Many Versions of Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, and other 3DS Games, are Failing Leaving Users Unable to Access Their Game Data

Over the past few days news has been spreading online that copies of the 2014 Nintendo 3DS games Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire from the PAL regions are failing leaving users unable to play their games and access their data.

Pokémon content creator Lewtwo took to Twitter to warn people that this has been happening, and to gather more data on how widespread this issue is.

Various users and video game preservationists have investigates this issue and have found that it appears to stem from Nintendo switching from using the MaskRom in their game cartridges to Flashrom. The MaskRom format has an average lifespan of 30 to 50 years, while Flashrom lasts for 5 to 15 years. This issue is a problem that will potentially show up in all Nintendo DS and 3DS games as time goes on making the physical copies of the games unpreventable.

Joe of Serebii.net provided an anecdote from a friend of his with a failed copy of the game and when he tried booting the game up in a 3DS that didn’t have updated firmware the game booted up like normal. Serebii proposes that this could be related to the 3DS Firmware or a combination of both the firmware of the system and an issue with the cartridge that leads to failure.

Investigations into the exact causes of the failure and if there are any ways to prevent it are currently ongoing.

In the meantime, it’s best for people to check out the physical copies of Nintendo DS and 3DS games in their library by booting up the game, and playing it for at least one hour to ensure that there are no failures. Homebrew users are also advised to create backups of their games to preserve any valuable game data.

At this time it is unknown if Nintendo is aware of this issue. This will likely change as more people become aware of this problem and get in contact with Nintendo customer support.

Twitch to Purge Over 7.5 Million Bot Accounts

In a series of social media posts Twitch announced that the platform would be removing 7.5 million accounts that the site has identified as ‘bot accounts’. The post cautions that streamers may notice drops in their viewer counts as well as follower counts. This comes as an effort to combat view-botting and follower-botting, which is an issue that has plagued the platform. The bot accounts were identified by a machine learning algorithm that the company is currently using and training.

This new crackdown on bots comes as the platform faces growing controversy over the disparity in site moderation with several popular creators that have violated the site’s terms not receiving punishment for those violations. This has lead to a growing belief that the site misuses the terms of use to bully smaller streamers and to remove popular creators that the site wants to remove.

Last week Twitch announced new community guidelines that allow the site to remove streamers if they are believed to have acted in a way that violates the Twitch’s community guidelines even if they do so outside of the Twitch platform. This effectively allows the site to ban users for off-site behaviors.

Twitch partner Pokimane has been embroiled in several controversies which have violated Twitch’s community guidelines, including flagrant use of racist terminology, targeted harassment where she encouraged her community to harass and attack other content creators and their sponsors. To this day the streamer has never been properly punished by the platform.

These latest moves indicate that the site is prioritizing enforcement of the community guidelines over the quality of life of the viewers and creators, which has been on a steady decline for the past several years. This is likely due to the company’s push to seek future partnerships with other major corporations for content and transition the platform to becoming be more like YouTube.

Sony Announces They Will Keep the PlayStation Store PlayStation Vita Digital Store

This week Sony has announced that they will not be closing down the PlayStation Store digital store fronts for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita consoles. The PSP store is still scheduled to be shut down, however. This decision comes in response to a community backlash after the news broke in early April that the company was planning to shut down these digital stores.

E3 Gaming Expo is to Return This Summer

The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) has announced that the event is to return this summer. Last year the expo was cancelled due to concerns over the COVID19 pandemic. The E3 conference will a be digital 4-day streaming event this year.

Nintendo, Xbox, Capcom, Konami, Ubisoft, Take-Two Warner Brothers, and Koch Media have all announced that they will be present at the event. The ESA has stated that more companies will announce their presence at the event in the coming months.

E3 is scheduled to run from June 12-16 2021. The ESA is currently planning to return to an in-person E3 in 2022.

Sony to Shut Down PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, and PlayStation Vita Digital Stores This Summer

In a new report from TheGamer, it has been revealed that Sony will be closing down the PlayStation Store digital stores for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portble, and PlayStation Vita consoles this summer. While this has not been confirmed yet, an announcement from Sony is expected to come at the end of the month.

After these stores close down users will no longer be able to purchase digital games or DLC for the consoles. The PlayStation 3 went on to sell 87 million units during it’s lifetime with the PSP and PlayStation Vita selling 81, and 13 million units respectively. All three platforms boast a wide selection of digital-exclusive titles that, presumably, will become unavailable once the digital stores close, including a lineup of indie games.

Nintendo and Pokémon Go Developer Niantic to Collaborate on New Pikmin App for Smartphones.

This week Nintendo and Niantic announced that they are working together to develop a new AR app based on Pikmin.

Niantic is known for developing the wildly successful Pokémon Go which released in 2016. Since release the company has been ramping up their AR development efforts as seen by the expanded AR features that have been added to the app.

In their announcement blog, Niantic revealed that the game would be developed by their Tokyo studio which was established in 2018. This will be the first game developed by Niantic’s Tokyo studio. In the release statement from Nintendo Pikmin creator Shigeru Miyamoto commented, “Niantic’s AR technology has made it possible for us to experience the world as if Pikmin are secretly living all around us”. The extent to which Miyamoto will be in the development of this app isn’t yet known.

