Retailers ignore R4DS ban

Despite this week’s ruling that saw the illegalisation of nearly all devices aimed at allowing the running of homebrew and pirated games on the Nintendo DS, MCV has confirmed that some outlets are still selling the accessories.

Though many of the links that come up in a Google search for ‘R4′ now lead to either missing pages or 404 links, in the space of 30 minutes MCV was still able to locate two retailers willing to sell us an R4 card right now.

In addition, we’re waiting on email responses from several more websites claiming to offer the device.

Though both vendors we spoke to were cagey about whether the R4 would allow us to play pirated games, both confessed to uncertainty about its legality – though both were happy to continue selling them.

MCV has withheld the names of the retailers in question and supplied the information to ELSPA and Nintendo.

Thanks to the MCV reader who helped us out with the story.


Hello. I’ve just been looking at something on your website called the R4. The blurb is a little vague so I wanted to make sure it’s the thing I’m after before I order it. Can I ask you what it does please?

THEM: The allow you to play music, video and pictures on your console and can also be used for people who have designed their own games and homebrew on the DS as well.

I’ve been told that you can play any game you want using them too?

THEM: I wouldn’t know about that.

I’ve also been told that it’s actually illegal to sell them.

THEM: We’ve not heard anything about that. We’re waiting for a release to find out what’s going on with that. But as far as we’re aware everything’s OK.

MCV: Despite the High Court ruling in London this week saying it’s illegal to import, distribute, advertise or sell them?

THEM: We’re currently in the process of awaiting advice about that.

MCV: But I’m free to order them at the moment?

THEM: That’s correct, yes.

MCV: As long as that’s clear, thanks.


MCV: Hello. I’ve just been looking at something on your website called the R4. The blurb is a little vague so I wanted to make sure it’s the thing I’m after before I order it. My friend tells me he’s able to use his to play any game he likes on his DS?

THEM: Erm, it’s used for a number of different purposes. You can use it for watching movies, viewing pictures or playing homebrew games and that sort of stuff.

MCV: What does homebrew mean exactly?

THEM: It’s an unlicensed game that’s been created by a developer without a licence.

MCV: My friend says he plays whatever game he wants on there. Is that how it works?

THEM: Yeah, I mean there is that side of it but we don’t really get involved with that side of things to be honest.

MCV: I’ve also read that these things are illegal. Is that right?

THEM: Yeah, there’s a decision that we’re investigating at the moment that came down through the courts a couple of days ago. It’s possible that once the stock that we’ve got now has sold through that we won’t be stocking this item.

MCV: But I’m OK to order it now?

THEM: I’d suggest that if you want one you order it ASAP. We’ve got limited stock in and it’s selling very fast.

MCV: Sells well, does it?

THEM: Yeah, it’s always been good but I think a lot of vendors have heard about the decision and a lot of them are ceasing to sell them so, yeah, stocks are limited. I’d get one now.

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