3DS Region Lock Disabled by Hackers

3DS Region Lock Disabled by Hackers

3ds xl

Hackers have devised a mod that renders the 3DS region free and imported cartridges playable.

We live in a world where technology has helped to bridge the gaps between borders in ways never before possible. All you really need to converse with someone living in another country, thousands of miles away, for instance, is a screen and a keyboard. If you're hoping to play their videogames however, that's another matter. Despite the internet making it both convenient and easy to import software from around the globe, some hardware manufacturers have been a bit slow to abandon region locks that restrict customers to only playing games released in their part of the world.

Currently, the most stalwart defender of this practice is Nintendo which, despite pressure from its customer base, continues to insist on locking users into playing local releases. As often happens however, where the official channels refuse to adapt, gamers find a way. In this case, hackers have devised a way to release region locks so that the 3DS can play retail cartridges from anywhere in the world.

To perform the hack the 3DS in question needs to be equipped with firmware version 4.5 or earlier. This is a necessity because the hack requires the use of a DS flashcard, which later updates have locked out. It should be noted that the flashcard is only needed once and that the modifications being added actually make it impossible for the hacked 3DS to use illegal ROMs. The hack will only equip your 3DS to play legitimately purchased games. The hack, of course, does come with some caveats, the least of which not being that it's possible Nintendo could find a way to counter it in the future. In short, while this isn't a perfect solution to what many find to be an ongoing problem, it definitely demonstrates that many gamers want restrictions like region locking left in the past.

Source: gbatemp via NintendoLife

Permalink

My god, a 3DS region locking breaking that forces you to make sure that you have legitimate copies of the games?
I love this hack, mainly because I always make sure that I import my games legally. The region locking of the 3DS has been a pain in the ass because of the fact that many games will never be release outside of Japan.
I just wish that Nintendo would update to allow physical software to be playable, because honestly it seems so ass-backwards that they decided now to block both physical software and digital software instead of just digital. It's screwed over many people already and I'd wish that Nintendo would stop with the region locks so then I'd not have to buy another console just to play games from that region.

... I might consider this if another Ouendan is made.

Sooner or later Japan, all your games are belong to us anyway...

Why not use this enthusiasm to your advantage Nintendo and open the market? While you're at it, give us official copies of the Mother series.

Redlin5:
Sooner or later Japan, all your games are belong to us anyway...

Why not use this enthusiasm to your advantage Nintendo and open the market? While you're at it, give us official copies of the Mother series.

Because Nintendo doesn't want pirating. That's one of the reasons I've seen them say that they are keeping region locking, to prevent piracy. Although it's quite obvious that region locking doesn't stop piracy in the slightest.
Other reason is because it "protects" the profits of that country so then you'll buy the one that is localized in your region instead of importing and not buying the localized one. The flaw in that though is that the game actually has to be localized in your region in the first place, which many Nintendo games either are a) never localized, b) selectively localized, c) localized about 1-3 years later, or d) localized on time (mainly only Nintendo's first party games get this treatment).

Well, that's good, except does anyone still have firmware 4.5?

Huh, considering how region-free, in terms of gaming, is supposed to be a standard at this point, I simply assumed the 3DS wasn't locked.

Shame on me for trusting Nintendo, I suppose.

Not sure how useful this hack is, but it's sure justified. The worst thing about the 3DS region lock is that as I found out whilst working in America, you can't even do local multiplayer with games from different regions to yours, even if those exact same games have worldwide online multiplayer. I can see literally no reason for that, it's just a pain if you are meeting with friends who originate from different continents.

McMarbles:
Well, that's good, except does anyone still have firmware 4.5?

It says earlier too, so i would assume a format could do it.

Makes me glad I did not trade my old 3ds when I upgrades to the XL, I swear Ill learn Japanese some day, then i can make use of this.

So what you're saying is, I can finally play Shin Megami Tensei IV? Seems pretty clear it's never being released over here at this rate. Strange Journey never was, so if the DS were region-locked I'd have never been able to play one of my all-time favourite DS games.

Thank you, Nintendo, for taking a tremendous step back and preventing me from giving you money on numerous occasions.

Kinda old news. They've already sold those things in my country for $80-ish. And in the end it's mostly used for piracy.

Kaimax:
And in the end it's mostly used for piracy.

Except the article states that it makes it so that you must have an actual copy of the game and can't use illegal ROMs when using this. Unless importing is the same as piracy then I don't see how. The cart to enable it, yes it is a flash cart, however you can't actually play and games that might be on that flash cart with it. You still need a retail copy of a 3DS game in order to take advantage of it.

What exactly was the point of one anyway? I'm not exactly sure...

That would be awesome if it didn't totally suck.

In order to disable your region lock, you need to use a flashcart. Doing it will disable your ability to run pirated games. So... why would you want to do that?

If you have a flashcart, chances are you probably bought it so you could play pirated games. I'm pretty sure pirated games can bypass that region lock anyways.

Its nice that they found a work around, but it'd be better if there was a reasonable way to do it.

Are we talking region locked games as in those that are in a totally different language to our own and owning them in a different language seems stupid?.

If it was a same language region lock I'd understand somewhat but if it's a small minority that want to play Japanese games in Japanese and not english well then you dun goofed if you do.

Okay yes, I get it that region locking ensures that games are price locked ..or so they'd like to think as many who want the game "that bad" have gone out to purchase a device from that region and then the game. So what is the bloody point? It's an outdated system that has no merits or reasoning to stick around.

