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Classic Games (Games) Games

Archive.org Adds Close To 2,400 DOS Games 198

New submitter Bugamn writes Archive.org has added a new library of DOS games. The games are playable on the browser through EM-DOSBOX, a port of the DOS emulator. The games are provided without instructions, so some experimentation (or search for old manuals) might be necessary. The library does not mention any copyright concerns, although some of the games can be found for sale on sites such as Steam and GoG.
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Archive.org Adds Close To 2,400 DOS Games

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  • Naww, I grew tired of Denial of Service attack games.

  • Oh... S*** (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Greyfox ( 87712 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2015 @07:57PM (#48750741) Homepage Journal
    They've got Master of Orion. Ok I'm just going to close up this story, walk away and pretend I didn't see it, before I go looking for Star Control and lose the next 4 months of my life to those games again.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 06, 2015 @07:57PM (#48750747)

    And not a single line in the crefits, source, github-page - nowhere.
    I even have mails from "dreamlayers" from 2014-01-03, when he discovered my port, and three days later his commits in his repo start...
    Would have been nice to be credited correctly... :/

  • The Internet Archive has a laudable goal, but these days they seem to just be shooting for straight-up piracy, not only hosting copies of games that are still for sale, but making them playable right on their site... I mean, they've got Street Fighter II in their arcade section...

    To be honest, I'm shocked nobody has sued them yet. They really don't have any fair use defense.

    • by Nyder ( 754090 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2015 @08:25PM (#48750907) Journal

      The Internet Archive has a laudable goal, but these days they seem to just be shooting for straight-up piracy, not only hosting copies of games that are still for sale, but making them playable right on their site... I mean, they've got Street Fighter II in their arcade section...

      To be honest, I'm shocked nobody has sued them yet. They really don't have any fair use defense.

      See, this is how the Copyright Cartels want you to think. It's not piracy, and it is fair use. If a owner of any of the software has a problem, they can ask for it to be removed.

    • by narcc ( 412956 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2015 @08:26PM (#48750911) Journal

      You're going to be absolutely shocked if you ever wander in to your local library!

      • Why, are libraries making copies of entire books and giving them away? Last I checked all the books they had were legally purchased with a valid copyright page and could only be lent to one person at a time.

        • by AK Marc ( 707885 )
          Last I checked, the libraries have started carrying e-books and let you "check out" e-books, which is a copy of an entire book that's "given away".
        • by ihtoit ( 3393327 )

          every library I've ever been in prohibits you from making a copy of an entire book using their copying facilities.

      • by radish ( 98371 ) on Wednesday January 07, 2015 @12:01AM (#48752019) Homepage

        And you're clearly going to be shocked if you ever learn how a library actually works.

        Hint: the books (and CDs, and DVDs, and games) on the shelves are legally purchased copies, and are lent to a single patron at a time. They are not printouts of torrented epubs.

        I love the Internet Archive but I seriously have no idea what they think they're doing here.

        • So it's legal because copying the book takes longer than copying the data?

          • by aiht ( 1017790 )
            Where on Earth did you get the idea that it's legal to copy the book? Don't the libraries near you have the posters up near the photocopiers specifically telling you you're only allowed to copy short sections under fair use?
            • No. Mostly because the catastrophic US copyright law does not apply in Europe.

            • by AK Marc ( 707885 )
              No. I've seen copiers in every library I've ever been to, but I've never seen a copyright warning around them.
        • I seriously have no idea what they think they're doing here.

          Historical preservation would be my guess. But what's the point of preserving history if it's completely hidden for all time? One could arguew that it's not really been preserved at all in that case.

        • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) *

          They are curating a collection, like a museum does. There are museums dedicated to old computers and old games consoles, which allow visitors to view and even use old software that is still under copyright. They are tolerated and while I don't know the exact legal situation in the US, judging the the policy of Archive.org of not collecting games that are still for sale or where removal has been requested I'd imagine that is representative of it.

          As for games that seem current like Street Fighter 2, it's the

    • by Anonymous Coward

      They have a DMCA exception for this which they asked the Librarian of Congress for.

    • I think they think that by not allowing you to download the binary they're in the clear. Unfortunately you _are_ downloading it, to the emulator running in your web-browser.

      There was a conference down here in Australia on game preservation last year and one of the most discussed subjects was precisely this -- and the conclusion was simply that what archive.org is doing in this context can't be considered as anything other than illegal.

      Now whether or not anyone complains or not is something for IA to deal wi

    • Not to mention there isn't any "grey" area legally (not that there ever really was) as many of the games listed are for sale on GOG and Steam. I've personally tried talking to some of the bunches that hold the rights to the old shareware titles too and they do NOT let anybody host their old stuff, in fact most want a fricking mint just to let you put up the original limited CD shareware, much less entire games like what they are doing.

      Is there ANY way the community can fork off the Wayback Machine? Becaus

      • "Is there ANY way the community can fork off the Wayback Machine? Because AFAIK that is the only source for many web pages lost to time and it would truly be a crime to lose them forever because this yo-yo has decided to turn Internet Archive into another warez site."

        It's got a couple of complicated twists I don't yet understand though.

        Elsewhere we see stories that skies alive if someone torrents a Justin Bieber song, say a homeowner's sister in Kansas or something, they wind up with a multi thousand dollar

    • I don't if any of these games are in violation of copyright laws but I do know that just because it is for sale does not mean that it is a violation. You can get e-books for works out of copyright for authors such as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and W. Shakespeare from archive.org and Project Gutenburg but it doesn't stop books stores from selling them anyways.

