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Nintendo Switch Piracy Subreddit Banned After Giant Tears Of The Kingdom Leak

The forum survived for three years prior to the Breath of the Wild sequel’s piracy bonanza

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Mario takes a hammer to the Yuzu Pirates subreddit.
Image: Reddit / Nintendo / Kotaku

The Nintendo Switch piracy subreddit r/newyuzupiracy managed to fly under the radar for years. However, on June 13, three years after it was originally created, Reddit banned the forum after it blew up in the wake of the massive pre-release leak of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.

As first reported by PC Gamer, the subreddit doubled in size last month, going from over 37,000 members in early May to over 69,000 after Tears of the Kingdom leaked early and pirated copies of the game subsequently began to proliferate online. Yuzu is software that lets users legally emulate Switch games they own on PC, but many players simply opt to use illegally downloaded copies instead.

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Once illicit copies of Tears of the Kingdom began circulating, users of the r/newyuzupiracy subreddit shared download links as well as tips for avoiding bugs and fixing emulator settings to get the best possible performance out of the game. Links for mods were also exchanged, as well as save file editors.

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A screenshot of r/newyuzupiracy from May 1.
A screenshot shows the front page of r/newyuzupiracy on May 1 when Tears of the Kingdom leaked.
Screenshot: Reddit / Kotaku

“We were expecting it to happen,” user ENOVA-Absolute posted posted on the 128bitbay subreddit earlier this week. “It was only a matter of when.” The reason Reddit gave for the ban was that r/newyuzupiracy served “the same objective as a previously banned or quarantined subreddit,” seemingly a reference to the original r/yuzupiracy board. The new community, however, had managed to survive for years without trouble prior to the Tears of the Kingdom mess.

It’s unclear if Reddit just didn’t take notice of the forum for some reason until it doubled in size or if Nintendo got involved following the leaks. The Mario maker has taken an increasingly aggressiv approach to piracy and mods as well as leaks and legal emulation in the last few months. It went after popular YouTubers for making videos about unofficial multiplayer add-ons for Breath of the Wild, subpoenaed Discord for the personal info of an alleged Tears of the Kingdom art book leaker, and advised Valve to remove a Steam listing for the GameCube and Wii emulator Dolphin.

Reddit and Nintendo did not immediately respond to requests for comment.