Can game companies trust anyone to preserve their unreleased projects?

Discussion in 'Unreleased Games Discussion' started by Dustyc0ns0les, Aug 17, 2015.

  1. Dustyc0ns0les

    Dustyc0ns0les Member

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    It seems like all the big names in the industry are opposed to the idea of preserving unreleased games or early builds of their projects, and I find it unfortunate. Video game betas have fascinated me for quite some time, and I have considered contacting the companies that were responsible for these projects to get more info on and possibly preserve them. The problem is, there's really no way to communicate directly with developers or company representatives on the issue, and even if I could get in touch with them, they probably wouldn't disclose any details since the company strictly prohibits them from doing so. Is there any way I could earn their trust and potentially gain access to their archives, or are their games technically unpreservable?
     
  2. Borman

    Borman Digital Games Curator

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    Companies arent going to trust some random guy. I barely get people to talk to me sometimes, their NDAs strictly prohibit it. Large non-profits and museum organizations are making moves to preserve gaming history, but we have many things standing in the way.
     
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  3. Dustyc0ns0les

    Dustyc0ns0les Member

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    That's too bad. I guess I'd have to be a close friend or relative of a developer in order to get some interesting info.
     
  4. HEX1GON

    HEX1GON FREEZE! Scumbag

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    Companies prefer things to rot away, money even barely changes their mind either.
     
  5. GodofHardcore

    GodofHardcore Paragon of the Forum *

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    Hell Sega even threw out code for games that DID come out. In some Japanese Landfill is the code for Panzer Dragoon Saga just rotting away to be lost to time.
     
  6. Bramsworth

    Bramsworth Well Known Member

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    If you're merely holding onto the stuff for them, then how is that different from them just keeping it locked up in their high security building? Better there than some guy's collection.

    Only answer I can come up with is open a gaming museum and then try doing an official transaction, if they'd even listen.
     
  7. Dustyc0ns0les

    Dustyc0ns0les Member

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    You guys have some valid points. I almost feel stupid for making this thread, because I already know that companies like Nintendo prefer to destroy prototypes of their games and consoles when they are no longer needed. The only people who can archive these items are the designers themselves, and while I'm sure they would love to tell the public about their work, their contract with the company is forcing them to remain silent. It's really a shame that game developers have to be so secretive about past projects, but I guess nothing can be done to change that.
     
  8. Celine

    Celine Gutsy Member

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    I'm pretty sure Nintendo archive all of their stuff although sometime there are fun events such as when Donky Kong program code is (was?) owned by another separate company.
     
  9. Adrenaline

    Adrenaline Member

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    Proof of this is the OOT debug rom, which was held onto for no "real" reason until the gamecube rerelease, where the rom was provided to be used by the company that created the remake, IIRC
     
  10. Dustyc0ns0les

    Dustyc0ns0les Member

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    Hmm...maybe game companies claim to "destroy" their unfinished projects in an attempt to reduce public interest and possibly prevent competitors from stealing them and copying ideas for their own games. After reading an old thread where a user obtained a prototype Wii remote and was forced to return it to Nintendo so they could destroy it, I was pretty convinced that incinerating obsolete projects was a common practice among game companies, but then again there's no solid proof that the items in question were completely trashed. Perhaps it's better for developers to hold on to their work rather than distribute it to people they don't know. They're perfectly capable of archiving their material in the best way possible, so they don't need an entire community to do it for them.
     
  11. gladders

    gladders Robust Member

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    Nintendo could make enormous bank if they opened a museum of Nintendo - huge exhibits on the technical development of the Famicom and the story of the creation of Donkey Kong, and every few years open a new exhibit for the latest console! And show off their prototypes as special exhibits, maybe charge special entry fees for select rooms!

    Hell, team up with SEGA (again) and do an epic exhibit on the 90s console wars
     
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  12. herrlehmann

    herrlehmann Newly Registered

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    Last edited: Aug 23, 2015
  13. Goblin 6

    Goblin 6 Rising Member

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    i try to think of the developers perspective how they feel about their work when its scrapped etc. im thankful for what ever reason is they keep their prototypes. i assume when they get word of different direction for a game they have a usb and keep the file take it home and it sits or they sell it off i wonder if they have to sneak it out of the company and if the companies keep track of who all has what.
    would be awesome if there was an insider who had access to a ton of protos and has them stashed away for the future :)
     
  14. StriderVM

    StriderVM Peppy Member

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    My basic theory is that they don't really wanna share information. Not because of being dense but actually for "trade secrets" .

    Their "official" reasoning is that any idea, work or art regarding cancelled projects can still be useful someday and just releasing them in the wild could be used against them, (ie competitors using those ideas)
     
  15. MBMM

    MBMM Powered by Pied Piper

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    If it hosted a Super Mario 64 Alpha/Beta/Pre-release, they'd have me in there on a weekly basis.
     
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  16. ShovelThumb

    ShovelThumb Gutsy Member

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    I don't like the idea of prototypes ending up in a museum I'll never get the chance to visit. At least if some of us online get lucky it increases the chance for better preservation..
     
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  17. Adrenaline

    Adrenaline Member

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    Prototypes should be preserved in similar manners to films. While they may never see the light of day from that facility, I don't see how it hurts the chances of something being leaked - either it will be leaked from an existing copy or someone internal will leak it, and any copy given to the company could be watermarked to prevent leaking. I'm also more concerned with preservation than exposure.
    http://www.filmpreservation.org/preservation-basics
     
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  18. speedyink

    speedyink Site Supporter 2016

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    I agree, Video games should be preserved just like films. Redundant copies and originals stored in controlled environments. People should have access to it though (even if in just video form) because really what's the point of preserving it if no one gets to see it.
     

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