Update [Tue 14th Nov, 2023 13:20 GMT]: In a statement on a recent site announcement about temporarily disabling downloads due to being targeted by scraping services, a staff reviewer at Romhacking.net has denied that the homebrew section will be removed in a future update, calling it a "misunderstanding" by one of their staff members.
In the comment section, the reviewer responded to a message about the potential removal and our previous article stating:
"That was a misunderstanding by one of our staff - there are no intentions to delete the homebrew section. We are not currently accepting new submissions, but all existing homebrew projects will stay on the site and can be updated by the original authors."
Obviously, this is great news for those concerned about the preservation of the homebrew titles already uploaded to the site, and for any creators who might still want to update their work.
Original Story [Fri 3rd Nov, 2023 14:00 GMT]: If you've read Time Extension for a while, you will no doubt have heard about the website Romhacking.net (often abbreviated to RHDN).
This is a site where creators can upload various kinds of hacks for existing games to give people new ways to experience their favourite titles and uncover obscure gems from other countries that they may have missed otherwise via language patches.
The site dates back all the way to 2005, and for the longest time has also been home to a much smaller number of homebrews (178 in total) developed for older consoles like the NES, Atari 2600, Nintendo Game Boy, Sega Mega Drive/Genesis, under a dedicated section. Now, though, this seems to be about to change, with the site recently revealing via an automatic email to the developer of the NES homebrew Space Mutants (as spotted by BillyTime!Games) that it has stopped accepting homebrew "of any kind" and will likely be removing the section in the next major site update.
It's unclear exactly why Romhacking.net is making this decision, but if we had to guess it's likely down to its relative inactivity compared to the other sections on the site, which typically have thousands of entries in comparison to just under a couple hundred.
We must admit Romhacking.net is not exactly the first place we tend to go looking to find out about new homebrew games, with other websites like itch.io, Kickstarter, and Twitter being much more reliable stops for us. Nevertheless, we definitely feel for those creators that do still publish their games there, and hope that should the section be removed that the archive is at least preserved somewhere else for people to play.