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Nintendo 3DS R4 and R4i Flash Cards for DS ROMs and Apps
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Gateway 3DS rom flash card
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Gateway 3DS Review • The 1st true Nintendo 3DS ROM fash card »
Unlike other 3DS "compatible" cards that play NDS ROMs on 3DS the GATEWAY runs 3DS ROMs pn the console!
The latest handheld console from Nintendo has proven on several occasions a well-structured and armored against any hacking attempt. Since the start of marketing in March 2011, numerous attempts to circumvent the security measures of the Nintendo 3DS portable were reported on the internet by hacking teams, quickly followed by denials and projects stalled or concluded with a hole in the water. On the other hand, there was a huge sales success of the R4 flashcards initially intended for DS consoles which used DS-MODE exploits on 3DS that were easier find. R4 3DS cards that were marketed as 3DS COMPATIBLE but did not work with 3DS ROMs (only with older DS roms), were sold as 3DS flash cards, to ride the 'wave of sales of these devices. The 3DS hacking scene has a history of light and shadow (more shadows than lights), marked by many small successes and great failures, which inevitably have reinforced the public's conviction that the portable gaming king - 3DS would not have been violated in times quick nor easy to use and compact solutions such as those offered by the tens of flashcards available for the younger sister DS.
While partially complying with the expectations of the public, the team Gateway - baby in the hacking scene Nintendo - releases the first rumors about the identification of an exploit exploitable for the use of ROM in May 2013, leading to demonstration of its claims a video showing a prototype of the card running with two 3DS titles. The reaction of the web is instant, the card is welcomed by the public that the team literally sent a storm of questions about the possible uses of the device and how they were able to unlock the Nintendo 3DS. Right now it is clear that the project is in an embryonic form with regard to everything that does not involve the emulation 3DS ROMs, but the team did not give up and Gateway 3DS cards have been puts into production in a short time from their creation. In late July 2013, the first specimens of this card were shipped. GW3DS.com is proud to be one of the first sites in the world to be able to put the first Gateway 3DS hands-on review.
GATEWAY 3DS - Introduction & Features
Unlike the 3DS compatible DS flashcards, which in the last years of the life of the console offered many DS-MODE functions, from (obvious) possibility to use ROM emulators to other consoles, through functionality from media player and not neglecting the possibility of launching DS homebrew, the Gateway 3DS advances big claims and aims to serve (at the time) to a single use, namely to make the 3DS ROMs playable on the 3DS console itself.
Here are the features and characteristics as reported by the FAQ manufacturer's website, at the time the only feature published:
The Gateway team proves quite active in updating and groped to find new uses for the card, so that the most recent release adds features to the possibility of bypassing the region lock – region-free to play ROMs that do not belong to the region of the 3DS and the blocking of update messages (we will see later the importance of the updates for the proper functioning of the Gateway 3DS). At present, these new features are released with firmware version 1.1 and above.
The packaging of the shipment does not differ too much from those to which we are accustomed for the numerous R4 DS flashcards. The item will arrive in a common envelope from international shipment, inside which there is a well-sealed cardboard box of multiple layers of adhesive tape. Armed with knife and scissors, the box is not difficult to open and inside we find the bubble wrap, turned in on itself several times to protect the packaging of the Gateway. Rolled out the packaging bubble wrap, what comes before is a minimal package made from semi-rigid plastic. The plastic of the box is quite fragile (during the unboxing broke a couple of tabs that hold firm ends), but overall the box is a little bulky (below you can see it next to a case of 3DS games to get an idea size) and, as minimal graphics, and content descriptions, it is pleasing to the eye and not in excess of useless content.
In fact, inside the box there is only one clear, plastic media with two slots for two cards. The Gateway 3DS Blue card in fact is needs as an installer to load the exploit that lets the second Red Gateway 3DS flash card run 3DS ROMs in GW-Mode, which we will see later in details.
Disappointing is the lack of a manual in a paper form or a CD-ROM, which by the express will of the producer is only available online in digital format, along with the necessary files for the installer. However, the decision to publish an extensive documentation on the site, in color and with installation steps clearly outlined and described, makes as not regret the lack of physical counterpart.
Let us now turn to the true stars of this review: the Gateway 3DS flash cards.
The Gateway 3DS Red card is in all respects similar to a 3DS cartridge, color white / gray is maintained in much the same way, the plastic seems to be of good quality and thick and also reflects perfectly the shape of an original title Nintendo is also retained the ' flap' typical for Nintendo 3DS cartridges. The sticker that adorns the front and back of the card is sleek and minimalist design, bearing the logo GATEWAY on red background, but it certainly does not want to be the aesthetic appearance of the strength of the device.
