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Copying Gameplay


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#1 cold_heats_.--.   Members   -  Reputation: 127

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 05:03 PM

Hi. I'm wondering if it's legal to copy the gameplay of a classic game, such as Snake.I don't know much about copyright issues.I'm trying to make a clone of it. The main character is not a snake, and he's not looking for food like in the original game.It's body does grow when he collides with the "object of desire " and he is destroyed if he goes out of boundaries or hits its own "tail" or the obstacles.I'm asking because I want to present my project in a contest.It will not be commercial.

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#2 Bacterius   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 8533

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 05:58 PM

And ehm second question, so I wont start two threads.

The first part of the question would be better suited in Business And Law, while the second one should stay here. It's best to only ask one question per topic, especially when they don't touch on the same domains.

Hi. I'm wondering if it's legal to copy the gameplay of a classic game, such as Snake.I don't know much about copyright issues.I'm trying to make a clone of it. The main character is not a snake, and he's not looking for food like in the original game.It's body does grow when he collides with the "object of desire " and he is destroyed if he goes out of boundaries or hits its own "tail" or the obstacles.I'm asking because I want to present my project in a contest.It will not be commercial.

My understanding is that you would in general be treading on legal fire here, the boundaries between "ripping off game IP" and "reusing original but non-copyrightable gameplay elements" could be very blurry. Fortunately, you are lucky, because the Snake concept itself is not (and cannot be) copyrighted*. So you are free to create your own variant, as long as you don't rip off names, art assets or explicit rules from other snake versions. And to be fair, if it's not going to be commercial, I don't think anybody will reject your game or get you in trouble at the contest, except perhaps overzealous judges. I wouldn't worry about it. After all, if the only reason you are making the game is for the contest, and it is actually copyrighted, it might actually fall under fair use.

* It could, however, be patented, in the USA at least, considering the sad state of the patent system, but I can't find such a patent.

Edited by Bacterius, 23 July 2012 - 06:43 PM.

The slowsort algorithm is a perfect illustration of the multiply and surrender paradigm, which is perhaps the single most important paradigm in the development of reluctant algorithms. The basic multiply and surrender strategy consists in replacing the problem at hand by two or more subproblems, each slightly simpler than the original, and continue multiplying subproblems and subsubproblems recursively in this fashion as long as possible. At some point the subproblems will all become so simple that their solution can no longer be postponed, and we will have to surrender. Experience shows that, in most cases, by the time this point is reached the total work will be substantially higher than what could have been wasted by a more direct approach.

 

- Pessimal Algorithms and Simplexity Analysis


#3 Fredericvo   Members   -  Reputation: 336

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 06:40 PM

On the C64 I used to have a game with a growing snake or worm-like creature in a maze. It was in fact even better than that nokia game. On old dos pc's there was even a more similar game named wormi.

#4 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 9570

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 09:19 PM

The answer to your frequently-asked biz/legal question (which does not belong here): http://sloperama.com/advice/faq61.htm
-- Tom Sloper
Sloperama Productions
Making games fun and getting them done.
www.sloperama.com

Please do not PM me. My email address is easy to find, but note that I do not give private advice.

#5 cold_heats_.--.   Members   -  Reputation: 127

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Posted 24 July 2012 - 12:04 AM

Thank you :) .
I'm going to start a new topic with my second question.




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