Re: [stella] Are 7800 demos legal???

Subject: Re: [stella] Are 7800 demos legal???
From: Glenn Saunders <cybpunks@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 28 Nov 1999 09:39:04 -0800
At 09:24 PM 11/23/99 -0600, you wrote:
Actually, we know that they declared the Jaguar an open platform, but
still won't release the encryption keys or method.  Far different thing

Russ, to the best of my knowledge, it's not that they WON'T release the encryption algo, it's that they CAN'T (or won't spend the time) find it, so that the best thing they could do for 4-Play was issue an announcement saying "go ahead and break it if you can". (although I do remember a note that 4-Play sifted through the closet of old stuff). I know that the 7800 encryption routine is definitely lost.

Legally speaking, it's not wise to read between the lines, but it's definitely implied in the Hasbro announcement that older systems have the green light for development. I mean, Carl is also developing Lynx games without trouble from Hasbro, and that's a far more modern system than the 7800 or 2600. Hasbro reps were at CG Expo and did not take offense to any of this, or Pesco or Merlin's Wall. It's logical for Hasbro to be the most concerned with the most recent dead console for which they have the rights. Remember that only a few years earlier Atari Corp. was spending millions pushing the Jaguar against 3d0 and the 16-bit machines. The Jaguar was very much a modern system with modern licensing arrangements and encryption schemes and this was all plopped into Hasbro's lap. There were official unfinished games that were in development while Atari was still alive awaiting encryption and Hasbro had to somehow appease these legitimate developers (or those who bought the rights to their work with the intention of releasing the games). There is no similar momentum for Hasbro to offer announcements about the other platforms because it's assumed that these platforms were long dead by the time they acquired the rights and that hence there were no dangling issues with legitimate 3rd party developers.

I agree that Hasbro should make a followup statement to make this official, but I think it's a safe bet to assume that they feel this way.

Well, the point is, the courts would find it illegal, but Glenn may not
mind.  But if you're really after being legal, you need a way around
the legal issue.

I think Russ is saying that we should contact Hasbro. If you've got enough time to fight your way through the beaurocracy there to get them to issue a statement, then go right ahead. But they just don't issue these statements overnight. They send a bunch of internal memos all around, come to a decision, then pay insane legal fees just to get the thing worded in a way they feel doesn't give anything away, so there is a great reluctance on their part to do this when it's just a net loss on their part. That's why we couldn't get them to allow us to manufacture a small quantity of Save Mary cartridges.

Glenn Saunders - Producer - Cyberpunks Entertainment Personal homepage: Cyberpunks Entertainment:

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