About Piracy and Emulators

Hi folks. So, this might be a polemical topic, but I’ll love to know what are your opinions on this. For me, emulators are great for the gaming community. Since we are on a 3DS emulator forum, I don’t think that’s something that folks here would disagree. There is, however, something that that I want to discuss: piracy.

I mean, not piracy itself, but on a moral and legal point of view, what is considered piracy in this environment. Let’s assume I’m a PC player that wants to play “That Exclusive 3DS Game”, but don’t want to spend on a 3DS. With that in mind, I decide to download Citra. Not wanting to support piracy, I decide to buy a physical copy of the game, but as there is no way to dump a game without the actual console, I decide to download an illegal copy somewhere. Is there, on both points of view, considered piracy?

There are some other interesting stuff that can be pulled from that example. Even if, in theory, the person is paying the developers, how about that gaming console that wasn’t bought? What would be the impact on gaming industry if more people think like “me”? (that was just an example). Although I love emulators, that’s something that always gets me thinking without having a definitive answer.

Anyway, just wanted to share some thoughts and hear your opinions. I’ve read the rules a few times and, from my understanding, talking about how to download games or where to find it is prohibited, not about what is/isn’t piracy. Even so, if you guys think that’s something not worth of being discussed here, sorry for that and please feel free to delete my thread :slight_smile:

Playing games on “Cydia” (I think you meant Citra :stuck_out_tongue: ) does not require you to own a 3DS in some cases. If a friend owns a 3DS, and you own the cartridge for say Ocarina of Time 3D, you can dump your game from your friends 3DS and play it in Citra completely legally. However, regardless of your moral standings, it is illegal to buy a game and play a backup of a game that was created by someone else as dictated by United States law.

In regards to how it would affect the gaming industry, having emulators that can run games, and very well, from current-gen consoles is an unusual thing. Also, it takes quite a powerful computer to run most games well in Citra, so the impact that emulators have on the industry isn’t very substantial. Even if a couple thousand users pirated games and chose not to buy the games or the console, the impact on the industry as a whole is beyond negligible.

Someone has to own a PC that costs multiple hundreds of dollars to play games in Citra at an “okay” speed. So someone who can afford that, will more than likely be able to afford a 3DS.

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Nice point of view, thanks for that!

Here in Brazil taxes are a very substantial issue. Just to have an idea, PS4 launch price was 4.000 in our local currency (about 4x the minimum wage). Due to that, I’ve noticed a very thin line between piracy and emulation on the average working class. I think that most third world countries have this kind of problem when it comes to current-gen emulation: as money is limited and console prices are high, a decent gaming PC with pirated games becomes and interesting option. With that being said, my concern is that the impact on gaming industry might be bigger when thinking globally. Still, that’s not the point of emulators and I do believe that more people are becoming aware of the harm that piracy can do these days.

Laws about these kind of stuff are outdated here, so it’s nice to know US position.

(btw, I was searching something about iphones jailbreak while typing that post, that’s why “Cydia” got into my mind :smile:)

Well if publishers wants me to buy their overpriced mostly bug-infested crap then they must cut price by 50-75% as simple as that (mainly PC games, not Citra related). As Gabriel said prices outside of US/EU are ridiculous. For example Battlefield 1 Ultimate Edition costs the same 120€ in Bulgaria where the average monthly income is only ~400€. Thats like paying 1450$ for a PC game in the USA where the average monthly income is around 4800$.

There is an emulator for BF3 and BF4 with pretty high user counts. There was non however for the games before BF3 because they sold for a lot less in 2nd and 3rd world countries.

If publisher wants less piracy/emulation they’ll have to reduce prices. Maybe using a strategy like GOG did with Witcher 3? No money wasted on DRM means more money left for the actual development. Additionally the game could be bought for ~20€ in a sale just 2 months after release. If your game sucks however, DRM may be an option.

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I think the problem starts when is a emulator of a actual console. The 3DS it’s on the end of life, so I don’t think have a problem.

Copyright is still relevant, regardless. I’m going to go ahead and close this, please take any questions about piracy to another site, like GBATemp.