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Nintendo wins battle against piracy software company

By Agence France-Presse Published Mar 05, 2024 8:43 am

A company that was sued by Nintendo for creating software that allowed the mass pirating of video games agreed Monday to pay the Super Mario maker $2.4 million in damages and shutter the tool.

The company behind Legend of Zelda and Donkey Kong last week sued Tropic Haze, registered in the US state of Rhode Island, which owns and runs Yuzu, a popular video game emulator.

A video game emulator is a piece of software that can be downloaded onto a PC or smartphone to play video games intended for a specific console, such as the Switch, PlayStation or Xbox.

Initially, emulators were developed to play games that were no longer published on the latest consoles, before vintage gaming became a market in its own right for Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft.

According to a settlement filed on Monday with the US federal court in Rhode Island, the defendant agreed to no longer make Yuzu available to the public and hand over all its programming code to Nintendo.

Nintendo would also take possession of the website where the Yuzu tool was made available to download.

The defendant is "fully aware" that Yuzu is "facilitating piracy at a colossal scale" the company said in the suit, which was filed a week ago in a federal court in Rhode Island.

The Japanese gaming juggernaut had accused the company of going out of its way to circumvent elaborate safeguards and encryption to make Nintendo games available to Yuzu's users.

Nintendo said that Yuzu was an important platform for existing games but also for playing games that were illegally leaked before their release.

Last year's Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, was downloaded one million times before its release with pirate websites directing users to Yuzu to play the game, the suit alleged.

The company had argued that Tropic Haze was liable for thousands of dollars in damages for each copyright violation. (AFP)