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Lik Sang On Nintendo Piracy Judgment

simoniker posted more than 11 years ago | from the denials-and-rebuttals dept.

Portables (Games) 16

Thanks to several readers for pointing to the official statement over at Lik-Sang.com's website, regarding Nintendo's $600,000 anti-piracy court case judgment against their GameBoy and GameBoy Advance 'backup' devices, which we covered a couple of days ago. The Lik-Sang.com statement claims that the current Lik Sang site is not involved in this court case, but goes on to reference the official statement of Lik Sang International, posted as a comment on the original Slashdot story. The statement says that LSI are appealing the decision, and further argues that "..the very same hardware under attack is used by thousands of hobbyist users and even professional developers for legitimate purpose. Very embarrassing for Nintendo: even the large publisher[s].. bought hundreds and hundreds of Flash Cartridges from my company for beta testing."

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Piracy? (-1, Offtopic)

Mensa Babe (675349) | more than 11 years ago | (#6265761)

I, for one, find it scary that there are still people actively practicing the craft of abordage...

Before you moderate it down... (1)

Mensa Babe (675349) | more than 11 years ago | (#6265777)

...you might consider reading a dictionary and getting some insight about the newspeak invented only for one reason: to make copyright infringement look like a crime to ignorant public. Think about it. Then read this [gnu.org] . Then think about it once more. Now you should know that my apparently funny and humorous words were indeed very sad.

Re:Before you moderate it down... (1)

Jeffool (675688) | more than 11 years ago | (#6265843)

No offense, but it's one of those deals where if you have to explain a 'joke' or reference.... It just wasn't worth it.

Jeffool.

This is not exactly on-topic. (1)

Mensa Babe (675349) | more than 11 years ago | (#6265922)

No offense,

None taken.

but it's one of those deals where if you have to explain a 'joke' or reference.... It just wasn't worth it.

I am not quite sure if I follow your drift (or if it even is on-topic, for that matter). Anyway, I don't think we should discuss off-topic topics here, because we might accidentally increase the signal-to-noise-ratio of an important discussion. I am sure my journal would be much more appropriate. [slashdot.org]

Also... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6265996)

It is obvious to most highly-knowledge readers, of whom I assume Slashdot is composed a great number. Perhaps this is a situation akin to demonstrating a card trick to a paramecium.

Re:Before you moderate it down... (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6266072)

I thought that copyright infringement was a crime.

Facts about the Gameboy Advance:

The BIOS is not directly readabl as the PC has to be in a certain range before memory accesses to the BIOS region read the correct data. The plan failed when people found bugs in the GBA BIOS that gave them access: one of BIOS routines would happily read the BIOS memory and return it to the calling program.

Multiboot transfers are encrypted, but there is now hardware that supports the multiboot protocol.

One might also consider the cart interface to be some sort of "embedded security" because it is not a standard interface, but this argument sounds a little weak.

As far as I know, the Gameboy Color and Gameboy Advance are mostly or even fully documented for programming purposes on hobbyist websites.

People interested in pir...stea...illicitly obtaining copyrighted material in order to play games without having to purchase them can use one of the many emulators available or write the games to compatible flash rom cartridges and use the real hardware to play them. The same hardware used for flashing the cartridges also allows users to read the contents of game cartridges.

On the other hand, this hardware is also used by commercial and hobbyist developers alike. It is less expensive and makes development less inconvenient.

Don't I have the right to backup? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6266288)

Isn't it a granted right that I can backup every software I paid money for? Ok, in this case "piracy" might be involved. But Lik-Sang is hardly to blame for it like a car manufacturer is hardly to blame for how many people were killed in accidents. I hope this is clear... or.. nah I doubt it is clear since still many people who probably do not even RTFA keep saying that the opposite is the case. However, backup units ARE/WERE(?) great development devices. But that is over now for the sake of.. nothing?

only because of Nintendo's monopoly... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6266684)

IMO the 3rd party GBA dev units ARE NOT illegal in any way. Just as Alex from lik-sang said in his
comment, just because you CAN use something to dump/pirate stuff doesnt mean you automaticly do.
I can break thousands of laws with many "legal" items such as cd-burners, scanners, computers(!!),
video recorders etc etc etc. However, only because Nintendo has a monpoly in making GBA
cartridges they seem to think these units can be banned.
But really Nintendo, wouldnt the fair thing be to cut the crap and let anyone and everyone make GBA
games and produce the carts at the gba cart manufacturer of their choice?

