Legal Roms

Written by Adam Blau
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With the number of so-called "free" downloads available on the Internet, it is often tempting for computer users to spurn the law and use pirated software. We have already seen huge upsets in the music and DVD industries. Pirated and cracked copies of all sorts of software can be found on the Web with a disturbing degree of ease.

Video games are no exception to this rule. It is possible to find the ROMs from arcade games available for download and use with a Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator (MAME--itself a legal piece of software). If these ROMs are available for free, then the proper licensing fee and royalties are likely not going to the developers of the software; these ROMs are likely illegal.

Finding Legal ROMs

Fortunately, there are sites from which a user can download legal ROMs of their favorite video games. These video game library sites enable a user to pay a small amount of money to license each game. The user of legal ROMs experiences several benefits, not the least of which is peace of mind. By paying the proper (and negligible, really) licensing fee, he or she ensures that the developers get their due, encouraging them to create new and exciting games in the future.

Furthermore, legal ROMs are frequently of better quality than their illegal counterparts. If you download the ROM from a legitimate library, you can rest assured that you won't inadvertently be loading a piece of spyware or a virus onto your machine. The legal ROMs also have a higher chance of containing authentic video game code rather than bug-laden cloneware, as the pirated version is wont to possess.


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