights to the game. So ask the content creator why they aren't supporting their own games.
@icomma if I pay you to make something for me then it’s mine, not yours. So the same thing still applies.
I understand this subjects divides but it’s about ownership, and that gives them freedom of choice. I don’t feel that allows others to decide what they should do.
@icomma you need to get over that be cause you will be crying about that issue for the rest of your life. Don’t sell your soul to the devil, i think that saying is quite fitting here. I’m afraid all those heart and soul people you are referring too all agreed to this happening when they took their money.
@icomma Bit dramatic, but yeah life sucks.
The entitlement on display here is absolutely mindblowing. Surely, it would be great if Nintendo's entire back catalog was available in the Virtual Console format, and they'd implement a console-independent system that ensures you can access your purchases on any new system they produce. BUT! Nintendo is not in any way required to do so, legally, ethically or otherwise. Pretending like Nintendo has some kind of moral obligation to cater to your own personal wants is so utterly mega cringe to me.
I pirate whatever retro game I want to play. I don't feel morally compromised in doing so. But I also don't blame Nintendo for "forcing me to do it". Own the decisions you make, and stop making excuses. What in the ever loving hell.
can we revoke text formatting from certain users
@FargusPelagius i have a bridge to sell you
"Keeping the 3DS and Wii U eShops online costs money"
I mean, it's not as if people are paying for an expensive subscription to keep these servers going...
Just proves that it's a service problem
Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for me.
We pillage plunder, we rifle and loot.
Stand up me hearties, yo ho.
We kidnap and ravage and don't give a hoot.
Stand up me hearties, yo ho.
Thank God for my trusty Gateway card and browser hack on WiiU
I owned a New 2DS XL for a few years now and I watched this https://youtu.be/f35i5AVzpsg. and https://youtu.be/yj9Gk84jRiE I found these videos from Nerrel's channels to be very interesting and gives the unfortunate reality of how Nintendo actually does to actual game preservation. There are so many good games for Game Boy, NES, SNES, and N64 that have never ever came to VC. Closing down VC for whatever reason is a bad idea for many reasons. And demand for old video games is only increasing more nowadays.
Until recently, aside from making unofficial emulators and using Legit games on a cartridge dumper, I had totally agreed with Nintendo's views on free ROM sites offering older games. But Don't Copy that Floppy's DP never mentions about older games from past gens. Going the totally clean way, for the past few Christmases, I played The Grinch for GBC on my GBA SP. I waited for games like that to appear on VC. As with important popular games on the platforms supported by Wii and Wii U and 3DS VC, but never made it, like Ducktales for GB/NES or Goldeneye for N64, I had to swallow the unfortunate reality that because of partly due to lisencing issues and that really shouldn't be an issue when easily re releasing a movie on a VHS, LazerDisc, DVD, Blu-Ray, YouTube, and 4K and because Nintendo didn't really show the care for all its older games as it showed to be with the Classic Minis, VC, and NSO, there will never ever be another official, legitimate release of these games within my lifetime.
The article itself is fair and well written... That Title, though lol, is pure sensationalism.
"The timing is impeccable, even by Nintendo's standards"
Not really... because the author admits that the court case "has been rumbling for quite some time".
IMO, the only thing that Nintendo made a "reality for countless fans" is that they get another year to legally download games that have been available for years.
Lastly, I get it guys. I miss the VC too. In fact, 90% of my WiiU library was old school... It was literally my go to retro machine, however, those days are over. They've been over since the NSO was announced.
@Royalblues Relax, relax, chill out. it was a guy that SOLD modchips that tricks the Switch into allowing downloads of unofficial emulators and ROMs that got arrested and put in prison. Its totally different from the thousands to millions of people around the world download free unauthorized ROMs everyday just to relieve their nostalgia.
@Grimley141 yes and no, I assume Nintendo had the option to press charges or not 🤔
Hopefully this gives a boost in popularity to the 3DS/Wii U hacking scene. I've been wanting to hack my 2DS and Wii U but I've held off because I don't want to hack a system that has an active eShop that sells games and is making money for Nintendo.
Hopefully the value of 3DSes goes down after this announcement, I've been wanting to get a new one but they're so darn expensive!
@piecez Yea I won't judge anyone for 'obtaining' games that you can't get anymore (even though they have been available for a while and they are giving notice and a year to download) but what you say is true.
