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  1. #1
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    Burger Time Champion, Sonic Champion Harrison's Avatar
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    Games unplayable without resorting to piracy

    Article by PC Gamer:

    https://www.pcgamer.com/study-finds-...to-an-archive/

    This was an interesting article wriiten based on a study conducted by the Video Game History Foundation; a video game preservation and history organisation.

    They highlight that only 13% of gaming is currently represented on current systems in the USA market. I would have expected it to be even less to be honest. But they seem surprised by this. This figure includes current games, backwards compatible systems allowing older games to run, such as Xbox games on the current system, PS Classics and PS4 games on the PS5, or back catalogue games on the Switch. Plus it also includes full remasters. But not remakes that alter the original game a lot, such as the recent Final Fantasy 7 remake.

    Whilst those of us who have been into emulation for a long time have known this for at least 15 years, this article highlights that since the dawn of internet connected gaming many games also quickly become impossible to play once abandoned or their platform becomes obsolete. The article then goes into detail that the only way to even find many older games now and to get them running is piracy, and cracked versions of games packaged to run as standalone games.. such as Steam games with their own loaders or games that rely on online services.

    As I said, we have known this for a long time. Many including myself use emulation and collect game roms not to pirate for the sack of bypassing having to buy them (although everyone has to admit that's most likely why we all started). Instead now it's to try and preserve the back catalogues of vintage systems so they don't get lost to time. Original copies of games are now gaining in value a lot, meaning it's becoming harder to obtain original games to collect them. Anyone with a big existing collection is lucky because you are starting to need serious money to collect now.

    Finally what is everyone's thoughts on these game archival groups that are collecting these games to store them, but they are not available to the public? Is there a point to that? Games are created to be played, but in trying to preserve and build an archive of every release they are just storing them and hoarding like a museum to collect dust. I often wonder if some people start this archive projects just as an excuse to build their own collections. Some do have fixed locations you can visit to look at and play them, but in the modern world of ever faster internet we are now quickly becoming a global remote virtual society. These archives whilst great to maintain some source of every release is still locked away with only their members able to see it. A future where we can remotely access these archives would be a far better solution. As we move forward emulation in a browser window is becoming ever better. We can now run a VM of things like an Apple Mac running OS9 perfectly this way. I hope at some point these archive projects find a way to unlock their collections legally, and remote VM style access to me seems a logical solution.

    But regardless such projects are still invaluable resources to maintain a copy of each release. Even if they can't be directly accessed. And we know companies such as Nintendo have needed to work with the emulation and rom collecting communities in the past when they have even lost their own game code.

    What are your thoughts on this?

    This might be an area I want to take Classicamiga in the future.

    If you haven't played a classic game in years, it's never too late to start!


  2. #2
    ELITE Kin Hell's Avatar
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    In a nutshell H....

    It's all about "Greed"....

    Make sure we get our pounds-worth of flesh...

    So many spins.... But you can't Emulate this... You can put it on FPGA but that's not really Emulation like EMU68 on an RPi....

    Who cares anymore!? - The past is the past.... Let it go!.....
    Getting 0ld0r is mandatory - Growing up is just an option.

  3. #3
    Retro Addict Administrator
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    Burger Time Champion, Sonic Champion Harrison's Avatar
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    Who cares? I definitely do!

    But commercially yes it is greed that drives gaming forward each generation, whist leaving the last behind.

    However both Xbox and Playstation changed to full backwards compatibility this time. For Playstation this made commercial sense because thy hardware is really just an evolution and users owning digital libraries of games meant carrying their ability to still access and play the same games enticed users to stay with the platform.

    But back on subject it is literaly the lack of access to existing older software through lack of compatibility. But we have been used to that situation forever. But for me that just enforces the need to safeguard softwarev and and archive it.

    If you haven't played a classic game in years, it's never too late to start!


  4. #4
    Burn! Hot Blooded Rhythm Soul! Staff Moderator
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    I'm a little torn by this. I've found some of the viewpoints quite interesting - even opposing ones.

    Finally what is everyone's thoughts on these game archival groups that are collecting these games to store them, but they are not available to the public? Is there a point to that? Games are created to be played, but in trying to preserve and build an archive of every release they are just storing them and hoarding like a museum to collect dust. I often wonder if some people start this archive projects just as an excuse to build their own collections
    I understand there is that feeling of being special, owning something rare or hard to find. But with a game, that's meant to be played, I kind of don't really get it. I know it would not be workable from a legal perspective but the idea of a preserved original, and a copy that people could actually play, would seem to be a nice idea. Would that devalue the original though? Is there a certain age of game when this becomes appropriate?

    How many people really care that much? I'm guessing the majority don't care all tham much, but are pretty quiet about it.

    What about online games? without anyone else, even if the server is kept running (or some other way of getting the game to still run) isn't it just a strange lonliness, wandering around abandoned places? And yet we enjoy going to castles and ruins in the real world, things that have long since passed their original purpose.

    Why should people be able to play it now, if they couldn't when it was released? Many people never had a Neo-Geo, for example, but want to play the games - why should they, though?

    How does keeping originals factor against censorship / revisionism? I read about some Simpsons episodes (the Michael Jackson one) being 'deleted' so unless you own an old box set, or go get a pirate copy, you can't see it any more. I feel a little pang, knowing I can't see it again easily, but then again I wasn't really going to anyway.

    Maybe in some cases the feelings are more about opportunities lost than actual fondness for the thing itself

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