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pokemon-like game (copyright question)

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So i'm planning on making a game that takes pokemon as an inspiration, but changes the gameplay almost entirely with a different combat system, different level up system etc. and of course i won't be using actual pokemon, but my own creature designs. I was wondering if i would be able to make money from that product without being at risk of a lawsuit by nintendo, since they do have lots of money and have a reputation of abusing copyright law. I don't believe i could be sued over it, since i won't use any of their pokemon designs or trademarks and i'll be changing almost every game mechanic, but i'd like to make sure i'm not breaking any laws by this.

 

Also, this is my first forum post here so if this isn't the right place for something like this i'm really sorry

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I would take issue with the suggestion that Nintendo "abuse" copyright law. The main problem is with Google who have chosen to refuse to perform any moderation on the videos that YouTube's revenue model is based around, and instead have implemented a primitive automated fingerprinting system that makes no attempt to see if there is any fair use, and which (as I understands it) files the claim automatically without any human interaction on the part of the rightsholder, unless disputes are filed. In fact I would argue that tool is deliberately swift and blunt in nature so as to make people angry at the rightsholders instead of at Google. Besides which, none of this is 'copyright law'; it's a hack that Google put in place to try and convince Congress that they were doing enough to fight copyright infringement to avoid the changes to the law that are desperately needed to protect musicians and filmmakers.

 

But anyway. You will be in the clear if you use none of the names or trademarks, just like most RPGs descend ultimately from Dungeons and Dragons but are also in the clear. They don't (and can't) own the idea or the gameplay.

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Like Kylotan said, having a game where you have fictional animals battle each other and you as a player collect them won't get you sued. Just don't use the 'Pokemon' name, names of any of the pokemon, or any of the graphics. You'll be good.

 

And if I was to point to any game company for copyright abuse, it would be Hasbro, if memory serves me right.

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Thanks! I really feel reassured about this issue now, and yeah it was rash of me to say they 'abuse' copyright, it was really just a casual way of saying that as a solo indie developer who doesn't really have much money at all it's kind of scary get direct inspiration from a game from such a huge company that, rightfully or not, has the kind of reputation nintendo has on this issue. Either way thanks a lot!

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