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These methods of verification have been debunked. As a result, we should not be using these methods as a sole means of verification. Ever.


Nintendo DS

The Dual-Screen Logo

Every DS cart should have the dual-screen logo. However, there are instances where the logo has been omitted due to printing errors. This is rare. Most dual-screen logos include a skewed marker, but there are some carts have the marker squared off, such as Pokemon Black 2. This is also normal, and as a result, we shouldn't be using this as a verification method.

Legitimate Dual-Screen logos for the NTR-005 and NTR-031 carts. Skewed, straight and missing.

NTR-031 - The "Light Trick"

Pokemon games are among some of the most counterfeited carts, including those that use the Pokewalker add-on. Luckily, these fake carts are very easy to spot in comparison with other grey NTR-005 carts. The main difference between the standard NTR-005 and NTR-031 carts are that the NTR-005 carts are grey, NTR-031 are black with a reddish tint when held up to any form of light - this is because of the IR used with the Pokewalker add-on. NTR-031 carts were also used with DS games that required the use of a pedometer, such as Personal Trainer: Walking.

Please note that unscrupulous sellers have cottoned on to this. They'll remove the label from Walk With Me/Active Health, and tack a third-party label for an NTR-031 Pokemon game. As a result, we can't use this method for a verification anymore.

Example of the "light trick" using a relabeled HeartGold. Not a verification method as a result. Backside image of same cart, code is for Active Health.

Top Seam

The top seams of DS cartridges are not a verification method, unlike what some YouTubers claim. This is because that some legitimate DS cartridges lack the "visible rectangle" that is present on some cartridges.

Both legitimate DS cartridges. Left lacking the rectangle, right including.

As a result, we can not use this as a verification method.

0J09 and 0J22 Stamps:

Contrary to popular belief, games with the stamp ending in "xxxxN0J09" and "xxxxN0J22" do not equal a fake game. Legitimate games also have this stamp. There are instances where the stamp looks pretty piss poor compared to a legitimate cartridge, and also instances where they look very close the really thing. Take a look at Pokemon Diamond below. It's almost perfect.

Fake US Pearl with 0J09. Legit PAL Platinum with 0J09. Fake US Diamond with 0J22. Legit White 2 with 0J22.

Nintendo Game Boy

4x Golden Rectangles

As with the previous Game Boy PCB iterations, 4x gold rectangles will ALWAYS be on the back of legitimate PCB's. No 4x gold rectangles, not legit.

Unfortunately, some counterfeiters have cottoned onto this, and readily produce games with the 4x golden rectangles. As a result, this is no longer a verification method. This goes for DMG, GBC and GBA cartridges.

There are some rare cases where legitimate games do not include the 4x golden rectangles. In the DMG era, Nintendo used to off-load some manufacturing to third-parties. It's rare, but likely that other GBC and GBA titles could have had the same fate. For the Game Boy Advance, WarioWare Twisted is one of these games that does not feature the golden rectangles. This is why using the 4x golden rectangles is a relatively shitty verification method, and shouldn't be used.

Fake Shantae GBC including the 4x golden rectangles. No longer a verification method.
Fake Pokemon FireRed and LeafGreen including the 4x golden rectangles. No longer a verification method.
Legitimate Tetris DMG excluding the 4x golden rectangles, outsourced manufacture. Third times the charm... NOT a verification method.

2x Golden Squares

There are also 2 gold squares on the top left and bottom right of the cartridge's board, front side. This confirms the authenticity of the board. If you're looking through the translucent plastic, three should be one easily seen square on the top left corner of the cartridge.

Again, some counterfeiters have cottoned onto this, and readily produce games with the 2x golden squares. As a result, this is no longer a verification method.

Fake Mother 3 US GBA including the 2x golden squares. No longer a verification method.

Number Stamps

Any bloke and his dog can obtain a 3mm die-stamp kit and a rubber mallet for less than $15, and get stamping away on fake carts. This is exactly why we don't use the number stamps for a verification method. Whilst the majority of legitimate cartridges do have number stamps, a number of third-party titles (not produced by Nintendo themselves) are known to completely omit the number stamps!

Fake Pokemon My Ass, with number stamp. Not a verification method.
Legitimate Fightbox GBA, no number stamp. Not a verification method.

GB Operator

The GB Operator is a device marketed by Epilogue that allows you to play, back up saves and detect bootleg cartridges - this is the issue. It doesn't detect all of them.

Here's an example of a bad fake of Pokemon Gold for the Game Boy, marked as "legit" by the GB Operator.

Fake Pokemon Gold, marked as "Legit" by GB Operator. Not a verification method.

Credits

  • Thanks to u/jakacop for the image of the PAL Pokemon Platinum in the "Stamps" section.
  • Thanks to u/flygon333333 for the images of the US Pokemon Diamonds in the "Top Seam" section.
  • Thanks to u/DonkeyKongOnN64 for the images of the fake Pokemon Gold in the "GB Operator" section.
  • Møøse trained to mix concrete and sign complicated insurance forms by u/Frontzie.