I once worked for a used game store as a console hacker/modder AMA

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  1. th3joker
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    th3joker GBAtemp Regular

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    hello there i wanted to share a little info about myself, cuz idk why im bored...

    first off, i have been into the console hacking scene since 2005. before that i was about 6 years old in love with my game genie for NES with a big book of codes, and knew how much more awesome it was to go beyond the chains of limitation imposed on consoles and their companys. loved my game shark for n64, gameboy color (mostly for pokemon blue/silver *MUST CATCH THEM ALL!!!11!1!*) i had friends who had a dreamcast and burnt bootleg cd-r games, mod chipped ps1, chipped ps2, soft modded og xbox PCs with emulators ect. so i was well aware of the piracy scenes but preferred to still buy the games i liked.


    the PSP was my kick into learning how to mod consoles myself. in 05 a friend showed me his psp1001 playing a snes emulator. the next day i bought a psp. i stupidly updated it to 2.0 ofw when all there was 1.50 kxploit but no more than a few months later someone named fanjita released a homebrew loader through a savegame exploit for gta liberty city stories. that got me by until our lord and savior Dark-AleX released downgraders and then custom firmware/pandora batterie. i really liked the homebrew devhook and playing with firmware manipulation and making hybrid frankenfirmware but being safe from bricks. i went back to my fatty ps2 and used a ps1 disc independence exploit/ulaunch and a network adapter modded to work with a 500gb hdd. filled that fucker with ISOs and brew:) bought a 360 and paid someone to flash the dvd drive before rgh jtag existed. when ps3 came out on launch day i bought 2 60gb launch systems and left one in the box sealed until 2010 and the free version of the 3.15 jailbreak (when u still needed a thumb drive and hit the start+eject combo) i also bought 2 PS4s 1 for normal use and one to leave in the box in hopes of hacks, the second one was only powered up once to verify its on 1.75 fw ;) i bought a vita on a black friday deal 2012 and have had a psp exploit from uno/101-in-1. tn-v, cso all the good shit, its still on 3.01 to this day.

    a few days after ninjax was released i went to a local game repair store and had them order me a copy of cubic ninja from their game distributor. once that brand new sealed copy was in my hands i bought a o3dsxl and went strait for that QR code and brew. so thats my history as a sceener i was going to leave out the parts were 1 was the first person ever to my knowledge to get debug firmware to install on a retail ps3 in 2008 via ps3proxy and hdd hotswaps before xvistaman5000 (i shared the method with him via IRC and he "leaked" it. i didnt want to get hell from people bricking their shit for a debug firmware and that didnt actually work with the debug options) (i also was the first person to ask dark alex if he could modify psp custom firmware to download system updates from a private server with newer custom firmwares)

    id always help friends hack or mod there psps or ps2s with my pandora batterie or make freemcboot memory cards and install homebrew and roms to thumb drives. i got into fixing disc read errors on fat ps2s (just adjusting the lazer with the 2 screws) fixing ylod on ps3s with cleaning/fresh proper artic5 silver thermal paste and reflowing the motherboard ( i always wanted to get into reballing but never had the proper tools)

    For years i liked to troll video game stores with my hacked psp/psvita. id boot up tn-v and ask the employees why my psvita still had the psp xmb as if i got it that way and it was broken, or when at gamestop or other mom n pop shops, when they ask "how can i help/what games are you looking for?" id ask for shit like "do you have super mario world or super mario 64 for the psp/psvita. they would look at me like i was retarded :/ and be like "umm those are snes/n64 games, thats not possible, mario games are only for nintendo not sony playstation." id ask are you sure? how much trade in credit can i get for the psp/psv version of sm64? they are just like "um none like i said its not possible!" then id be like oh yea? welllll check this shit out and bust out my psp or psv running said super mario world or super mario 64, and the looks on their faces were priceless. some would say no thats just a video running, but then id hand it to them and tell them to try it. they would either be shocked and flabbergasted or pissed off and angry i proved them wrong then asked how did i do it, or they would be onto the fact it was a hack or mod. some would ask if i could do it to their system. id say no but tell them the websites with the guides.

    well one day i was at this popular used game store named game world when i pulled my troll trick on one of the owners of the shop. he had this huge shitface grin and was like "hmm so your one of those modders huh? i could really use your skills here, as i always get people asking me if i could mod their systems" this mom n pop shop did sell r4 nds flash carts so they knew if they could sell a piracy device they would. he asked me what i knew and what i can do. i told him i can repair PS2, ps3s, unbrick PSPs, downgrade and flash psp install custom firmware, softmod ps2, make ps2 work with regular pc hard drives, the various emulators i can get to run on varying hardware, softmod a og xbox, if i had a infectus or e3 flasher downgrade and cfw a ps3, jailbreak android devices, ect. well he wanted proof. so he went in the back repair room, and gave me 2 disc read error PS2s w/network adapters and 2 500 gb hdds, a bricked PSP, a YLOD 60gb ps3, and 3 ps2 memory cards, and said if u can fix and mod these we will talk and ill pay u for fixing and modding them and maybe a job. CHALLENGE ACCEPTED!!!! i asked for a blue disc ps2 game to test with as those are the hardest to read.

