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As Nintendo Targets Emulation, Users Keep 3DS Preservation Scene Alive

Amid Nintendo's continued war on emulation and the 3DS and Wii U online servers shutdown, players keep developing preservation tools, now introducing the ability to stream from 3DS, allowing you to play your officially owned 3DS library on the PC with visual enhancements, controllers, and cross-save.

Image Credits: The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

Emulation exists in a legal gray area, and even a slight misstep by a developer can be seen as piracy endorsement. Nintendo is notorious for pursuing legal action against those who allegedly violate its copyrights, with its recent target being Tropic Haze LLC, the developer behind Yuzu, an open-source Nintendo Switch emulator, and 3DS emulator Citra, resulting not only in the shutdown of Yuzu but its GitHub forks as well.

As Nintendo's recent crackdown on emulation complicates preservation efforts for active consoles, this legal battle sent the emulation community into disarray. Followed by the news of the discontinuation of online services for the Nintendo Wii U and 3DS, this marked a whole end of an era for Nintendo games.

Image Credits: Splatoon

While it's not the first major shutdown these consoles have experienced, as last year Nintendo closed the eShops for both 3DS and Wii U, making it impossible to purchase digital games, this news felt quite like the final nail in the coffin for these platforms. For some games, like Pokémon, the cease of online features meant losing game modes, and for some like Splatoon, it meant that they would effectively perish.

On the bright side, players online continue to come up with methods to preserve the consoles alive, kickstarting a better way to emulate your games without even needing to "dump" them using an external tool to extract game ROMs.

Image Credits: amigo nicholas

3DS Developer PabloMK7 has released Artic Base, an open-source Stadia-like tool for broadcasting games from your Nintendo 3DS. This solution allows playing your own collection of 3DS games, physical or digital, on a compatible emulator, syncing the save data, enabling you to resume your progress on the console at any time.

Not only you can enjoy your favorite games with several advantages, such as not having to deal with typical emulator shenanigans, being able to play at higher resolutions, switching between playing on a 3DS on the go and a PC at home, and using preferred external controllers, but also use partially broken consoles to act as a server.

Currently, the only emulator supporting Artic Base is a forked version of the former 3DS emulator Citra, also maintained by PabloMK7. Have a look at a demo broadcasting Shovel Knight to a PC:

Several Twitter users have also shared their successful 3DS broadcasts:

Learn more about Arctic Base on its GitHub repository here and don't forget to don't forget to join our 80 Level Talent platform and our Telegram channel, follow us on InstagramTwitter, and LinkedIn, where we share breakdowns, the latest news, awesome artworks, and more. 

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