Nintendo 3DS GBA Game Injection [GBA on 3DS] [Pokemon 128k Saves + RTC Support]

Discussion in 'Nintendo 3DS Guides' started by InsaneNutter, Mar 24, 2018.

  1. InsaneNutter

    InsaneNutter Resident Nutter Staff Member

    Jun 1, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Yorkshire, England

    The Nintendo 3DS actually has all the hardware inside to natively play GBA (GameBoy Advanced) games without using emulation. With CFW (Custom firmware) this means we can package our own GBA and load them on the 3DS, having them play exactly the same as on a real GBA. The only thing been emulated is the actual GBA cartridge slot.

    It was recently discovered how to load GBA games with 128k save support and in addition RTC (real time clock) support, meaning its now possible for the 3DS to perfectly play the vast majority of GBA games. The only games which will not work are games where the cartridge contains special hardware, which very very few games do. Something to keep in mind as with the DS / DS Lite link cable support is not possible, however if you wish to trade Pokemon for example you can backup your save, do the trading on an emulator then restore the save to your 3DS as a work around.

    What interest me about this is that its now possible to play all the core Pokemon games on the 3DS, from Red and Blue to Ultra Sun and Moon.

    In this tutorial I will teach you how to easily inject a GBA rom so it can be loaded from the 3DS home screen, this will work on any 3DS console which is running CFW. If your 3DS doesn't have CFW not to worry, its possible to hack and install CFW on any 3DS today relatively easy. For this i'd recommend you follow

    Injecting GBA games on the 3DS:

    Today GBA injection is very easy with the latest New Super Ultimate Injector 3DS Beta26 application, 128k saves and RTC support is now built directly in to the application.

    So first download New Super Ultimate Injector 3DS, you will see you can inject Nes, Snes, GameBoy, GameBoy Colour, GameBoy Advance, Mega Drive, Game Gear and TurbiGrafx 16 games, it's a very similar process for all these consoles, however this tutorial will focus on GBA games:

    So to get started with GBA game injection on the 3DS click File > New > Game Boy Advance CIA:


    If you now drag and drop your GBA rom on to New Super Ultimate Injector you will notice the program is pretty smart and should automatically determine the vast majority of settings for any known game and should even be smart enough to download the correct title screen or cover art from online databases:

    1. If not automatically determined enter the game of the game and the publisher here.

    2. You have the choice to download the title screen or box art, I download the title screen as thats what official Nintendo VC releases use, however this is totally your personal preference.

    3. The console should automatically be detected, if not then choose it here.

    4. You can leave this totally random, however I like to keep things as official as possible so use the correct product code with is displayed on your GBA cartridge label like so:


    The title ID can't be the same as any other game installed on your 3DS, it's pretty safe just to randomize this, however for a series of games such as Pokemon I have gone about this logically and manually created consecutive title ID's as shown below:

    Ruby - Product Code: AXVP, Title ID: 1731
    Sapphire - Product Code: AXPP, Title ID: 1732
    Emerald - Product Code: BPEP, Title ID: 1733
    Fire Red - Product Code: BPRP, Title ID: 1734
    Leaf Green - Product Code: BPGP, Title ID: 1735

    5. Again you have the choice to download the title screen or box art, I download the title screen as thats what official Nintendo VC releases use, however this is totally your personal preference.

    6. The save type and if RTC support is required should be automatically determined, however if its not you can manually select this here. All Pokemon games use 128k saves, however only Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald support an RTC.

    Here is the end result of my user created Pokemon Emerald GBA VC Injection:


    Once you are happy with everything go to Project > Export CIA and save the CIA with whatever file name you like


    You can now install this CIA like any other CIA on the 3DS. Its beyond the scope of this tutorial to explain how to install a CIA, however if you have hacked your 3DS you will have a CIA manager such as FBI installed and have to have used to during the process of hacking your 3DS when following the linked to above.

    I'm sure you will agree the end result is nice and official looking:



    It's also possible to restore your save game from either an emulator or an actual GBA game cartridge If you wish to do that then you are now ready to have a look at this tutorial: 3DS GBA Save Backup and Restore with GodMode9


    Hopefully this tutorial shows just how easy GBA rom injection on the 3DS now is, you no longer need to patch your games to have them fully working.
    Slaz and King Impoleon like this.

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