It seems like a game developer for the Nintendo Switch has purposefully made a game he has created user access to the console prompt of the game by pressing the ‘~’ key when a USB keyboard has been plugged in.

As you can imagine, a developer pulling something like this is surely going to rattle the bones of publishers and console manufacturers alike.

The game’s publisher, Circle Entertainment has responded to a statement made by Eurogamer on the subject matter; they had the following to say:

“We’re liaising with Nintendo to clarify on the next steps and will deal with the matter accordingly; they are regretful circumstances and we apologise for the issue. We have always worked hard to carefully follow Nintendo’s processes and terms throughout our history of publishing on DSiWare, 3DS eShop, Wii U eShop and Nintendo Switch eShop, and we’re sorry that there has evidently been an issue with this title.
Until we clarify the next steps with Nintendo, we can’t offer any further comment.”

Eurogamer correspondence

“A simple toy sandboxed environment has been framed as this massive exploit. And of course it’s the community that exploits these things that pushed it up to that level. I’m partly to blame with my sensationalised media posts.”

Rajan, “A Dark Room” Developer via Eurogamer

As it seems, it is clear that Nintendo takes a very serious policy on any software published on their storefront that may act as a gateway to homebrews/hacking. Further evidence can be pointed at their policy against cheaters as most of them are outright banned from online play through a hardware ban that prevents the user from accessing their online servers.

While the creator himself has clarified that the console is unable to grant the user with the full technical capabilities of a code editor ala IDE (Integrated Development Environment), I think Nintendo is still justifiably concerned about the potential security threat that could be posed with something that could be reverse-engineered for malice on their own console.

Thoughts

As a developer myself, I can see where he is coming from. Being able to arbitrarily change the game code has always been an interesting way to ‘hack’ the game which serves as a gateway introduction to programming in general.

In the early days of flash-based gaming, it was common to experiment with altering the game’s memory via a memory editor (ala Cheat Engine) to gain infinite resources or cheats. To take it even further back to the Amiga/IBM-PC days, games themselves would often have the consoles exposed via the same methods for someone curious enough to mess around with it.

The game in question has already been removed from the Nintendo e-shop and is most likely not going to return soon.

Via Eurogamer & Kotaku

Chia is the horse-author from the far flung year of 2153. While not grazing on grass pastures or reviewing old time-y games and technology from the early 21st century pretending to not know what comes next (as to not disturb the space-time continuum), he can be seen exchanging vast quantities of Earth currency for parts needed to fix his damaged space ship.

Chia is the horse-author from the far flung year of 2153. While not grazing on grass pastures or reviewing old time-y games and technology from the early 21st century pretending to not know what comes next (as to not disturb the space-time continuum), he can be seen exchanging vast quantities of Earth currency for parts needed to fix his damaged space ship.