Below are a list of Frequently Asked Questions and their respective responses. I have made my best attempt at compiling a list of everything you should need to know regarding Emulators, ROMs, and ROM Hacks. Please do not email me with any other questions, especially troubleshooting problems. Refer to the instruction manuals for trouble shooting.
NES Instructions SNES Instructions
What are Emulators?
They are programs which allow software to be run on a device for which it was not originally intended. For example, Nintendo games on a PC.
Are Emulators illegal?
No. They can however be used to run illegal software. The emulators on this site are only intended for use with legal software.
What are ROMs?
They are the code extracted from video game cartridges. When the code is run by an emulator, it allows you to play the game on a PC.
Are ROMs illegal?
The trading of ROMs via the Internet is a grey area, at best, in terms of legality. The generally accepted standard is that commercial ROMs are not illegal if you own the original cartridge and you create the ROM YOURSELF. However, this is a fairly complicated process.
Downloading a copy of of any commercial ROM, whether you own the original cartridge or not, is likely illegal. There certainly is no "24 hour trial" rule written in the law. That is a myth. For this reason, no commercial ROMs are available for download on this site. Also, for what it's worth, there aren't any non-commercial ROMs for download either.
What is a commercial ROM?
Any ROM that was created from a video game cartridge sold in stores. For example: All Super Mario Bros., Zelda, Mega Man, and Metroid ROMs are commercial ROMs. There are a handful of ROMs made by individuals as a hobby that were created for the public that are not commercial ROMs. But basically any game that was available on a video game system is a commercial ROM.
What are Hacked ROMs?
They are game for which the original code has been altered to create a new version. These changes often include new graphics, levels, or text.
Are Hacked ROMs illegal?
It depends. A hacked ROM contains two parts; the altered code which is certainly not copyrighted, and the unchanged code which is part of the original ROM. Therefore, downloading a complete, playable hacked ROM is likely illegal because a portion of the ROM is still copyrighted.
However, the downloadable files on this site contain ONLY the altered code which is not copyrighted. Therefore, it is legal to download any of the hacked ROMs on this site.
How do you create a ROM with only altered code?
There are programs that can detect the differences between the original ROM and the newly created hacked ROM. These programs then make a separate file, called an IPS file, which contains only those differences.
How do I play the Hacked ROM if it's missing part of the code?
To play the hacked ROM, you will need a copy of the original ROM. Then, using a special program, you can combine the two files. This newly combined file can be played using an emulator.
See the instruction manuals for more detailed information.
Where do I get the original ROMs from?
Not this site. Allowing you to download the original ROMs would likely be illegal. In order to remain unquestionably within the law, you need to create your own ROMs from your own game cartridges. I cannot offer you any instructions regarding ROM creation.
Please note that the content policy for this site clearly states that the Emulators and ROM patches on this site are only intended for use with legal software. If you plan on using these files with ROMs you acquired over the internet, you DO NOT have permission to download them. DeROK.Net does not endorse the downloading of commerical ROMs. If you choose to violate this policy and download the ROMs anyway, you are solely responsible for your own actions.
Is it illegal to play the hacked ROMs on this site live in a web browser, using the "Play it Now" links?
No. When you play the ROMs within your browser you are not downloading of any sensitive files, but instead, your computer loads them dynamically and on the fly. The inner workings of this technology only allow the files to be loaded into temporary RAM of a computer while playing. When the browser is closed, the resource is no longer available. This situation is analogous to visiting a friend and playing NES games with them, which, naturally is legal under the DMCA.
Why aren't there any Super Nintendo games available for play within a web browser, only NES games?
Super Nintendo games are far more advanced than their 8-bit counterparts, and the technology which allows the ROMs to run within a web browser are not advanced enough to process them.
Can you give me ROMs? Can you tell me where to find ROMs?
No. DO NOT EMAIL ME asking me for ROMs or their location. If you do, I will ban you from this site.
Do you have a "insert name" ROM?
Everything I have is posted on this site. If it's not here, I don't have it.
How do I make a hacked ROM?
There are hexidecimal, graphics, and level editors available on the internet. I have never made a hacked ROM, so I can't tell you how to use them. My best advice would be to look on Google for information.
If you have any other questions, look around the site for answers. Everything I know is on the site, so I really can't help you any further.