Final Message

At the risk of offending people, there seems to be three main problems with this scene now

The first is that nobody I've come into contact with seems to own the ROMs that they are running
the best I've found are less than handful of people owning less than a handful of the games they run

The second is conversion of classic cabinets into MAME cabinets, this really makes my heart sink
There are very few original 'classic' cabinets left - most have been parted out , converted or just dumped
Taking these cabinets, replacing the monitor, butchering the control panel - what ever anybody says
'It's mine, I can do what I like with it' - of course you can, but you just destroyed a rare part of video gaming
history all the same
Generic/JAMMA cabinets are so easy to get hold of - why destroy something that can never be replaced ?

Even if the cabinet "doesn't work" it can be fixed, if it's good enough to have a PC put inside it
it's good enough to restored to its original state

The last problem really relates to the first, and that is the amount of money spent making cabinets or
buying off the shelf cabinets

I've seen projects and cabinets which you can buy that run into the $1000s, people are only spending this
sort of money because they're doing the following calculation -

cost of the cabinet+monitor+PC / number of games in MAME = $1 or less per game

The real calculation is

cost of the cabinet+monitor+PC + (number of games in MAME * average price of an arcade board)

but - nobody's paying for the games that they're playing.....

So - isn't VAntAGE hypocritical ?
If you run it without owning the boards then yes,but it's designed to replace boards you already own

The reason it was written to be fast was to keep the cost down - because you've already
spent your money on the boards it's emulating, if you can live with the approximation that emulators give you
it makes board repairs a thing of the past and board swapping a simple matter of selecting the game from
a menu

Don't get me wrong -
arcade emulation is a fascinating hobby and the work done on the likes of Retrocade,MAME,Callus,Raine
etc. has been nothing short of incredible; and although my MAME setup started off 100% legal
it may have strayed in the past as well

just don't forget what the documentation says...

M.A.M.E. v0.37 BETA 12 (Feb 17 2001) - Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator
Copyright (C) 1997-2001 by Nicola Salmoria and the MAME Team

MAME is an emulator: it reproduces, more or less faithfully, the behaviour of
several arcade machines. But hardware is useless without software, so an image
of the ROMs which run on that hardware is required. Such ROMs, like any other
commercial software, are copyrighted material and it is therefore illegal to
use them if you don't own the original arcade machine. Needless to say, ROMs
are not distributed together with MAME. Distribution of MAME together with ROM
images is a violation of copyright law and should be promptly reported to the
authors so that appropriate legal action can be taken.