is creating the world's largest website for classic video game modifications

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What is is a site dedicated to classic video game modifications, fan translations, utilities, and learning resources. Historically, video game consoles produced on cartridges stored the game data (code, graphics, sound etc.) on 'ROM' (Read Only Memory) chips, hence where the name of the site comes from. It was founded in 2005 and is currently the largest site of its kind in the world. It is home to thousands of projects for hundreds of games on all your favorite classic video game consoles. Browsing our content, you may see patches that provide all new levels, new music, new characters, or even new abilities for your favorite console game. You might also find a fan translation patch in your language for a game you've never seen before. Maybe you're interested in learning how it is all done. If so, we have documents and utilities for that too! The possibilities are endless!

What is Data Crystal?

Data Crystal is our separate general wiki site containing ROM maps, RAM maps, and other technical information reverse engineered from many video games.

Why Do We Need You?

For over 12 years, we have worked hundreds of hours and spent thousands of dollars to provide a home for the ROM hacking community, never asking for anything in return. We have provided a home for thousands of great community projects and learning resources. We've joined ROM hackers and translators. We've united international communities together to assemble the largest global force of ROM hackers on the planet! We've developed a central hub and platform to share, discuss, and distribute your ROM hacking creations. We have processed nearly 40,000 submissions! Don't forget about the Data Crystal wiki too!

Most people take for granted what it takes to run a site of this magnitude. They visit, consume, and request, ever expecting more without a single pause to think about how much personal time and money was given to make that experience possible. The site grows larger every single day. It has now become an unsustainable reality for the site owner and a few select community donations to provide the development and financial resources needed. We are losing the fight against limited resources and are calling for reinforcements. The site now demands more. YOU demand more. We need you to take that pause now and think...

Close your eyes. Imagine that tomorrow and Data Crystal disappeared forever. Imagine thousands of patches, utilities, and interesting forum projects were lost to time. Imagine people no longer having a central resource location to learn the trade, or share their latest projects. Now imagine all of the data in the Data Crystal shattered into millions of pieces never to be put back together again. Maybe you could find some things on Google, in old archives, or on other sites. However, try as you may you'd never be able to replace the many years worth of great things found only on Scary, we know! Open your eyes now. We don't want that to happen either. So, now is the time for you to do your part and make your contribution. Help preserve years worth of work by thousands of community members. Help preserve the years of development efforts to provide the platform. Help the site continue to develop, prosper, and grow for future visitors (maybe even your kids!)

Isn't and Data Crystal worth supporting? We think so too. We also think it's worth a tiny bit more to not only keep it around, but also allow for it to grow, improve, and reach new heights! This can only happen with your support!

How your support will help?

  • First and foremost, you will directly ensure we remain online and operational. We need a stable funding source to continue operating. We currently have no other source of income to meet our ever-growing resource requirements or fund further site development.
  • Help us put resources into servers. Anyone that was around for any of our extended outages will know that our current bottom-dollar operations are sub-par (to say the least) whenever something goes wrong. We are at or near capacity every day and need to make an expensive leap to better dedicated hardware, managed services, off-site backups, redundancy controls, and other modern services. This exponentially increases costs and this will not happen without adequate funding.
  • It will fund further development of the site. There is a long list of features and design improvements just waiting to be done. Without adequate funding, development will likely cease. It's a major undertaking, the code base contains 11 years of challenges. The database has thousands of hack entries, game entries, credits, reviews, etc. Some items date back to The Whirlpool (historical predecessor site). There are many tools for the submission and approval processes, and much more.
  • Several areas of the site require professional design and/or development assistance. Such areas include site layout, themes, graphics, and more.
  • Allow us to get commercial forum software instead of the obsolete free SMF.

What could we do with Extended Funding?

  • Write articles about featured hacks
  • Write articles on technical lessons
  • Write articles on the history of the community
  • Add and maintain community driven top hacks, translations, utilities, etc. lists
  • Hold various contests with rewards
  • Expand to include general emulators, TAS (tool-assisted speedrun) tools, game cheats, PC mods or other things that visitors have asked for over the years.
  • Full wiki-like rollback capabilities of entries to previous states.
  • Loosen the guideline restrictions on the types of content accepted. Many limitations are in place due to resource control.
  • This list just scratches the surface on what could be done!
$329.39 of $500 per month
This will allow us to start functioning like a REAL site with adequate resources, sustaining development, and periodic articles and content.
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