Nintendo’s Wii U is struggling a little at the moment, and the primary reason for that is the lack of games. Without much consumer support for the system, 3rd party support is dwindling – and it could be set to decrease even more – because the system has reportedly been hacked.
One of the groups instrumental in hacking the now widely pirated original Wii now claims to have engineered a modchip to allow piracy on the Wii U.
"Yes, its real," says an announcement on the Wiikey website. "We have now completely reversed the WiiU drive authentification, disk encryption, file system, and everything else needed for this next generation K3y. Stay tuned for updates!"
Authentification? Usually when these hacks are announced they’re intended for homebrew use, such as running emulators or other garage coded software with piracy only coming later – but in this instance all the modchip does is enable booting games off a USB drive.
If true, this will likely help bolster Wii U hardware sales – but software sales will be driven in to the ground, eradicating what little 3rd party support the system has.
For its part, Nintendo is aware of the claims – but says that they’ve received no evidence of anybody playing pirated copies.
"Nintendo is aware that a hacking group claims to have compromised Wii U security," a Nintendo spokesperson told Eurogamer. "However, we have no reports of illegal Wii U games nor unauthorized applications playable on the system while in Wii U mode.
"Nintendo continuously monitors all threats to its products’ security and will use technology and will take the necessary legal steps to prevent the facilitation of piracy."
Is this game over for the Wii U, or could the prospect of piracy get more people to buy the system? One thing’s for sure though; if it is real, expect the same game of cat-and-mouse between hackers and platform holders that we’ve seen so many times before.
Patch, hack, patch hack, patch hack….
Last Updated: May 2, 2013