Anyone who's visited this site prior to February 2001 might remember that my main draw was a tidy collection of hand-picked, really fun, out-of-print video game rom files with full descriptions and screenshots. Alas, all good things must come to an end. In late January, Tripod, who had been hosting my site, decided to pull the plug. I can't say that I blame them, because I had agreed not to put anything illegal on my site. It would have been nice if they had given me some warning, but I guess that's not their policy. A couple of months later, my site is back up, but the roms are gone.
spend more than a couple of hours a week on it. So, in mid-1999, I began adding a couple of new roms each week that I felt deserved the Madguy Seal of Approval. After awhile, my site had amassed a pretty large collection of games, totaling hundreds of megabytes of space. The games were all stored on free unlimited space accounts at XOOM.com (now a part of nbci.com). The only problem was that XOOM was always able to find and delete my games (must've sent their XOOMgoons out), forcing me to start up new accounts on their service and upload everything again. While this didn't take much time with a cable modem, re-uploading everything on a regular basis began to get on my nerves.
A screenshot from one of MadGames's many wholesome roms See, most of the bigger rom sites around are not hosted on free servers. They're run by people who have time and money to invest, and most of whom expect to make a good chunk of change in return through often ridiculous numbers of banner ads and popup windows. It was never my intention to make money through the site, and I really didn't want to
It eventually became obvious to me that the more roms I added without spending any money, the harder things were going to get. For most of this website's existence, game design stuff has been my top priority. Hours spent on roms were hours away from AfterShocked! At about the time that my entire site was shut down, I had been thinking about quitting the emulation scene anyway. Not that I was ever really a part of the "scene", because for that you need to get 100,000 hits a day and display "WANT ROMS GO GAMEQUEST!!!!!!" popups every time someone visits the main page.
And as of late, some really terrible stuff has been going down. A 22-year-old student, Ryan Carey, was arrested for posting NES, SNES, and Game Boy roms, and he could face a $250,000 fine or up to three years in jail if he's convicted. That's pretty harsh, and though it's unlikely that something of that sort could happen to a small site on a free server, I'd rather not be involved with any sort of semi-large collection of roms. This is, to my knowledge, the first time anyone has actually been arrested for running a rom site. Ryan Carey's failed attempt at evading the police
The constant dread of being found out is only made worse when you receive e-mails like the following. Actually, this was the only threat I ever got, but it made me steaming mad!
"Godly Gamer" File Photo
- From: Godly Gamer <email@example.com>
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Subject: Okay, BUDDY
- Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2000 10:50:50 -0700
- Now you seem to claim it is illegal to have these on a system for more
- that 24 hours unless you own the original cart/arcade console yet, you
- have posted so many games out there, and that includes the Arcade
- consoles, there you have (yeah right) spent well over 3000 dollars (on
- bargain deals) so, pall, take the disclaimer off, or I will inform
- TRIPOD of illegal activities on their site collection.. and I have
- The Godly Gamer
Congratulations, Mr. Gamer, you are a jackass! Well, I sent this rectal tumor a couple of polite e-mails to which he never responded, and I took down my nice disclaimer. It seemed strange that he wanted me to do this considering EVERY ROM SITE ON THE PLANET HAS A DISCLAIMER. A true Godly Gamer would have known that! Sure, it's just a name, but it pains me to think that anyone would have the audacity to use the word "godly" in their internet nickname. Maybe he's god of the rectal tumors, but he's certainly no game god!
Fortunately, most of my rom-related e-mail was pleasant. Not pleasant enough to inspire me to continue posting roms, but it was pretty nice. So thanks to everyone who e-mailed me, thanks for a great one and a half years of rommy goodness.
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