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Topic: Clarifying our Gray Areas: Emulators, Homebrew, and ROMs

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theblackdragon

Hey guys, got another big fat wall of TL;DR for you, but this one's important, so please at least give it a once-over. :3

More than a few of you have complained over the years regarding the forums' strict 'none at all' enforcement while the main site showcases unofficial retro hardware, ROM hacks, homebrew news, discussions about piracy, etc. and so forth on an almost weekly basis. The bottom line is that there's all sorts of content out there based on 'gray-area' topics that our Editorial team would like very much to cover without seeing the (admittedly justified) backlash from users confused about where we stand on certain things, so we're changing up our Community Rules to clarify some of our gray-area stuff with regards to what we deem to be Unacceptable Content.

We are going to go ahead and allow constructive discussion about the use of flashcarts, unofficial emulators, and homebrew software for PREVIOUS GENERATION hardware only. This means any discussion of current-gen stuff is out — no Wii U emulators for your computer, no 'how 'bout that HBC 3DS' topics, no 'hey guys I just hacked my Vita and it's great' comments. By 'previous generation', at this time we mean DS/i, Wii, and anything prior. This rule will also cover non-Nintendo consoles like the PS3 and PSP or the Xbox 360 (though if you hack a 360 for whatever reason, good luck with that impending doorstop, lol).

By 'constructive' we don't mean stuff like 'where can I buy R4' or 'come visit my homebrew-related YouTube channel' or 'check out my ROM collection, I've pirated 768554687654 games!!!'. Those sorts of comments will still be nuked from orbit. What we mean is that if you happen to mention the only way you've played a given game was via ROM, for example, we're going to officially be okay with that. If you decide you want to talk about your experience beating a super-hard ROM hack, we're going to be okay with that. If you want to start a discussion about how your favorite indie developer started from hacker/modder roots, we're going to be okay with that. If you'd like to discuss which original homebrew games you've played and recommend certain ones to others, we're going to be okay with that.

You'll note that our stance on links, however, is largely the same. You may constructively discuss to your heart's content, but please don't provide links to torrent sites or copyrighted material like ROMs, BIOS files or to places where people can purchase anything based on or for current-gen hardware. This includes links to sites that host both original and copyrighted content or sites that sell hardware for current-gen stuff along with previous-gen — the copyrighted content or current-gen stuff will outweigh whatever you are actually trying to share with everyone else. Feel free to name names of specific programs or emulators or flashcarts or whatever, give people terms to search for via Google if you like because that's exactly where we're going to send them if they come here asking for these things. We'd rather be safe than sorry when it comes to this sort of stuff.

This is a new thing for both us and you guys, so please bear with us while we all test these waters together. We do reserve the right to lock, edit, or delete anything that steps too far into an illegal or legal gray area, so if we feel something has crossed a line we'll let you know via comment edit note or in-thread comment as we take action and, as always, if ever you have any questions, comments, or concerns regarding any of our Rules or acts of moderation, we invite you to get in touch with us directly.

Also, before anyone asks: Will we be going down the line to unban users who may have previously been banned for persistently discussing hacks/ROMs/homebrew/emulators/other gray-area no-no topics previously disallowed by our Rules? No. They couldn't handle following the Rules before, after all, and if that was honestly all they did to get banned, it's because they wouldn't listen to a moderator when repeatedly asked to stop. We give people plenty of rope with which to hang themselves. If someone couldn't listen to us before, we don't expect that to have miraculously changed just because our Rules are a bit different.

I think I've covered everything I could think of, but any questions? Comments? Offerings of bacon and/or adorably small fuzzy creatures? Give them to meeee~

Edited on by theblackdragon

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[16:43] James: I should learn these site rules more clearly
[16:44] LztheBlehBird: James doesn't know the rules? For shame!!!

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Jazzer94

The only way I could play Mother 3 was via an emulator, there I said and man does that feel good.

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Joeynator3000

...So, how about that ZSNEW, epic emulator right? I dunno, I stopped using it altogether once Earthbound showed up on the virtual console. xD
But yeah, glad this was changed....I made a thread about Project M a while back...it was deleted...then...Project M article. o_0

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theblackdragon

@Maelstrom: Not sure what you're asking, but if it's a fan-game of some sort, it should be okay to discuss and/or link to (provided the site you're linking doesn't also provide downloads of original ROM versions of copyrighted games). Does this answer the question?

BEST THREAD EVER
future of NL >:3
[16:43] James: I should learn these site rules more clearly
[16:44] LztheBlehBird: James doesn't know the rules? For shame!!!

3DS Friend Code: 3136-6802-7042 | Nintendo Network ID: gentlemen_cat | Twitter:

Storytime7

theblackdragon wrote:

@Maelstrom: Not sure what you're asking, but if it's a fan-game of some sort, it should be okay to discuss and/or link to (provided the site you're linking doesn't also provide downloads of original ROM versions of copyrighted games). Does this answer the question?

He's asking about fan remakes (Sonic 2 HD and Project AM2R, for example), which I believe have been discussed in articles on this site before.

