Switched cartridges


Feb 16, 2013
I remember, and this was when I was rather young, as I'm a child of the nineties, see - every once in a while, I could convince my dad into letting me rent a Super Nintendo game from the movie store.

Ah, the feeling - getting home, popping open the bulky plastic rental case. Blowing the dust out of the cartridge, popping it in and watching the system boot up.

And then you're angry. You're extremely angry. You rented Rock and Roll Racing. The cartridge says Rock and Roll Racing. But no - you're looking at some kind of Power Rangers. What is this madness?! Cartridge switching.

Used to infuriate me so, but I admit I may have been guilty of switching them a time or two myself once I figured it out. I suppose this is somewhat random of a thread, but if we're going to wax nostalgic over the system, might as well wax over it all, right?

I had no idea that this was ever done. I never got to rent games at all. I would just occasionally save up my money enough to buy the new game myself and keep it.

Why would people switch them and was it that common?
I used to rent games too back in the games, all of those stores are currently extinct by now..
But I never had the problem of someone switching the cartridge, always got the one that I wanted.
Jessi said:

I had no idea that this was ever done. I never got to rent games at all. I would just occasionally save up my money enough to buy the new game myself and keep it.

Why would people switch them and was it that common?
They were switched because people would pick up crap games like sports games (they were really primitive and not as fun back then) really cheap at a garage sale, and then rent the game they actually wanted but either couldn't afford or just didn't want to buy, say, Link to the Past, various Mario games, Rock and Roll Racing, Final Fantasy, and then open the catridge and replace the boards in them. So you'd have a copy of FIFA with MARIO scribbled on it with a sharpie.

It was pretty common around here, and I figured it was common elsewhere. You did have to be really good at getting the stickers up without ripping them, and carefully handling it. One rental store around here started checking the cartridges before they'd accept the return.
I guess that the local stores in here always checked, since I've rented tons of games without having that problem ever.
And yeah that could be a real problem, there were many games that were cheap as hell because they were terrible, that changed with this rented game would bring a lot of profit..
Wow, that's really lame. It doesn't really surprise me any, though.

I know people who did the same thing with VCR tapes way back when, too. I just never thought about it happening with game cartridges because I never got to rent any myself.
I never had this problem myself when I was growing up, however, I did do this once when there was a game i REALLY wanted and my parents wouldn't buy it for me. I rented it and switched the cart.with a crappy game I knew i'd never play again that I had duplicate carts of. :D

However, it never personally happened to me. :)
I didn't even realize this was an occurrence. I've never had that happen to me, but I could imagine being very upset if it did. I'm truly just kind of flabbergasted that people even came up with this solution; it would have never occurred to me.
I knew a kid who swapped a whole SNES system for a used one, then returned it right back to K-mart. He grew up to become a financial auditor. Comforting, isn't it? :lol:
I've rented games and opened up the case and the wrong game was inside. But I've never heard of someone having a game that said one thing on the actual cartridge and wound up being something else when you tried to play it. I would have lost my mind if that happened, at least after i got over being very confused LOL.
I've heard about this happening but never experienced it personally. Yes, it's quite easy to change a cartridge by opening the shell and switching the PCB with one of your own games that you want to get rid of. It's very unethical though but I'm not here to judge anyone. We all did a few nefarious things when we were younger, as our moral compass was all over the place.

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