And how many of you have paid the Content Creators? Not Nintendo but those guys/gals the made the game for you to download and play? Tell me whom here has sent money to those content creators to keep their game going? I bet all those Trolls on here has done "0" payments to them.
Astounding how many hypocrites will voice agreement with this article, yet have no problem ushering in this sort of world by buying digital instead of physical, as well as cheering on "cloud" gaming.
I will keep my 3DS and Wii U machine stay original.
The cost of living is insane and the second hand game market is now full of resellers with over inflated prices. The best option is to sail the open seas at this point.
Edit - I'm referring to past gen consoles that are not currently on sale in stores.
Shut down legal and reasonably priced channels for game purchases?
Are you ready kids!??!!??
@icomma switchforce kind of tends to talk nonsense with lots of bold font to make it seem less like nonsense if you haven't noticed yet
i'm sure many of the people who played shovel knight, or any other kickstarter game on here, have given money directly to the makers of the game :V
"Yar har, fiddle de dee
Being a pirate is alright to be" /ly
I have a feeling the Steam Deck and other handheld emulators are about to become more popular in the next few days, if not already as of now.
Seriously though, Nintendo as a company is completely tone deaf to their customers/fans and unlike Sony, I doubt they'll backtrack on their decision, despite the backlash; I'd love to be proven wrong though.
Piracy. Is. Preservation. The entire games industry has a pretty bad problem with preservation, don't get me wrong, but Nintendo really is the worst. That bit about "Doesn’t Nintendo have an obligation to preserve its classic games?" in the announcement felt like a taunt.
@piecez fallacy of false equivalency
@Jayenkai Is the air too thin up there on your high horse to read the part about the titles that are not available physically in any form? You know, the whole point of the article?
@cfgk24 Fact. -proceeds to state what is objectively an opinion followed by another opinion that has yet to be partly or substantially proven in any capacity-
@james_squared Nintendo said you’ll still be able to download software updates even after March 2023, likely until they shut down the servers to be able to play 3DS and Wii U games online (the date of which is still unknown).
....Just ban older Nintendo systems at this point, make them illegal or something. I mean, shutting down the eshops seemed like it was going to happen at some point, but it feels way too soon.
Been using roms since 1998, nothing new here lol. Also www.archive.org is your best friend now <3.
@Mikmoomamimocki Hacked my Wii U as soon as Mario Maker 2 released, it is 100% worth it.
@durrdevil Just buy one of the 10 DS games that have an exploit that Nintendo can't fix. There is a list online.
@Ogbert first of all a blockchain doesn't just 'dissapear', if at least one node is active the blockchain is live and since anyone can be become a node that just doesn't happen.
So basicly if you can put games on the blockchain then it will be up untill everyone in the world decides to stop caring about it.
The problem with most peoples perception on NFTs is that they only look at what NFTs currently offer: a bunch of useless jpegs to buy and sell.
There is a lot more potential for these proof of ownership certificates (for example I can see a future where you can start your car and unlock your house by using your NFT since it's way more convenient and secure than physical keys).
One of those potentials is when storefronts start selling their gamekeys as NFTs. As consumer you get the ability to sell your games or loan them to a friend (for a small fee to the devs of course). It also means that games that have been pulled from the storefront are still in circulation, although the scarcety is decided by the number of sales.
For devs and the storefront it can provide a decent stream of income een after the storefront dies out.
You can hate on NFTs however you want, but I genuinly believe it will become a big part of our future. Just try to think beyond the stupid jpeg's, that's just a tiny part of what NFTs can offer.
It's like back in '95 or so when everybody was hating on the internet because it "couldn't do anything that radio, television or a newspaper already could offer".
I fond it despicable to jail someone for making tools. And even more despicable to give that sort of behaviour moral support by saying it's deserved. Buy what tops it all, is a site that does this, while at the same time making money writing about how cool all the mods and hacks are that result from it.
@dBackLash Oh don't worry I know NFTs are nothing to do with Jpegs. If you'd read any of my comments properly you'd know that.
The "You can sell digital games" can already be done it just widely isn't because it's not desired, and still wont be. The "and the developer can get a share" as I already mentioned is not inherent to NFTs, it needs to be in that smart contract and compatible with the marketplace it's being sold on, and again could be done already.
