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Just Sell Me the Homebrew ROM with PDF Manual

  

59 members have voted

  1. 1. If you were to buy a homebrew ROM, you would play it...

    • on multicart
      20
    • in emulation
      10
    • both
      29


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How many of you are with me on this? I don't need a CIB for homebrew releases. The box and manual just go up on a shelf collecting dust. While the presentation looks impressive, for some like me it's not practical in this day and age of SD multicarts.

 

Give us the option of buying the ROM with a PDF of the manual for like $10. Let's stop making the printers and USPS rich with only offering CIB for homebrew releases.

 

I buy the games to play first and foremost.

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As a consumer and fan of homebrew releases, I can understand your point on this. A lot of people buy the game simply to play the game and the rest is clutter. But at the same time, the collector in me disagrees because as a collector, I make a purchase CIB so that the homebrew purchase will mesh in well with the actual releases, as well as to increase the overall resale purchase of the collection, should I ever decide to sell it.

 

If anything ever deterred me from collecting CIB, it is the fact that with boxes and all, collections for multiple systems will clutter up valuable space. But that is the price to pay when one is a collector.

 

I like the idea of homebrewers offering the option of whether or not the purchaser/collector would like to purchase their game CIB or not, and I would support it and applaud it should it ever becomes an option. But ultimately, that will only drive up the prices of the games as a lot of printing companies give a discounted prices on their labor when ordering in bulk. So as long as collectors who demand CIB exist, then the homebrewer has to do what will save them cost-wise on production.

 

As far as instructions go, with the exception of Intellivision games [which provide controller overlays to assist in game play understanding], many gamers need to understand what the homebrewer is intending for us to fully enjoy the same. A lot of games today, because they offer plenty of space, offer tutorials built into the game, which is awesome. But I somehow doubt that this could be done on many retro systems, although INTV Corp. games did dedicate on-screen controller descriptions to avoid the cost of producing controller overlays, and thus saved some production costs.

 

If I had one gripe, it is that I was never fond of shelling out $70-$100 for a homebrew game [especially for systems like Atari 2600 and Intellivision], when I can buy a brand new game for Xbox One for $60. But again, it comes down to the purchaser having a deep love and kindred connection with their retro system that justifies it.

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This comes up periodically, and I'd like to give people an option to buy a digital version of a game if they aren't interested in a physical copy, but still want to support the homebrewing scene. I will be exploring this when I move the AtariAge Store to completely new software early next year.

 

..Al

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In the meantime, you can always arrange with the authors to slip them a few bucks via Paypal after you've downloaded the ROM, given most homebrews are available for free anyway. I've even seen some manual PDF's floating around, and some polite questions to the right people might score you a few more.

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This comes up periodically, and I'd like to give people an option to buy a digital version of a game if they aren't interested in a physical copy, but still want to support the homebrewing scene. I will be exploring this when I move the AtariAge Store to completely new software early next year.

 

..Al

 

Having both is a great option. I REALLY love having a nice physical cart, but I understand people don't have space sometimes. ALSO a big factor, if a producer does a limited run of carts and then you can't get your hands on one! Having the ROM and PDF available is then convenient for both parties and discourages eBay scalping of existing physical copies. I can also see the game makers side, it must get tiring to make carts!

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I'm OK with CIBs costing more. Why should I have to pay $40-75 for a CIB I don't want (I just want to play the game) so a fellow collector doesn't have to pay as much for his/her CIB? I consider myself a player not a collector.

 

And who knows maybe the publishers make more money because now with the option to purchase just the ROM gamers can play it on their multicart or in emulation if they want to. And at $10 it's affordable.

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Free is also affordable. Pardon me for repeating myself, but you are aware most homebrews are also offered as free downloads, right? Those that aren't usually have a very good reason for it, like Boulder Dash. As for the rest, donate some cash to the authors' PayPal funds if you'd still like to support them.

 

Of course I'm all for having an "official" means of buying just a downloadable ROM as well, because (presumably) that would also give a few pennies to the publisher (Albert) for running the store. But in the meantime, in most cases there are in fact cheaper options.

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Digital options are already available. I don't know if I'd want to put a 6+ month project as a digital download though. That kind of quality and time deserves a physical release before getting spread around the Internet.

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Free is also affordable. Pardon me for repeating myself, but you are aware most homebrews are also offered as free downloads, right?

 

I don't know depends what system, right? For example, on the ColecoVision side the ROMs aren't released for free until years after they've been available on cartridge.

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Digital options are already available. I don't know if I'd want to put a 6+ month project as a digital download though. That kind of quality and time deserves a physical release before getting spread around the Internet.

The only reason I'm against the idea is piracy. I want great homebrews to keep coming. I dont know what the solution is to this? Personal example. I really wanted to play GhostnZombies on the colecovision. I paid quite a bit of money for the cart. Dumped the image then resold it back. I'm not a douche bag so I havent nor will I ever sell the rom image or redistribute it in any way. I just worry about what others would do . Ideas like individual rom labeling is a short term fix. Edited by adamchevy
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Everyone have his opinion on this.

