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DS

Band Bros. Expansion Pack Coming Soon

by Steven Rodriguez - July 4, 2005, 7:37 pm PDT
Total comments: 18 Source: http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ds/abbj/barbarasama/inde...

The new song pack will see the first use of the DS's GBA slot for something other than GBA games.

Nintendo of Japan has updated their Band Bros. DS page announcing that an expansion for the game is in the works. The "Band Brothers Zouka Kyoku Cartridge" will feature 20 more songs for the DS music game, and Japanese gamers can vote for which songs they want to see included.

The way these songs will be made available to DS owners is what makes this expansion interesting. The pack of songs will come on a GBA cartridge. Both the DS card and the GBA cartridge need to be inserted in the system at the same time for the new songs to be available in the game. This marks the first time that the GBA slot on the DS is being used for expansion purposes, and not just for Game Boy Advance games.

According to the game site, more information on the expansion will be made available on August 22, which will likely include a list of songs voted on by visitors to the Band Bros page. While the US version of the game, Jam with the Band, has been announced, there still aren't any details on when we can expect to see it in the States. Hopefully, Nintendo will release more info on it by the end of the year.

Talkback

Holy crap, Batman! This is brilliant! Nintendo should let third parties join in on the fun.

DasmosJuly 04, 2005

Yeah that's pretty awesome..

MarioJuly 04, 2005

This is great, but it's like Donkey Konga 3 being out in Japan before the rest of the world even has Donkey Konga 2. RELEASE IT HERE! There's a whole world outside of Japan Nintendo.

Switchblade CrossJuly 04, 2005

If only Nintendo would release the game here in the USA alreday!

IceColdJuly 04, 2005

lol you and Mario said the same thing at the same time

I guess it isn't really a priority to get it to North America for Nintendo.

The idea is great, and I hope it will be used in many games to come.

KnowsNothingJuly 05, 2005

This is pretty cool. Unfortunatley, I doubt I'll ever be able to get it, what with importing being more expensive, and me being broke (well, I have enough for Nintendogs, but I need that...)

UncleBobRichard Cook, Guest ContributorJuly 05, 2005

The question is... could someone take one of those GBA Flash Carts and program their own "expansion" for this?

Ian SaneJuly 05, 2005

"could someone take one of those GBA Flash Carts and program their own 'expansion' for this?"

Now that's interesting. I wonder how the expansion concept works. Does the original DS game have to programmed with the option in mind or does the GBA cart just detect the DS game? If the DS game doesn't have to be programmed with it in theory people could make fan mods for any DS game.

EA is SO going to abuse this though when done right expansions are pretty cool. Let's just hope publishers don't see this as an option for patching.

When is this game being released in North America? The DS is like the damn Saturn in that it's like you have to import to get full use of it. It's not like NOA is swamped with several DS games a month to translate. Why is localization taking them so damn long?

BloodworthDaniel Bloodworth, Staff AlumnusJuly 05, 2005

Quote

EA is SO going to abuse this though when done right expansions are pretty cool. Let's just hope publishers don't see this as an option for patching.


Considering how expensive GBA carts are to produce, I seriously doubt it. I'd be surprised if third parties ever use the feature.

Well, the cost of GBA cartridges is somewhat proportional to the size of the ROM chip inside, and for this kind of expansion pack, I'm betting that the smallest available ROM chip will be sufficient. So the cost of the cartridge could be as low or lower than a typical DS card, even. I haven't done the math though, so it's just speculation on my part. Exact prices for these components are rather hard to track down.

DweditJuly 05, 2005

This marks the first non-hacker use of the GBA cartridge slot for DS software. The DS was hacked a long time ago.

MarioAllStarJuly 05, 2005

Quote

Now that's interesting. I wonder how the expansion concept works. Does the original DS game have to programmed with the option in mind or does the GBA cart just detect the DS game? If the DS game doesn't have to be programmed with it in theory people could make fan mods for any DS game.

I believe that the DS games must be specifically programmed for this type of expansion, as well as being programmed to only look for certain things (such as additional song information). Otherwise, on games like Mario Kart DS, a patch could be easily applied to exploit the online system for cheating and who knows what else.

nickmitchJuly 05, 2005

So could a game come out and use the expansion pack to add online features?

UrkelJuly 05, 2005

Why is Nintendo being so reluctant about bringing this game to North America? Didn't Donkey Konga do well in NA? I'm really tempted to just import this one.

IceColdJuly 05, 2005

"So could a game come out and use the expansion pack to add online features?"

I believe so, if the DS card is pre-programmed to accept it.

MarioAllStarJuly 06, 2005

This is basically just expanding on what IceCold said, but here it is anyway...

What I believe is that in order to accept data on the GBA cart a DS game needs to do these things:

-Read the GBA cart (Obvious, I know)
-Verify that the cart is a compatible update (My copy of The Minish Cap shouldn't be patched to a game)
-Patch the information the game is looking for into the game (Such as added music)

What I'm trying to say here is that game is probably looking for certain things (new songs, new race tracks, new characters, etc.). This means that it doesn't just take the entire GBA cart and apply it as a patch to the DS game without discretion, but instead only takes what it can verify. So, unless someone can disguise online functionality as a new melody or find a game that is programmed to look for it, I don't think you can easily add things like online functionality to the game.

In short, the game will only use expansions that have the new "stuff" the game is looking for.

steveyJuly 06, 2005

ww:T and wwT do the same thing if you have them both in at the same time you unlock a video.

KDR_11kJuly 07, 2005

unless someone can disguise online functionality as a new melody

I have a feeling an overflow exploit should work.

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