Report: 3DS 'bricked' after pirate activity

A Japanese retailer states that firmware updates to the 3DS could brick the system if it detects illegal hardware or firmware customization.

46

If you plan on getting a shiny new Nintendo 3DS when it launches later this month, you should probably take care not to use flash carts to play ROMs. A report from GoNintendo claims that firmware updates may render the 3DS inoperable (aka "bricked") if it detects fishy activity.

Japanese retailer Enterking has updated its site with a warning about the possibility. The (very) rough translation states, "In case if you use equipment which is illegal or unapproved by Nintendo or if you do customization which is unapproved by Nintendo, there is a possibility that Nintendo 3DS become non bootable by system update."

This is all highly speculative at the moment, but Nintendo has promised stronger piracy measures for the 3DS, and has mentioned that automatic firmware updates are part of the effort.

In response to an inquiry, a Nintendo spokesperson told Shacknews, "We do not discuss product security details (for obvious reasons), nor can we discuss the details of countermeasures available in the Nintendo 3DS system."

Editor-In-Chief
From The Chatty
  • reply
    March 9, 2011 1:30 PM

    Comment on Report: 3DS 'bricked' after pirate activity, by Steve Watts.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 1:34 PM

      in before piracy justifiers

      • reply
        March 9, 2011 1:35 PM

        If I don't pirate I will get aids.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 1:37 PM

          if I cant smoke and swear, im fucked!

          • reply
            March 9, 2011 1:40 PM

            Trailer Park Boys ftw!

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 1:55 PM

              I am SO HAPPY most of the seasons are on netflix instant now! Its like you can feel the way the shit clings to the air!

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 2:12 PM

              Its like a shit rope, the tighter you squeeze....the faster you fall down.

          • reply
            March 9, 2011 2:02 PM

            Smokes, let's go!

      • reply
        March 9, 2011 1:37 PM

        not a piracy justification, but once I buy a product, it's mine to do with as I please. (excepting reverse engineering).
        If I want to mod it to run homebrew apps, or linux, I should damn well be allowed to.

        If I'm not, then I didn't purchase it, I rented it from nintendo.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 1:53 PM

          Fair enough... but what percentage of the people who had one of those cards on the DS actually used it for homebrew apps and running linux?! Nobody is saying that those people don't exist.. but I bet 98% of the people with an R4 used it to play pirated games. Let's be realistic here.

          • reply
            March 9, 2011 4:36 PM

            I think that claiming even 2% of people with cards were using it for anything other than piracy is still being generous. I'd say maybe .5%, if that, were using the R4 or TTDS for anything other than piracy.

            • reply
              March 10, 2011 6:51 AM

              r4? democoding, soundtracking 839% more fun with the DS for me

        • ArB legacy 10 years
          reply
          March 9, 2011 1:57 PM

          I agree with that, but they aren't preventing you from doing that, they just don't want modified hardware connecting to their network. It's understandable.

          • reply
            March 9, 2011 2:30 PM

            That would not be "just" preventing you from connecting to their network. That is actively destroying your hardware.

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 2:32 PM

              That's if they're bricking devices intentionally. Accidental bricking would be different.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 4:06 PM

          It's fairly clear that the device isn't intended to run homebrew or linux, so I don't see why you would somehow feel entitled to do so.

          • reply
            March 9, 2011 4:40 PM

            People will do some pretty entertaining mental gymnastics to justify piracy.

          • reply
            March 9, 2011 4:50 PM

            So you can never use a device outside it's intended design?

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 10:52 PM

              Sure, you could also use the 3DS as a hammer. Just don't be upset if it doesn't work as well as you hoped it might.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 4:42 PM

          It's no different than the fact that you can buy medicine at the store, but using it in certain ways is still illegal.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 6:30 PM

          But that's exactly what you "buy" with certain products. Like DVDs or software.

      • reply
        March 9, 2011 1:43 PM

        In before knee jerk reactions from people who haven't thought the issue through. Read Vertdang comment above.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 1:47 PM

          Speaking of which. I need a good homebrew MP3 app for my DS Lite.

        • reply
          March 10, 2011 7:49 AM

          wait, are you meaning that "I" was kneejerk? /has a confused.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 1:40 PM

      haha it's so sad when companies do this. We all know that's not going to happen.