Mine is the opposite.

Having loose carts feels like you picked that up from a garage sale.

I do'nt mind getting the ROM, even to pay for it to support the work. I have some flash multicards so I could as well get "all digital"

But IMO, the box is part of the game.

How many game heve been bought because of their fancy, silly artbox? Plus, many games of the 8bits era are today unplayable because many infos and tips are on the manual. And where do you wanna keep the manual? Well in the box.

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I don't know depends what system, right? For example, on the ColecoVision side the ROMs aren't released for free until years after they've been available on cartridge.

 

Yes, but you're on an Atari forum. :)

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Yes, but you're on an Atari forum. :)

 

CV sucks for homebrew roms. I think i found one for sale....princess quest. And I was happy to pay the 10 bucks for it. Very annoying though when you can't find a game because only 20 "limited editions" were produced and then the rom never becomes available.

 

That community needs to get better about that (availability) because the CV is a fine machine with many great homebrews (that people can't afford to get their hands on.)

Edited by travistouchdown
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I'm with the original poster -- I don't really collect, but I like to play games. I don't need physical clutter or swag but I am happy to send a few bucks to someone whose work I like. Artificial scarcity of "limited runs" is no fun. I'm glad most home brew developers seem to release a ROM.

 

I get that many of you feel differently -- the retrovgs thread took a little detour about the virtues of Indiebox, something I just don't understand -- it's random Steam games with extra physical junk in the box. There's clearly a split in the road and I took the digital detour several years ago.

 

Short version: digital is nice. Choice is the best.

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I like the idea of having the downloadable ROM as a purchase option (or as a "Donate to Developer and AA" if the ROM is already publicly available).

 

On another note, I also like owning physical carts of awesome homebrews but I couldn't care less about boxes. I'd rather have the option of getting the game's artwork on glossy cardstock with a condensed version of the game's instructions on the back. It'd be an homage to what Atari did with the Lynx where some games came with posters with the game's instructions on the back. They were completely impractical because if you hung them on a wall you wouldn't be able to read the manual but I think glossy cardstock would be a great alternative. And how cool would it be to thumb through a pile of them to find the instructions to the homebrew you're about to play?

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OK 2 ColecoVision releases come to mind: Ghosts and Zombies and Starcom. CollectorVision doesn't want to do another run of either of these games so that the games will hold value for collectors. Fine, then how about selling the ROM for $10 a pop? Or is the fear that great that someone out there is going to hit eBay with pirated copies of these games?

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I'm sorta off Topic, because I don't buy "homebrews", I buy Indie games. I would have nothing against buying a homebrew and just emulating it though. I don't have any Kind of Flash carts so I couldn't use original Hardware.

 

On that note, Just a copy of the game and the PDF for the Manual is what I want. If I want to print the Manual for some reason I can. I can even print a cover and buy a storage box. Or I can just leave it on 3 different backups and be quite sure I won't lose my stuff. And that's what I've been going for,

 

If People are open for pay pal donations I'd certainly donate to a Team I like.

 

My Price for digital DRM free Releases are up to 10 bucks if it's an amazing game, 5 bucks for good, and if it's mediocre it has to be dirt cheap.

 

Case anyone wants to know... Unlike some People I don't think the Internet or computers are the enemy. It's strange to see that Kind of thought on an online community, but yeah. Whatever...

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OK 2 ColecoVision releases come to mind: Ghosts and Zombies and Starcom. CollectorVision doesn't want to do another run of either of these games so that the games will hold value for collectors. Fine, then how about selling the ROM for $10 a pop? Or is the fear that great that someone out there is going to hit eBay with pirated copies of these games?

I'm not sure why they would want to limit how many people could enjoy these great games? It frustrated me to no end back when I was wanting to play colecovision homebrews. Certainly the programmer would want people to play there games as time moves on? I know I would want as many people as possible to play a game I worked so hard to create . Especially because the whole homebrew thing is a very niche market. Of course licensing is always an issue. I have scene this same debate a few times on the forums before with ghostnzombies and boulder dash 2600. The programmers respect there original licenses because they are legally bound. There has to be enough demand and up front money to justify buying a limited use license for rom images or carts. Edited by adamchevy

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As a consumer and fan of homebrew releases, I can understand your point on this. A lot of people buy the game simply to play the game and the rest is clutter. But at the same time, the collector in me disagrees because as a collector, I make a purchase CIB so that the homebrew purchase will mesh in well with the actual releases, as well as to increase the overall resale purchase of the collection, should I ever decide to sell it.

 

 

This could be a WIN-WIN! If fewer 'real' cartridges are made, the value for the 'collector' should not be depressed. However this could be a great opportunity for a developer to make a few extra bucks and sales (if they wanted to sell) by zipping up the binary image in a ZIP file along with a PDF of the documentation. One could burn their own cartridge and use the game until bored with it, then buy the next one that comes down the pike and do the same.