Storytime7

3DS Friend Code: 4124-5304-9315 | Nintendo Network ID: storytime7

GuSolarFlare

I guess it's the perfect time to say why I keep saying I don't have many DS games left, I was into those flashcart things but since I got the 3DS I jumped out of this stuff(I never really wanted to get into it but my parents didn't care when I said it was bad for the industry so they said I had to stay with it, but I was already an adult when I got the 3DS)

Edited on by GuSolarFlare

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Joeynator3000

Does this mean we can finally have an Automatic Mario thread!?!?!? x3 (I love those videos, lol)

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Keep it PG-13-ish.

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unrandomsam

The homebrew I use is :

priiloader (On an NTSCU Wii) for Region Free Disks and to turn off the menu screen sound (As a side effect). Makes it so I can play both USA and JPN Gamecube and Wii disks on one Wii which is convenient. (I have a PAL one as well).

riivolution - The Newer Mod for NSMBW is better than anything Nintendo ever did with the series. (Maybe excluding NSLU but that suffers by having such short levels). The same teams Super Mario Galaxy mod will more than likely be exceptional as well.

The only DS homebrew I have seen (That has interested me) is the NeoDS emulator which is incredibly impressive. My brother had or has one of the original R4's what is annoying is my legit copy of Metal Slug X (NTSCU VC) lags on MVS difficult but this DS emulator doesn't.

I am somewhat interested in devolution (I have about 5 PAL gamecube games that can be forced into 60hz only by a mod chip but doing so works fine - Not sure it is an option. My PAL Wii doesn't have Gamecube ports (I do have a PAL Gamecube though)).

And Quadforce.

Thinking of getting a 3rd Wii and doing a full region change (Not done that yet) to NTSC-J to get some of their VC stuff. (I don't need the NTSC-J Gamecube support because the NTSC-U Wii I have already handles it and none of the Games I have seem to have the memory card needing formatting problem). So I could replace the Gamecube OS with Quadforce.

Most of the other Wii homebrew I tried I have a better option already on some other device.

I don't have a DS flashcard myself. (The crimes are importing / selling at least as far as I can see). Dunno what games can only be played in English like that.

Edited on by unrandomsam

“30fps Is Not a Good Artistic Decision, It's a Failure”
Freedom of the press is for those who happen to own one.

unrandomsam

That Streets of Rage fan game is absolutely brilliant as well. (It has something like 96 levels).

“30fps Is Not a Good Artistic Decision, It's a Failure”
Freedom of the press is for those who happen to own one.

CanisWolfred

I'm actually very surprised. This is very reasonable, arguably moreso than other sites I've been to. A younger me would be very pleased, though honestly I don't use emulators much anymore and always feel really bad the few times I do use it these days, even if its a game I have no reasonable way of playing otherwise. At the very least, it's good to know that if a discussion gets going where I'm forced to use one of those terms, I won't have to worry about a warning/possible ban anymore.

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BearHunger

I suppose this covers unlicensed games like Kart Fighter as well. Or maybe mentioning those was already allowed, I was never quite sure about it…

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SMEXIZELDAMAN

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LzWinky

Jazzer94 wrote:

The only way I could play Mother 3 was via an emulator, there I said and man does that feel good.

This discussion is...tolerated now.

Untitled

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Jazzer94

WaLzgi wrote:

Jazzer94 wrote:

The only way I could play Mother 3 was via an emulator, there I said and man does that feel good.

This discussion is...tolerated now.

<img>

I had to take the image out just to read it, Paper Mario's cold hollow merciless eyes made the post to terrifying.

Edited on by Jazzer94

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LzWinky

You will discuss homebrew and like it. Now get to discussing before I hammer you with this paper hammer!

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theblackdragon

Storytime7 wrote:

theblackdragon wrote:

@Maelstrom: Not sure what you're asking, but if it's a fan-game of some sort, it should be okay to discuss and/or link to (provided the site you're linking doesn't also provide downloads of original ROM versions of copyrighted games). Does this answer the question?

He's asking about fan remakes (Sonic 2 HD and Project AM2R, for example), which I believe have been discussed in articles on this site before.

I think these are things we'd just keep an eye on — it's one thing if users are discussing playing these games but a whole 'nother kettle of fish if the devs behind them were coming here, offering up files for download and asking our users for input on some sort of special beta version, for example. It would depend on how the topic plays out, i suppose. :3

BEST THREAD EVER
future of NL >:3
[16:43] James: I should learn these site rules more clearly
[16:44] LztheBlehBird: James doesn't know the rules? For shame!!!

3DS Friend Code: 3136-6802-7042 | Nintendo Network ID: gentlemen_cat | Twitter:

Shane904

So does discussing having the Homebrew Channel on the Wii Mode of your Wii U count as last gen or current gen?

Shane904

OptometristLime

SMEXIZELDAMAN wrote:

/me offers up a delicious, kawaii catgirl to the tbdsamaaa~

Sounds like we need to amend the fine print already, no human sacrifice clause.

You are what you eat from your head to your feet.

theblackdragon

@Shane904: That would count as current-gen since you're doing it on a current-gen platform. Discussing your experience with it on an actual Wii would be okay; discussing your experience with it in Wii Mode on a Wii U is not.

BEST THREAD EVER
future of NL >:3
[16:43] James: I should learn these site rules more clearly
[16:44] LztheBlehBird: James doesn't know the rules? For shame!!!

3DS Friend Code: 3136-6802-7042 | Nintendo Network ID: gentlemen_cat | Twitter:

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