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Notorious hacking group member Gary Bowser has denied being involved with a new Nintendo Switch flash cart which claims it will allow users to play back-up games.
Bowser was released from prison just last year after being sentenced for his part as a member of hacking group Team-Xecuter, which in 2013 began creating and selling circumvention devices enabling users to play illegal ROMs on consoles, including Switch and 3DS.
Now, despite having to pay $10 million in damages to Nintendo – which will likely see him paying the company a portion of his salary for the rest of his life – Bowser’s name has allegedly been connected to another more high-profile hacking project.
Last month a Nintendo Switch flash cart known as ‘MIG-Switch’ was announced, which creators claim will allow users to play back-up games on all standard, non-modified Switch consoles, regardless of firmware.
The device has the appearance of a Switch game cartridge, but with an SD card slot which will allow users to boot up ROMs.
The device’s website claims it’s designed to “back up your legally owned Nintendo Switch games”. However, Nintendo will likely be concerned around potential piracy implications – especially considering the impact the similar R4 flash cart had on Nintendo DS.
Gary Bowser’s alleged involvement in the device relates to the website aftertimex.com, where videos of MIG-Switch first appeared. As detailed in a video by Modern Vintage Gamer, Bowser’s website was reportedly discovered in the DNS records for AfterTimeX, potentially linking him to the project.
Bowser appeared to deny being involved with MIG-Switch via X, and directly responded to the allegation in a Discord post, claiming that he was the subject of a DNS poisoning attack in which he said he was being threatened by a bad actor seeking ransom money.
“I was the subject of DNS poisoning attack on my nameservers, I repaired the damage and changed all my passwords, but sadly people will talk, not what I needed just before Christmas,” he reportedly wrote.
“And also just a day after someone was threatening me via Skype, demanding I send them $1,000 per month for next 40 months, or they would leak a bunch of shit. I am not going to engage the trolls or comment on it.”
Bowser was arrested in September 2020 and appeared in court the following year charged with 11 felony counts. Instead of facing trial, he pled guilty to two counts and offered to pay Nintendo $4.5 million.
In a separate civil case ruling, Bowser was ordered to pay Nintendo an additional $10 million fine for his part in selling console mods.
According to the US government, Team-Xecuter’s criminal enterprise generated tens of millions of dollars in sales and resulted in up to $150 million in losses to victims.