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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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Josh Foreman

Getting Tradmarks

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Hi everyone.  I hate business.  But I'm also a careful person, so when the opportunity came up to start making some casual games I decided I better start educating myself.  I bought Tom Buscaglia's game dev kit.  He's a really cool guy who obviously cares about game developers.  But I would have to spend more money to really dig down into all these issues I don't understand yet.  So I'm hoping the collective knowledge base here can help me out.  Here's my background:

* I'm a 17 year game industry vet.  I do every kind of art and design.  I've got a boatload of game ideas for small projects I want to do on the side.

 

* I live in Seattle, US

 

* I've got a best friend (also and artist, but understands technical pipeline stuff better than I) who works with me, and he has a brother-in-law who's a programmer.  They both want to make little games as well, but neither of them have strong design skills so the past projects they've tried together petered out.  Now they are both happy to help me make some of my game ideas for a flat fee I'd pay them for services rendered, keeping the IP all to myself.

 

* I own my own business that I've been doing traditional sculpture with, but I always planned to branch into games at some point.

 

 

Ok, I think that's enough background.  My question is about how important trademarks are for my needs.  Looking into the whole international search and then filing in all the various locations looks like it could cost me tens of thousands of dollars.  Well, that's the dream-killer right there.  I have about 2 thousand I can put into this project.  And I'm already using that to pay my friends for their work.

So for those of you who have made little iOS, Steam, Android, XBL, etc. games: what have you done for Trademarks?  I'm assuming it's only a problem if your game becomes very successful, right?  Though on the other side of it, I imagine it's a protection from accidentally using someone else's TM and getting sued, right?  

 

It seems to me that one somewhat risky strategy is to wait, and in the very unlikely chance that my game is a hit and makes some money, take the first income I get and do my TMing.  Is that insane?  

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Josh

If you want to learn about the TM process, www.uspto.gov has all the info you might want. It's also where you can register a TM online.

As far as whether and what to TM, the name of your game is something you should do. And you should begin the process well in advance of release. You car start the registration process in advance and secure the name, then complete the registration when you release it. The way you can avoid problems with infringements, both with and from others. The process takes at least 6 months. So, settle on the name, make sure there are no other games already using it and get the registration started. It's not too hard to do yourself, but can be a little confusing.

The GameDevKit includes a section on IP, including info on Trademarks. And, you get a free consult and a nice discount with the GameDevKit. Ping me next week and I'll give you a more detailed explanation, if you like. Or take the time to come out to Vashon and we can do lunch!

Tom Buscaglia
The Game Attorney
888.848.GLAW
Skype - thombusc
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