Time for year 5 of our 5 years of DS roms in 5 days threads. As the name implies we saw the five year anniversary of the first proper DS rom on the 16th of June so in celebration of the milestone this week we are counting off the 5 years of DS roms with a day given to each year. Today is year 5 which ran from the 16th of June 2009 round to the 15th of June 2010 which started with HanGeomDS_KOR_NDS-iND and finished with Megaman_Zero_Collection_USA_CLEAN_DIRFIX_READNFO_NDS-iND. All in the year saw just over 1300 releases including nukes, patches, tools, trainers and the like. Year 5 Year 4 Year 3 Year 2 Year 1
While a quick overview of the history of the DS was part of the celebration thread a lot happened in those years and to cover it all would have made it rather boring to read, these threads however by virtue of dealing with a smaller timeframe can afford to go into detail. Year 5 saw a few shakeups but was otherwise another great year for the for the DS scene.
That was not to say things were always smooth sailing though as anti piracy was more prevalent and we saw flash carts troubled with the DSi 1.4 update (albeit only for a short while). The larger screened DSi XL (DSi LL in Japan) was also launched in all territories over the course of the year but that did little to flash carts.
By the start of the year most of the big teams had DSi compatible flash carts out already and were busy refining them and their features as well as dealing with anti piracy protection. The big news of the year on the flash cart front was the iplayer and later the supercard DS two which brought more processing power to the DS allowing for such things as GBA emulation using a DS slot device- something that without the extra power would be near impossible and amusingly allowing GBA games to be played on DSi and DSi XL devices (these iterations of the DS lack a GBA slot and support for it). Enhancements of console abilities have a long history with the homebrew scene going right back to the earliest home consoles/computers and while many a game was made better for using a flash cart or work of a hacker with one these were the first that provided an enhancement in processing power to the DS consoles.
Emulation now focused on two long standing emulators Desmume and iDeaS.
On the scene front we saw a shakeup in the rules used although who uses them and what happens about various things is still hotly contested and there are seemingly two competing sets, (1)(2), of rules in addition to those that carried on the old way and those who pick and choose what rules they want to follow. Crack fixes and intros were now considerably more common and this caused some troubles for various flash carts.
Not so many tools released this year although wood dumper got released and earlier on NDS_Backup_Tools_NDS-iND to increase speed and in some cases completeness of the dumps (earlier releases did not use an area of the header later releases had).
It also saw a shift in SDK to TWL games for the DSi Hybrid releases (those games that have extra functionality when run from the DSi proper- something all present flash carts do not do).
In other news July 2009 saw some DSi mode homebrew made available and later a more refined kit made available. So far this is about the limit of things on the DSi and as mentioned no flash carts had yet done anything with this.
Finally in the E3 2010 press conference we saw the successor to the DS line demonstrated in the 3DS although it had been already announced with other accompanying rumours and leaked photos before it.
By this year extensive use of anti piracy in roms was common although it rarely troubled those that wanted to run them (indeed many flash cart makers reacted and reduced the footprint to help with the situation)- scene releases often appear before street date and you could usually be playing the game by the street date if not before. Early on in this year we saw the DSi hybrid games (as well as several issues dumping them) although the extra features they might afford are at present still unable to be used owing to flash carts on the new hardware running in legacy DS mode.
After all was said and done there were actually fewer releases than year 4, debate on what this means will be left for another day as this is about the past and not the future.
In many ways it seems redundant to detail the year that has only just passed but between updates, changes and many continuing to take a back seat there is still plenty of opportunity for people to miss things. As it was in all the other threads we will detail games that were great and those that meant something to the scene.
Naturally we can not cover all releases so if you feel we have missed a couple of your favourite game please feel free to make the case in these threads, we ask you confine yourself to the relevant year/thread depending on date of release with the folks over at ABGX providing a nice text release list with dates if you need it.
It seems that the DS is one of the few game platforms that is able to defy the summer drought with several notable releases happening early in this year. Note the release names posted will be first release unless there is a true need for a proper.
For the unaware Horrible Histories is a franchise of books, TV shows and now games that cover history in ways that are not the traditional memorise a textbook approach. Taken at face value though the minigames themselves are quite enjoyable and you might even learn something along the way.
Could have made the year 4 release but it is here now so it will be covered. Lego games have a patchy history in general and on the handhelds even more so, fortunately this game was one of the good ones and one of the few real time strategy games out there on the DS.
The Lone Wolf DS project has received an update with the release of book 3. For more information about the project please check the link below. The developer is looking to compile a Flash Kit compatibility listing. If the homebrew works for you please report what Flash Kit and firmware you are using.