by Mike Masnick

Common Sense Beats Out Lawyers Over Fan Video Game

from the it's-about-time dept

Over the years there have been way too many stories about entertainment companies reacting badly when fans have gone off and created additional content around something they've liked. These are often cases where the lawyers get ahead of the business people. They get so focused on trademark issues that they forget that these fans are basically giving free promotion to their content -- and in a way that never seems to take away from the original content. It had looked like the story of King's Quest IX might go along similar lines. While Vivendi Universal Games hadn't produced a new game in the King's Quest series since 1998, some fans decided to take it upon themselves to build just such a game -- only to have the lawyers show up to stop them. However, Matt Compton, from the "Save King's Quest IX Campaign" writes in to note that Vivendi Universal Games has seen the light and will allow the project to live on -- as long as it changes its name to "The Silver Lining."

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  • identicon
    Sv, 12 Dec 2005 @ 2:16am

    Excuse me

    The MPAA and RIAA bullshit doesn't make protecting one's own game brand and characters bad.

    I think VU was pretty generous and good for them (if they didn't plan sequels anyway).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Rikko, 12 Dec 2005 @ 8:09am

      Re: Excuse me

      If the developers weren't planning on making any money from the venture (note it doesn't say if they planned any kind of kind revenue within the game itself), I don't see how any protectionism is justified. Anybody likely to stumble onto the game's website certainly won't be at a level where they confuse it with the original, and nobody is profiting from this.

      IP laws need a bit of an overhaul for the nonprofit domain.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anarchy_Creator, 12 Dec 2005 @ 4:02am

    I believe that...

    Provided that you don't receive any revenue from doing so you should be allowed to create mod's and next chapters of any game made readily available.
    Perhaps if the mod does so well like say CS, Natural Selection, Action Half-Life, or so many other mods that are just as good, if not better then the original game the mod's creator could sign a deal with the game's company for compensation, and or some type or credits, or rights.
    I think it would really help the gaming community create better games.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    kingmanor, 12 Dec 2005 @ 4:40am


    Its really great that this happened, but I wish the story told us HOW it happened. I'd really like to know exactly how these guys convinced VU to let them do this. What were their arguments? how did they meet with them?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Just Me, 12 Dec 2005 @ 6:24am

    When Fans Attack

    There has been some discussion behind this problem over at The new CIV IV game has (in my humble but experienced opinion) a number of serious memory leaks.

    The developer has released a patch, but (again IMHO) it doesn't really solve all of the issues.

    A fan in Russia has created a patch which seems to have resolved many of the issues. My end-games are playable now, and I didn't crash to desktop at all after I had installed it.

    His download site has been getting thousands of hits, but I don't know what % of the total sales this represents.

    So far, there's no word from Firaxis.

    We will see how this plays out.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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