    i got home, slapped in my pandora batterie into the bricked psp, BAM it booted up. downgraded, latest cfw installed, slapped some emulators and roms, a few homebrew games.... 20 minutes later done
    cracked open both ps2s, adjusted the lazers, tested the systems with ps1 discs, ps2 blue discs, ps2 dvd games, dvd movies, then used my modded ps2 to make the mem cards into freemcboot cards, modded the network adapters to fit the hdds, filled the hdds with emulators, roms, some ps2 backups and loaders, swapmajic, codebreaker, ect 30 minutes done cracked open the ylod ps3, cleaned, reflowed with a heat gun, new grease, bam it booted into a pre 3.55 firmware XD bam installed 3.55 ofw, then 3.55 cfw then the latest kmeaw cfw, installed brew emulators, roms, ps3 disc backups spoofers and psnpatchers and stealth loaders. 45 minutes.

    i ate lunch and within 3 hours of me getting the systems i was back at the shop to the surprise of the owner. he said how he thought i wouldnt come back and id of kept all the stuff he gave me without even getting my personal info. i was like naaaa man i already have all the and modded, i dont need these, im not a complete dick, believe in karma, and had fun fixing this shit. he asked me how much i wanted. i wasnt sure how much to charge him so i said $20 per system for the repairs and $10 per mod. so $120. he was like really thats all? no u deserve more than that hell we charge $50 to $100 per repair. so he ended up giving me $200 cash on the spot. but then it gets better he asked is there anything in my shop u want? games? systems? and i said i was eyeballing that PSPgo pack u have there in that case ( it was the system with a 16gb memory card, neopreme soft case and component video out cables) he opens it up asking why that? i said so i can use it to play mario bros on TVs with a ps3 controller XD hes like damn good anwser id of never thought of that, anything else? i being a huge metal gear solid fan asked you got any rare mgs games like a black case MGS1, mgs2 subsistance, mgs vr missions, ps2 document of metal gear solid, or really anything MGS related? shure enough he had all those and a mgs peace walker limited edition hard shell for a psp. i also scored a new condition ps3 controller cammo. he gave all this *for free*/payment for my speedy work.


    we discussed the job,(over a blunt XD) id be in charge of ps2 psp and ps3 repairs, and if people wanted a system modded id be the one to do it. i told him how on ps3 id need a e3 flasher to do custom firmware installs, i showed him how to run the ps2 homebrew/backups/emulators and to load the roms. same for psp and ps3. he asked if i could write up a simple easy to understand instruction manual to go with a modded system, i said yea shure. we agreed on a hourly wage + a comission per system id fix or mod. i already had another job working nights 4-11 pm and id come in when i could so no fixed schedule, this shop was open from 8am-9pm id usually come in 10am-3pm or longer on my days off. this job was cake!

    first they had me fix and mod about 30 ps2s, about 10 ps3s, a few psps in their repair room. i came up with the idea of selling a ps2 modded memory cards with a 16gb usb thumb drives and instruction booklets on how to run the preinstalled emus/brew on the thumb drive and how to burn dvd games or add a usb hdd and dump and run games, and we would offer games to install to the hdd and charge per game. they started to display the modded ps2s in the cases, the memcard/thumb drive kits, a couple of the cfw psps. we sold quite a few of the ps2s. they put a ad in the case about asking about having your console modded here. i helped the store redesign the overall layout of the shelves and glass cases. this shop was also a card shop with a second attached shop were they held magic and yugioh contests, it was my idea to buy a ice cream freezer and sell icecream ( they sold chips n soda before) they had a shit ton of action figures in boxes crammed in a small glass case and a bunch more in the stock room. i took it upon myself to use thumb tacks and hang all the figures in their boxes on some bare walls and made this sweet ass display. people would come in and just stare at the wall and comment how cool it looked (there was probably around 50-80 all setup with themes about 50 feet long and 4 feet high along the ceiling.

