Tempest: The Arcade Game that Crashes Itself for Anti-Piracy Reasons (www.youtube.com)
from cowpowered@lemm.ee to retrogaming@lemmy.world on 31 Jul 2023 14:42 +0000

Tempest, the 1981 arcade game, has some clever anti-piracy checks in its code

PotentialProblem@sh.itjust.works on 31 Jul 2023 17:11 +0000 next

I hate watching videos! So I asked some AI to provide a summary.

In this YouTube video titled “The Arcade Game that Crashes Itself for Anti-Piracy Reasons,” the speaker discusses the anti-piracy measures implemented in the arcade game Tempest. These measures include checksums used to verify the integrity of the code and copyright strings, as well as checks for genuine hardware. The speaker explains the checksum calculation process, provides examples of the code used, and discusses how the game detects genuine hardware by auditing random number generation in the POKEY chips. The purpose of these measures is to deter piracy and make it more challenging for hackers to modify the game. However, it is now easier to disable or delete these anti-piracy measures, although finding unmodified versions of the Tempest arcade cabinet remains challenging.”

Pretty interesting that they leveraged how the random number generation happened to determine if the hardware was authentic or not.

Buddahriffic@lemmy.world on 31 Jul 2023 17:19 +0000 next

Haha that reminds me of some other game that I had pirated back in the day that wasn’t stable and I wondered if they had something like this to detect it DRM code was patched out. I liked the game a lot so I bought a copy.

Nope, it was just a poorly coded game as the legit version crashed as much as my pirated copy.

BitterSweet@discuss.tchncs.de on 31 Jul 2023 21:10 +0000 next

Great watch! I’m now going to go play Tempest on my 2021 lenovo laptop with my Atari VCS controller.

LoopingRiver@lemm.ee on 01 Aug 2023 21:37 +0000

Great video and stumbled on a new channel to follow. Thanks! This level of technical detail and explanation is right up my alley!