Is Piracy ok with older games i.e:NES,SNES,Sega Saturn Etc.?

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25 May 2010 22:34

i want to know since it is almost impossible to get them either because of price or availability.

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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25 May 2010 22:47

that is true. it's practically impossible to not use piracy with these games, though you'd better ask leiger about it.

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26 May 2010 01:37

"Piracy" is illegal. Instead, it's a question of whether obtaining those games on the Internet is still considered to be piracy or not. I think it is, but I haven't actually looked at the law on this one, so I could be wrong.

I think there's a time limit on all copyright. If a certain amount of time has passed, then all copyright rules are waived.

But, I did some research and found some information on this:

From Nintendo.com (very interesting reading)

People Making Nintendo Emulators and Nintendo ROMs are Helping Publishers by Making Old Games Available that are No Longer Being Sold by the Copyright Owner. This Does Not Hurt Anyone and Allows Gamers to Play Old Favorites. What's the Problem?

The problem is that it's illegal. Copyrights and trademarks of games are corporate assets. If these vintage titles are available far and wide, it undermines the value of this intellectual property and adversely affects the right owner. In addition, the assumption that the games involved are vintage or nostalgia games is incorrect. Nintendo is famous for bringing back to life its popular characters for its newer systems, for example, Mario and Donkey Kong have enjoyed their adventures on all Nintendo platforms, going from coin-op machines to our latest hardware platforms. As a copyright owner, and creator of such famous characters, only Nintendo has the right to benefit from such valuable assets.

Isn't it Okay to Download Nintendo ROMs for Games that are No Longer Distributed in the Stores or Commercially Exploited? Aren't They Considered "Public Domain"?

No, the current availability of a game in stores is irrelevant as to its copyright status. Copyrights do not enter the public domain just because they are no longer commercially exploited or widely available. Therefore, the copyrights of games are valid even if the games are not found on store shelves, and using, copying and/or distributing those games is a copyright infringement.

Haven't the Copyrights for Old Games Expired?

U.S. copyright laws state that copyrights owned by corporations are valid for 75 years from the date of first publication. Because video games have been around for less than three decades, the copyrights of all video games will not expire for many decades to come.

So, the time period is 75 years. If you find a game that is more than 75 years old and you want to play it, it's perfectly legal to download and play it xD

According to this source, the first freely programmable computer was built by Konrad Zuse in 1936. That's 74 years ago… and games and game consoles came a looooong time after that! :)


And then there's some unofficial, user opinions:

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26 May 2010 01:48

wow i cant wait till im 90 to play NES!

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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26 May 2010 02:08

do you think your thumbs will still work at that age? ;)

I own: Gameboy Advance SP (Cobalt) | NDS lite (Jet Black) | CycloDS Evolution (Black) 2.1
Creator of: Mario And Luigi Entertainment | Fingerz - me, myself and I
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26 May 2010 02:20

LOL! :)

I've got a Super Nintendo back at home but it hasn't been used for years. Don't think my current TV even supports the connection it uses, to be honest.

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26 May 2010 02:27

yeah, i can agree with you leiger. i have to go to my grandparents' house to play the N64. :(

I own: Gameboy Advance SP (Cobalt) | NDS lite (Jet Black) | CycloDS Evolution (Black) 2.1
Creator of: Mario And Luigi Entertainment | Fingerz - me, myself and I
Proud member of: CycloDS Revolution | Pokémon HG/SS | Saves

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26 May 2010 02:38

titen96 wrote: wow i cant wait till im 90 to play NES!

When you're 90, you'll be able to legally download and play any games that were made in 2012 or earlier (so all current games as well)

Might as well try them now instead of waiting another 75+ years to get them for free, lol XD

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26 May 2010 10:26

When I'm 100, I'll be downloading Super Mario Galaxy 2. I can't wait!

