Re: [stella] Perfect BIN copy protection

Subject: Re: [stella] Perfect BIN copy protection
From: Chad Schell <gamer@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 03 Feb 2002 14:52:31 -0800
At 10:29 AM 2/3/2002, Manuel wrote:
I assume there's people out there, that think the

"Hey, I could spend XXX$ a year buying homebrews. Or I
can _once_ spend 100$ buying a CC and never another
penny again."

Even if they think, "Well, if there's a really good
homebrew I will still buy it", the number of "really
good homebrews" will get drastically reduced once you
own a CC.

Think about Thrust. Thomas said that ~30 copies were
sold all in all. Compare that to the number of "real
collectors" who bought a CC...

Thrust and Jammed were available before the Cuttle Cart. (The Cuttle Cart was shipped in August of 2001.) I don't think the poor sales of these games can be blamed on the Cuttle Cart. I think the problems lie elsewhere.

One problem I see is the lack of advertising. I personally didn't see a lot of press about these games outside of the Stella list, which isn't read by much of the classic gaming community at large. Compare this to say Qb, which had a lot of advertising in rgvc and sold well.

Also, I think for some reason people do not view games released by Hozer as actual new releases, but rather just copies. I think this comes from the fact that Hozer was at one time mainly known for providing copies of hard to find games, which while fine for gamers, was not what collectors are looking for. So when you release a game though Hozer, these collectors don't feel they need to have it. This does seem to be changing as more and more homebrew games are being released by Hozer, and with more advertising largely coming from Atariage. (And given the general antagonistic tone of this thread let me head any problems off and say right now that THIS IS NOT AN ATTACK ON HOZER OR RANDY! It's just my perception of an aspect of the community. I think Randy offers a great service, and he was very helpful in my obtaining eproms for the Cuttle Cart.)

But people who really work hard, share
concepts/thoughts, even fully commented sources and who
are really trying to push the scene towards quality,
because we love programming _and_ 2600 gaming, who sell
just plain stock versions, which actually should really
be worth the lousy 5$ royalties we're asking for, get
kicked in the ass in the end, with a game selling less
than 10 copies in a whole year! (Jammed)

See above out the timing of Jammed. And if you're really looking for just for $5.00 commission, why not use the Cuttle Cart to your advantage and just sell the ROM for $5.00, kind of like shareware. This lowers the cost of ownership, which always helps to move more copies. And if you don't want the hassle of handling individual payments, ask Randy to offer that service for you, adding a fee similar to what he profits when selling one of your carts. (Like he sells the ROM for $7.00, or the ROM and a manual for $8.00.) That way Randy is still your distributor and you're not cutting him out of the loop.

So be the Cuttle Cart the homebrew to end all other
homebrews and Chad being the only one to get some $$
back for his (admittedly) hard work?

If that was my intention, I would simply give people a patch to allow them to play Gunfight. I'm not working against you Manuel. I don't distribute ROMs and I've never done anything to help people obtain or play your games.

I personally do not like your policy. I think it's very silly to release the ROM for play on emulators or for burning onto carts, but not for play on the Cuttle Cart / Supercharger. If you want people to buy to play, use the Ebivision model that you only sell the game and it's not freely available to anyone. Singling out one sector shows a personal bias against that sector (and those products) in my opinion.

I'm also very annoyed about Gunfight because I had been told by you that you would remove the anti-Cuttle Cart code before releasing the ROM. Then I start getting all these "Gunfight doesn't work" complaints. So much for removing it eh?

Think Ebivision or other guys doing "homebrews". From
Ebivison games you don't even see a screenshot, before
you buy them...

True, but they also don't come to the public community for assistance in developing and play testing their games.

Chad Schell
Like the Atari 2600?  Check out the Cuttle Cart.

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