      • reply
        March 9, 2011 1:44 PM

        Has Nintendo ever done that before? If they haven't I sure hope they don't start with the 3DS. :/

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 1:46 PM

          Even if they somehow tried to. You know it's not going to last. If someone wants to get homebrew on there they will get homebrew on there. Companies just need to stop with this dorky propaganda and move forward.

          • reply
            March 9, 2011 2:10 PM

            Move forward? Do you realize how fucking retarded you sound? This sense of entitlement that hackers have is complete bull. Everyone justifies it by saying that one lost sell isn't going to hurt the company but that is just ignorance. As more and more people "steal" games they hurt the developers which in turn causes a drop in sales. If you can't afford the games then you are not meant to have them tough luck, get a fucking job and buy them legit.

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 2:19 PM

              IME homebrew != burned games

              • reply
                March 9, 2011 5:41 PM

                how many homebrew games do you have vs ROMs?

                I've never seen one homebrew anything on a flash cart, ever. I know they exist, but everyone that has a cart has it packed full of roms, and none of them have any idea how to rip a game from a store bought cart for "backup purposes"

                I'm sure there is a dude out there pissed off at all the software pirates for giving him a bad rap, but I'm still waiting for him to show up on Ripley's Believe it or Not

                • reply
                  March 9, 2011 5:51 PM

                  there are a couple of shackers who claim to be all bout the homebrew.
                  i can tell you when i bought a cart for my DS way back in the day it was for piracy only

                  • reply
                    March 9, 2011 6:38 PM

                    I'm not even asking for proof. I patently don't buy it. 

                    Deamon tools, yeah I see the valid uses for that. Hacking a wiimote or kinect, sure. Porting an ogg player to a dslite, bullshit

                    • reply
                      March 9, 2011 6:58 PM

                      whether you dont really buy the utility of such a function is irrelevant to the discussion of whther people have the right to do whatever they want with something they own without having it punitively, intentionally and permanently broken

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 2:28 PM

              Yeah I wonder where they get that "sense of entitlement?" Maybe from buying the equipment?

              • reply
                March 9, 2011 2:46 PM

                Haha right they can afford the equipment but can't afford to purchase the games. Nice argument, maybe next time I need car I'll just buy the equipment to steal it then I can share in that sense of entitlement.

                • reply
                  March 9, 2011 3:08 PM

                  Godhatesfatpeople isn't talking about piracy, he's talking about writing his own games or code or whatever for the handheld computer he purchased. His sense of entitlement is perfectly justified.

                  He doesn't want to steal anything, just make some cool stuff.

                  • reply
                    March 9, 2011 3:09 PM

                    To continue your metaphor, it would be like buying a car but then making your own gasoline instead of buying the stuff that comes from The Man/dead Arabs/drunk Canadians.

                  • reply
                    March 9, 2011 3:26 PM

                    This :)

                  • reply
                    March 10, 2011 8:34 AM

                    But there are development kits you can get from Nintendo to do just that.

                • reply
                  March 9, 2011 3:37 PM

                  lol @ "nice argument"

                • reply
                  March 9, 2011 4:12 PM

                  You suck at analogies, Rob the Gaming Freak. I suppose everyone who buys a gun has every intention or robbing a bank right? I don't like pirates of the Somalian, Software, or Caribbean variety. They have nothing to do with hackers.

                  • reply
                    March 11, 2011 4:25 PM

                    You suck at understanding analogies. Just because everyone is defending homebrew doesn't mean that it's actually the case. Maybe a few people want to use it for legitimate reasons but most people want to hack their 3DS to play free games. Just like people defend burning DVD's for the sake of having a backup when in reality they want to burn illegal copies. Your comment about every gun owner wanting to rob a bank is just as stupid as people asking you if you would jump off a cliff if everyone else did. Maybe I'm wrong though, I guess everyone is honest and nice in this world :)

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 2:43 PM

              As soon as they buy the hardware for me, I'm fine with them dictating what software I can run on it.

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 2:46 PM

              So a company puts out a game that has a 5 hour SP and charges the same as a game with a 20 hour SP, or a game with a 6 hour SP and MP ? Ive been fucked over by buying games, Im done with buying crappy games, im just going to rent them. Pirating games isnt destroying the gaming community, its companies putting out crap games and then blaming pirates.

              • reply
                March 9, 2011 2:50 PM

                Oh I agree with you there, prices should not be standard across the board when games vary so much in length. Like Vanquish being on sale for $30 bucks when it should have been that price to begin with.

