It has been said that cheaters never prosper, but it's clearly not the case when it comes to Datel, as they seem to be going from strength to strength, and their latest release for the Gamecube offers not only cheat codes but also a region busting disc allowing the play of import games on your console.


The release of FreeLoader was delayed numerous times since Datel first announced it, and generated plenty of interest over the months from gamers wanting to find a way to enjoy new releases months before their UK release. Luckily Datel haven't disappointed, and FreeLoader appears to do everything that was hoped.

To use Action Replay and FreeLoader you simply insert the Action Replay memory card in to port B on the console, and switch on your Gamecube. Seconds later you'll be at the menu screen, where you can select the FreeLoader option, and moments later be enjoying import games from all three regions of the world - all without voiding your warranty. There's also two alternative boot modes just incase the normal way doesn't run your imported title.


The other aspect of Action Replay is the cheat codes feature, which lets you get extra ammo, faster cars, unlimited lives, more powerful weapons, and numerous other tweaks which both extends the gameplay and allows you to get further in games if you're getting really stuck in the normal settings.

Codes are available for games from Europe, America and Japan, meaning you've got access to a huge number of bonuses for your region-free games. Extra cheat codes are available from Datel's CodeJunkies website, and are entered via the virtual keyboard, meaning the system isn't just limited to the codes and games which it was pre-programmed with.


Our only real criticism of the whole package is the fact that the FreeLoader disc doesn't come in any sort of protective case - especially when you consider the fact that if you buy FreeLoader on it's own then the disc comes in a DVD style case - quite why it doesn't come in a small plastic or paper wallet seems odd, and there is a chance that storing the disc in the manual will cause it to get damaged if not stored carefully - especially if it comes packaged in the centre pages of the manual next to the staples, like our review sample was.

Datel's Action Replay offers a value for money package which Gamecube owners will find useful not only for the cheat code system, but also the fact that at long last you can play games such as Animal Crossing from other regions without having to modify hardware or importing sometimes expensive region specific Gamecube's with power converters.

Overall score: 9 out of 10
Publisher: Datel
Recommended Price: 29.99
Available: Now
Buy the Gamecube Action Replay featuring FreeLoader from Amazon