Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Rare Replay - A Compilation and Anti-Piracy Movement?

Rare Replay is out on XBox One this week, giving you 30 Rare games over their 30 years of publishing. From Battletoads to Conker's Bad Fur Day, it's $30 of great games that built the legacy of a wise-cracking developer.

But one author at The Verge thinks this might be the company's attempt to combat piracy. As technology improves, older systems are finding themselves locked away in cabinets, collecting dust, or out in the dumpster along with their games. Or the systems no longer work. It's difficult to play older content if you don't have the system and the game in working condition. This is assuming the system and game are within a reasonable price range. Something like the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Arcade on the Nintendo Entertainment System may cost you $200+ once you finish getting everything you need. Is it worth it for one game?

This is where the internet comes in, and websites such as Archive.org that help keep older content alive. These websites not only store the games, but have updated the coding to allow newer PC's and Laptops to play them. It's a great time to be alive. But some people don't see it that way. Because now those games are online for free, we're taking money away from the developers. Some of these devs no longer exist, snuffed out since the video game crash of the 1980's. Others have been bought out and stripped away their powers that they no longer have control over their games or content.

And truthfully, it's really easy to get older games for free online. With ROM's and digital rights laws favoring the old school fans, it's not something that's easy to tame.

But Rare creating a collection of their best work to say no to piracy? I doubt it. Even the most malicious of hackers knows that $30 for 30 games is a fantastic deal. And you can play them on a next gen system without the need to bust open the code to make it work? It just got better.

Take what you will from the article. Like most people, we see it as Rare capitalizing on their anniversary and selling a bundle that their fans have wanted for years. It's a money making opportunity, not an underhanded way to stop piracy in a manner that really won't resolve it. If people want something bad enough, they'll find a way to get it for free.

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