      I imagine that the copyright laws governing these games are subject to where the foundation for archive.org is established. So if they established the foun

      • by Guspaz ( 556486 )

        The Internet Archive is based in the US. Every single game that they're pirating is still under copyright in the US.

  • by caseih ( 160668 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2015 @08:27PM (#48750921)

    Just a note that many games on archive.org cannot be downloaded. They can be played online only, through the uncredited javascript dosbox implementation. Not sure how that affects the legal status of these games.

    • by cusco ( 717999 )

      I believe that would make archive.org fall under the same classification as libraries then.

      • If the copyright allows it though. Which would mean that all those copies were originally legally purchased and only one player at a time played the game. I certain this is not the case here, so they'd need to get additional permission from the copyright owners.

        Sure some people feel the law is outdated or more likely they think the law is inconvenient, but people can not just make up their own laws on the fly. There are large sections of laws regarding libraries, what they can and cannot do, and so forth

      • Except that the exceptions in copyright code that allow public libraries to make copies of works specifically prohibit them from allowing digital copies to leave their premises and place strict limits on the number of copies that can be made, neither of which seem to be being honored here, given that hundreds or thousands of people are likely accessing these files from all around the world simultaneously, each of whom is getting their own copy to play around with.

  • by linebackn ( 131821 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2015 @08:35PM (#48750953)

    A pile of just games, really? Not even manuals?

    Archive.org seems like the kind of place that should have the resources to scan and host all kinds of serious material. There are many, many, "boring" vintage applications, application manuals, and other computer system manuals, that have not yet been archived.

    Give me R:Base 4000, UCSD p-system for IBM PC, the Kaypro 2000 utility disk (with color utility), Digital Research DR Logo for IBM PC, or how how about the impossible to Google for 1980s telecommunications program from Microsoft called "Access". Given time I could list hundreds more that need archiving. And even when some messy partial copy surfaces, many of these are useless without their manuals.

    Chances are archive.org are just up for the attention grab, and I do hope that in the long run perhaps it benefits all media that needs archiving.

  • I've been trying to remember the name of an old DOS "game" without success for some time now. Can anyone remember this game: It was a shareware DOS game the used only the native character set, mostly symbols like slashes and * and other pseudo-graphical characters. It used the screen as a large 2 dimensional workspace, and moved pieces around the screen based on other cells that served as twirling propellers, moving panels and other simple character animations. Some of the "maps" were amazingly complex for
  • by SuperDre ( 982372 ) on Wednesday January 07, 2015 @05:36AM (#48752995) Homepage

    How about first checking if you are allowed to publish the game like this before actually doing it?
    What makes them different from any other internetuser?

  • I fairly sure it's their entire library, was getting updates from the Usenet but god was that ever slow going.

    MAME_0.149_CHDs_A-B
    MAME_0.149_CHDs_C
    MAME_0.149_CHDs_D-G
    MAME_0.149_CHDs_H-N
    MAME_0.149_CHDs_P-S
    MAME_0.149_CHDs_U-Z
    MAME_0.149_EXTRAs
    MAME_0.149_ROMs
    These are game disk images http://fileinfo.com/extension/... [fileinfo.com]

    I added up the files (torrents) and I've got 308 Gigs worth of games, most of which I'll pry never load let alone play.

    If your not aware the program MAME will load the ROMs of the old arcade games, so you can play your old favs. MAME has been ported to most tablets and cell phones, not that they all work that well. "Moon Patrol" is a great cell phone game for me as there are only 4 keys that you use, fairly fun to play and it's great bathroom throne material.

    "MAME can currently emulate several thousand different classic arcade video games from the late 1970s through the modern era."
    http://mamedev.org/ [mamedev.org]

    • If your not aware the program MAME will load the ROMs of the old arcade games

      I should add if you wish to play these arcade games on your tablets or cell phone you would just need to download the "MAME_0.149_ROMs" file.
      It's got the game ROM that would be required for you systems emulator, there are 28,510 different games (ROMs) within that file so should keep you occupied.

      • MAME is a nice application but the problem is that most games were not designed for fun but to make you lose as fast as possible. Simply speaking, a cabinet game will be a lot harder than the same game for console or PC. When I was young, playing cabinet games was fun partly because I did not have a lot of money. In MAME, I can just play a few minutes, die, insert a "free" coin and continue the game to die even faster ... Boring!

        MAME is still interesting for people trying to beat their high-score but not fo

        • MAME is a nice application but the problem is that most games were not designed for fun but to make you lose as fast as possible. Simply speaking, a cabinet game will be a lot harder than the same game for console or PC. When I was young, playing cabinet games was fun partly because I did not have a lot of money.

          I've done my share of arcades, they sprang up all over the place at one time, even the 7-11's had at least one. Many times my pockets were full of quarters in the event I ran across Donkey Kong or Defender.

          Gummy Worms and video games quite the combination, like they were made for each other :).

          They are made to make you lose but when you do beat an arcade game, your going to get your next quarters worth. The Atari 2600 was awful for this "made to make you lose" and you owned the damn thing, just a simple ga

  • by ihtoit ( 3393327 ) on Wednesday January 07, 2015 @12:36PM (#48755401)

    I've got a Virtualbox setup with MS DOS and a stack of 2GB virtual drives packed chock full of full version games and apps, I've had to put a clock limiter on it because watching USS Ticonderoga scroll through at $stupid fps makes me dizzy.

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