No seriously. I can't. When I'm 100, Nintendo will have released Super Mario Parallel Universe 32 for the Nintendo Synapse… you know, the game console that you plug into the ports on the back of your neck…

Oh, I'm giving away the future now. Just forget I said anything.

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26 May 2010 10:37

please no more spoilers i have enough to deal with at E3
EDIT:Can copyrights also be renewed for old games?

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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26 May 2010 12:55

Plugs into the neck? By then all of the neural connections will be wireless, I would've thought…

And yes, I've seen the same information on Nintendo's site(s).

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26 May 2010 19:15

23 more years until i can download pong

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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26 May 2010 20:35

Actually, Nintendo's view on emulators and "piracy" is very unrealistic. In reality, emulators aren't illegal at all. In fact, MAME, a really popular arcade machine emulator, has had commercial support and appears in museums. Atari used to have a site where you could legally purchase ROMs to use for MAME, even. So legally, you can only use ROMs that you back up yourself if you don't break DRM (which isn't on many games, only some really really recent ones. Wii/PS2 games, AFAIK, don't have DRM).

Will you get "caught" if you download ROMs? Probably not, as Gamefaqs says here: http://www.gamefaqs.com/features/help/entry.html?cat=24. If the game isn't making money anymore, and/or it's "Abandonware", it's still illegal to download but it's very likely that the people who made the game don't care, since they aren't selling it anymore.

So it all boils down to "download at your own risk", and "back up a legally acquired copy of the game if you can". I seriously wish there was an "abandonware clause" in the DMCA or something to cover freely downloading things that the creator doesn't care about anymore :\.

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26 May 2010 21:11

wow thats a great answer sloshy

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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26 May 2010 21:52

well people, by the time i'm 100 i'm sure there will be around 5000 pokemon. :O

I own: Gameboy Advance SP (Cobalt) | NDS lite (Jet Black) | CycloDS Evolution (Black) 2.1
Creator of: Mario And Luigi Entertainment | Fingerz - me, myself and I
Proud member of: CycloDS Revolution | Pokémon HG/SS | Saves

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27 May 2010 03:07

Yes Sloshy, good post. My research was looking mostly into whether or not it was "illegal". As you said, it is.

Whether the developers care is a completely different kettle of fish… if they don't care they aren't going to take you to court, therefore even though it's illegal, it's probably fine to download some games that the developer has no interest in any more, or even actively supports downloading for - as you provided the example of MAME emulators.

titen96 wrote: 23 more years until i can download pong

Why download pong when you can make your own version? LOL

Pong is one of the easiest (and most fun) games to make for a beginner programmer. I made an awesome version of Pong on my graphics calculator in high school… with high scores and custom graphics for the ball and paddle too! :)

I found the source code for it still on my calculator just yesterday and played it for a bit :)

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27 May 2010 05:04

hahaha! i love making games. best thing out.

I own: Gameboy Advance SP (Cobalt) | NDS lite (Jet Black) | CycloDS Evolution (Black) 2.1
Creator of: Mario And Luigi Entertainment | Fingerz - me, myself and I
Proud member of: CycloDS Revolution | Pokémon HG/SS | Saves

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27 May 2010 09:56

This would be the 9860G that I've wanted for ages then, leiger? :P

And yes, I've always thought that Nintendo's viewpoint on it was, even if some of it is technically right, a little hopeful and unrealistic.

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27 May 2010 10:03

This would be the 9860G that I've wanted for ages then, leiger? :P

Yep. And a wikidot site dedicated to programming on it will be coming up shortly. Just need the time.

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27 May 2010 19:25

Not to butt in here, but…

In the age where Virtual Console, XBLA, PSN, "Sonic Hits Collection" and "Namco Museum" and the like exist, a large amount of what you call "abandonware" are seeing new releases. I'm sure the devs will do anything they can to renew interest and/or re-release an old property, which will also effectively renew the copyright on it. Many developers also wound up being purchased by a larger publisher, who will likely renew all the copyrights (if not straight up just obtain all rights associated with them). Just food for thought.

