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Nintendo Has a Secret Message For Famicom Mini Hackers

Greetings from the Hanafuda Captain.

News by Nadia Oxford, .

It's taken longer for Nintendo to satisfy demand for the NES Classic Edition than it has for hackers to have their way with it. Interestingly, it seems Nintendo understood its little console would inevitably be cracked wide open.

Yesterday we reported Russian hackers found a way to add more games to the NES Classic Edition by way of a USB cable and a Super Mario Bros save file. In a related event, a Japanese modder named Bakueikozo recently discovered the cheek-pinchingly cute Famicom Mini has a security message for its hackers, and it is oh-so Nintendo.

What's Next for the NES Classic Edition?

Nintendo's mini-NES seems likely to be a hit... and the first in a long line of inexpensive standalone retro consoles.

"This is the hanafuda captain speaking," the message begins. "Launching emulation in 3...2...1. Many efforts, tears and countless hours have been put into this jewel. So, please keep this place tidied up and don’t break everything! Cheers, the hanafuda captain."

The "Hanafuda Captain" nickname, which calls back to Nintendo's history as a maker of Japanese hanafuda cards, is awesome. The tone of the message is likewise great, as it conveys a resigned sigh: "Look, we know you're going to muck around with our code, so just try not to trash the joint, all right?"

Indeed, modding your NES Classic Edition can brick the system, so tread carefully if you decide to crack that clamshell open. It's not like you can just go to the store and buy another one.

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Comments 5

  • Avatar for ericj.baker43 #1 ericj.baker43 A month ago
    That's surprisingly congenial given Nintendo's obsession with locking down their hardware in all other ways. Good on them!

    Realistically, though, the fact that you can hack the system and add more games actually might increase its sales, especially among more tech savvy players that weren't the target market for the device in the first place.
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  • Avatar for kingaelfric #2 kingaelfric A month ago
    Nice throwback to the actual NES/Famicom days, though decidedly more safe-for-work than the hidden messages tended to be thirty years ago (...and I crumble in to dust, being ancient).
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  • Avatar for SIGGYZtar #3 SIGGYZtar A month ago
    At least it's not the same guy from Super Monkey Adventure.
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  • Avatar for nadiaoxford #4 nadiaoxford A month ago
    @SIGGYZtar [looks that up]

    lol oh dear
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  • Avatar for KaiserWarrior #5 KaiserWarrior A month ago
    I really don't understand it. If you're going to muck about with things like repacking the kernel and re-flashing the system just to add potentially 30 more NES games... why would you not just build out a Pi instead. It's not like you can't just 3D-print an NES-shaped case for one, if it's the aesthetics you're after.

    I mean, I've already been over why the NES mini is not for me given the existence of the Pi. But now you don't even have the "it's for non-tech-savvy people" angle to work with -- people that would do this quite clearly have the skills necessary to install Raspbian and a few packages.
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