    one other perk was being able to bring my personal ps3 and psp and dump whatever games i wanted form their inventory XD some of the other employees hated that id just go threw the games and pull out stacks and break the seals then give them back to them to reseal after i ripped them lol

    a funny story was the owner asked if id look at this Japanese console called a tm martys that was from the 1990s. it was cd rom based and the disc drive was so generic, it used a rubber band belt drive to spin the disc. the band dry rotted and they couldnt figure out how to fix it and that the replacement rubberbands wer on back order for years with no hope of ever getting them and fixing it. well, i looked at the old rubberband and took it with me to a hardware store. i bought a O-ring set that had the same size. it was so simple to fix and couldnt believe how simple minded the owner and other repair guy was. fuck even a regular rubberband could have worked. but the real funny part is that this system was know for having hentai ergo based games, witch the shop had a collection of. well when the other repair guy opened the case of one of these hentai games, there seemed to be dried cum on the inside of the case, on the disc and on the manual. everyone was like eeeewwwww gross.

    this job lasted about a year and a half until the owner started losing money from his escalating cocaine addiction and DUIs he lost his wizzards of the coast endorsement for the card tournaments and that was his bread and butter. his employees pay checks started bouncing so they quit, the co owner/brother went on a 2 month backpacking trip to europe and he was the man incharge of trade ins and was the real working owner who busted his ass while the main owner sat on his ass in his office doing lines of coke ( he offered me i never took) he started smoking spice due to his drug court for his dwi/duis and mad that fake weed crap made this dude retarded. i was always paid in cash weekly under the table. so i never had to deal with a bounced check. one day he paid me and was like i dont think i can pay u next week can i give u store credit? i was like na there isnt anything i want in this shop i didnt already pirate lol he did have some sweet ass panchio machines but id not want to really own one and he wanted thousands for them. so i said u have my number call me when buisness picks up again until then i wont be back. it sucked but the place was on its last leg near death. the shop moved a few miles away in a hard to find strip mall were u couldnt eve see the shop from the street or parking lot. no sign in the lot. i checked out the new location once. the boss man looked like shit. had 1 employee left, and the shop was tiny, cramped and just was un inviting. nothing like the lively old huge shop before. this new spot only lasted a few months till is dissapeared with no warning.

    it did kinda suck being undocumented working there as i cant really use it in my resume but i did troll another shop owner of another game repair store with my vita/sm64 after this, and he asked if i was the modder from the game world XD so i guess i was know of. we had this debate how what i did was unethical and hurt his business. he offered me a hourly job for less pay and no commission, but i passed. he was a old grumpy dick in a tiny shop. but man it was fun while it lasted. especially having smoke breaks of blunts/joints/bongs/wax dabs with the bosses erryday and being blitzed while pressing buttons and getting paid to do something i loved <3

    tl;dr: i used a hacked psvita to troll the owner of a game shop, fixed some playstation2/3s/PSPs. got a job at said shop, robbed them blind for easy as fuck work and pirating their games, smoked weed erryday till the owner went on a coke binge downward spiral and took the shop down with him, and some guy touched dried cum. good times
     
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  2. th3joker
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    th3joker GBAtemp Regular

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    ok fine dont ask me anything i dont care *starts cutting self*
     
  3. TotalInsanity4

    TotalInsanity4 GBAtemp Supreme Overlord

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    That's actually a very interesting story :o do you enjoy the job?
     
  4. th3joker
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    th3joker GBAtemp Regular

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    i did, the pay was good, i set my own hours, the atmosphere was fun and lively, got to get stoned with the owners/bosses, the work was relatively easy, and how often do people really get a job by trolling, and be paid to mod consoles by a video game retail store? i do miss it, it suckes it had to die like it did, it was easily the biggest and best mom-n-pop used game store in the city. i will say this though, it was sustained by the fact that most of the trade in games were stolen and they gave shit for cash for them. like who the hell just so happens to have 5-10 caseless copys of games that just came out? the yugioh tournaments were always kinda crazy with 50 plus kids yelling and acting all crazy. i was never into it but it was a party atmosphere. i met some cool people while working there. and my nickname was "the dude" like the big lebowski. i didnt want randoms knowing my real name as i knew what i was doing was shady and technically illegal selling piracy and all
     
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  5. TotalInsanity4

    TotalInsanity4 GBAtemp Supreme Overlord

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    There's a game store like that called Video Games Etc. in my area that I'm thinking of working at eventually, just because of how cool the people are and the type of things they sell
     
  6. Clydefrosch

    Clydefrosch GBAtemp Psycho!

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    what monumental idiot videogame store sells free games to their customers? and what one would rather cheaply repair broken consoles when they could sell them new ones, take the broken ones for 10bucks of storecredit, 'repair' them for basically nothing and resell them later?

    i honestly cant believe that story.

    the only store i ever found flashcards in sold them for 250bucks because its basically unlimited games for the price of 5 games.
     
  7. TheStoneBanana

    TheStoneBanana GBAtemp Fan

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    This story sounds extremely fabricated, IMO.
     
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  8. osm70

    osm70 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Please, stop.

    If you are serious, don't do it, it's a bad idea. just trust me on this.