NFTs replacing house and car keys? No that's in no way more secure. Nothing is more secure than the user and a system that relies on multiple users being secure is inherently less secure as each new user adds new risk. You can steal an NFT and crypto currency, it's possible it's been done and once it's done all you have to rely on is the blockchain to verify who it belongs to now. Putting things like house keys and medical records and such on it is a very bad idea. But it sounds like you really really want to believe that they are great no matter what because you're emotionally and perhaps financially invested so it seems like you're not going to listen. I hope you don't loose too much.
As someone 100% opposed to 'renting' games and paying for my own internet, that I have already paid my ISP for I don't see Nintendo as a victim of piracy. It's like asking people with peg legs and parrots to hold their gold coins and diamonds, say you'll come back next week and ask for extortionate rent on them. Clearly, they've manufactured a situation where it is preferable to just take their stuff and run.
@CharlieGirl it will still be possible to download again your purchased games, but will not be possible to buy new stuff.
Imagine for a moment that there was a way that Nintendo could stop people from profiting from selling their games, that they could stop the unnecessary jailing of others, and Nintendo could be the good guys.
If only there was some sort of way of sharing content that was no longer being sold, but like, legally, for free. A way of companies giving out the content, and not forcing pirates to do it.
I mean, after the closure, Nintendo won't be making any more money from these games anyway, so why would not vaulting it, and giving it away really be an issue?
We could call it, I don't know, 'shareware', or something.
@setezerocinco You will be able to re-download them, but until when? They will stop their servers at some point in the future, even if it is 5 years from now.
Just bought a SD card to backup all my games, BUT not from the online store, no, I am going the "matey" way, because that way I can have the files myself and redownload them to my card whenever I may need.
I feel this is the morally correct way, if they stop their services.
I have no regrets.
@icomma Hi, Obviously I do understand where you are coming from and appreciate corporate business can, and is, a horrible beast that will do what it can to survive.
But you ou have to think of this situation as, what would I do?. Just to use a situation to explain my point, because if you owned a shop selling your art, and then someone photocopied it and started selling it for the fraction of the price then you would not accept that and do something about it. The same can be said in several other scenario for small business, they generally act in very similar ways to big business. So all you people saying they are wrong would all do the same as them if there were in the same situation.
Yar har fiddle dee dee, being a pirate is all right to be, do what you want 'cause a pirate is free, you are a pirate! 🎶☠️
This just keeps getting funnier, I am thoroughly entertained
@liverpoolvk for sure, that is the main problem, until when! I am against digital and pro physical 100%, I was just pointing what they wrote there because some think that after the server's turn off date the games would be lost forever.
Sorry, this is just incorrect.
If any meaningful number of ppl were still buying from the store it wouldn't get shut down. You don't close a booming storefront.
But ppl will use it as a blank check to pirate enmasse., despite being able to buy games for the last decade and even now, being able to buy games, and even for the next year, still able to buy games.
If you've had the opportunity to buy games for the last decade, and now, and tomorrow, and every day for the next year, and choose not to, then turn around and use that as an excuse to pirate, you're a gutter trash thief and that's the end of it.
Not to mention, they didn't prosecute for simple piracy, they prosecuted for running a multi million dollar for profit global enterprise.
The two have nothing to do with each other.
Piracy can definitely used for preservation. Surely, most people don't use it for that, but it can be used. It was exactly because of pirating that we still have ROMs of Satellaview games.
But the most important thing about piracy, imo, is that it is exactly what allows lower income people to get games, just like me in the past. I don't live in Europe, US, Australia, Japan, or somewhere else, I (or my parents) could not just simply spend over 50 dollars for a game, so I had no other choice other than buying pirated cartridges, CD/DVDs, or downloading pirated games. It also allowed me to know very obscure games, like Satellaview games, lol
When they shut these services down, all the digital exclusives essentially become abandonware, meaning it is not only morally and ethically acceptable to pirate those games in the world of computer ethics, but becomes a moral necessity for the world of digital preservation. Nintendo could fix this with minimal effort, but they choose not to.
it's not only Nintendo of course.
Companies care about profit and sales. Preservation is about dumping all backups and collect them for the future.
@BloodNinja tons? Yeah, if that would have been the case, the Switch wouldn't have come out until last year.
@Jokerwolf God bless that site, holy smokes.
@somebread here we go with people talking nonsense with FALSE equivalence again. Must like talking to oneself daily.
Pirates are coming out of the woodwork to support each other and their own replies just goes to show they expose themselves for all to know whom they really are.