:)

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27 May 2010 19:28

yeah that would make even less reason for somebody to download them

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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27 May 2010 23:54

Yes, exactly. Whilst it effectively means you won't live long enough to see the 75 year period expire because it keeps getting renewed xD It also means that people that use the argument that games can't be found at a reasonable price have got the answer they're looking for - a re-release.

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28 May 2010 01:41

eventually there will be a re-release of everything. we all know it. ;)

I own: Gameboy Advance SP (Cobalt) | NDS lite (Jet Black) | CycloDS Evolution (Black) 2.1
Creator of: Mario And Luigi Entertainment | Fingerz - me, myself and I
Proud member of: CycloDS Revolution | Pokémon HG/SS | Saves

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28 May 2010 22:40

I can't wait for a re-release of Modern Warfare 2… hopefully with updated visuals, as it's starting to look a bit dated.

What?

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28 May 2010 23:07

james i noticed that your name is too long under your avatar

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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29 May 2010 04:04

james i noticed that your name is too long under your avatar

Should probably have posted that as a new thread… in the feedback section (bug report). I'll create the thread now and post my reply there.
Edit: http://cyclods.wikidot.com/thread:135

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29 May 2010 14:04

ok sorry to go off topic

"At first, this completely shocked me. Then I found a neat picture of a bunny and posted it at the top of the article. Hello there, bunny!"

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04 Jul 2012 14:43

If you've got a nice bit of cash you could probably buy the rights to some of these old games. If your a developer it could give you the opportunity to make the original game available to the public or to recreate the game targeted at a newer system… On another note I think Nintendo gone overboard with bringing back their old games. A lot of us are absolutely sick of it. must be at least 400 mario games, one of things that annoyed me though is their not exceptional games for their time now their average and i feel their running the image of the originals. Kids these days arn't going to see mario the way we did when we were kids, it'll just be another game. Its far from innovative or original and they really need to come up with some new ideas before they take the franchise 2 far and ruin the image forever.


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05 Jul 2012 00:49

Many of those games were classics then, and are still classics now, so I can understand Nintendo's actions.

No need to create a whole new game - just make a few changes to port it to the latest handheld or home console - and suddenly the current generation has another game to play that they may not have seen before.

For example, even the old Zelda games hold up just as well today as the new Zelda games do. They're timeless.


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Nintendo 3DS: Message me if you want to exchange FC. Lost your game save files? You might want to try one of these.

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20 May 2014 07:51

Sometimes actually hunting down the old Carts is a treat in itself.

Lets put it this way - If you find an old copy of Super Mario World for SNES, and you buy it from the thrift shop, pawn shop, flea market, garage sale, etc. it's all yours. You can play it for hours & hours on a proper controller, which feels just perfect….and it's legal.

Or, for a small fee ($8.50) You can download the game from the Nintendo eShop, so the developer and the company will make money and they will feel like gamers are still interested in the franchises that are downloaded, and again, it's legal.

With modern gaming, it's so stupid that people play burned copies of games rather than forking out 60$ for a game they really, really want. That 60$ will get you a legal copy, a manual, a case, and maybe even a poster. Free just gets you a cheesy Memorex DVD with the name of a game scribbled on it.

Pirating only gets you and every other gamer "Pay-to-Play" and Micro-transactions. The Developers know their material is going to be pirated, so they decide it's best to rip off @$$)-(01es that want to play for free…and even the people who buy things legitimately.

According to statistics, Big releases will almost always see an 8 to 9-figure sum in lost sales due to piracy. so…if you think pirating the next COD game won't hurt anyone….so does the other 90% of gamers who downloaded it from a torrent site, compared to the 10% of gamers who actually forked over the money for a legit copy.


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25 May 2017 10:21

That's a very good point Phil, thank you for your comment.


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