Microsoft Edge extension store hosted possibly illegal copies of retro games

Some of the titles spotted on the extension store include Mario Kart 64, Super Mario Bros., Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and Minecraft

Microsoft’s extension store for its Edge browser reportedly hosted several possibly illegal copies of old, iconic games.

Some of the titles include Mario Kart 64, Super Mario Bros, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Pac-Man, Tetris and Cut The Rope. Microsoft’s own Minecraft also appeared on the Edge extension store.

The Verge first reported the games being available on the store and noted that hours after publishing the story, several of the games were removed. Considering many of the developers tied to these extensions weren’t Microsoft, Nintendo, or other recognized developers, The Verge says the games likely aren’t official.

In total, the publication found 35 listings across 10 different ‘developers’ sporting names like ‘GamePro Inc,’ ‘Gamelands,’ ‘StayReal’ and ‘Kday.’ Further, there were some duplicate listings from different developers, and many had similar descriptions, indicating the extensions came from the same source.

Adding to the oddity of it all, Microsoft allegedly promoted some of the browser extensions in a tweet that appears to have been deleted. The Verge reported that it didn’t see the tweet and couldn’t find it, but user ‘KoolAid’ from the ResetEra forums posted a screenshot.

The tweet came from the Microsoft Edge Dev (@MSEdgeDev) Twitter account and boasted about access to “vintage games” on the extension site. The link included in the tweet surfaces a ‘Page not found’ error.

Although the extensions were removed, if any of them pop up again, it’d probably be best to avoid downloading them. Some of the extensions could have malicious software inside.

That said, a Twitter user by the name of Jordan Chase did download some of the games. In a tweet responding to a deleted tweet from the @MSEdgeDev account, Chase said the Mario Kart 64 extension downloaded a ROM of the old Nintendo 64 game. Chase tested Tetris and Pac-Man as well, noting the former appeared to be a clone of the puzzle game but didn’t download a ROM, while the latter seems to use “direct assets from the original game.”

Some of the games listed in the extension store had reviews dating back to October, suggesting they had been available for some time.

Microsoft and Nintendo are reportedly looking into the situation.

Source: The Verge