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Cooking Mama: Cookstar developers respond to cryptocurrency mining allegations

The allegations were partly fueled by early announcements positioning the title as “the first game to integrate blockchain technology on major consoles.”
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The developers of Cooking Mama: Cookstar have denied allegations that the Nintendo Switch eShop version of their game is mining cryptocurrency and said there is “no cryptocurrency or data collection of blockchain” elements in its code.

The developers put out a statement after claims that the game was mining cryptocurrency and causing Nintendo Switch consoles to heat up went viral on Twitter.

The developers told games industry news reporter Ryan Brown:

“As the developers we can say with certainty there is no cryptocurrency or data collection or blockchain or anything else shady in the code.

The Nintendo Switch is a very safe platform, with none of the data and privacy issues associated with some mobile and PC games.”

Developer and reverse engineer SimonTime also tweeted that he found “no cryptominer/blockchain stuff anywhere within Cooking Mama: Cookstar” after reverse-engineering the code.

The developer’s response comes after a series of irregularities have surrounded Cooking Mama: Cookstar over the last couple of years.

In February 2019, the game was announced as Cooking Mama: Coming Home to Mama and marketed as “the first game to integrate blockchain technology on major consoles.”

This announcement also stated “we are using blockchain to add new innovative gameplay that investors can now have equity in” and referred to “digital preferred shares.”

https://twitter.com/nintendaan/status/1246851705318367235

When asked about the blockchain references in this 2019 announcement, the developers told Brown this was “hypothetical” and never integrated into the final product.

However, Brown later added “it would seem the blockchain code was there at some point but was removed” and suggested this likely caused poor optimization.

Brown also tweeted that the developers didn’t seem aware of the blockchain plan yet it “existed at a publisher level.”

A March 26, 2020, tweet from the Cooking Mama: Cookstar’s official Twitter account has also created confusion around the game.

The tweet contained a video that said the game was “available now” and encouraged Twitter users to order the game via the official Cooking Mama: Cookstar website.

However, the “Buy It Now” page on this website contains a broken link to the Nintendo Switch eShop version of the game which has left many wondering why the game has been removed from Nintendo’s store.

The Cooking Mama: Cookstar official website contains a “Buy Now” link to the Nintendo eShop
The Cooking Mama: Cookstar official website contains a “Buy Now” link to the Nintendo eShop
The Nintendo Switch eShop link is broken and Cooking Mama: Cookstar doesn’t appear to be available anywhere in the eShop
The Nintendo Switch eShop link is broken and Cooking Mama: Cookstar doesn’t appear to be available anywhere in the eShop

Several gaming news outlets reported that Cooking Mama: Cookstar was available in the Nintendo Switch eShop for a short time before disappearing.

However, it’s still unclear why the game was removed from the eShop but some Twitter users are speculating it’s a licensing or rating-related issue.

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