NDS Nintendo DS Online Rumours

Lately, several projects for getting the Nintendo DS 'online' emerged. Time for an update...


First of all, there was DemaSked from WarpPipe. Where Chad Paulson from WarpPipe always spoke of 'no-line' when dealing with the Nintendo DS, Chad today spoke these wise words: "The DS will go online. Period." Chad also recently spoke about seeing Demasked commercials in the future as well. However, Chad also said that "If I had the opportunity to give my input, (the commercials) would be stranger. I was not asking for input, but you are free to do so. That's what makes this community what it is". Now if Chad doesn't have the opportunity to influence the commercials on his own project, who does? Could WarpPipe be working on DemaSked, while a (bigger?) company is working on the promotion?

To make this story even more interesting, the latest EGM magazine had an interesting part in its rumour section: "Unfortunately, I can't get into specifics right now, but word around Mario's pad is that the company will make some huge (and very surprising) DS announcements near the time of the Playstation Portable launch (which is still on target for March '05)". Earlier, WarpPipe already announced that the launch of DemaSked was postponed to March 2005. A coincidence?

But there's more! A joint venture between MuchMusic and Nintendo resulted in a promotional website for the Nintendo DS. On the 'Future Potential' sub-page, a quote from Shigeru Miyamoto is given: ""Another way of looking at it is that it would be possible for someone who has a wireless router in their home to use the DS to link up with the Internet and an instant message service."


In the meantime, another community (Team XLink) is also working on getting the Nintendo DS online. Initial tests looked promising: PictoChat was succesfully tunneled and Metroid Prime Hunters (the demo) was played smoothly on a ping of 100ms. However, XLink only got it to work on one specific configuration and router yet, and points out NOT to buy any hardware yourself yet.

Today, one of the moderators from Team XLink talked about a possible release: "Well I can't tell much, but great things are happening and it would be weird if we would see them in 2005? As long as everything goes right it will be before 2005, but I make no promise". Let's hope everything will...


The third group working on getting the Nintendo DS online is Nitro Online. After showing a nice conceptual framework of what they were trying to achieve, not much happened. "A possible release withing the next 10-12 days" was mentioned, but will most probably not happen. Today it also became clear that the group didn't manage to establish any communication yet with the handheld whatsoever.


Finally, there are a number of home developers trying to mess with the Nintendo DS. So far people managed to decode PictoChat messages, read and unscramble most of the contents of Super Mario 64 DS multiplayer data and fooling the Nintendo DS by altering data-packages.

Conclusions By now, it must be obvious that the Nintendo DS will go online one way or another. Who will be first to go public remains shrouded, but our money is on Team XLink. Whether their attempts will be the optimal solution, we don't know but we do know that a new gameplay-era is about to start for the handheld scene with the Nintendo DS.

Posted on 10-12-2004 by Dennis


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