A few players of Nintendo’s new Super Smash Bros. game on the 3DS have found that it’s pretty easy to get temporary bans for being a troublemaker. However, it looks like someone left a decimal place out somewhere in the multiplayer code. Instead of getting 15 minute bans for minor infractions, players are reportedly receiving bans of 71,582,030 minutes. That’s about 136 years.Maybe you’re thinking you shouldn’t feel bad for someone who was doing something that got them banned in the first place, but this is a somewhat unique situation. Super Smash Bros. has some pretty harsh rules to make the game playable for more people. For example, you can receive a short ban if you continuously attack the same player in a group battle or if you disconnect in the middle of a match.Let’s ignore for a moment how strange it is that you can get banned from a fighting game for fighting the wrong person, and try to figure out what is going on. Obviously a programmer made a mistake somewhere, but how do we get to 136 years? Ban times are usually measured in seconds, so a 15 minute ban should only be 900 seconds. A plausible explanation is that a negative integer was accidentally introduced at some point (time is positive), which caused the ban timer to default to the maximum value of 4,294,967,295 seconds. Which is very close to the 71 million minute ban times. So why 4,294,967,295 seconds? That’s the largest possible 32-bit binary number.Nintendo hasn’t made any official statement on the matter yet, but I have to assume that once the error is corrected, all those 136 year bans will be rescinded. Until that happens, players who have gotten the bans are stuck as this is a server side bug.