Several older Nintendo games, both on current and last-gen consoles, have received minor updates in recent weeks with the developer looking to address major security vulnerabilities. While Nintendo regularly offers updates for many of the developer's most popular titles, older games tend to stop receiving updates within a couple of years after release. Fans were mystified when Mario Kart 7 received a new update for the first time in 10 years without anything significant being added to the game. Now, Nintendo has revealed the update was related to a major vulnerability.
While Nintendo itself moved on from the 3DS and Wii U years ago, the consoles remain a popular choice for many budget gamers today. Both consoles just saw online play sunsetted for the devices earlier this year with the eShop for both set to close in early 2023. Social media sharing on the devices was also shuttered earlier this year with fans no longer able to post their in-game screenshots to Facebook or Twitter from their consoles. Now, however, several older games are receiving new updates to address a critical vulnerability that could see players at risk.
The updates from Nintendo look to address a recently discovered vulnerability referred to as "ENLBufferPwn," rated as a 9.8/10-level vulnerability. The issue was found to be present in multiple games and present a serious risk to players looking to play their classic games, possibly resulting in payment information being stolen as well as camera and mic access. The vulnerability was found to be present in multiple games across the 3DS, Wii U, and Switch with games as recent as Nintendo Switch Sports affected.
While Nintendo is working to address the issues found in the games, the developer would warn fans that other first party titles may be vulnerable. The exploit comes as a "buffer overflow" attack with the affected games not setting a hard cap on the amount of data sent during a play session. Animal Crossing: New Horizons also saw an update earlier this year, its first in several months, with many fans speculating New Horizons may have been affected by the vulnerability. New Horizons was included in the list of games affected by the potential exploit.
As Nintendo continues to remove online features from the Wii U and 3DS, the two consoles saw opposite fates throughout their lifespan. The Wii U was characterized by its underwhelming launch and short time in the spotlight with the console being discontinued less than five years after its launch. The 3DS would go on to become one of Nintendo's most successful handheld consoles, selling over 75 million units during its nine-year lifespan. While the consoles may no longer be able to access their online functions, the 3DS and Wii U continue to offer plenty of enjoyment for many Nintendo fans.
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