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Abandonware: Good, Or Evil (Or awesome)

posted by Pvt._Public on - last edited - Viewed by 1.7K users

I know this is something that a lot of people are always talking about and i also know that there may be a lot of people who are going to call me filthy pirating scum for this and ALSO that there may be another thread much like this hidden elsewhere in the forum but basically, what do you think? Abandonware good or bad?
Personally, having been born back in 1990 i missed out on all the classic games such as Maniac Mansion and whatnot. Also i was a little too young at the time to think that most of the games around then were any good. Where were the explosions? now days though i find my self spending vast sums of money continuously buying classic games. Some games though are impossible to find (at least in NZ). The point is that i download a lot of abandonware. Indiana Jones and the fate of atlantis being the latest one (please, no links). I am aware that some of the people at telltale game may have worked on some of these classic games but i'm sure they know what i'm talking about. Once again, what do you think? should Lucasarts etc. continue saying that i shouldn't download their games despite there being no other way to get them or not?

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    Anonymous

    I think it depends. If it's the only way you can get your hands on a game...I guess it's ok. But, Indiana Jones is most certaintly not abandoned.You obviously didn't even check the company store.
    Most people are just looking for free games and will download anything they find on the internet. Whatever happened to supporting the developers?

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    Anonymous

    I'll admit Ive downloaded Sam And MAx and Day of the Tentacle. Both I'm having trouble fixing the sound issues for on windows xp.
    But I'll let you know right now If I see them in stores I'd buy them. I'm still looking in pawn shops etc.

    Also I already own Day of the Tentacle and Sam and Max for Mac. But I don't have a mac anymore, so I can't play them sadly.
    At least I can still use the hint books that came with them.

  • On Abandonware: I guess I would have to say evil. I definitely don't like the idea that games are just being pirated around the internet. I am happy to say that I am old enough to have purchased and still own almost every classic adventure game since Kings Quest 1. I know that all are not so lucky so... I also think it stinks that these companies (Sierra, Lucasarts, et al) don't have the decency to continue to sell these old games. Why not offer the games for download on their website for US $ 5.00 or less? Many people try to illegally download music, but Apple iTunes has shown that plenty of people are willing to a pay a nominal fee to get their music legitimately.

    On getting Lucasarts games to work on WinXP: Once again Summvm is the way to go get it here -> www.scummvm.org

  • If the game is obsolete and the company isn't making any money off it anymore then why not. There isn't anything to lose on it. Games go obsolete almost as fast as pc hardware. I guess companies are just afraid that people will play all the old games and not buy new ones or something supid like that. As for selling them at 5 bucks US each? Give me a break already. Haven't they milked the public enough ? I'd just put the 5 bucks towards some new game instead. Why not freely distribute them with coupons for new games the company is coming out with or something, maybe the'll get hooked on a series and buy stuff but at least let it be up to date things people spend money on. Like if a game is more then 5 years old and a company is still trying to sell it thats pretty weak.

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    Anonymous

    [quote]On Abandonware: I guess I would have to say evil. I definitely don't like the idea that games are just being pirated around the internet.[/quote] :(( I have never understood this mentality. The game is no longer commercially available; no one makes any profit or revenue from it; no one really cares to claim responsibility for it; it gets shoved into the back corner of the closet, destined for forced-obscurity; yet, we're suppsed to bury our head in the ground out of shame if we download it becuase of being the nasty pirates that we are. I will never understand that.

    I would have absolutely no problem giving a quick PayPal payment of a few bucks to any game owner/publisher who still makes an old, favorite game available for download without draconian DRM. But if no one cares enough about protecting its copyright, they will by default lose it (at least in the U.S.). You should look up the legal history of the Thermos company to see proof of that.

    I used to make software about 10 years ago. I would not be surprised if some of them are still going around. I gave up developing them years ago. So, am I supposed to be incensed if something that I abandoned is still being distributed? I think not.

    Sorry for the extended rant, but the "stealing is stealing" attitudes have been a hot button of mine for a l-o-n-g time.