Nintendo, maybe if you made some kind of reasonable priced development setup for amateur
developers THEN you could claim that these units are basicly used only for piracy, but NOT before
then! It would still be a monpoly BUT at least you wouldnt go around claiming that these units
are only used for piracy. A very good example of this would be www.gbadev.org [gbadev.org] !
They use these units and still you go around calling them pirates!?! Some of them make better
games at home then official games available in the stores.

Re:only because of Nintendo's monopoly... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6267789)

I'd rather see Nintendo continue to control commercial games. Atari 2600-itis is bad.

Re:only because of Nintendo's monopoly... (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 11 years ago | (#6270007)

"wouldnt the fair thing be to cut the crap and let anyone and everyone make GBA
games and produce the carts at the gba cart manufacturer of their choice?"

It wouldn't be fair on Nintendo if that was how they make their money from the system. It's like saying the food is reasonably priced in a restaurant, but saying you can get the wine from a supermarket for half what they charge. Sure, they could put the price of the wine down, but then they`d have to increase the price of the food.

Re:only because of Nintendo's monopoly... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6274042)

I dont think you understood what I was trying to say really.

Im not saying Nintendo shouldnt be allowed to make money on their consoles/games on the consoles,
just that if someone wants to buy a game that Nintendo cannot provide, the consumer should be allowed to get it somewhere else (but still for the GBA). It doesnt mean a small fee could not be payed to Nintendo anyways.

With this said, I do understand that Nintendo lowers the price of the GBA just to take out a higher price on the games. This is their decision though! They dont have to sell it for less than what it costs to make one if they dont want to.

If I explain this with your wine example:
If I am an expert in wine and I go to a nice expensive (I dont agree with your "reasonably priced" comment) restuarant known for its good
food and wine, and they dont have any of the wines I want, I think it would be fair for me to run off
to an independant wine importer and buy the wine, go back to the restaurant and give them a 5$ and continue with my dinner.

Now, why dont I agree with saying that Nintendo's prices are "reasonably priced"?
Because most normal gba games cost 35-45$ when they launch. If I would contract a 3rd party gba
cart manufacturer, make a profit of 10$/game and let the store that sell the game make 5$/game that
would still mean the game would cost only 20$ to the end consumer.

Hey 20$, thats just great. Then I can afford to pay Nintendo 5$/cart for each game I sell and they
dont have to do anything for me. But wait a minute! I am not allowed to do that :(((

Re:only because of Nintendo's monopoly... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6278441)

There was a time when any yahoo could make a game without first party quality control. We called this time pre-1984. Almost killed the industry.

Motiviation (1)

R0 (40549) | more than 11 years ago | (#6266838)

Perhaps Nintendo's primary motiviation is not to stop unauthorised copying of games, but to distance the possibility of developers releasing games without paying Nintendo royaltys.

Missing the point? (2, Interesting)

specialJay (672051) | more than 11 years ago | (#6267477)

Me thinks the other comments are just missing the point. Nintendo wants control over these devices. They do not want these devices available for just anyone since they can be used for illegal purposes as well as for legitimate development. By going after the source of these so-called "backup units" they are making it more difficult for the casual user to be able to use the GBA ROM files that are pervading the net and eating into the profits of their developers.

If you're a legitimate developer, there are proper channels to go through to obtain these devices to facilitate your development. Nintendo just wants some degree of control over their distribution, and rightly so.

Re:Missing the point? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6267648)

"If you're a legitimate developer, there are proper channels to go through to obtain these devices to facilitate your development. Nintendo just wants some degree of control over their distribution, and rightly so."

Licenced developers can get them but if your company needs 200 flash cartridges and 50 flashers,
would you like to pay 50$/cart for a 3rd party one or several hundred $ / cart for a Nintendo flash cart?
A big company could easily save 25-50000$usd on buying 3rd party ones. What would you do?

I myself have both Nintendo flash carts and most of the 3rd party ones and I can tell you that I
much rather use the 3rd party ones.
Also, a few years ago when the GBA first came out Nintendo couldnt provide enough of the test units.
And at that time they cost several thousands of dollars. Not only that but they sent the ones
they had to the developers in Japan first, so many of us developers in the US and Europe had to wait
months to actually get them! That is really a good way to show your developers support.

All Your Cube Are Belong Tzo Us (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6269105)

pwned [lik-sang.com]
for you modem users: they just pop in a burned mini-dvd into a gc, and it works
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