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Old 09 April 2019, 13:54   #1
Neil79
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Antstream - A retro game streaming subscription service



Quote:
Titled as Antstream and developed as the brainchild of CEO Steve Cottam and inspired by his involvement in 3DO development, this service features a lovingly curated selection of games from a catalogue of thousands of fully licensed titles!
http://www.indieretronews.com/2019/0...streaming.html
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Old 10 April 2019, 02:35   #2
enigma776
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Amiga and other classics to be streamed??

So it seems John Burton of Gamehut/Travellers Tales has partnered up with a company called AntStream to be the netflix of games.

They have a list of 2000 or so games from arcades, Speccy and the Amiga, they claim its all above board and have the licenses for the games but it will cost $.25 a day to use and play. It is all streamed too boot.

Now I don't know where to stand on this as on one hand people are getting paid but are they the right people, where does it leave many of us with collections of Amiga games (sure the legality of which is up in the air, but are also forgotten) So now that there is some company trying to make money off of these games are we all likely to be sued or are website such as this a target?

Anyone else got any idea on how this will work in the real world?
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Old 10 April 2019, 05:39   #3
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Good the future is here. So just $7.50 a month to play Amiga games. Hopefully there will also be advertisements in place of the cracktros, since those will not be needed since they purchased licenses from all of the original authors, both living and dead.
I can't wait to see a 30 second trailer of a Marvel Movie Shitfest or perhaps an Insurance ad before the game starts.

Hopefully it will include microtransactions, where all health pickups will be removed and will pause the game when you die and ask for a mere 0.75c to keep going.
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Old 10 April 2019, 07:43   #4
005AGIMA
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I think streaming is an inevitable part of gaming future.

Do I like it as a concept? HELL NO!

But I'm rare. I think more than 2 moves ahead.

Waiting for editors approval on a story I've written for pczone.co.uk on the topic of games streaming.

I'll link if it gets approved.

Last edited by 005AGIMA; 10 April 2019 at 07:53.
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Old 10 April 2019, 09:21   #5
acidbottle
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one day, in the far and distant future, there may be no alternative other than game streaming. as above, i think its a rotten idea, at least from a collector point of view.

the time it takes to d/load a few roms and an emulator, makes no sense whatsoever for retro platforms. with AAA its even worse though, lacking any ability to modify your experience and a threat to game preservation also.

on both a personal and professional level, I think we are using technology for the sake of it now, much of it good, much of it is making our experiences worse.
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Old 10 April 2019, 10:06   #6
005AGIMA
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Duplicate thread?
http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=97009
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Old 10 April 2019, 10:09   #7
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I would rather just buy the games than stream.
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Old 10 April 2019, 12:19   #8
DamienD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 005AGIMA View Post
Yes, threads merged...
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Old 10 April 2019, 12:38   #9
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I find myself torn on this subject. On the one hand I'm in favour of more people getting exposure to retro games. On the other hand I have a very, very bad feeling about this.

If models like this succeed you can be certain that bigger companies will get involved and more and more effort will be put in removing ROMs and the like (and maybe even a push to get rid of open source/free emulators) from the internet.

It might sound a bit alarmist, but I genuinely feel that this move to streaming could herald a new 'dark age' in terms of game preservation and keeping history 'alive'. This could end up with (some subset of) retro games only being available through sites like these - effectively putting all our eggs in one basket and removing the public's access to the original ROMs. And that doesn't even get into the problems of preserving modern games, which is something that is being made ever harder by current trends.

Remember, under current copyright laws, spreading (or even copying from original media to ROM to a point*) ROMs is not legal. Everyone should understand this - a big part of our hobby is mired in legal issues.

I have a strong opinion on this any many other elements of copyright law, but my opinion that copyright shouldn't last more than about 25-30 years is not the law. Hence (in EU at least) we're stuck with 95 year copyright lengths (or for non-company copyrights, 'death date' of author plus 75 years).

The shift to streaming and digital-only distribution with strong copyright laws and draconian DRM measures makes society as a whole run a genuine risk of losing big parts of our culture forever and no one seems to be interested in preventing this from happing (this last part is obviously not just about games by the way).

*) it depends on the country you live in, but the idea of format shifting (i.e. I have a cartridge/floppy disk/etc and I'll just use a ROM instead) is not legal by default. It may be in some cases, but it's not a certainty. As for BIOS/OS/ROM files for the system themselves - the same goes, owning an original machine/ROM chip is not by itself a guarantee for being legal.
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Old 10 April 2019, 14:56   #10
gimbal
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Unhappy

Streaming services are not going to magically make the rom files disappear from all harddrives. If there is one thing I have faith in which allows me to fully embrace these kind of services for my own selfish purposes: there will always be a large crowd that vilifies anything with the word "service" in the name and will make sure the preservation keeps happening. It's already a wildly uncontrolled and voluntary process, yet it happens quite effectively nonetheless.

The situation right now: obtain, rather easily in most cases, a less than legal rom and play it with less than legal tooling, nobody cries about it really. Or the other choice: hope that the content owner makes it possible for you to pay for legal access to the content.

