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Advice for a New Developer


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#1 R Prieto   Members   -  Reputation: 106

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 06:51 PM

First off, thanks for taking the time to read this.

I'm new to indie game development, and, at this point, I’ve got an idea of what my next move should be, but I’d really appreciate any feedback or advice.

 

But first, a little bit of backstory - I’ll try to summarize this as much as possible:

 

Two years ago, I had two partners (both, programmers) that I’d worked with closely on developing a game for our college senior project. After working on the game for one year (and completing our senior project course), they both decided not to continue working on the game.

At that time, I spoke with them both and they both gladly agreed that they would relinquish their rights to the game (even the code that they’d both worked on) so that I could continue development with new partners in the future.

 

A year has passed since our agreement and I’ve made great progress on all aspects of the game’s design, art, and story - but not its code. Rather than immediately begin my search for replacement programmers, I chose to work alone because I wanted to be able to show off my hard work to any new potential partners to reassure them that I was absolutely serious about completing this game - and that I had some talent.

 

I’ve now reached that point, and I’ve got ideas about what to do next:

  1. Get a signed agreement from my ex-partners stating that they relinquish all ownership/rights to the game
  2. Get a website up to show off the game
  3. Search for a new programmer or two

Again, I’d really appreciate any kind of feedback or advice. smile.png

 

I do have one explicit question, however.

I’ve looked over the Business and Law FAQ, and it seems like I don’t have to worry about people stealing my work:

 

“These days, almost all things are copyrighted the moment they are written, and no copyright notice is required.”

 

I’m not too worried about it, but is there anything I should do or know before I publish my game’s design / artwork to a website?



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#2 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 9887

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 06:57 PM


I’ve got ideas about what to do next:
1. Get a signed agreement from my ex-partners stating that they relinquish all ownership/rights to the game
2. Get a website up to show off the game
3. Search for a new programmer or two

 

1. Yes, absolutely get that in writing.

2. Consider who your target audience is: investors, partners... and also competitors.

 

So, what kind of advice are you looking for?


-- 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.

#3 R Prieto   Members   -  Reputation: 106

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 08:36 PM

@Tom
Thanks very much for the response.

When I read that I didn't actually have to do anything to ensure that my work was copyrighted, I was a little skeptical- is it really that simple?
I thought I'd at least have to fill out some forms or something.

Aside from that, though, I'm just looking for general advice / food for thought.



#4 Orymus3   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 9044

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 10:24 PM

Well. You could always program the game yourself too. That way, you can't be scared of slackers!



#5 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 9887

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 07:32 AM


1. is it really that simple?
2. Aside from that, though, I'm just looking for general advice / food for thought.

 

1. Copyright is automatic, but if you ever have to go to court, having registered your copyright is highly recommended. http://copyright.gov/

2. General advice / food for thought:  http://sloperama.com/advice/lesson47.htm and http://sloperama.com/advice/entry65.htm


Edited by Tom Sloper, 18 October 2013 - 07:32 AM.

-- 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.

#6 bschmidt1962   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1834

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 12:38 PM

When I read that I didn't actually have to do anything to ensure that my work was copyrighted, I was a little skeptical- is it really that simple?

 

It is and it isn't... It is that simple in that, by law, as soon as a creative work is put into tangible form, it is automatically copyrighted.  I.e. the copyright of a creative work belongs to the creator as soon is it's no longer just in their head.

 

it's not simple if you ever need to prove that you created it and when you created it.  Officially registering it can make proving that case easier should a dispute arise. 

Also, if you every want to sue someone over it, then you must register it.

 

At that time, I spoke with them both and they both gladly agreed that they would relinquish their rights to the game (even the code that they’d both worked on) so that I could continue development with new partners in the future.

 

Do you have any of that in email?  That would help refresh their memories :)...


Brian Schmidt

Executive Director, GameSoundCon:

GameSoundCon 2014:October 7-8, Los Angeles, CA

 

Founder, EarGames

Founder, Brian Schmidt Studios, LLC

Music Composition & Sound Design

Audio Technology Consultant


#7 R Prieto   Members   -  Reputation: 106

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 05:19 PM

Thank you all for the responses- I've learned what I needed to know.

I'm no longer concerned about copyright for the time being. smile.png

 

For anyone else who may stumble upon this thread in the future:

http://gbgames.com/blog/articles/indie-legal-copyright-and-trademark/what-an-indie-needs-to-know-about-copyright/






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