GameCube’s ‘Animal Crossing’ has an emulator capable of playing NES games

snes classic xbox survey nes

The GameCube version of Animal Crossing contains a basic Nintendo Entertainment System emulator capable of running a selection of included games, such as Balloon Fight and Donkey Kong, but it appears the software Nintendo used is quite a bit more versatile than previously believed. A security researcher has managed to use an exploit that allows users to play additional NES games on the GameCube via memory cards.

Security researcher James Chambers found that the generic NES Console item available in Animal Crossing — thought to just be for decorating your house — actually attempts to scan your GameCube’s memory card for relevant ROM files.

Chambers discovered that the function responsible for handling furniture items was actually also responsible for handling a screen transition to the NES emulator in the game. By exploiting the way the game responds when a certain function is listed as zero — the plain NES console appears to give this function — and then tricking it into loading a ROM as a save file, Chambers was eventually able to get Animal Crossing to run additional games, such as Mega Man. There were several crashes along the way, but his solution appears to work for nearly every NES game and he uploaded his memory card file creator code to GitHub for other users to access.

Nintendo fans have been attempting to exploit the company’s consoles and games for decades, beginning back with cheating tools like the Game Genie and GameShark. After the GameCube came and went, the emulator software Dolphin was created to run the console’s games on a PC, eventually supporting Wii games, as well. Through the use of an exploit on Nintendo Switch, hackers were even able to get the emulator running on Nintendo’s latest console. This was due to an unpatchable exploit with the system’s Tegra processor, though it appears that latest batch of Switch systems have made this exploit impossible.

If you want a more elegant way to play old NES games, the NES Classic Edition recently went into production again. The plug-and-play system contains 30 classic games, including Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, Castlevania, Super C, Final Fantasy, and Metroid.

Gaming

‘Super Mario Party’ delights, frustrates, and leaves the party early

In many ways, Super Mario Party is a return from less-than-stellar entries in the long-running series. There's more strategy this time around, and it boasts an impressive collection of minigames. It's not always a party though.
Gaming

From Blackout to Zombies, here's everything we know about 'Black Ops 4'

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 arrives on PS4, Xbox One, and PC on October 12. Here's everything you need to know about the game, including info on multiplayer, Zombies, Blackout, and Signature Weapons.
Mobile

Razer Phone 2 vs. Galaxy Note 9: They’re closer than you think

While the Razer Phone wasn't a bad phone, it failed to set the market on fire. Razer's back though, with the much improved Razer Phone 2. But can it beat one of the big boys -- the Galaxy Note 9? We found out.
Gaming

Get caught up on all things 'Fallout 76,' including when the beta starts

Bethesda's Fallout 76 takes the open world series in a new direction. With an emphasis on co-op, survival, and rebuilding a broken world, Fallout 76 will be the largest and most challenging game in the franchise yet.
Gaming

Be the last player standing with our Call of Duty 4 Blackout mode survival tips

Battle Royale fans will find that lots of their strategies are skills carry over into the new Blackout mode in Call of Duty: Black Op 4. But with the franchise's signature perks, weapons, and equipment, there's still a lot of new stuff to…
Gaming

W. Virginia isn’t for mutants, but its tourism board doesn’t mind if you think so

Bethesda and the state of West Virginia are partnering on a new tourism program intended to bring Fallout 76 fans to the state. Vault Boy sightings have been recorded across West Virginia already.
Product Review

'Black Ops 4' learns a few new tricks, but it's Call of Duty to the core

Despite nods to hero-based tactical gameplay, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s multiplayer feels as stable as ever -- even as the game trades in its story-driven campaign for the new Blackout mode.
Gaming

GameStop manager marks ‘Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’ launch by mimicking cover art

To celebrate the launch of Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, GameStop stores held midnight launch events across the United States. One manager even cosplayed as the cover star from the game, complete with an accurate haircut.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.
Mobile

Here’s our guide on how to get ‘Fortnite’ on your Android device

'Fortnite: Battle Royale' is one of the biggest games in the world right now, and it's finally on Android, even if getting set up is a bit long-winded. Here's how to play 'Fortnite: Battle Royale' on an Android device.
Mobile

Put your iPad Pro to the test with these great games

Did you recently purchase a 10.5-inch iPad Pro, or are you enjoying the 12.9-inch version? If so, we've rounded up a few of the best iPad Pro games currently available on Apple's mobile platform.
Gaming

Open-world video games are getting too big for their own good

As technology has progressed, open-world video games have grown increasingly bigger. What seems like a universal positive has shown problems preventing the genre from truly moving forward, however.
Product Review

The Oculus Rift is cheaper, the Vive Pro is better. Is the original Vive still worth it?

The Oculus Rift may have brought virtual reality into the public eye, but HTC’s Vive, built in partnership with Valve, does it better. Does the Vive still represent the true future of virtual reality, or are there better competitors on…
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: DIY smartphones and zip-on bike tires

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!