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The pros and cons of renaming my game, and do i need to?

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Hi all,

 

When i set out making my game "firework factory" back in 2010, there was nothing else on the market with the same name. Mobile gaming was only just really taking off, so google had not been flooded with results, and the closest google results relating to gaming were a level on Spyro the Dragon, an old playstation game.

 

This week when i came back to this project a google search has revealed a game produced for android called "Firework Factory - Crazy fun" which although the concept is entirely different, the appearance of the game different, and it is part of a set of simple kids games, i do believe the name is likely to cause confusion, even though i don't intend to distribute my own game on android or any other mobile platform.

 

So, my question is twofold:

 

Firstly, do i legally need to rename my game as common courtesy, even though i have been developing it for 5 years before this upstart appeared (just to clarify, i don't know if they've registered a trademark, and i certainly haven't).

 

Secondly, if i am not legally bound, is anyone else here in the opinion that i should rename my game (i personally am of the opinion that i should, although it is an inconvenience).

 

Comments more than welcome. If it turns out i should rename my game, i will probably be opening a second thread brainstorming for a new name (as i am useless and naming things!)

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This occurs often with books - something like "Shadow wars" would be taken by three or four authors, so you'd just name yours "Tom Clancy's Shadow Wars" to disambiguate. You could always name your game, "braindigitalis's Fireworks Factory"

 

That said, you don't want people looking for your game to accidentally go to their sites. If you haven't yet begun heavily marketing your game, you should give some thought to renaming, to more-easily control search results if nothing else.

 

I don't know your legal obligations here, so I'm not saying you are/aren't in danger.

 

What's the difficulty in renaming it? Did you already register a domain name or something?

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What's the difficulty in renaming it? Did you already register a domain name or something?

 

The difficulty in renaming it is purely technical, changing the name of the game on my site, changing the name of its playlist in youtube, changing all of the related text within the project etc. These aren't insurmountable, as i haven't registered any domains and it just has a sub-directory on my personal website right now. It will affect any small amount of google ranking i've managed to build up over the past 5 years though, even though i haven't seriously started marketing it.

 

To do it right though im quite prepared to throw that away. I was considering renaming it to mention it's main antagonist, e.g. "Mr Boom's Firework Factory"... but actually coming up with a name? well, that's a subject for another thread :)

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Pros:
- Your game will not be confused with or believed to be related to or come from the same source as this other game
- Opportunity for the game to have its own unique brand
- Easier to find your game by search
- (Personal opinion) you can probably come up with a better name

Cons:
- Would require code changes
- The people already interested in your game will have to remember it under a new name now.





Personal view: continue using Fireworks Factory as a working title, and change it shortly before release, to minimize risk of another totally unrelated game using your new title and having to change the title AGAIN

Edited by nfries88

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