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October 03, 2003

Legal ROMs, tuppence a pound!

Over at Star ROMs they're selling Atari ROM sets for download. You play them with MAME or other emulator of your choice. Atari's the only copyright owner they've manged to bring on board at the moment, but they're negotiating with others. They have about 60 games, including Tempest, the game I bought a Griffin Powermate to play, and other longstanding Alison favourites like Tetris, Klax, Marble Madness and Gauntlet. Other games include 'classics of the genre' Missile Command, Asteroids, Centipede and so on. Most of the money goes back to the copyright owner, helping them to believe it's worth keeping their back catalogue available and encouraging the other companies to join in, and some of the profits will go to emulator development projects.

You buy credits, allowing you to download games. If you buy more credits, they're cheaper, just like arcade tokens used to be in my youth (and probably still are). The games themselves work out at between $2 and $6 each before the discount. The $3.85 I paid for Tempest must work out at about a farthing for every time I've played it. (I do have a legal version of some of these games, bought from Atari, but I find MAME purer to play). He gives you 15 free credits to start you off; that's not quite enough to buy one of the better games, but it allows you to download a basic game to test your MAME setup.

By paying for the ROMs, you get a nice, reliable, secure spot on the Internet to download them from. But better, you receive absolution, and a lovely warm feeling inside when MAME asks you if you're allowed to play Tempest.

Posted by Alison at October 3, 2003 09:34 PM


This is so cool.

Posted by: Damien Warman at October 4, 2003 04:42 AM

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