The Internet Archive has previously made banks of emulated games available to play in your browser – from the DOS era, from arcade machines, from Ataris and Segas and other old consoles – but none of that tickled my thumbs much. That they’ve just added 2000+ Amiga games, however, has me reaching for my Zip Stick. From Lemmings 2: The Tribes to R-Type, these were the games of my youth.
This is, of course, of questionable legality. The Internet Archive works under the hope that emulating these games is valid and fair given that most or all of the games are no longer for sale in any form. They’re also putting the burden on the copyright holder to get in touch and ask for their game to be removed if they don’t want it up there. Jason Scott, the archivist responsible for putting together the collection, argued at 2015’s GDC that “Workplace theft is the future of game history,” and spoke to us more about his thoughts when it comes to the preservation of MMOs.
Of course, it’s been possible, with a little digging, to emulate Amiga games for a long time. WinUAE is easy to setup and use it’ll allow you to save your games as you play. I haven’t done it in a while, but finding the ROMs for Amiga games meanwhile used to mean trawling through websites of questionable intention. Making the platform’s long history easily accessible in your browser with a couple of clicks is valuable work.