3DS fixes Nintendo's piracy problem - THQ

Publisher says new tech will foil illegal downloaders

Nintendo is confident that all-new anti-piracy tech in 3DS will be foolproof to cracks from illegal downloaders.

That's according to THQ's executive VP of global publishing Ian Curran, who told CVG that that piracy had scuppered his firm's ability to produce more games for DS Lite in the past.

"What excites me even more [than 3DS games] is that there's technology built in that device to really combat piracy," said Curran.

"The problem with the DS market in the last few years, particularly with the DS Lite, is that it's just been attacked by piracy. It's made it almost impossible to shift any significant volume. The DSi combated it a little bit, but the 3DS has taken that a step further."

"I actually asked Nintendo to explain the technology and they said it's very difficult to do so because it's so sophisticated," he continued. "They combated the piracy on Dsi, which they don't believe is cracked yet - but they know they've been hurt across the world and they believe the 3DS has got technology that can stop that.

"Therefore the opportunity for people to invest more in product development [on the system] and bring more 3DS products to market comes out of that. It's going to probably cost us more to do it all in 3D - so we want to make sure we get a return on our investment when we do it."

When Curran says piracy has "attacked" DS, he isn't kidding. Rampant illegal activity has killed revenues for publishers on the device - driven by the release of re-writable cartridges, particularly the R4 cart, which has been outlawed in Japan.