There are many emulators for old computer and game console systems (like C64, ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, NES, Sega, etc). But all I know about are free and open-source software. I was not able to find any commercial ones. Are there any legal issues for creating commercial emulation software for old systems?

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    There are always legal issues related to everything. But I presume that what you really mean is whether doing so would violate the intellectual property rights of someone.
    – ohwilleke
    Jun 9 at 21:25

Almost any IP issue I can think off (trademarks, copyright, patents and trade secrets) would apply to free versions as well as commercial versions.

It might be the case that a for-profit operation would attract greater enforcement but the legal technicalities would be about the same with a free version.

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