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      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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proanim

video codec patents

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I came across small app that lets you play video files, but due to copyright some of the codecs are disabled by default. And the user should recompile the program to use them. Now from what I saw on Wikipedia about those codecs is that some of them are GPL, LGPL, (and GNU variations), MIT (and variations). All codecs use some sort of patent and the user (in this case developer) is required to pay for the patent to use the codec. Is this true? Does x264 also requires this? It's not like someone will binge through multi-gigabyte sized game to see if someone used certain codec. Are there any video codecs that provide something close to x264 quality/compression without need to pay for patent?

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Thank you, that one i missed in sea of codecs.

Edited by proanim
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H.264 is absolutely patented. That is the name of the codec that x264 uses.

Never mind the software licenses. Software and codecs are not the same thing. Just because a library is released under the MIT/GPL/any other license, it doesn't mean the actual codec being used isn't protected and patented.

The WebM project uses VP8 as their video codec, and it's all patent free. I suggest you check it out. It's competitive in quality and size to H.264 but patent free.

For the record, it's not an H.264 video that will get you in trouble. It's an H.264 encoder or decoder that will get you in trouble if you don't have a license from the MPEGLA group. If you distribute a program that can encode or decode H.264 then there can be a problem. If your program itself (or the binaries you ship with it) can't encode or decode H.264, but instead you rely on a encoder/decoder that you aren't distributing yourself (say, one that comes with the OS), then you should be Ok.

Note that some codecs prevent you from distributing an encoded file (in addition to an encoder or decoder). One example of this is MP3.
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