That’s the way I always looked at it.
I mean, who in their right mind is going to spend upwards of 500 bucks for a US copy of the Misadventures of Tron Bonne for PS1? That’s possibly damaged.
The PS3 digital release is six dollars. But once the PS3 store closes your only “legal” option is to buy a used copy. And not many people have 500 bucks laying around to play a single game that is a risk to buy.
Screw that nonsense. Get the .iso and play it on a PC.
Say you really wanna try out Panzer Dragoon Saga. You don’t speak Japanese. So you’re only option is to pick up a second hand American or PAL copy. Copies of that game go anywhere from 600 dollars for just the disks up to two grand for a complete in case set with the instruction manual. The Japanese version is significantly cheaper, but once again you don’t read or speak Japanese. And this is a game with a TON of story and text to read through.
Now knowing these prices, you also have to factor in that many Saturn discs were poorly mastered and written. Premature Disc rot is a big issue on Saturn titles compared to PlayStation titles. You’re taking a gamble, of 600 or more, on a game that may not even work. And it’s a game that you’re interested in trying, but you’re not a die hard fan of RPGs. So that’s quite a risk. And Sega refuses to rerelease the game. It’s stuck on the Sega Saturn. Since they refuse to rerelease it, you can’t even support Sega directly with your money since you have to buy second hand.
Or, instead of going through all that potential heartbreak, you get the iso for all four discs and play it on a PC. The game is preserved on the internet; it’s easily available.
Nintendo is shutting these down because at this point they cost more to keep them running than not. Why would they keep supporting them? It simply makes no business sense whatsoever. Just learn your lesson and support physical games.
@Troll_Decimator Games were going digital regardless of what people did, it just makes more business sense and it is far better for the environment in the long run and saves them a ton of money on packaging.
@icomma Doesn't change the fact that I prefer physical where available.
@Jokerwolf Obviously, but I still prefer physical. Digital games inherently cheapen the product and make it just vague "content", especially if we are looking at subscription services. Not that buying digital games is much better, though, your entire library could be gone in a snap. I have thousands of digital games, because they were cheap, I have zero attachment to any of them.
Citra and CEMU can emulate 3DS and Wii U to perfection with better performance and graphics. Yuzu is getting there with Switch. One day they will all be part of RetroArch.
It's always the underground movement that preserved history.
Something i still dont understand is why nintendo sell their eshop games for max. price. While you can grab physical games for the same and most times less. If you have to make physical games and distribute them and share some profit with the seller, the overall profit is like 50% of the prices they sell them for in the eshop.
And yes, pirating games is the only solution to ensure you can play your games after a decade.
@Troll_Decimator That says more about copyright laws and our rights to software we purchase than the software itself. Delivery method doesn't really matter if safeguards are in place. If a company makes software unavailable legitimately to purchase it should become public domain after so many years, that is how you fix this problem and empower preservation.
@Jokerwolf Except for that to be possible, governments would have to implement a system in which they adopt ownership of a certain ecosystem once the company involved just can't or doesn't want to upkeep it anymore. There are a million reasons why such a thing is not currently available. Legislation and lots of effort would need to go towards that.
However, even with that in place, physical media will always be superior when it comes to ownership and value. There's a reason why digital AAA games with dozens of millions of dollars in budget these days cost like $1-5, or are given away for free even, yet their physical counterparts are more often than not multiple times the price. Physical goods are actually valuable. Data is just data, it has no inherent value, only perceived, and apparently even the perceived is not much, judging by the numbers.
@Troll_Decimator I still own a lot of physical games and systems (at least 20k worth of retro stuff if not more), but I also have a bunch of external drives with everything I could want from software to media that will serve me until I die. Honestly though unless someone is re-selling your products no one should care as most people value the people who made those products not the corporations pumping out half assed emulated messes they claim as remasters, entertainment media is art and meant to be experienced and enjoyed so enjoy it how ever you can, end of story.
Removed - spam
@icomma It's not yours to make that decision. You don't own the game, you don't own the rights to the game. It's up to the owners to decide what they want.
Monies earned from game sales go to Devs. You pirate a game - They can never use their work to earn a living again. You stopped it
Nintendo will just rerelease it and make you buy it again at a ridiculous mark up on a current gen console.
And people will eat it up likes it's a good thing because Nintendo can't be bad.
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