                • reply
                  March 9, 2011 3:09 PM

                  I have no problem paying for a game when it is worth it. But when I have to pay more per hour then what I make its retarded. Minimum wage is $9 and a video game is $50 for a 5 hour story, that's $10 an hour. Im done buying games until I try them out, if they are worth it I will buy it, if not I will keep playing them for free.


                  I wont buy a game with only single player unless I know its worth it ( fallout 3/ NV, Red Dead Redemption ect...)

              • reply
                March 9, 2011 4:32 PM

                I'm pretty sure that piracy fucked the PSP. The "gaming community" may not care much either way about the affects of piracy. But after investing a fair ammount into R&D to make the systems, I'm sure Sony and Nintendo prefer not to get the short stick at the end of the line. I'm sorry you've picked up some shitty games, but how about doing a little reasearch and reading a review or two before picking up the latest installment of My Little Pony.

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 3:10 PM

              wtf is this post

            • reply
              March 9, 2011 4:42 PM

              This isn't about piracy.

              • reply
                March 9, 2011 4:45 PM

                (In case you don't understand what I mean, homebrew isn't piracy and that's what this subthread is talking about)

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 1:56 PM

          Wii homebrew apparently has a chance to brick the console if you do it wrong, although it's supposed to be fairly uncommon.

          Shit like this is inevitable, you can't expect a console manufacturer to test against hacked firmware.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 1:58 PM

          Yes, Nintendo bricked a gazillion (or so) asian Wii's (koren/taiwanese/chinese) that were soft moded.
          Also, certain mod-chips would brick european wii's after the 4.2 update.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 1:58 PM

      Can't you turn off auto update?

      Problem solved.

      • reply
        March 9, 2011 3:10 PM

        In fact, you have to agree to the EULA on 'major' updates. I doubt Nintendo would risk bricking folks who didn't ask for it.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 1:58 PM

      Just turn off auto update.

      Problem solved.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 2:00 PM

      I wonder if this will mean that cheat devices will also brick it.

      I need my action replay so I don't have to grind in pokemon.

      • reply
        March 9, 2011 7:12 PM

        Since it is apparently blocked on the Wii via firmware, it wouldn't surprise me. It is an unauthorized device so I suppose they would do it. However purposefully bricking a device solely because of an unauthorized but legal item doesn't seem like something they could legally do.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 2:18 PM

      Summary: A Japanese retailer states that firmware updates to the 3DS could brick the system if it detects illegal hardware or firmware customization.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 2:25 PM

      I just got back after 3 months and I have to say, I'm really glad they did this news chat thread integration idea. Who was it who suggested this 4 or 5 months back?

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 2:34 PM

      Very simple. Don't register for auto upda... now I'm at a crossroads. Netflix streaming, or flash carts?

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 2:40 PM

      I can already hear the lawsuits of people who dont pirate games getting bricked.


      This thing will be hacked, look at the PS3.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 4:35 PM

      Good for them. I can't say I blame them after how rampant piracy was on the DS.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 4:41 PM

      I'll believe it when I see it. Nintendo's anti-piracy efforts have been awful in the past.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 4:41 PM

      This would make me very happy. I'm all for game piracy to go away.

      • reply
        March 9, 2011 4:56 PM

        Never going to happen. It needs to be dealt with in such a way that legitimate customers aren't caught in the crossfire.

        • reply
          March 9, 2011 6:05 PM

          Luckily it sounds like they're doing it in a way where 99.99999% of legitimate consumers aren't caught in the crossfire. That's good enough for me.

      • reply
        March 10, 2011 7:52 AM

        I'm all for game piracy to go away.
        http://agentpothead.com/morbo.jpg
        DRM DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 5:59 PM

      I'm sure that pirates will navigaate around any security they encounter, as per usual. Anyway here's hoping that it's not easy to do and no one gets away with pirating, hombrew is go as far as I'm concerned though.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 6:13 PM

      They required updates for the NDS and that didn't do much of anything.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 6:20 PM

      Give it time, GeoHot or someone else, will crack this in no time. It's just a matter or time.

    • reply
      March 9, 2011 6:56 PM

      It's that time again, for the "pirate dumbass" train to roll through town.

    • reply
      March 10, 2011 8:26 AM

      hmm thats kinda shady... eather I own the hardware and can do whatever I want with it... Or they own the hardware and I buy a license to use it. There is no 2 other ways about it.

    • reply
      March 10, 2011 11:52 PM

      I don't want to run homebrew I just wish I could play my JP carts on a NA 3DS.

Hello, Meet Lola