In December, wily hackers made considerable progress in circumventing the security of the Nintendo 3DS and getting homebrew code to run on the handheld.
First, noted hacker Yellows8 managed to get a smidgen of custom code running on the device. Now, Tiny Cartridge reports that tinkerer Xcution is running homebrew tests, while Neimod has taken full control of the system in kernel mode.
In that kernel hack, Neimod uses an exploit in a retail game. This exploit could be rendered useless "very easily" with a patch, though, as Neimod explains in a chat log posted on the GBAtemp forum.
The hack already has one useful benefit, mind: the pesky region lock, which stops you playing Japanese games on your European machine, can be switched off via the exploit.
Irate about pirates
But, as with any hack, there's a possibility that this could lead to piracy on the console.
Unfettered access to bootleg games almost crippled the DS and PSP, and developers on Nintendo's new console are already anxious about piracy hitting 3DS.
Writing on his blog, Mutant Mudds developer Jools Watsham says: "If piracy gets bad on the 3DS, we will have no choice but to stop supporting the platform with new games."