Japanese Super Mario 3D Land carts have started dropping into 3DS slots, and early reports from the country indicate that the game comes packed with brand new firmware for the system. What does the firmware update do, you wonder? Apparently, it makes the portable's friends list a bit more functional -- a button will now allow you to join a friend's game in progress. It seems that the update isn't an early release of the upcoming November one, which brings a variety of features.

The firmware update also adds a modification to the console's ability to play flashcarts, a notorious game piracy culprit on portable consoles. Like most game-based firmware updates, the cart requires the update before allowing the user to access Super Mario 3D Land, so, uh, resistance is kinda futile. It's unclear whether the same firmware update will be present on US and EU carts when the game ships in the coming weeks, but we've asked Nintendo for clarification and will update the story if we hear back.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.