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My love note to Vivendi Universal

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The recent 'foxing' of the Kings Quest 9, Non-Profit, Indie Fan project, has awoken the activist in me.

Letter #1:


To Whom It SHOULD Concern:

My name is Raymond Jacobs,
I am the owner of a small independent game development, and a fan of the Kings Quest series.

I had been following the development of KQIX for about a year, greatly anticipating it's release this winter.

If it had been VU publishing this game I would have paid for it, top dollar too, I own every KQ game ever made and love them all. I was already very upset that Sierra had been gobbled up into a large entity and of course the adventure genre has all but died out.

However when I realized that your company, which legally owns the KQ Intellectual Properties; and seems to be doing little with it, save for re-releasing some re-fried versions of the classics. Lays down a big Cease and Desist on Phoenix Freeware Online, because they were a bunch of indie-developers trying to make a FREE continuation of the kings quest series, to please the FANS of the IP you own.

Not to try and undermine you or the KQ IP, but because a continuation does not exist, just because the IP has been sold does not mean it is the end of the KQ story.

I understand you need to 'protect' your IP and Trademarks, the same as any other, but it is apparent that there are people who still want Kings Quest, and go to great lengths to get it. (Developing a game in your spare time, is a great length, trust me, I know.)

So here is my pledge to you as a consumer:

Either let KQIX be released, or release another KQ game of your own accord.

Or, you can consider me a lost customer, and I will strive to turn any I may meet through telling of this tale of misused power.

Will this hurt your bottom line? Likely not.

But it seems money is the only thing you'll listen to. So, I am protesting with my money.

Sincerely,

Raymond Jacobs



*sniffle* =/
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Uh.. Considering that the development has been going on since 2000, it was about to be released, has an all volunteer staff, tons of script already written, characters out the wazoo and so much more. It does not make sense that Vivendi wouldn't have come out WAY EARLIER TO STOP what was going on... Yeah, I'll stop there.

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What a steaming pile of cow dung. How the hell can a company invoke IP rights to content that they weren't even responsible for creating and just gave up on, but simply because they own the rights they can threaten to hault a fan based production? So what, I'm not allowed to make fan art or write stories based around the Kings Quest verse and distribute them free of charge? I really don't see a difference.

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So someone uses someone's intellectual property without permission and gets a legal smackdown from it?

[John reels from shock]

Easy time-tested solution: Something they should've done from the start -- change the names and look enough so that it's not infringing on anyone's IP.

Ironically, that's how Sierra started out.

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True,

the SAFE way would have been to do that.

But realize the goal was NOT to just create a game.

The goal was to create a Kings Quest continuation.

So changing the names and etc would not have worked.

I just think it's rotten of VU and as a result I won't buy from them.

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Quote:
But realize the goal was NOT to just create a game.

The goal was to create a Kings Quest continuation.

. . .without the permission of the owners of the King's Quest IP.

To use someone's IP without permission is stupid, and they got smacked down for it. Sucks for them, but ultimately they were lucky. At least they're not looking at a big lawsuit for intellectual property theft.

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Right, sucks for them and sucks for the fans.

What about the fans?

are they not important?

I could have sworn games were being made because of fans.

Guess I'm dumb [grin]

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Quote:
What about the fans?

are they not important?
They're very important. They're the ones who pay money to buy the games, thus filling up the pockets of the developer.
Quote:
I could have sworn games were being made because of fans.
For the most part, no. King's Quest, like most other games, was written to make money. The fact that the IP owner hired a lawyer to prevent their IP from being used without permission makes that clear.

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Guest Anonymous Poster

Posted

Quote:
Original post by EDI
Letter #1:

<small>
To Whom It SHOULD Concern:

My name is Raymond Jacobs,
I am the owner of a small independent game development, and a fan of the Kings Quest series.


What is a small independent game development? Methinks you left out a word or two here.

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