Streaming services change nothing in the landscape other than making content more widely accessible, it's just another way to squeeze money out of the pockets of chumps like me that have bad memories of a lifetime of pirating stuff and want to do that as little as possible today. The rest of the world will keep doing what it does now - share and play roms.
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Old 10 April 2019, 15:33   #11
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A terrible idea. Seems another attempt at a cash-in on the "retro" scene. With ex Goldman Sachs people involved what could go wrong? Hahaha.
To boot - they are expecting a kickstarter to fund it.
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Old 10 April 2019, 15:52   #12
modrobert
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Is it another one of those "lets start a limited company and handle any lawsuits" way of dealing with the copyright problem of ancient software? It's legal (until it's not for some single title among thousands), but ethically even worse than oldschool pirates since profits are made.
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Old 10 April 2019, 17:48   #13
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Everything gets turned into a subscription method, it is ridiculous

Many games require latency-free accuracy on controls, streaming just cannot offer that.
Besides that, if you enjoy graphic artifaction on your games, I guess knock yourself out.
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Old 10 April 2019, 18:39   #14
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On the bright side (if there is one and I'm not sure about that) if it means that it gets harder and harder to get copies of games to play the way we have become accustomed to (wrongly, or not), then we might well see a return to the days of "dialling in" to bulletin boards to exchange titles, or even swap parties

PS: I hate pretty much anything that is monetised as a service. The only thing worse than having to pay for my software yearly is paying for it once and being forced to pay for updates yearly because a new OS version has come out and it needs an update to the software to support that new OS version (VMware and the like, I'm looking squarely in your direction here!)
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Old 10 April 2019, 18:55   #15
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Just don't pay for it it's that simple. It will only succeed if gamers allow it so if it does then that is because that is what people want. I've still yet to buy a digital game on any platform, even stuff I really want to play I just let it slip by until a physical comes out. Case in point... Horizon Chase Turbo physical on Switch coming very soon

In the meantime download full rom sets of every system under the sun now while you can and keep them stored on DVD or hard drive somewhere for the day you do want them.
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Old 10 April 2019, 23:25   #16
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I do not mind streaming emulation and I wonder how it could works. I am only afraid we will have similar situation like with Nintendo mini series and masive lawsuit against sites with their roms. There is a mistake in assuming that people who get those roms will get their mini snes/nes if they do not have other options to play games. So they have to fight all those sites so maybe they will earn more money on their products. As for myself, I like to have stuff in digital form on my hard drive and I believe it is the best way to preserve it. All those services will one day ends and all that stuff will be lost for us. I like to have control over files, roms and emulators settings, if I break something than it will be my fault and I will fix it by myself. I also would like to do not give names of sites that were closed already, but there were a few good ones, damage were already done.
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Old 11 April 2019, 10:57   #17
005AGIMA
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My thoughts on the topic of streaming services have just been published on PCZone.co.uk in my article "Insert Coin(s): Gaming may be coming full circle"

https://www.pczone.co.uk/insert-coin...g-full-circle/

Enjoy.

(If link doesnt work try again tomorrow. Had to submit an edit (added an image) so it's pending re-approval by the editor)

Last edited by 005AGIMA; 11 April 2019 at 16:49.
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Old 11 April 2019, 11:36   #18
BarryB
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No, i'll just use WinUAE, my own collection and the SPS Amiga collection to play my Amiga games thank you, why subscribe when you can get 'free' access.

Plus I don't support crowdfunding so that's an Instamiss anyway. Is this just a fancy Virtual Desktop running WinUAE and MAME
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Old 08 May 2019, 13:19   #19
Lorfarius
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gimbal View Post
Streaming services are not going to magically make the rom files disappear from all harddrives.

Streaming services change nothing in the landscape other than making content more widely accessible, it's just another way to squeeze money out of the pockets of chumps like me that have bad memories of a lifetime of pirating stuff and want to do that as little as possible today. The rest of the world will keep doing what it does now - share and play roms.
Are you sure? I used to download loads of music years ago, loads of songs dumped on CDs and whatever device I was playing stuff with. Since iTunes and Google Play store came along I can't even remember the last time I've touched or gone after copied stuff. It's so cheap that I'm perfectly happy to just buy them on a service like that and have access whenever I want.

It's like with the Nintendo store stuff, I could easily acquire a million ROMs but it never stops me buying stuff like Mario, Earthbound or Metroid when it's on there even if its across a couple of systems. If you provide the access people will use it, what we truly need is a decent sized easil accessed centralised library the likes of what iTunes has.

Legal stuff often has a lot of public appeal, the likes of the NES and SNES Classics have sold piles upon piles of what is effectively ROMs that could easily be stuck on a Pi. No solution is ever perfect.

Last edited by Lorfarius; 08 May 2019 at 16:29.
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Old 08 May 2019, 15:03   #20
gimbal
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I have full faith in the fact that the world is full of people who will pay nothing if they have the ability to pay nothing.
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