Is it bad to backup your games or download them?

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Initially published on March 27th 2018 on Steemit

Source: iPhone, Tigerfog

Imagine that you own a 20-year-old used game and realized it was no longer working because of bit rot. You ask yourself how this could happen when you’ve always taken good care of it by keeping it away from sunlight, dust and a humid environment. That’s when you remember a conversation you’ve had with a friend who backed up his/her games and now wonder if it’s still frowned upon to backup your own games, let alone download them.

Why it’s a good thing

  • You bought this game brand new so the rights owners already got paid
  • Regardless of how you bought it, it’s no longer sold new in any format so the rights owners are no longer getting paid
  • You bought this game used so the rights owners didn’t get paid anyway
  • Having a backup of your game will help you preserve it beyond the natural lifespan of your original physical media which, once it’s no longer usable, will end up being simply a piece of your collection
  • If you’ve modded your console to boot digital copies of your games using storage media such as a USB thumb drive or an SD card or even a shared drive on your computer using a network cable, you’ll use up less your original copies and your console especially if you can get it to play games without using its optical drive


Source: iPhone, Tigerfog

Why it’s a bad thing

  • Even if you want to remain honest by creating only backups of your games, the temptation to just download games you don’t own is extremely high
  • Rumors have been circulating regarding burned discs damaging your console in the long run (e.g.: the Sega Dreamcast)
  • Using your own backups will require you to mod your console, either physically with a modchip or digitally with a custom firmware and in both cases, you are violating the console manufacturer’s terms and conditions
  • If and only if you care about what people think about you, know that some people in the gaming community will judge and look down on those who own backups regardless of their reasons for doing so
  • When putting the game in your console and turning it on no longer appeals to you, you start spending more time growing your digital collection and less time actually playing your games and in time, you’ll appreciate them less for their real purpose


Source: iPhone, Tigerfog

What’s my take on this?

On one hand, I love having real original physical copies of my games and half of the fun comes in putting them in my console. However on the other hand, I know nothing lasts forever, especially disc-based consoles with moving parts and the discs themselves so I’m in favor of creating your own backups for future preservation and in some cases, extend the life of consoles that, when modded, can run games without using its optical drive. What about you? What’s your take on this? Should we always buy our games even if the money doesn’t always go to the rights owners? Should they re-release all of their game catalog without DRM and at reasonable prices to combat piracy? Let’s discuss this in the comments.


Source: iPhone, Tigerfog

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Source: iPhone, Tigerfog

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