Nintendo thinks the ‘heyday of piracy’ is over

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Is piracy coming to an end? Nintendo’s UK general manager thinks we may be at the cusp of a new day when piracy is no longer a viable option. Speaking with CVG about Nintendo’s upcoming 3DS handheld, David Yarnton and UK marketing manager James Honeywell seemed pretty confident in the new anti-piracy technology in the system and the increased pressure countries around the world are putting on digital thieves.

“We can’t divulge any technical details on that but needless to say this is probably one of our best pieces of equipment in that respect,” said Yarnton. “There are a lot of things we’ve learnt over time to try and improve the security and protection – not only of our IP but of our third-party publishers’ IP as well. It’s not just to the extent of the technical side but on a global basis many countries and governments are recognising that the IP of creative industries and such needs to be protected. There are things happening all the time, but as I said if you went and made bold statements saying ‘this is uncrackable’…”

Honeywell elaborated on Yarnton’s statements with more enthusiasm. “There’s definitely a step change coming and you see it in various countries around the world,” said Honeywell. “People are aware that video games, music and movies make massive contributions to the economies of countries. They need to make sure they start protecting those things. I think perhaps there’s been a ‘heyday of piracy’ and we’ve now seen a lot of rules come in to stop it.”

Last year, THQ also spoke highly of Nintendo’s anti-piracy efforts in the 3DS, but as of yet, neither Nintendo or its partners have revealed any significant details on exactly how the system combats digital copies differently from previous video game handhelds. Though countries are beginning to crack down on pirates, illegal downloads of video games continue to soar. With more and more digital distribution on the horizon, the industry will only face greater pressure in the future.

The Nintendo 3DS hits U.S. shelves on March 27 for a suggested retail price of $249.

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