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Nintendo sues Switch emulator Yuzu for ‘facilitating piracy at a colossal scale



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 2 months ago '16        #1
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00010111  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x24
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Nintendo sues Switch emulator Yuzu for ‘facilitating piracy at a colossal scale
 

 
If you’ve ever seen a Steam Deck playing a Legend of Zelda game, chances are you were seeing the Yuzu emulator at work. Now, Nintendo has sued the developers of Yuzu in US federal court, with the intent of squashing Yuzu for good.

In the lawsuit, spotted by Stephen Totilo, Nintendo alleges that Yuzu violates the anti-circumvention and anti-trafficking provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) as well as accusing the creators of copyright infringement. It alleges Yuzu is “primarily designed” to circumvent several layers of Nintendo Switch encryption so its users can play copyrighted Nintendo games.

The company’s not only asking for the courts to stop Yuzu in its tracks with a permanent injunction. It also wants to take away its domain names, URLs, chatrooms, and social media presence; hand yuzu-emu.org over to Nintendo; and even seize and destroy its hard drives to help wipe out the emulator. Oh, and Nintendo wants lots of money in damages as well.

Aren’t emulators legal? Well... yes and no. While there’s legal precedent that suggests it’s okay to reverse engineer a console and develop an emulator that uses none of the company’s source code, those cases are roughly a quarter of a century old or more — it gets trickier when we’re talking about multiple layers of modern encryption and the copyrighted BIOSes that Yuzu and other modern emulators require to run.

The Dolphin Emulator for Nintendo Wii and GameCube got in enough hot water to abandon its plan to launch on Steam, when it was revealed that Dolphin ships with Nintendo’s Wii common key to help circumvent the copyright protection on Wii games. (Dolphin maintains that including that key is legal.)

Nintendo doesn’t allege that Yuzu includes any such keys, though. Yuzu takes a bring-your-own-BIOS approach, expecting users to either lift their own BIOSes and keys off a hacked Nintendo Switch (using a loophole that Nintendo eliminated in newer models), or more likely download a pirated one.

So instead, Nintendo’s arguing that Yuzu is knowingly “facilitating piracy at a colossal scale.”

As you’ll see in the full complaint below, Nintendo suggests that Yuzu is facilitating that piracy in myriad ways, including providing “detailed instructions” on how to “get it running with unlawful copies of Nintendo Switch games,” testing thousands of official Nintendo Switch games to verify their compatibility, and linking to websites that help users “obtain and further distribute the prod.keys.” Nintendo also says the developers have clearly extracted Nintendo Switch games themselves, bypassing encryption, in order to test their own emulator.

image


If Nintendo can prove that Yuzu is “primarily designed” to give people access to official Nintendo Switch games and has no other real use, Yuzu would indeed be in trouble. DMCA Section 1201(a)(2) bans products “primarily designed or produced for the purpose of circumventing a technological measure that effectively controls access” to a copyrighted work. It’s the same provision that game archivists have struggled with for years.

“The important thing is that Nintendo is bringing the case as a DMCA circumvention claim,” says Richard h0eg, a business attorney who hosts the Virtual Legality podcast. He tells me that that while emulators are broadly legal if engineered “correctly,” the DMCA also lets Nintendo focus on whether the emulator was only designed to break Nintendo’s control over its games.

“There is a real chance for them to win as the court ‘tests’ things like the effectiveness of the measure and just how the emulator was created,” h0eg says.

Nintendo suggests in its complaint that it may have actually been damaged by Yuzu, too, alleging that The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom was illegally downloaded over a million times in early May 2023, while Yuzu’s Patreon membership doubled during that same period.


 https://www.theverge.com/ .. r-yuzu-lawsuit
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29 comments

 2 months ago '16        #2
seatownslayer  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x8
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Go yuzu....we need you to win this for all emulators out there


Last edited by seatownslayer; 02-28-2024 at 08:12 AM..
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 2 months ago '22        #3
zerogate  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x5
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The money they're losing to emulation must have justified them pursuing this lawsuit.
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 2 months ago '11        #4
Blokka Blokka  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x9
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Lol@thinking they're gonna stop it

Another emulator will pop up
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 2 months ago '23        #5
Typewriter 
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I mean, they ain’t wrong lol
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 2 months ago '11        #6
Gamemusic 
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 zerogate said 🔗
The money they're losing to emulation must have justified them pursuing this lawsuit.
They've definitely lost some money, but they're games still selling like crazy regardless. This is prob a moreso let's deal with this now, before the successor comes out. Those dudes were stupid for having a Patreon tied to this also.


Last edited by Gamemusic; 02-28-2024 at 07:22 AM..
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 2 months ago '21        #7
blackreign 
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That Patreon being tied to Yuzu was dumb
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 2 months ago '23        #8
HimKenobi 
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Good thing it’s open source. Somebody else will pick it to if they stop.
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 2 months ago '12        #9
Faythung  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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Ultimately this subject has been litigated on before and even with the clear evidence that Yuzu's patreon saw a significant boost before and after the release of TotK I imagine they won't lose in court, but they will get absolutely drowned in litigation and the subsequent costs.
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 2 months ago '23        #10
Typewriter 
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 Faythung said 🔗
Ultimately this subject has been litigated on before and even with the clear evidence that Yuzu's patreon saw a significant boost before and after the release of TotK I imagine they won't lose in court, but they will get absolutely drowned in litigation and the subsequent costs.
Where did you get your law degree?
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 2 months ago '23        #11
HimKenobi 
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 Faythung said 🔗
Ultimately this subject has been litigated on before and even with the clear evidence that Yuzu's patreon saw a significant boost before and after the release of TotK I imagine they won't lose in court, but they will get absolutely drowned in litigation and the subsequent costs.
 Typewriter said 🔗
Where did you get your law degree?
n1gga do you care or not?