On the back of the card, the contacts are arranged in a similar way to the 3DS games and the housing of the microSD is located at the top center. With regard to the housing of the memory, it is necessary to note the absence of a return spring (like that of DSONE, or Acekard 2i for instance), which makes the insertion of the SD less enjoyable and gives the idea of a smaller memory stability inside the device. Moreover, given the limitation of being able to load only a single ROM at a time on the SD destined to the Gateway 3DS, the presence of a spring would make it easier to change the microSD directly from the slot of the 3DS, but it is not a defect and a minimum inconvenience to which you can forgive as it does not compromise the goodness of the object.
The second Blue GW3DS card instead is to all affects a regular R4 DS flashcard, in particular a cloned R4i Gold 3DS. Also in this case the device is well-made, good and durable plastics. The adhesive that covers the card is blue, to avoid confusion between the two cards to less accustomed to hacking the portable Nintendo, and resumes, along with that of the Gateway 3DS, the colors of the two casing flashcards. This second cartridge, as already mentioned just above, serves essentially to take advantage of the installer that allows the correct operation of the first. There is not much to say about this flashcards, except that it can also be used to boot all NDS ROM games once its primary purpose of hacking 3DS and putting it into the GW-MODE has been achieved: in short, an added value to this flash kit that allows you to play games from this and the previous generation of 3DS.
Finally, we note the regrettable absence of a USB reader for microSD, device that most of the card for DS previously in trade included in the packages. Although this lack, however, is not heavy, as the times of the microSD flashcard for DS have become increasingly common and are usually found on the market with SD adapters that make it much easier to read / write these flash memories.
Both cards come with ease and without the "game" in the slot of the 3DS, and being, as already mentioned, the same size as the original Nintendo cartridges, do not protrude from the console, preventing blemishes typical of the first DS flashcards.
In conclusion, a packaging and minimalist, which could (and perhaps should) be studied in detail. However, the simplicity and the summary of the presentation of the card is not unpleasant, anything, and do not exceed in useless frivolities, high-sounding descriptions and graphic effects that often hide behind a bill mediocre products of excess appearance.
GUI and Operating System
As you might guess from what has been said so far, the Gateway does not have an operating system, nor, therefore, to a graphical interface. The use of the card is limited to a ROM microSD, and support for, or any homebrew loader that can read more than a game for SD are currently developing the (fast) Gateway team. As for the blue card, I refer you to the review of the R4, as the interface and how to use (apart from the installer) are quite similar.
Compatibility and Performance
The Gateway has the exact same performance of an original 3DS card. No visible slowdown or framerate drops, the reproduction of the ROM is smooth and flowing. Who is then used to virtually flawless performance of DS flashcards, you will not be disappointed by the Gateway, which, in the only task that at the moment has to do, does not lose - virtually - a shot. The tests were conducted with a standard set, namely:
- Flashcard Gateway
- Nintendo 3DS Aqua Blue, Day One European edition, Firmware 4.5.0-10E
- Transcend 4GB MicroSD HC
The Gateway has been tested with:
- New Super Mario Bros 2 : Perfect reproduction.
- Luigi's Mansion 2 : Perfect reproduction.
- Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition : Perfect reproduction.
- Kid Icarus: Uprising : Perfect reproduction.
- Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Bros. : The rom works but is not playable as the start requires you to update the console, which surely would corrupt the use of the Gateway. A spoof firmware is currently in development by the team Gateway to overcome this problem.
From what has been said from the manufacturer's website, Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the only other ROM when not working on Gateway, due to a type of storage on NAND memory of the original cartridge not (yet) emulated on flashcards. It was unfortunately not possible due to lack of a physical copy, test this game.
So here we are at the verdict. Really hard to write these conclusions; task made even more difficult if you think about it, by today uniqueness of this card, which at the moment is the only one to be able to offer the use of homonymous 3DS ROMs portable.
Building on the strengths, as well as being the first device running in its class, it is necessary to focus attention on the excellent (if not perfect) yield ROM on 3DS: the feeling is not to play with a third-party accessory but with a real Nintendo cartridge. Compatibility is good, all the ROM try (from oldest to newest) work fine and do not show any problems, even when loading saved games from SD. In addition, the manufacturer promises the latest updates (and permit) to avoid the tedious system messages that require to download the latest firmware and Nintendo also roam the long standing problem of the region lock, allowing you to play titles do not belong to your region. Well, maybe the card does not promise the moon, but he respects what he has always communicated to his likely buyers: play ROMs on 3DS.
We come then to the defects, which unfortunately are not lacking. As mentioned earlier, however, these judgments are dictated by the need to review what is and offers, to date, this flashcard so it is not said that many features cannot - fingers crossed - to improve in the near future. Starting from the aesthetic presentation of the product is immediately evident that the packaging is bare-bones, choice dictated, probably, by the need to ensure the rapid commercialization of the device. Second, the preparation of the console to the use of the card is not the most simple (but even the most difficult); those coming from a flashcard DS last generation and is not proficient with the computer may find some difficulty during the process, but it's nothing overly complex and cannot be solved by following strictly the good online documentation. Being an exploit firmware dependent, and not being the same firmware downgradabile, the card is restricted to the use of the 3DS consoles still in circulation that are equipped with firmware verionup to 4.5, and not all who had a Nintendo 3DS already at the time of the first announcements of the team Gateway 3DS, have a firmware so "old". In addition, the fact of being able to load a single ROM at a time to microSD, combined with the total absence of an operating system and a GUI (which therefore precludes the use of any - for now non-existent – 3DS homebrew) may turn up their noses at About do not buy a flashcard only play signed ROMs, especially if you considered the cost of the card, not exactly low.
