Alternatively, the game may simply attempt to overwrite critical program instructions, which if successful renders it unplayable. ROMs can be copied from the read-only memory chips found in cartridge-based games and many arcade machines using a dedicated device in a process known as dumping. For most common home video game systems, these devices are widely available, examples being the Doctor V64, or the Retrode. I’m not actually sure that downloading a game you own is technically legal (though I’m not a lawyer, and laws are different everywhere). But, presumably, unless they had records from your ISP or the download site proving you downloaded it, they wouldn’t be able to prove that you didn’t just rip the files from your hard copy .

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On an authentic cartridge this would do nothing; however, emulators would often allow the write to succeed. Pirate cartridges also often used writable chips instead of ROM. By reading the value back to see whether the write succeeded, the game could tell whether it was running from an authentic cartridge.

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Instead, the fan website Starmen.net undertook a massive translation project and released the translated version of Mother 3 in October, 2008. The translation was praised by fans and even employees from Nintendo, Square Enix, and other industry professionals. While black-and-white photographs may survive for a century or more, many digital media can become unreadable after only 10 years.

Further to this, a project called Vocals of Phantasia was begun to translate the actual speech from the game. An official English version was not released until March 2006, some five years after the text translation was released. Another example was that of Mother 3 final fantasy 3 emulator download, a Japan-only sequel to the cult-favorite Earthbound. In spite of massive fan response and several petitions for an English translation, the only response from Nintendo was that Mother 3 would be translated and released in Europe, which it never was.

The game would send data to this hardware by attempting to write it to specific areas of ROM; thus, if the ROM were writable, this process would corrupt data. Another copy prevention technique used in cartridge-games was to have the game attempt to write to ROM.

This is beginning to become a problem as early computer systems may be presently fifty or sixty years old while early home video consoles may be almost thirty years old. Due to this aging, there is a significant worry that many early computer and video games may not survive without being transferred to new media. So, those with an interest in preservation are actively seeking older arcade and video games and attempting to dump them to ROM images. When stored on standardized media such as CD-ROMs and DVD-ROMs, they can be copied to future media with significantly reduced effort. Some games, such as Game Boy games, also had other hardware such as memory bank controllers connected to the cartridge bus.