Surely if you have been involved in the world of video games for many years and especially retro games, you have already heard about CoolROM, RomsMania and other similar sites. Here we show you how to download retro games and ROMs on various platforms.
What is CoolROM?
According to CoolROM’s own words “It is the largest retro games resource on the net”, on this site we can find thousands of games (ROM) and the latest emulators to run them, on this site we will be able to find games for different consoles, from “Arcade” to the “Xbox”.
To understand CoolROM more in depth, we must delve into the subject by being up-to-date with certain terminology used for retro games:
- Emulation: The process of simulating hardware from one machine to another, that is, in this case, running games for SNES, Genesis, N64, etc., on your PC, Mac or mobile device.
- ROM / ISO: The image of the game; for example: Super Mario 64. This is basically a file converted from a game cartridge or a CD so that you can run it on your computer or mobile device.
- Emulator: A program that allows you to run game images (ROMs / ISOs) for SNES, Genesis, N64, etc., on your PC, Mac or mobile device.
Disadvantages of CoolROM
Now we know that we can play all those classics from our childhood on our current computers or on our mobile devices, but what are the disadvantages of using the CoolROM site?
Well, according to the opinion of many users on Reddit, they have begun to opt for other sites because this site implemented the use of download managers for our files, which are annoying because on many occasions they install unwanted programs, to avoid this CoolROM also They have an “alternative download” which will take us to a 15 second advertisement, but it will give us the file without any annoying manager.
When you finish reading all this you will surely be wondering if this is legal, because to answer this question we will turn a little to history, and we will take as an example Nintendo who undoubtedly has the greatest retro classics, then we will ask ourselves:
What is Nintendo doing about it?
Sometimes Nintendo will sue people who host ROMs. As a result, the pages that did it got smarter. Most of these sites have their servers located in countries like Russia and Belarus that have little or no respect for intellectual property law.
Nintendo, SEGA and other companies sometimes sue when the law applies, unfortunately some countries just don’t have those laws.
When the law applies, normally these websites are blocked or closed, although sometimes the website owners raise them again using a new server, with a similar interface and a different domain.
Emulators – CoolROM
As for the legality of emulators and ROMs in the US at least, it’s perfectly legal to write a program that pretends to be hardware to allow software written for that hardware to run on other hardware (as long as you don’t copy the original vendor software firmware code).
It is not legal to distribute copyrighted software (“ROMS”), but there is currently insufficient control over it.
Likewise, in Latin America, as is generally known, there is no control over digital piracy, so there is no impediment to the free use of this type of software.
Currently CoolROM continues to update and maintain its links so it is a good option to get those retro games that we liked so much, however, if you are one of those who are looking for something more or do not like the policy of the download managers or the Ads here we bring you some alternatives that could be useful, bearing in mind that all these sites have a similar situation in terms of legal matters.
Alternatives to CoolROM
Here is a list of alternatives to CoolROM that are functional in 2020, where users can download retro game ROMs and other resources.
Although they are currently in force, their existence in the medium and long term is not guaranteed, however, at present they are not blocked and are alternatives to these platforms.
Like CoolROM, RomsEmulator allows us to find emulators and roms of various types with a friendlier and more attractive interface, romsemulator offers us easy access to all the main emulators available online categorized according to the consoles, so it is very easy to find an emulator for your favorite console.
Now, as a disadvantage, RomsEmulator has a high amount of advertising that can delay or confuse us when making our downloads, however the downloads are done immediately and without any manager.
To enter the CoolROM site, click on this link. Entering this site you do it at your own discretion and responsibility.
Like CoolROM and the like, RomsMania allows us to download video game ROMs for GBA, SNES, GAMECUBE, WII, NDS, GBC, GB, N64, NES, PS1, PS2, PSP, MAME, SEGA and more, its graphical interface is equally very attractive, RomsMania offers us easy access to all the main emulators available.
RomsMania does not have a large amount of advertising, so it will not be difficult for us to navigate it.
Downloads at RomsMania
Now as a disadvantage, RomsMania like CoolROM implements a download manager in the same way, which represents a great inconvenience for many people.
In summary, RomsMania offers us an easy navigation and search for what we want as well as little advertising that can hinder our stay on the page, however the use of download managers is a great disadvantage in this one.
To enter the RomsMania website, click on this link. Entering the site is at your own discretion and responsibility.
The Old Computer
According to its description in The Old Computer we can find more than 480,000 NES roms, SNES roms, DS roms, N64 roms, Gameboy roms, GBA roms, MAME roms, Sega roms, Commodore roms and PC, and they describe themselves as the largest retro gaming site in the world.
In The Old Computer we find a great variety of roms (similar to CoolROM and RomsMania) for more than 510 different computers and consoles and the largest collection of MAME sets (Multipurpose Emulator of Recreational Machines, free and open source) of any site on the Internet .
They have MAME for Android, iPhone, iPad and all iOS devices, as well as games for Xbox and smartphones. They also have a massive collection of emulators for every major computer and mobile device.
The Old Computer has a registration system and a premium user that will allow us to access more functionalities and a higher download speed, we can also download without registering and we will have our games directly in zip format without any complications.
In summary, The Old Computer offers us an easy navigation and search for what we want as well as no advertising that could hinder our stay on the page, and it also offers us a direct download, so it is a great option when looking for a Rom .
To enter The Old Computer site, click on this link. By entering the site you do so at your own discretion and responsibility.
Communities of The Old Computer, CoolRom and RomsMania
The Old Computer also offers us Box Scans, Manuals, Magazines and a strong community of more than 130,000 in its forums, Facebook page and Twitter. A wide community like those that exist in CoolRom and RomsMania.
Security when downloading games on CoolROM, RomsMania and the like
As CoolROM, RomsMania and similar gaming platforms contain a lot of advertising, it is better to avoid clicking on the ads to avoid the possible download of malware derived from external sites, direct download is always better.
To download torrents and any type of free software, it is necessary to keep the antivirus updated, as well as to avoid providing usernames and passwords that we use for other websites, including our email, since they could be stolen.
As you can see, there are several alternatives to CoolROM and RomsMania to download ROMs of retro and more recent games, which are many users and gamers who have downloaded these sites.
Therefore, when downloading resources from these sites, you must keep your guard up and take high security measures, especially in public internet places, before making any download from this site and other similar websites.
Still, we do not recommend the use of CoolRom, RomsMania and other free gaming platforms, which may infringe copyright on many content (except Freeware, Shareware and in some cases Abandonware), better use legal gaming platforms, such as Xbox or PlayStation.
Here we show you some evaluations for your favorite consoles: Xbox Series X vs PlayStation 5, Vote on which is the best console option to buy !, based on your own experience.
This article in Spanish