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Abandonware: Good, Or Evil (Or awesome)

posted by Pvt._Public on - last edited - Viewed by 1.5K 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?

51 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
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    Anonymous

    I just remember when I mentioned abandonware a while ago. It was like I said a curse word. Moderator edits on my posts and everything. You know what, if the company doesnt care enough about the product anymore to back it up, then I find no problem with using it free of charge. It only helps to strengthen the fan base and/or market value of other games. If you feel like its wrong to download abandonware, by all means, be a good boy/girl and try to find it on a shelf somewhere, in a store you've never heard of, that exclusively sells antiques and relics, on the discount PC titles rack. Not gonna happen.

  • Woah. I didn't mean for this to happen. By the way, in case you haven't read anything else i've written i'm behind the publishers/developers all the way. All i basically wanted to see was what everyone else out there thought about abandonware. Didn't mean for all the legal mumbo-jumbo to appear (it confused and kind of bored my little simpleton mind).
    By the way, the whole "(or awesome)" thing was just something that happened after spending a little too much time watching strongbad cartoons. Doesn't mean i think piracy is cool because i get to play games without legally obtaining them. or something

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    Anonymous

    [quote]I just remember when I mentioned abandonware a while ago. It was like I said a curse word. Moderator edits on my posts and everything.[/quote]
    Weren't you giving away the url for a (cough) illegal (cough) abandoware site. I'd seen it before somewhere, and I'm sure it wasn't legit.

  • If it's the one I think it is (the place of residence for canines who don't get enough credit ;) ), I've personally never been able to download a thing from that particular site. Not even completely legitimate freeware independant games that were exclusively hosted there. I just kept getting error messages.

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    Anonymous

    Isn't America the land of the free anyway?

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    Anonymous

    Ironically, I just found this on Slashdot:

    The US Copyright Office is currently reviewing the law as it applies to "orphan works" and "abandonware". The question is how to treat works (books, films, software, etc.) for which the copyright owner cannot be found so that permission can be granted to republish or create derivative works. "The issue is whether orphan works are being needlessly removed from public access and their dissemination inhibited. If no one claims the copyright in a work," they write, "it appears likely that the public benefit of having access to the work would outweigh whatever copyright interest there might be."

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    Anonymous

    [quote]Doesn't mean i think piracy is cool because i get to play games without legally obtaining them. or something[/quote]Ah, but that's the grey area that everyone is trying to sort out. IS it illegal? If so, is it illegal because of what it is, or is it illegal only when someone presses charges? It is illegal when its owners are no longer around? If not, should it be? If someone intentionally abandons a puppy on the side of the road and you take it home, is that dognapping? That's the crux of the issue. And as you can see, there are people on all sides of the issue vying for dominance.

  • [quote]The US Copyright Office is currently reviewing the law as it applies to "orphan works" and "abandonware"....[/quote]

    This is why I love the internet - it shows how slow beaurocrats are at getting things done.

    This whole debate just makes me smile. :)

  • What i meant was that though i do download abandonware i don't just go, "Hey! Doom III was kind of fun. I think i'll just go and pay 5 dollars and get it burnt to disk". I appreciate that many people have spent possibly years slaving away making a game. But some games, they were around in 1989 and nobody longer wishes to know about it and the copyright stopped back in 2000 and i really REALLY want to play it and after about 1 month of searching a i can't legally buy it, i'll download it. I ain't no pirate just because of that am i?

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    Anonymous

    [quote]Yes, I'm aware of how pirates define the term in order to make themselves feel better, but it doesn't actually exist from a legal standpoint, right?
    [/quote]

    Freeware doesn't exist from a legal standpoint either. A game is either Public Domain or it's not, most freeware games aren't. Freeware and abandonware are both terms invented by gamers.

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