    As to awesome vaporware, a few weeks ago I rebuilt an old Pentium 350 w/ PC-DOS 7 (legal) and Windows for Workgroups 3.11 (legal) just to play Magic Carpet (legal), which AFAIC is one of the best games every released. (I even have the TCP/IP stack installed! I can surf the Internet through my DSL connection using Netscape 4.08! How's *that* for geeky? :D )

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    Anonymous

    [quote]If the game is obsolete and the company isn't making any money off it anymore then why not. There isn't anything to lose on it. Games go obsolete almost as fast as pc hardware. I guess companies are just afraid that people will play all the old games and not buy new ones or something supid like that. As for selling them at 5 bucks US each? Give me a break already. Haven't they milked the public enough ? I'd just put the 5 bucks towards some new game instead. Why not freely distribute them with coupons for new games the company is coming out with or something, maybe the'll get hooked on a series and buy stuff but at least let it be up to date things people spend money on. Like if a game is more then 5 years old and a company is still trying to sell it thats pretty weak.[/quote]

    Yeah, ok. I'm going to march into my local Best Buy and demand that the DVDs for all TV shows and movies that are older than five years old be given to me free of charge. The solution is not to start giving games away, but to sell older games. I think it's grat when compaines support their old games by selling them on their website. Geez, it's not like you're going to pay full price.

  • screw the selling of old games already, the company has already made enough friggen money off of it. It's not like abandonware costs them anything. Your example to march into best buy and demand stuff for free is absurd. Cause there is material costs etc involved. Think of it as taping an old movie thats on tv that you tape (and no not ppv or anything like that I'm talking old movies on basic cable) Plus tv shows and movies don't fade out quite the same way as games do. Take a game like doom or wolf 3d. Those games arn't worth a dime anymore. The same could be said about some tv shows =P. But what I'm saying that the amount that the technology has progressed through the years makes old games uncomparable to those of today.

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    Anonymous

    [quote]Yeah, ok. I'm going to march into my local Best Buy and demand that the DVDs for all TV shows and movies that are older than five years old be given to me free of charge.[/quote] That is a very, very poor argument.

    Abandonware is not judged by its age but by whether or not it is no longer made available commercially and whether or not its copyright is actively enforced by the copyright owner. Technically, if a game is made available even for a few dollars by the copyright owner, it cannot be categorized as abandonware. In that circumstance the game should be purchased and distribution can be classified is illegal.

    However, if the game is no longer available for commercial purchase, the publisher is no longer in existance, and the curernt copyright holders (if any) are voluntarily not enforcing their copyright, that most certainly categorizes it as abandonware. The game should be made available to whomever wants it without fear of "you evil pirate" guilt-trippers on his or her tail.

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    Anonymous

    [quote][quote]Yeah, ok. I'm going to march into my local Best Buy and demand that the DVDs for all TV shows and movies that are older than five years old be given to me free of charge.[/quote] That is a very, very poor argument.

    Abandonware is not judged by its age but by whether or not it is no longer made available commercially and whether or not its copyright is actively enforced by the copyright owner. Technically, if a game is made available even for a few dollars by the copyright owner, it cannot be categorized as abandonware. In that circumstance the game should be purchased and distribution can be classified is illegal.

    However, if the game is no longer available for commercial purchase, the publisher is no longer in existance, and the curernt copyright holders (if any) are voluntarily not enforcing their copyright, that most certainly categorizes it as abandonware. The game should be made available to whomever wants it without fear of "you evil pirate" guilt-trippers on his or her tail.[/quote]

    Who's guilt-tripping? He's the one who brought up the arbitrary five year rule. Of course my argument was absurd. That was the point. I completely agree with everything else you said.

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    Anonymous

    [quote]screw the selling of old games already, the company has already made enough friggen money off of it. [/quote]

    What company? What if they didn't make a lot of money? What if the game sold 30,000 copies?

    [quote] Take a game like doom or wolf 3d. Those games arn't worth a dime anymore. [/quote]

    Why not? Because they're old? Because they're graphics are outdated? They're still a lot of fun to play. Casual games are very popular right now and they have outdated graphics and simplified gameplay. Why can't ID charge casual game prices?

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