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homer_3

Making a game based on existing IP

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If my team and I were to make our own art but copy the likenesses of the characters from another IP, is that legal as long as they aren't identified as belonging to that IP?

If it isn't legal and I still wanted to make the game, would it be better to go ahead and make a piece of the game and then contact the IP holder with a pitch for using their IP or is it better to contact the IP holder first?

I know, in the first option, I risk my work being deleted if they refuse. But all I'd really have to delete would be the infringing content, since the game world and game type would be mine. I just want to use their character likenesses.

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Please scroll up to the top of this page. Look for the small blue "View Forum FAQ" link, and click it. You will find the answer to this Frequently-Asked Question there.

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If the game world is yours, and the gameplay is yours, why populate it with characters from other worlds and styles of play? Not only will they be an odd fit, but you're just riding on the coat-tails and success of all those other franchises. I find the concept demeaning not only to them, but to you and your design as well.

If your idea doesn't tickle you with characters of your own, then its not worth doing. Little sense in wasting effort on something which hinges solely on the good graces of (probably several) other entities which have no care to help you out.

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If I can't get the support of the IP holder, yea, I'll make my own characters. The thing is, no one's made a video game for this IP yet and I'd really love to play one with those characters.

But I guess the answers to my questions is that neither can really be answered by anyone other than the IP holder.

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Making a game based on other people's IP without asking them for permission first is a Bad Idea (tm). And in the hypothetical but likely situation that they are some big publisher and you are an unknown one man team without a previous track record of publishing high quality triple-A titles, you might as well not bother asking. Just roll your own characters, you'll be better off in the long run.

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Homer, you are better off contacting the IP owners first as what you are describing may constitute copyright infringement. The fact the owners have not made a video game based on the characters is not relevant as they may have licensed those rights to a 3rd party. As others have mentioned, it might be a better idea to use original characters first and then pitch the IP owner on the concept of licensing their characters for inclusion in the game. That way you can move forward if you do not obtain permission. Good luck.

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Quote:
Original post by kdog77
As others have mentioned, it might be a better idea to use original characters first and then pitch the IP owner on the concept of licensing their characters for inclusion in the game. That way you can move forward if you do not obtain permission.


Hah, yea that would work. I don't know why I didn't think of doing the reverse of what I originally planned before.

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