You've had your Xbox 360 for a few years now and your game collection is pretty extensive.
Maybe it's not that extensive, but it's still substantial. Now imagine that you live in Europe and you're moving to the United States. I don't know why—maybe your dad got a job offer. Don't ask me, ask your parents. They're the ones that are making you move. Anyways, as most Xbox users know, games are coded by region. Games that work in Europe might not work in the United States.
Does this mean you should throw away your entire collection and start over?
Each Xbox game and device is coded uniquely according to the region:
- NTSC-U/C constitutes domestic U.S. and Canadian systems
- NTSC-J are domestic Asian systems, like Korea and Japan
- PAL implies domestic European or Australian systems
Note: Lol at Antarctica
While you can't change the region of the game (not legally anyways), you can change the region of the Xbox 360—no matter where it was bought. It's as simple as going to the settings on the Xbox 360.
If you're on vacation in a different region, you can simply change your locale and rent some video games from that region.
Also, there are some video games which can be played in several regions. You can check out this extensive guide, along with this one, which both specify which games work in what regions. There are several games that work in all three regions.
So, what if your game doesn't work in that region and you don't feel like spending money to buy the same game again? There's only one solution—
Mod your Xbox 360.
You can also buy a JTAG or modded one from eBay or Amazon for several hundred dollars.
The easiest (but still pretty difficult) way to mod your Xbox 360 is by taking it apart, inserting hardware and downloading software from your computer onto it, like in the video below. This process is knows as flashing.
This allows your Xbox 360 to play burned games. That way, you can change the region of a game on your computer, burn it and play it on your console.
This isn't for the faint of heart and should not be attempted by n00bs. Also, it voids the warranty and it's possible you can be banished from Xbox LIVE if not done properly. If you do happen to get banned, you can try tricking the system and un-banning yourself with this trick from Null Byte.
Once the Xbox 360 is modified, you can either change the region of the game or turn your Xbox region free. The video below explains how to change the region of the game by uploading it your computer and burning it in the necessary region using the free 360 Flash Dump Tool.
If you'd like to turn your Xbox into a region-free console, you can read this articulate and well-written guide that details very closely what you need to do. The article is in French, so make sure to translate it (easy with Google Chrome).
These are the only ways to play other region games on an Xbox 360. It's an arduous process and isn't easy at all. It takes much time, money and effort, but is also a great learning experience for anyone interested in computer engineering. If there's any other way you now to get around this problem (possibly an easier way) feel free to comment below!
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