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Emulation is Piracy. . . Except It's Okay. . . But Maybe Not. . .

Emulators and ROMs let you play old console games from your computer. They provide an important role for our industry, but isn't it still piracy? Just like everything with piracy, it's a tricky question.

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EcoSos31466d ago

It is piracy because why should I buy it from Nintendo online store when I can play it for free, that is taking money from them.

Mr Tretton1466d ago (Edited 1466d ago )

I bought those games many years ago. I'm not buying them again. They made their money on it. Just like I'm not gonna rebuy PS3 games on PS4 just because they didn't offer backwards compatibility. Screw double dipping.

Also, many roms of old games, simply aren't available to purchase anyway. No one is losing anything by me playing a rom of an old game that I can't purchase.

EcoSos31466d ago

Just because you bought those games before doesnt give you the right to download them for free.

Mr Tretton1466d ago

EcoSos3, what if I bought an old NES and old carts off ebay? Nintendo isn't getting money off that, some ebayer is. Do I have the right to play that? What if I played an old NES game at someone else's house on their NES? Should Nintendo get a fee from me? Is it their right? Microsoft sure thinks so (original XB1)

Dude4201466d ago (Edited 1466d ago )

Oh EcoSos3, you poor, media brainwashed soul. Maybe one day you'll realize that this piracy they speak of is really a description they slapped on to make file sharing look evil.

I'm sure your parents had some VHS copies of movies sitting on the shelves back in the day, maybe you should confront them about it and give them hell.

mikeslemonade1466d ago

Nintendo doesn't deserve my money. But I deserve to play their games Muwahahaha.

Gigaguy7771466d ago

Apparently people can't tell the difference between reselling PHYSICAL software, vs. Illegally downloading a game. I'm all for emulation, but if the dev or publisher make the game available for sale again, then Piracy is still illegal. Common sense peeps. Use it.

"I used to own an NES blablabla"
Still own it? Then play. Don't own it anymore? Then buy it, unless you hate supporting people who make games.

Dude4201465d ago (Edited 1465d ago )

@ Gigaguy 777

Apparently you think there is a difference, when there really isn't one. You just think it's different because sharing files on the internet is in a much, much larger scale than sharing physical media among friends.

Here's an analogy for you, you record/copy a movie/game on to a VHS/Harddrive and distribute the copied movie/game to a friend. Your friend paid for neither the VHS or game, they're both for sale, yet you claim that one is perfectly ok and the other is illegal.

Downloading shared files is illegal because the law says so, but in fact it's the exact same thing as copying a movie.

Now I'm not saying we should freely download every game out there today because I believe in supporting developers. However, I'll be damned if I have to pay another $5 just to play the original Mario Bros. again.

Then again, if it's available on the Wii Shop then I'll consider paying the money because at least I know they made an effort to make an old NES game work on the Wii. If I want to play it on a PC emulator, screw paying it, they didn't make any extra effort to put it on my PC. The money should go to the person who made the emulator, you know, the one who made the effort.

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zeal0us1466d ago

Its taking money from them on one hand.

On the other hand Nintendo got more money than I will ever make in ten lifetimes.

Someone can buy the game off ebay and create a rom file from the cartridge. While itself is perfectly legal however Nintendo wouldn't see any money from this transaction.

The only way they will ever see any money is if someone buy Nintendo handheld or console and buy the game off their e-shop. That method would having them spending $100-250+ and additional $5+ for the game itself.

Nerdmaster1466d ago

So it's OK to steal a car from a rich guy just because he makes more money in a month than I'll ever make in my life?

zeal0us1465d ago (Edited 1465d ago )

A old game that's worth less $5 isn't the same as $250K+ car.

Also I never once mention it's OK. The first two sentences I only type because OP made it seem(imho) like pirating an very old is really going to do some serious damage to Nintendo.

Dude4201465d ago (Edited 1465d ago )

@ Nerdmaster

But it's not stealing, stealing involves someone losing his/her property to a thief. This is file sharing, completely different. While Nintendo doesn't make money, they don't lose money either, so there's no stolen property here.

Nerdmaster1465d ago (Edited 1465d ago )

@zeal0us
So stealing $5 from him is fine, right?

Even so, let's say that you "steal" $5 from Nintendo. A couple of friends of yours do the same. And so on. In the end, Nintendo (or any other game company) may have lost millions. "Oh, but these are old games that Nintendo doesn't even sell anymore". It does, through Virtual Console. Other companies do compilations and whatnot (Sonic Mega Collection, Mega Man X Collection...). Basically the most downloaded emulated games can be bought legally nowadays.

