Booting up the “Wiiloader”, Japan Edition

By Spencer . March 17, 2008 . 12:21pm


I have a copy of Datel’s Freeloader for Nintnedo Wii, but unlike some early reports the disc clearly says “for use with Japanese consoles.” The discs are region encoded so if you’re thinking about getting one make sure you select the correct version.



Let’s open up the pacakage… what? This is a Gamecube disc! The one page slip of paper clearly warns about accepting online upgrades. Datel cannot guarantee compatibility with future firmware updates.



Enough with the warnings, it’s time to test the Freeloader for Wii. After putting the disc in the screen blurs horizontally, twice. You don’t need to click on the Wii disc channel to run a program or anything like that. Just insert a disc and you’re good to go. OK. How about a classic Wii title like the Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess?




That’s the US version of Twilight Princess working on a Japanese Wii!



It appears the game can save properly too. Now for a second test… how about something more recent like Trauma Center: New Blood.



The Freeloader for Wii successfully loaded the game, but the nunchuck style screen is in Japanese…



… wait this says Caduceus: New Blood in Japanese on a US disc?



Surprisingly, my North American copy of Trauma Center: New Blood completely switched to the Japanese version when booted with Datel's device. Not only did this include Japanese text, but Japanese voice acting too! Apparently, Atlus put two versions of Trauma Center: New Blood on the same disc and the disc can tell which region it's being run on. Neat! I wonder if any Japanese games have hidden English language options. 

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  • Whoa, sounds great. Too bad that creating a Wiiloader, which works even after a firmware upgrade is probably impossible to make >_>

  • Wow now that is awesome, they have two different versions on the same disk, has anyone bothered just sticking a US disk of Trauma Center into a Japanese Wii and see if it bothers working at all? I could’ve sworn Nintendo left it up to the developer if they wanted a game to be region restricted =o

  • I have both a Japanese and US Wii and tried the US Trauma Centre on my Japanese console and, unsurprisingly, it failed to load.
    Tested a couple of other US games and they failed to boot too.

    It’s still interesting that the one DVD contains both versions.

  • kakashi

    I’m still upset at Datel (or Codejunkies US) since I emailed them 2 weeks before my order shipped, asking if there are multiple versions of the Freeloader and they never responded.

    OTOH, I’m happy that the US Freeloader works on my Japanese console.
    I think it might have something to do with the fact that I got mine modded shortly after I bought it, so I could play domestics, but firmware upgrades changed that really quickly.

  • Ryu Kazama

    Apparantly it’s meant to work for GC games too. Mine didn’t seem to work for my Naruto games (Euro Freeloader in use). I haven’t got any import Wii games to try out yet though I did just order Smash Bros.

  • thaKingRocka

    now that’s a pretty cool find. i may actually import a title or two should i get impatient.

    btw, Scott, that’s MS’s policy. some xbox and 360 games are locked, some aren’t. nintendo has strict region control with the wii for some reason. i don’t know why though. they know first-hand from the success of the DS that it doesn’t hurt to have region-free hardware.

  • I’ve ordered a Freeloader two weeks ago and it’s apparently been shipped on the 6th but I still haven’t received anything… should I e-mail them or whatever?

  • @CRIMExTHINK – I would e-mail them just to see what’s going on. I actually didn’t get my Freeloader through Datel so I can’t speak on their shipping times.

  • Aoshi00

    I just got mine tonight too! Ordered it from codejunkies back in the end of Feb.

    Unfortunately the Wii import games I ordered haven’t arrived yet, I can’t wait to try out Eyeshield 21 & Dragon Quest Swords. And there’s a high chance I would get the cute “Clean Keeper” :)

    Hopefully the big N wouldn’t void this freeloader w/ another update so soon. I don’t mind getting a 2nd Jpn Wii, my qualm is I want another color other than white.

  • Shushu

    How did you get a Wii Freeloader Japan version?
    I went to the Codejunkies site and I only saw a UK and US version…

  • @People worried about the firmware update : Read this


    That alone justified ordering one. Oh, that and playing Karous and Shikigami no Shiro III of course :)

  • Daizyujin

    While that is somewhat comforting CRIMExTHINK, it isn’t like it will probably take very long for Nintendo to relock it. Lets face it, with all these firmware updates available for consoles we are at the complete whim of the system maker. Just like the shift to selling half finished games and demanding more money for the missing content (yes sony I am looking at you and Toy Home) great technological advantages are just being used to rip off consumers and make a quick buck this generation. I just hope this don’t tune into a situation like with the PSP where I can’t play a single new game due to not wanting to update the firmware. Of course realistically speaking, I know it will.

  • TacoBeaver

    well… cool

  • Melody Kitn

    I’m still waiting to see a firmware upgrade and how it affects it, just cause I’m paranoid that way (and cause the paycheck hasn’t arrived). Still, stuff like this is a godsend for me being in the UK but having brought my US Wii. Not being able to play aside from the few games I bought when I first got the system has been maddening. Will be nice to pick up stuff like Brawl and Okami when it’s released here instead of having to import.

  • nika

    I keep hearing positive things about the freeloader. maybe I’ll eventually get one, considering that my wii still isn’t accepting all games even though I modded it. (I’ll have to thank super mario galaxy for that…)

  • bp

    Anyone know how to change the US trauma center back to english on the japanese wii?

  • viper

    the american version of residnt evil: the umbrella chronicles running on a japanese wii also completely switched to the japanese version with a freeloader ver.japan ~(?

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