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News video games 28 February 2024, 06:24

author: Adrian Werner

Nintendo Sues Creators of Yuzu Emulator. Latest Zelda was Pirated a Million Times Before It Hit the Market

Nintendo has sued the makers of Yuzu, a Switch console emulator. The company cited the popularity of the pirated version of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom as an example of damages.

Source: Nintendo

The creators of Yuzu, one of the most popular emulators for the Switch console, have a big problem. They were sued by Nintendo.

  1. Nintendo demands compensation and cessation of emulator distribution.
  2. The company argues that Yuzu allows for playing pirated versions of games on PCs and devices with an Android mobile system. According to Nintendo, the software bypasses the console's security and uses illegal copies of prod.keys files needed to run games.
  3. Nintendo reported that more than a million people played a pirated version of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom using Yuzu before the game was released on Switch (the game was leaked two weeks before its official launch).

In the lawsuit, the company's lawyers argue:

With Yuzu in hand, nothing stops a user from obtaining and playing unlawful copies of virtually any game made for the Nintendo Switch, all without paying a dime to Nintendo or to any of the hundreds of other game developers and publishers making and selling games for the Nintendo Switch.

It's hard to judge how the case will end. Previous decisions by American courts have set precedents that generally provide strong protection for the creators of emulators, as long as they don't include files from the developers of these devices. That's why the prod.keys files mentioned in the lawsuit aren't included with Yuzu.

Fans are usually unable to finance their own defense, so companies often succeeded in stopping the development of such projects by simply threatening lawsuits. The fact that Nintendo is demanding not only the cessation of distribution and development of Yuzu, but also compensation, changes the situation. The emulator creators have little choice but to engage their own legal representation to either litigate for their rights or negotiate a settlement. They will probably also receive financial support from fans, as an unfavorable verdict in this case could establish a precedent that would devastate the entire community.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom was released on May 12th of last year exclusively for the Nintendo Switch. The game turned out to be a huge box office hit - over 20 million copies have been sold so far.

Adrian Werner

Adrian Werner

A true veteran of the Gamepressure newsroom, writing continuously since 2009 and still not having enough. He caught the gaming bug thanks to playing on his friend's ZX Spectrum. Then he switched to his own Commodore 64, and after a short adventure with 16-bit consoles, he forever entrusted his heart to PC games. A fan of niche productions, especially adventure games, RPGs and games of the immersive sim genre, as well as a mod enthusiast. Apart from games, he devourers stories in every form - books, series, movies, and comics.