Last year Nintendo released Pikmin 3 Deluxe for Nintendo Switch, an updated version of Pikmin 3 which released on the Wii U in 2013. Pikmin 4 is currently in development for the Nintendo Switch, at this time it is unknown if the upcoming Pikmin app will have any connectivity to Pikmin 4.

A Pre-registration website for the app is live now and can be found at https://nianticlabs.com/newappsignup/

New Open-World Pokémon Game: Pokémon Legends Arceus Coming in 2022

During the Pokémon Presents showcase The Pokémon company revealed Pokémon Legends Arceus, an all-new Pokémon game coming to Nintendo Switch in 2022.

The game is set in the Sinnoh region in an ancient era. In the game you take on the role of a trainer that picks Rowlet, Cyndaquil or Oshawot as their starter Pokémon and sets off to on an adventure to create the first Pokédex of the Sinnoh region. The environments are natural and filled with wild Pokémon.

The game is an open-area action RPG. The trailer shows an evolution of the free-roaming gameplay from the Wild Area in Pokémon Sword and Shield. The trailer shows the trainer rolling, crawling, and sneaking as ways to catch up to wild Pokémon. Players can aim and throw Poké Balls at wild Pokémon to attempt to catch them. They can also battle with the wild Pokémon by throwing a Poké Ball containing their Pokémon to engage in the battle. The Poké Balls in the game have an ancient construction, they are made from wood and appear to be steam-powered. It is unknown at this time if any other types of Poké Balls will be available in the game.

The battles in the game will feature the turn-based combat that Pokémon is renowned for. In the trailer only battles against wild Pokémon were shown, however, it can be assumed that there will be trainer battles in the game. The setting is before the existence of the Pokémon League, so the game most likely won’t have traditional Gym Leaders or a Champion. It is possible that there could be a system similar to the island trials from Pokémon Sword and Shield versions, but at this time no details are known.

At the center of the game’s story is the mythical Pokémon Arceus, the creator of the world. In the announcement it states that the player will adventure to unravel the mystery surrounding Arceus in this ancient Sinnoh.

The game is scheduled to release in early 2022. The website for the game is live now.

Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl Versions Revealed

Today during the Pokémon Presents stream showcase The Pokémon Company announced Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Pokémon Shining Pearl versions will be coming to the Nintendo Switch in late 2021. These games are faithful remakes of the 2007 Nintendo DS titles Pokémon Diamond Version and Pokémon Pearl Version.

The titles are being developed by ILCA, Inc. the developers of Pokémon Home. Junichi Masuda of GAME FREAK, the director for the original Diamond and Pearl games, direct this game alongside Yuichi Ueda of ILCA.

This remake will feature a faithful remake of diamond and Pearl. Where players choose their starter Pokémon from Turtwig, Chimchar, and Piplup and travel through the beautiful Sinnoh region on a grand adventure to become the champion. Encounter the villainous Team Galactic, battle the Gym Leaders and eventually face the Pokémon league champion, Cynthia. The over world designs will feature a new chibi art style. The layouts will also be designed to preserve the scale of the locations and environments from the original games.

The in-battle designs for the trainers will be full-sized more similar to the style from Pokémon Sun and Moon, and Pokémon Sword and Shield versions. The press release states that the games will be “updated with the easy-to-understand, player-friendly conveniences introduced in recent Pokémon core series video games” this likely means that the game will have the experience all feature turned on. It may also have the convivences for competitive breeding such as the Ability Capsule and Hyper Training.

Pokémon Diamond Version and Pokémon Pearl Version were the first games to introduce the ability to trade and battle Pokémon with trainers from around the world over the internet. This includes the Global Trade Station (GTS), a feature where players can offer up Pokémon for asynchronous trade with other players around the world. Pokémon Sword and Shield versions were the first titles since the introduction not to include the feature, which was moved to the Pokémon Home storage app. Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl could mark the return of the feature to the main series Pokémon games.

The games are scheduled to release in late 2021 on the Nintendo Switch, if the trend of previous releases is followed the games will launch in the October-November window. The official website for the games is live now.

Nintendo Direct Round-Up

The Nintendo Direct this week was chock-full of game announcements, including several surprises. Here is a round-up of all the games featured.

The direct started with the news that Pyra and Mythra from Xenoblade Chronicles 2 are the newest fighter coming to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate this March. The fighters will come with a new stage based on Gramps and featuring other heroes from the game. There will likely be some new music tracks from Xenoblade Chronicles 2 coming to the game along with the Pyra. Interestingly there were no new Mii Fighter costumes announced.

Fall Guys Ultimate Knockout will be coming to Nintendo Switch this summer.

The award-winning 2019 adventure game Outer Wilds is coming to the Switch this summer.

Famicom Detective Club: The Missing Heir, and Famicom Detective Club: The Girl Who Stands Behind are HD remakes of games that were originally released on the Famicom Disc System. The Japan-exclusive titles were the first writing project of Metroid creator Yoshio Sakamoto at Nintendo. In the game players solving an intricate murder mystery in the Japaneses countryside. The Games will release on May 14 on Nintendo Switch.