Shadow-Phoenix:
Are we talking region locked games as in those that are in a totally different language to our own and owning them in a different language seems stupid?.

If it was a same language region lock I'd understand somewhat but if it's a small minority that want to play Japanese games in Japanese and not english well then you dun goofed if you do.

And if you happen to understand that language is it stupid to own them and possibly want to play them? Plus, this would benefit many in Europe seeing as in Europe there are many games that are either never localized or are released a few years later. One big example is Shin Megami Tensei IV, which has yet to receive a release date in Europe. It's also not the same as in the other language because there are also games released in Europe and Japan, but not in the US, and then there are many that are released in Japan and the US but never Europe.
What about when moving countries or going on the road to another country and you can't even do download play or multiplayer because of the region locking?

I know that's gonna screw me because I'm going to be doing a study-abroad program in Japan next year, and so my 3DS would be completely useless in Japan.

Well done hackers, I salute you. I have zero tolerance for regional restrictions on any products and frequently bypass such controls if a better deal is to be had. I've had multi-region converters/adapters for every (cartridge) console I've owned and I buy DVD drives region free also.

Hope they find a way to make the hack stick, though I imagine that if it's in firmware simply updating to a newer (official) one will render this obsolete.

Neronium:

I know that's gonna screw me because I'm going to be doing a study-abroad program in Japan next year, and so my 3DS would be completely useless in Japan.

So basically allow the rule for a very small group of people, while it does nothing to everyone already gaming with their DS's (otherwise there'd be the biggest shit storm to abolish all region locking and that's not happened).

What's stopping you from buying a Japanese 3DS?, I mean by the sounds of it you want to live in Japan at some stage or at least visit it a lot more often.

Neronium:

Redlin5:
Sooner or later Japan, all your games are belong to us anyway...

Why not use this enthusiasm to your advantage Nintendo and open the market? While you're at it, give us official copies of the Mother series.

Because Nintendo doesn't want pirating. That's one of the reasons I've seen them say that they are keeping region locking, to prevent piracy. Although it's quite obvious that region locking doesn't stop piracy in the slightest.

Especially because this is cause and effect backwards. If I can't legitimately get to play a game from another region that I want to play, then the only solutions are the illegitimate ones.

Shadow-Phoenix:

So basically allow the rule for a very small group of people, while it does nothing to everyone already gaming with their DS's (otherwise there'd be the biggest shit storm to abolish all region locking and that's not happened).

What's stopping you from buying a Japanese 3DS?, I mean by the sounds of it you want to live in Japan at some stage or at least visit it a lot more often.

So basically you're telling people to buy the entirely same console, along with importing it, instead of having more effective ways of being able to play imports. I'm studying abroad in Japan because I'm a Japanese major, and need it for a requirement for my Japanese major, just like how a study abroad program is required for many language majors.

Buying systems from another country is never the best plan because if it breaks the 3DS cannot be repaired if it's from another country. You also have to buy converters and adapters to plug them into your countries electric slots, which costs even more. Then the fact that if you want to play games with your friends in another region, then you have to rebuy games as well since the 3DS also region locks download play. This is inconvenient to soldiers who go overseas, or to other people who might be forced to move to other countries because of their job. So you move and now you have to rebuy all the $100-$300 hardware with the $40-$60 games? Yeah that's stupid and shouldn't be the case.

The 3DS is the first Nintendo handheld to ever be region locked. The Gameboy line and the DS ones were never region locked, so why do it now and prevent people from giving your money to Nintendo. Region locking in general is outdated, and unnecessary. The Xbox One, PS4, PSP, PS3, and PS Vita are all not region locked, and Nintendo are the only ones who actually implement a region locking system anymore.

Neronium:
snip

Well if it's that much of a problem and issue then hack away, if what you think you're doing is right then I'd implore you to go right ahead but if Nintendo don't really like it then I guess that's tough luck when it's us gamers.

*sigh*

My 3DS has whatever the latest firmware is so I can't take advantage of this. I got my hopes up when I saw the article title, thinking I might be able to actually play SMT IV.

Seriously Nintendo, why are you still region locking? Actually scratch that, why is Japan in general still region locking? Looking at you Atlus and Persona 4 Arena, if you do the same for Ultimax and Persona 5... I will be mad.

Neronium:

Kaimax:
And in the end it's mostly used for piracy.

Except the article states that it makes it so that you must have an actual copy of the game and can't use illegal ROMs when using this. Unless importing is the same as piracy then I don't see how. The cart to enable it, yes it is a flash cart, however you can't actually play and games that might be on that flash cart with it. You still need a retail copy of a 3DS game in order to take advantage of it.

Sorry, buy I'm not commenting about the product that's mentioned in this article. I'm talking about the 3DS Gateway, which only uses a miniSD card to put in roms in it's flashcart, but in only works for one game at a time. I've seen it work with Japanese games like Super Robot Wars and Love plus for the 3DS

I sure hope Nintendo gets rid of that region lock. It's just such a pain. I was THIS close to buying my boyfriend a 3DS XL for Christmas when he came to visit from the US, but on the day I was going to pick it up (I'd even reserved one) I found out they're region locked so he couldn't buy any games when he got home. So I bought him an iPod instead, and now Apple has my 200 instead

It should not be locked in the first place, i just don't understand Nintendo i mean if someone wants to pay you money for something that is not out in your country then why stop them. Or is all of this just in the interest of continuing to rip off our upside down friends in Australia.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here