Unexpected 3DS update breaks many common homebrew hacking methods

Enlarge / A few of the 3DS variations that were once supported by Nintendo. (credit: Mark Walton)

It has been years since Nintendo stopped producing its Nintendo 3DS line of portable hardware and months since the company officially shut down the 3DS eShop for new downloadable game purchases. But those facts haven’t stopped the company from issuing a new firmware update that seems at least partly focused on impeding some of the most common methods for installing homebrew software on the defunct console.

Monday night’s surprise release of 3DS firmware Ver. 11.17.0-50 is the first official system update for the console since last September and the fifth update since the hardware was officially discontinued in 2020. The official patch notes for the sudden update cover the now-standard (if vague) promise of “further improvements to overall system stability and other minor adjustments [that] have been made to enhance the user experience.”

But console hacking groups quickly noticed that downloading the update ruined many of the documented hacking methods that could previously be used to install custom 3DS firmware.

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