    And if you are kidding, don't. You don't know what you are talking about.
     
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  9. th3joker
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    th3joker GBAtemp Regular

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    This store never sold new consoles or games. It was all used/refurbished stuff. If it was new it was traded in as new. Yes we sold some refurbished systems that i modded and the charged $5-10 per game installed. There wasnt alot of people who got installed games but we sold quite a few modded systems. They would take in broken systems for $5-10 and fix them and flip those. This shop lived off their trade ins becuase they would offer more than gamestop for credit or cash. They bought out the inventory of other games shops that closed for pennies it was funny and sad.
     
  10. th3joker
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    th3joker GBAtemp Regular

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    Why would i need to lie about this? Look up game world of las vegas. They have the site still up i think. And if u look up their google reviews ull see they have gone to shit, owners names were steve and chris. Steve was the cokehead. What would i have to gain from making up a story? I just felt like sharing a bit of my past and letting some people know i may be new here but im a long time scener.
     
  11. Lilith Valentine

    Lilith Valentine GBATemp's Wolfdog™ ☠️Grunt☠️

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    This honestly sounds like a load of crap. I am not doubting that you've worked for a game store before, but I highly doubt you actually worked for them as a "hacker."
    First: They would have been shutdown in a week. No matter where they are located in the US, there's no way a store would have been able to do anything you claim and still be open.
    Second: If this is true, then they committed copyright infringement and you've just admitted on a public form to committing a federal crime.
    Third: I did look them up and I am not finding anything more than a poorly made website for them. Nothing about hacking, modding, ect.
    Finally: You are flat lying for attention.
     
  12. iAqua

    iAqua

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    People are so untrusting, smh. You really should be a little kinder...
     
  13. Lilith Valentine

    Lilith Valentine GBATemp's Wolfdog™ ☠️Grunt☠️

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    Just because someone made an extremely long post, doesn't mean it's true. Just look at the Lord of Rings Trilogy.
     
  14. iAqua

    iAqua

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    I'm not saying its true because it's long. I'm saying you really should trust people.
     
  15. Engert

    Engert I love me

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    Nobody cares.
     
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  16. iAqua

    iAqua

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    You seemed to care enough to post that.
     
  17. Lilith Valentine

    Lilith Valentine GBATemp's Wolfdog™ ☠️Grunt☠️

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    Nah. There's too many things wrong with this story to make it even close to being legit and research isn't backing up any of the OP's claims. There's no way a store would be able to operate like this for any amount of time without gaining some kind of legal attention. Not to mention with actions like DUI's and drug charges being placed on the owner of the store, you would think that there would be some kind of record to those claims as well.
    Everything about this post screams "LOOK AT ME!! I AM COOL BECAUSE DID SOMETHING!! BELIEVE ME BECAUSE I PUT DETAIL IN IT!"
     
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  18. vayanui8

    vayanui8 GBAtemp Maniac

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    Its not even remotely believable. Why should anyone believe someones story if it makes no sense. I mean, this would be a pretty terrible business model if it actually were real. He's killing his own profits by selling the hacked consoles. Thats not to mention any of the other holes in this story like the store going from being very successful to going out of business in a year and a half, or the fact that this would easily draw legal attention, especially if the owner is getting pulled in for his DUIs to begin with.
     
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  19. th3joker
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    th3joker GBAtemp Regular

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    Well no shit they didnt advertise on the website they enabled piracy and sold backups. It was only advertised as a small sign in the case that to ask about console modding and jailbreaks. We had a demo ps2 for anyone to play that had snes9x loaded and that was the bait. People would ask how is mario world running on this ps2. Then i or other sales people would explain its a modded system and a emulator. The shop is closed now and i was never documented as a employee so there is no paper trail to link me (as planned) so i can give 2 shits if some douche from here trys to blow a whistle. Shop is already dead. And if steve took the heat, fuck him he ruined his own buisness. He was always shady as fuck. Like i said what do i even have to gain by lying? Nothing. What do i have to lose? Freedom? Think
     
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  20. Lilith Valentine

    Lilith Valentine GBATemp's Wolfdog™ ☠️Grunt☠️

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    First, you've completely ruined your entire story. The second that sign would have been put up, they would have been shutdown. There is no way in hell a store would have gotten away with advertising that kind of stuff without gaining legal attention.
    And if you were running Mario World on a PS2 as a demo, the store would have been shutdown because like I just said, there's no way something like that would have not gained legal attention. And worst of all, you claim to have told them that it was hacked. There's nothing even remotely believable about your story.
    And what would you gain? IDK. I guess 5 minutes of fame? I mean, your post got my attention, even if it was to call it bullshit.
     
    Last edited by Lilith Valentine, Sep 10, 2016
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