In short, a product intended for a particular and precise slice of the market and promises only what it can actually do, leaving the "ifs" and "buts" future developments. Applause from the effort that this team showed the hacking scene 3DS is investing in the search for solutions and updates for their creation: updates regularly published on the website and intend to push the Gateway 3DS beyond the mere reading of ROM confirm the good faith of the development team, which proves to take into account the reactions of the public and the precise determination not to abandon the project in itself, at least not any time soon.
+ First, a real working card for playing 3DS roms
+ Excellent ROM compatibility and playback with no slowdowns
+ Ability to bypass the region lock of imported games
+ Two cards, one for 3DS games and an R4i for DS roms and homebrew
+ Upgradeable to add new features
- Minimalist packaging
- Instructions for how to install and loading the ROM have to be read online
- A single ROM per microSD – no multi-game loader at this time
- Employs a firmware exploit that Nintendo has closed in future firmware versions
- Lacks an operating system and GUI
- High price
While you are waiting for the Gateway 3DS why don't you check out Nintendo 3DS compatible cards that can be used to run NDS roms on the 3DS / DSi / DS : EZ-Flash, Cyclo3DS , SuperCard DSTWO and AceKard 3. They can not play 3DS games but are great R4 flash cards for playing ~2000 available nds roms as well as DS homebrew and Emulators!
Now you can use your Nintendo DS with the R4i 3DS cards to run homebrew applications, these are programs developed by independent programmers that will enable your Nintendo DS to do things that it could not do before. With the R4i 3DS flash cards you will turn your Nintendo DS than just a video game machine; you can now browse the Internet via Wi-Fi, listen to music, watch movies (in *.dpg format) and even read e-books! You can even play games from the earlier Nintendo systems, like the NES and the Super NES, just download the necessary files from the Internet and you're ready to go playing old school games.
Nintendo 3DS Emulator -for playing Game Card Backups also known as 3DS ROMs. Pokemon IR and full details at 3DS Wiki . How to download and play Super Mario 3D from a R4 DS Card. The best Shop for 3DS Flash Carts.
Reviews of SuperCard DSTWO 3DS (SC3DS), AceKard 2i also known as AceKard 3 because of it's compatibility wit the N3DS. EZ-Flash Viand CycloDS iEvo with DSi mode support.
Bear in mind that for playing commercial DS ROMS from R43DS cards to be legal you need to own the original games if you want to use the backup copies with the Nintendo R4 3DS flashcards. If you don't own the original game cartridges please choose to play Freeware or Homebrew games. In many countries it is illegal to play the backup copies because of piracy.
R4i Gold and R4i DSN for 3DS
These two Nintendo 3DS R4 and R4i Flash Cards costs $11. They could play DS and DSi game sin DS mode but are hopeless at DSi games in DSi mode.
SuperCard DSTwo 3DS
Bootloader updates, Game updates, Auto-Boot, SDHC slot, Blocks Anti-Piracy, Real Time Menus, Slow Motion, Free Cheat and supports Special Homebrew.
Acekard 2i and AceKard 3 3DS
Both can play DS games in DS mode but only the Acekard 2i can play DSi games in DS mode. Both cannot play DSi games in DS mode and only the Acekard 2i can play games on 3DS.
The first true 3DS Flash Card that can play 3DS ROMs. While other R4 cards are 3DS compatible they will only run .NDS roms wehen as GATEWAY 3DS is a real next gen flash card for the new console. Gateway 3DS ROM card »
probably the best use of the Nintendo R4 3DS flash cards is that you can now play backup copies of your games that you own. Backup files are also known as Nintendo DS ROMs. Now you no longer have to bring all of your game cartridges with you whenever you want to play with your Nintendo DS, you can now save backup copies of them in the micro SD card and access them through the Nintendo R4i 3DS cards. This also helps you keep your original cartridges safe from constant use, making them last longer. Buy R4 3DS Cards online »
Using Nintendo R4 3DS cards is so easy. The user interface is simple and easy to understand; you can even customize it if you want using the built-in themes creator included in the adapter. Transferring files is easy as well in R4i flash cards; all you need to do is remove the micro SD card from the back of the R4i 3DS cards and connect it to your PC using a card reader. Now you can just drag and drop all the files you want from your PC to the micro SD card; it's that simple. And because the memory of the 3DS R4i cards is expandable up to 32 GB, you can now put in as much content as you want and take them with you wherever you go!