 2 months ago '05        #12
Ari Gold  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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Should I download it now and save it in a hard drive for whenever I finally get my steam deck?

 2 months ago '23        #13
Typewriter 
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 Ari Gold said 🔗
Should I download it now and save it in a hard drive for whenever I finally get my steam deck?
Probably wouldn't hurt, this one isn't as simple as previous cases involving emulators and could end up with Yuzu getting shut down.

Nintendo's lawyers have some creative legal theories going in this one. Neither side has a slam dunk, but I think as it stands now, the edge goes to Nintendo.

 2 months ago '12        #14
Faythung  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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 Ari Gold said 🔗
Should I download it now and save it in a hard drive for whenever I finally get my steam deck?
Yes.
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 2 months ago '05        #15
jaedot  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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Just put it on my Ally yesterday too

 2 months ago '19        #16
mkooner 
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I think Nintendo may have a uphill battle here because Yuzu website also provided Homebrew software to play on their emulator. So, they can show there definitely is a legal way to use their emulator, how others use their emulator isn't their problem.

 2 months ago '23        #17
Typewriter 
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 mkooner said 🔗
I think Nintendo may have a uphill battle here because Yuzu website also provided Homebrew software to play on their emulator. So, they can show there definitely is a legal way to use their emulator, how others use their emulator isn't their problem.
yeah that's why it's not an easy call.

The problem is the "inducement" and "circumvention" theories they have and all the materials that yuzu provided users teaching them how to essentially pirate protected material.

It really will be an interesting case. All we've had so far on these issues is the Sony case from way back in the day and that was very high level, basically saying using a machine's BIOS settings to reverse engineer an emulator isn't illegal.

It was less about the actual piracy of video games, and more about just building an emulator.

This case is much more focused on the piracy argument.


Last edited by Typewriter; 02-28-2024 at 12:16 PM..

 2 months ago '08        #18
LevelHeaded 
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 Gamemusic said 🔗
They've definitely lost some money, but they're games still selling like crazy regardless. This is prob a moreso let's deal with this now, before the successor comes out. Those dudes were stupid for having a Patreon tied to this also.
a fu#kin patreon, yeah that changes alot. at most i would see donation links in the emulation software but a patreon is wild and super bold. they deserve the lawsuit
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 2 months ago '17        #19
dubsax  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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 Blokka Blokka said 🔗
Lol@thinking they're gonna stop it

Another emulator will pop up
never has and never will

all it does really is make THEM better
it just give them better guidelines to code around for the next version
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 2 months ago '19        #20
mkooner 
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 LevelHeaded said 🔗
a fu#kin patreon, yeah that changes alot. at most i would see donation links in the emulation software but a patreon is wild and super bold. they deserve the lawsuit
Them making money on the emulation software isn't that issue raised by Nintendo on the lawsuit. Its the use of their BIOS and Game decryption and they said without using those two things Yuzu has no legal use case, but there using homebrew is a legal use case. It doesn't matter if they charge money for their work our not.

 2 months ago '08        #21
LevelHeaded 
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 mkooner said 🔗
Them making money on the emulation software isn't that issue raised by Nintendo on the lawsuit. Its the use of their BIOS and Game decryption and they said without using those two things Yuzu has no legal use case, but there using homebrew is a legal use case. It doesn't matter if they charge money for their work our not.
yeah but making a patreon is [putting a spotlight on them and advertising how much revenue theyre getting. with a donation link you have no idea how much money theyre actually getting, and its a different thing to ask for donations compared to running a business on patreon
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 2 months ago '17        #22
SPdaGOAT  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x7
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Yuzu lawyered up. Hope it works out for them
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 2 months ago '10        #23
KJHARDY 
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Leave my emulators alone
emoji
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 1 month ago '16        #24
Understandable 
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Nintendo and Yuzu reach settlement, Yuzu to pay $2.4 million

↪🔗
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 1 month ago '23        #25
Typewriter 
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 Understandable said 🔗
Nintendo and Yuzu reach settlement, Yuzu to pay $2.4 million

↪🔗
and

1) an admission that Yuzu was primarily designed to circumvent DRM and play pirated games;

2) a permanent injunction which we're waiting on details of.

My guess is if they aren't about to shut down entirely, they're going to remove all the guidance documents about how to circumvent the DRM

edit: sounds like they agreed to fully shut down


According to a joint filing, Tropic Haze, LLC has not only agreed to pay $2,400,000 to Nintendo, it also agrees that Yuzu was “primarily designed to circumvent and play Nintendo Switch games,” and agrees to be permanently enjoined from working on Yuzu, hosting Yuzu, distributing Yuzu’s code or features, hosting Yuzu websites and social media, or doing anything else that circumvents Nintendo’s copyright protection.




Last edited by Typewriter; 03-04-2024 at 11:27 AM..

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