The Vita Hasn’t Been Completely Cracked Yet, But One Guy Is Getting Awfully Close

The Vita Hasn’t Been Completely Cracked Yet, But One Guy Is Getting Awfully Close

Sony wanted to make sure the Vita was difficult to crack. Earlier this year, some folks at wololo found exploitable in the Vita and were able to run custom (homebrew) software. Sony pulled some games in order to remove the code, and not too much about hacking the Vita has been heard since.

Recently, however, Yifan Lu, a student in Texas, has made some significant progress in reverse-engineering the Vita, GiantBomb reports. However, while Lu is working hard on a exploit for the Vita, he told GiantBomb that he has absolutely zero interest in using exploits in order to pirate games:

“We can’t stop it, but I can promise that I will never help it,” he said. “I made this metaphor before, but it’s like the invention of aeroplanes. They’re good for transportation, but somebody decided it can be used to drop bombs. But to prevent bombing cities, would it have been better if aeroplanes were never invented?”

Sony, meanwhile, had major issues with piracy on the PSP and clearly wants to prevent their second handhold from falling into the same troubles. They are unlikely to look favourably on Lu’s efforts, no matter how innocent his intentions.

Lu and a team of others working with him have been able to see and analyse the code running in the Vita’s memory, and are now working on designing a loader that can read custom code. When they’ve got that done, the Vita will be able to run pretty much anything, from anyone.

How long can he and others keep climbing the metaphorical mountain of this challenge before Sony knocks them down? Who knows. But until they do, he’ll keep at it. “If they tell me to stop, I will. I don’t have the time or resources to fight them,” Lu told GiantBomb. But until Sony actually tells them to knock it off, the quest to hack the Vita is a go.

The Engineer Behind Vita’s First Big Exploit [GiantBomb]


  • It really is such a shame to see such a wonderful piece of tech so sorely under-supported by devs… it’s littered with possibility and I have yet to play a good game on it… though a few recent announcements look promising, might even convince me to pick one up for myself.

    • I can see your concern abut the vita but when you get it in your hands and play around with it for the first time, you’ll realize just how great the vita is. I bought mine on day 2 of its release and haven’t regretted it since. Some good games coming out later this year as well such as LBP, NFS MW, AC3, Sonic and sega racing, silent hill,Sly Cooper, PS battle royals. Surely one of those would interest you.

    • After getting burned by being a day 1 buyer of the original PSP and really only used the thing like 1-2 times a year till MGS came out on it, i was very hesitant buying into the Vita and i still haven’t made the plunge for a few reasons.

      One of them being lack of developer support as you mentioned. Reason being – yes its a great piece of handheld technology but it is a poorly priced piece of technology that has led to too little sales to get many devs and publishers really invested in it, which in turn leads to complaints about lack of original software for the vita, which ultimately leads to fail.

      There are some good titles out there no doubt – i would like to play uncharted, the AC3 tie in game etc… but realistically at the price it is at, i would much rather get a new ps3 (my old one broke a while ago out of warranty) since i know i am probably not going to whip the vita out and enjoy games like that unless i am at home or am on a really long trip like on a plane so that i can actually play it and not stop start every 10 minutes like if i was on the bus/train.

  • I bought a 3DS not because it’s better hardware, but because quite simply it had a lot of games on it right now that I want to play.

  • Sounds like he’s getting pretty close… This from CNET:

    When asked for proof of the exploit, Yifanlu said, “I could [proabably] get a ‘pretty’ hello world done by next week. Right now, the hello world can’t be seen on screen, but is observable indirectly, and we know that code is running.”

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