@Dude420
So if a musician makes the most popular song in the world but nobody buys it and just download it from torrent sites, he may starve to death but that's ok, because he "didn't lose money".

If a single person was going to buy the game but decided to download it illegally, the company jost lost that money.

And people keep saying "I already bought the game so I have the right to download it and play on my PC", but it's bulls***. You didn't buy the game, you bought the right to use that software on that media on that specific console. It's two completely different things. And worst of all, if a pirate says "I only download games that I bought at some point in my life (so I have the right to do it)", he will be lying.

zeal0us1465d ago (Edited 1465d ago )

"Basically the most downloaded emulated games can be bought legally nowadays."

True but most people don't want to spend $100-$250+ on a device just to play these games and additional $5-$10+ for the game itself. Some just want to play these games on their platform of choice(mostly PC or smartphone) for a decent price. While it doesn't justify pirating these games its does mean however until the game is available on some people platform of choice they will continue to pirate these games.

Even some of these companies release their games on pc or smartphones it wouldn't stop emulation however it would open up the door to new customers. I brought both FF7 and Sega's Mega Collection when they became available on steam. Heck if Capcom threw Megaman X pc I would buy it fast despite already owning the MMX collection for my ps2 and Maverick Hunter X for my PSP.

Dude4201465d ago (Edited 1465d ago )

Musicians make most of their money from doing shows, not from selling albums. Studios are the ones who produce the musician's albums and sells them. Even then, musicians don't get that big of a cut from studios anyway, so downloading music doesn't even hurt the artist. This argument doesn't hold weight.

The gaming company didn't lose that money, they lost a potential customer. It only becomes illegal when the person "steals" a license to play, not when they "borrowed" the game. Downloading the game from a host who bought the game is the same thing as your friend installing his game on your computer. With your logic, you might as well tell your friend to buzz off because you don't support his actions. If there's no unique license involved, then it's not illegal.

Well, if they did in fact buy the game, then what's the issue? You're quick to generalize people on the internet with lying about having the game. The truth is, you don't know that.

On topic, why should you worry about downloading an old NES game for your emulator? As far as I know, Nintendo won't make any sale on it anyway since the cartridges are discontinued. They didn't make any effort on making it compatible with the PC. There's no license to pay for and really, the people who made the emulators are the ones who really deserve payment for making these games compatible on PC. There's nothing illegal here if you've bought an emulator.

So what, you're going to go out and buy a Wii-U just so you can play that $5 game?

Look, I'm not trying to be pro-pirate here, but people need to get the difference between downloading shared files and ACTUAL piracy.

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-Gespenst-1466d ago (Edited 1466d ago )

Nintendo, and even Sony, re-monetizing their old stuff isn't something you should get behind. That shit had its day. It should totally be free now, but these corporations are too money-hungry to allow that. I'll never pay for a game from the fifth generation or below, it's absurd. You're being exploited if you comply with such repackaging

I have the same opinion regarding old consoles. When the Ps3 gets fully superseded by the Ps4? Let us hack the hell out of it with no consequence. It's even a little ridiculous that Sony are still policing Ps2 piracy.

Perhaps people would end up waiting for a generation to end in order to get it all for free, but would that be a good idea? If everyone did that there'd be no "industry," and I'm sure people couldn't resist buying a lot of the stuff on offer.

At the end of the day, entertainment and creative works shouldn't be monetized at all - money shouldn't be the motive for human creation, but the creation itself and everything that it brings - but I guess that's the world we're currently living in.

Hicken1466d ago

They're not guaranteed my money, so it's taking nothing from them.

It's also not a physical product they spent money producing, so there's also that: like piracy in general, I can't steal something that didn't exist until I possessed it. And, as others have stated, it'd be a different story if they were still producing these games, but most emulated titles have likely been out of print for decades; the only copies for sale would have already made money for Nintendo, and are likely prohibitively expensive simply because they're physical copies.

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zeal0us1466d ago (Edited 1466d ago )

Emulation is piracy only when you are using a rom file you don't own/created.

ufo8mycat1466d ago

Yes because thats what I really care about when I am having fun playing the game

Care factor = 0

stavrami1466d ago

Double Dragon is worth it though

wishingW3L1466d ago

a necessary evil if you ask me. Emulation is the only way to truly conserve gaming history.

Skizelli1466d ago (Edited 1466d ago )

Understandably (and unfortunately), a lot of copyright holders don't see it that way. I'm one who's very much into the history of video games, be it hardware, magazines, and of course the games themselves. I'm not saying piracy is OK, but I'm all for the preservation of its history.

1466d ago
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