Nintendo 3DS

(See this page for an overview of all known hardware.)

If you need help, please come chat with us on the VGPC Discord.

Important Notes

  • If you have an unused/sealed game, you should dump ROM and save data from the physical media before using it, and note in your submission if the physical media was new or sealed when you got it. This is to avoid inadvertent modification of the data and to help preserve the data in its unused/“factory” state. Its also a good idea to photograph the cart/packaging in its sealed state, in order to help with verifying it.
  • If the dump hashes don't match an already existing item in the relevant database, you should try and verify that the dump is correct before submitting it as a new dump or new version. You can do that by cleaning the contacts (or equivalent) and dumping again.

Dumping Nintendo 3DS carts is fairly easy, and can either be done through homebrew software, or by using a DS flashcart.

You will need an SD card 8GB or larger for this.

  1. SkyDock (todo)

The following method work on all models of the 3DS, 2DS and New 3DS handhelds.

Follow the instructions over at 3DS Hacks Guide for more details on how to get your handheld ready, by enabling it to run 3DS-mode bare metal ARM9 homebrew, and make sure the latest stable GodMode9 is installed/present (v2.0.0 or later).

Note that you do not necessarily need to install custom firmware to run GodMode9 - you can stop following the 3DS Hacks Guide once you get to the point of being able to run a .firm file (or equivalent file for that particular exploit). But for convenience, you may want to follow the 3DS Hacks Guide to the end, so you can easily run GodMode9 at boot.


  • Launch GodMode9 by pressing (Start) and then the power button
  • Navigate to [C:] GAMECART
  • Copy the .3ds file without trim in its name and the .txt file to the SD card. If split files show up (for 3DS games that are 4GB or larger), copy all the split parts to the SD card. Note that you can clear the clipboard by pressing select.
  • If you copied the .3ds file in split form, you need to combine them using copy /b part1 + part2 combined on the Windows command line or cat part1 part1 > combined on the Mac OS or Linux terminal. Otherwise, you're done.

todo: add info on “front of cart”/box serials (and non-standard carts if relevant)


T = Type
GG = Game code (e.g. DA = nintendogs + cats: Golden Retriever & New Friends)
R = Region (J = Japan, E = USA, P = Europe)
M = Manufacturing month (numbers, then after Sep its X,Y,Z for Oct,Nov,Dec)
Y = Manufacturing year (2010 + value OR 2020 + value, depending)
V = Version (starts at 0)
R = Manufacturing run

Easy way to remember where the version number is: fourth character from the right - this works for DS/i carts too.

Download ctrtool and run

ctrtool --intype=cci --verify dump.3ds > ctrtool_log.txt

(replace dump.3ds with the name of your dump). This will create a file called ctrtool_log.txt, which you should keep alongside the dump.

See Gathering and Submitting Dump Info (Basic)

Based on this No-Intro wiki page and Psykopat's back-of-cart serial research

  • carts/nintendo/3ds.txt
  • Last modified: 2022/07/04 11:14
  • by hiccup