Samurai Warriors 5 is coming to Nintendo Switch this summer. This fifth installment of the series focuses on Oda Nobunaga and Mitsuhide Akechi as players battle through the sengoku period of Japan in the frenzied 1-vs-1000 game-play that the Warriors series is known for. The Nintendo Switch version of the game will have revamped character designs and visuals.

The HD Remake of Legend of Mana is coming to Nintendo Switch on June 24th. This remake will feature HD graphics, and a remastered soundtrack by the game’s original composer Yoko Shimomura and players will be able to choose between the original soundtrack and the remastered. The game will also feature the ability to toggle enemy encounters and a new mini-game.

More story details and monsters were revealed for Monster Hunter Rise, and the release date was confirmed as March 26th.

A brand-new Mario Golf title was announced. Mario Golf: Super Rush is being developed by Camelot Software, who has developed every Mario Golf title. The game will have the strong mix of Simulation with inspired Mario-themed arcade game-play the franchise is known for. Players will be able to choose between a motion-control scheme where the Joy-Con is held and swung like a golf club, and traditional button controls.

The game will see the return of a RPG story mode where players take their Mii and golf their way to the top gaining experience and leveling up stats to improve their ability. The game will have a new Speed Golf mode where players race to the hole using power-ups and trick-shots rather than taking turns. The playable characters so far are Mario, Luigi, Peach, Daisy, Yoshi, Bowser, Wario and Waluigi. Mario Golf Super Rush will release on June 25th,

  • Capcom Arcade Stadium – Out now
  • Tales From the Borderlands – March 16
  • Stubbs the Zombie in Rebel Without a Pulse – Summer
  • DC Super Hero Girls: Teen Power – June 4
  • Plants VS Zombies: Battle For Neighborville Complete Edition – March 19
  • Miitopia

No More Heroes III is set to release on August 27th. The game will have Travis Touchdown facing off against an army of aliens that has invaded the earth with the goal of taking it over. Travis will have to do odd jobs to earn enough currency to face off against each boss. The fast-paced beam katana combat returns in form, and there is a new combat tool that Travis can power up that grants him various abilities in battle.

In Neon White heaven has be overrun with demons and a group of sinners is brought int exterminate the demons, with the reward of getting into heaven being offered to the one that finds and eliminates the source of the infestation. The game-play combines card battle and shooter elements. Neon White release s winter of 2021.

Super Mario Items are coming to Animal Crossing New Horizons in celebration of the 35th anniversary of Super Mario Bros. The items include costumes of Mario, Luigi, Peach, and Wario. As well as a selection of items and blocks from Super Mario. There is also a warp pipe that will allow players to teleport between areas of the island. The download starts on February 25tt with the items becoming available in-game on March 1st.

Project Triangle Strategy is the working title of the latest HD-2D title from Square Enix, In this strategy RPG three kingdoms are locked in a war over resources that has lasted for hundreds of years. You must protect your kingdom from being wiped as you deal with the complex political political web that threatens to accelerate the flames of war. The game will feature several critical decisions that will change the way the story plays out, and what allies can be recruited, based on the player’s decisions. The game is scheduled to release in 2022. A test demo is available now.

  • Star Wars: Hunters is a free-to-play competitive third-person shooter that will release sometime this year.
  • Knockout City is s competitive dodge ball game from EA. Coming May 21st.
  • World’s End Club is from the creators of Danganronpa and features side-scrolling game-play as a group of characters that were in a survival game setting suddenly find the game is cancelled and they must solve the mystery of why everyone on Earth has vanished. The game releases May 28th.
  • A physical release of Hades will release on March 19th.
  • Ninja Gaiden Master Collection is coming June 10.
  • An expansion pass is coming to Hyrule Warriors Age of Calamity.
  • Bravely Default II releases February 26th.
  • Ghosts ‘n Goblins Resurrection releases February 26th.
  • SaGa Frontier Remastered is coming April 15th.
  • Apex Legends coming March 9th.

An HD Port of The Legend of Zelda Skyward Sword will be coming to Nintendo Switch. This version of the game has motion controls via the Joy-Cos and it also has a traditional button scheme so it can be played that way. A special set of Joy-Con controllers featuring the Master Sword and the Hylian Shield will release at the same time as Skyward Sword. The game will launch on July 16th.

The direct closed out with revealing Splatoon 3. The trailer shows a desert wasteland setting indicating that the game may be taking place in this new environment. Several new weapons were sown in the trailer, most notaably a weapon that looks like a bow and arrow. Splatoon 3 will launch in 2022.

New Nintendo Direct Coming Tomorrow

Today Nintendo has announced that the first Nintendo Direct presentation of 2021will stream tomorrow. The announcement stats that the livestream will be 50 minutes in length and showcase new content coming Super Smash Bros Ultimate, and other already released games, as well as the upcoming Nintendo games for the first half of 2021.

The Nintendo Direct will stream at 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m ET