 

I imagine someone could make more money $10.00 at a time with no further investment, than off of 50 limited editions that require printing, postage, PCB's, cases, etc. I'd be far more willing to shell out $10.00 than $70 for a dust collector.... IMHO.

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Free is also affordable. Pardon me for repeating myself, but you are aware most homebrews are also offered as free downloads, right? Those that aren't usually have a very good reason for it, like Boulder Dash. As for the rest, donate some cash to the authors' PayPal funds if you'd still like to support them.

 

Yeah, free is affordable and I agree with you, if I really like a game, and I'd like to see the guy make another, it would be great to have the option of firing off a few bucks as a form of encouragement.

 

Honestly, I usually only play a new game for about 10-15 minutes and therefore would never purchase it (I'm not a big gamer), but there are a few others out there that do merit a donation.

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Re: ColecoVision Ghosts and Zombies.

The author admits it has bugs, and has corrected them and changed enough of the game for a new release.

A. It will play better.

B. It will not be Ghosts and Zombies so those rare copies are still rare.

 

This post has nothing to do with selling ROMs and PDF manuals.

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I find more often than not, the truly great home brews also seem to be the ones that have their roms released for free.(pacmanplus is a great example here) And conversely, a lot of the special cart only no rom available tend to be underwhelming once you get your hands on them.

 

It's almost like the developers who really care about the quality of their final release game tend to be motivated by exactly that - the quality of the end product, not how much money they are going to make on it. And vice versa, the devs who lock it down and threaten people about sharing roms tend to produce something that shows money was the motivating factor - rushed, buggy, and lots of times just plain boring.

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I also wouldn't mind paying some for 2600 ROMs of homebrews if it's a relatively cheap fee, I even think $10 is a little wacky. IndieBox has calmed down my need for a physical copy - If I buy one and play it every month, I win, but I've seen things like the holiday carts I'd like to play around with in the season, but figured, shit, I am not really a big collector, especially with my 2600 using coax, and I don't feel like hooking it up in the first place. So even if I did have a moment of weakness and was going to impulse buy a homebrew, I always don't. I would get a ROM though. I'm no expert, but from the AA site, it looks like most homebrews have the ROM released, but I don't think it's ever on "release date" is it? A year down the line, Zippy isn't so interesting, for example. I don't have any idea of the costs, but would it be feasible for 2600 homebrew ports to go to something like Steam? This way the 2600 homebrew could be more lined in a modern day price while still giving creators some bucks?

 

At this point, I own so much shit I'll never play and with emulation that number becomes exponential, it's hard to compete for my gaming time. And then you have the Humble Bundle type games that always seem to include a good retro inspired title (and a mediocre one or two, while we're at it), it's really hard to compete in today's indie/retro market. We're spoiled, but people are still bitching endlessly.

 

I'm with the original poster -- I don't really collect, but I like to play games. I don't need physical clutter or swag but I am happy to send a few bucks to someone whose work I like. Artificial scarcity of "limited runs" is no fun. I'm glad most home brew developers seem to release a ROM.

I get that many of you feel differently -- the retrovgs thread took a little detour about the virtues of Indiebox, something I just don't understand -- it's random Steam games with extra physical junk in the box. There's clearly a split in the road and I took the digital detour several years ago.

Short version: digital is nice. Choice is the best.

 

The thing about IndieBox is the game I received this month and the game I will receive next month are $16.99 each in the Steam store. I am only paying $19.99 a month for the physical edition, DRM free at that. In my box, Axiom Verge (which is amazing and I've already beat it), I got the boxed copy, a manual, physical soundtrack CD, two stickers, a big map of the game and a statue figure thing-y and the game came on its own flash drive, with art that resembles like a TG16 card size cartridge, and it includes a Steam Key. I am aware you already know this, but just in case someone else steps into the fray - this is ultra value for your money. And it's in an old school box, not a boring DVD case. I can literally give away my Steam Key to a friend and give them a great game in addition to having this physical copy and I still have my non-Steam "cartridge" forever for me to play. Yes, I will swing on their dicks until the end of time for this method of being the ultimate monthly subscription service. :-D

Edited by bretthorror

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I guess I understand the "grab bag" appeal of Indiebox (I subscribed to the Humble Bundle monthly deal) but your description of all that other swag leaves me completely cold. I used to think Happy Meal toys could be charming, too. A monthly trip to McDonalds will give you enough landfill fodder to change that perspective.

 

Perhaps I have too much kid crap around the house to tolerate similar stuff for myself. I've burned all our CDs to digital and stowed the disks. As a parent, I'm pretty stickered out. A plastic statuette? Um, not for me, though I have some pals obsessed with Amiibos, which seems like the same kind of thing. I wouldn't mind a Steam key for Axiom Verge, even though I know I won't get around to playing it anytime until 2016. :-)

 

I'd be curious how long your "dick swinging" phase with them lasts. Your enthusiasm has also inspired me to look at the two unopened Loot Crate boxes I have from last year. It took them 2 extra months to get around to cancelling that box service after I signed up to get their Star Wars box.

 

Yeah, I'm a grump. Bah, humbug!

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