Dolphin team fully ends plans to release emulator on Steam

Philip Trahan
dolphin emulator header

The team behind the Dolphin Emulator has officially canceled plans to bring it to Steam nearly two months after its release was indefinitely postponed.

Some Nintendo fans may remember that in late March 2023, the team behind the GameCube and Wii Dolphin Emulator announced plans to bring it to Valve’s Steam storefront.

Those plans would eventually fall through on May 27, 2023, after Valve brought it to Nintendo’s attention, and the Dolphin team indefinitely postponed the release of the emulator on Steam.

Now, the Dolphin team has released an official statement surrounding what happened in May and announced they are officially canceling plans to bring Dolphin to Steam.

Dolphin Emulator team officially scraps Steam release

The confirmation came from a post on Dolphin’s website titled, “What Happened to Dolphin on Steam?” The post opened up by confirming the team needed time to contact lawyers to understand the entire situation legally before posting an official response.

The team also confirmed that neither Nintendo nor Valve ever sent them a DMCA takedown notice against their Steam page. Additionally, the post assured that “Nintendo has not taken any legal action against Dolphin Emulator or Valve.”

Valve Nintendo logos and a Dolphin
It appears Valve may have been the first party to bring the Steam Dolphin emulator release to Nintendo’s attention.

According to the post, Valve’s legal department contacted Nintendo regarding the Steam announcement and was met with a reply from a lawyer representing Nintendo of America. They requested Valve prevent Dolphin from releasing on the Steam store, citing the DMCA as justification.

Valve then forwarded the Dolphin team that statement from Nintendo’s lawyers, and told the team that they would have to come to an agreement with Nintendo to release the emulator on Steam — something the team called “impossible.”

As such, the team made the following statement: “So, after a long stay of silence, we have a difficult announcement to make. We are abandoning our efforts to release Dolphin on Steam.”

While unfortunate for those fans looking for a platform to use Dolphin on, it’s clear the team behind the emulator is looking to avoid dealing with Nintendo directly from here on.

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