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August 2, 2000
5:28 PM   Subscribe

Perhaps Lance was right. No maybe Peter was right. Regardless, the wheels of progress continue to turn, this time it's a p-to-p app that allows the swapping of console video games napster/gnutella-style, with the 17 year-old creator saying this about the possibility of getting shut down: "Sure, it is a concern that they may try to shut us down, despite the fact that we don't permit piracy, but I am confident in the law and believe we will prevail." Riiiiiight.
posted by mathowie (12 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
Y'know, I could've sworn that stuff like this has been going on for a good long time. What exactly is the difference between having a list of ROMs on your site and Napsterizing your ROM swapping?

All the same, I have ROMs for Super Nintendo games that I never owned but always wanted to play. What do you do when you want to play games on systems that are obsolete? If you're a publisher, you tell the public, "Tough. You'll have to buy a new system and play our new stuff." If you're an emulator junkie, you download a ROM and play.

But, yeah...this won't end well.
posted by RakDaddy at 5:38 PM on August 2, 2000


Something else that just popped into my fevered little brain: what's the difference between Napsterizing ROMs of games from obsolete systems and doing the same with images of today's games? Both are piracy, though I've never understood why publishers go after people who trade old ROMs. I know it's the function of a company to protect its assets and go after anyone who could possibly make an unauthorized profit. But come on! Where else are you going to find the American version of "Chrono Trigger"?

The smart publisher, of course, would have made sure its back catalog of Good Stuff was updated and available to the buying public, as Square did with its "Final Fantasy Anthology" for the PlayStation. Two Super Nintendo games, one an old favorite, the other never released in America, were put into a nice package for the PlayStation and Square made a killing. A publisher thrives on its backlog of Good Stuff; that goes for games as well as print and music.

But swapping ROM images of Nintendo 64 and PlayStation games...sorry, kids, but that's piracy. And are you really going to shell out forty bucks for a game when you can download it for free? Doubt it. As hamfisted as Metallica's approach was earlier this year, as a video game developer, I understand what they meant by saying their livlihoods were at stake. One more image of a game I've worked on is one less sale.
posted by RakDaddy at 5:58 PM on August 2, 2000


Yeah, well I own an NES, I've owned 3 in my life... I've owned a SNES with the stupid $80 gun and the stupid $60 mouse, and a huge pile of games... I own a gameboy with a few games...
I've probably paid nintendo over $1000 in my lifetime, but they'd have no problem throwing me in jail for the 15mb of NES roms I've collected... Even though they haven't made money off an NES game in 9 years..

I hate politics.
posted by Bane at 6:11 PM on August 2, 2000


What exactly is the difference between having a list of ROMs on your site and Napsterizing your ROM swapping?

Napsterizing it makes it much more vulnerable to a lawsuit.
posted by hijinx at 6:14 PM on August 2, 2000


I bought the power glove when it came out. I think I should be compensated for that.
posted by corpse at 8:41 PM on August 2, 2000


"But swapping ROM images of Nintendo 64 and PlayStation games...sorry, kids, but that's piracy. And are you really going to shell out forty bucks for a game when you can download it for free? Doubt it."

Considering the current state of N64 emulators (they sorta kinda work sometimes) and PSX emulators (which usually need a real CD anyway)...yes.

Anyway, my two cents: I have a bunch of Sega Genesis, NES, and SNES ROMs. Why? Because I like Sonic, MegaMan, and F-Zero. Am I going to spend money on buying three console systems and a bunch of used games, plus a TV, plus find space to put them, when I'm only going to play them once or twice a month anyway? Nah.

On the other hand, I've bought a couple N64 games. And I've been thinking of buying Bleem, but you better believe I'll *buy* any PSX games I want to use with it.

posted by CrayDrygu at 9:54 PM on August 2, 2000


Bah, you guys don't need compensation. I bought the Virtual Boy.

Now THAT deserves compensation. heh.
posted by cCranium at 2:39 AM on August 3, 2000


Gee the emulation 'scene' seems to consistently come up with silly excuses and reasoning.

"Users may not download a ROM unless it is known to be freeware and not copyrighted." Today, though, those terms were relaxed: "Users may not download a ROM unless they own the game itself,"

The publisher and games companies own the rights to control the means of distribution of their own games, whether you own the copy or not doesn't really come into it. There has also been those other disclaimers "delete within 24 hours of downloading these files" ... where exactly do these myth-like 'laws' come from?

And RakDaddy,
What do you do when you want to play games on systems that are obsolete? If you're a publisher, you tell the public, "Tough. You'll have to buy a new system and play our new stuff." If you're an emulator junkie, you download a ROM and play.

Again, that is the publisher's decision, and they have every legal right to do that, as part of their marketing, to make you buy their new stuff. And you clearly said you didn't buy those games you "always wanted to play", when they were out and distributed. At the end of the day, you're playing them now because they're free.
posted by aki at 3:40 AM on August 3, 2000


Heh. Virtual Boy. That's a shame.
posted by danwalker at 5:32 AM on August 3, 2000


I dislocated my neck playing virtual boy...
but was it WORTH IT!
I loved that thing
posted by starduck at 9:36 AM on August 3, 2000


You know, I heard if you download a ROM, and the teacher doesn't show up in 15 minutes, you can keep it. (-:
posted by alan at 10:25 AM on August 3, 2000


warning: the following is severely off-topic. I heartily apologize

That's nothing!

Once there was this couple who was out parking in lover's lane.

The romantic music they were listening to on the radio ("Can't get enough of your love, bay-bee") was interrupted by a burst of static, and a frantic radio announcer.

"This just in. The Gotham Center for the Criminally Insane has reported that one of their nuttiest nut-jobs managed to weasle his way out of containment with a teaspoon of Orange Marmelade.

"We advise all listeners to immediately return home, and lock all doors and windows, and for God's sake, keep those preservatives tightly closed!"

Laughing it off - and intent on the smooching - the couple quickly forget the bulletin's warning, lost in the heat of the moment.

Suddenly, a loud scraping burst their Bubble-O-Love. Pertrified by the noise emitting from the passanger-side door, the couple high-tailed it out of there, heading back to town.

When they finally arrived at home, they examined the car, and to their shock and horror, there, hanging from the door handle was a floppy disk containing a Super Mario Brother's ROM

True story. Happened to my father's brother's college roomate's nephew.
posted by cCranium at 4:59 PM on August 3, 2000


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