Jump to content
  • Advertisement

Remaking old games

Recommended Posts

Hello, story first:

Recently i felt like playing the game brick breaker. I realized that making my own version of the game would be quite simple, and after i make it, i could even sell it on Steam for like 1-2€. But then i though, aren't games like this copyrighted?

So here's my question:

Are old games like snake, tetris, solitaire, brick breaker copyrighted? I don't mean reselling an existing game, i mean if i make the whole game from scratch, is the idea of the game copyrighted? I know this may be a stupid question but i saw copyrights on various things so i ask just in case.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
42 minutes ago, -Tau- said:

Are old games like snake, tetris, solitaire, brick breaker copyrighted?

The names of things like Tetris are certainly trademarked by their respective owners. So don't use the names. The actual assets (sprites, sounds, etc) are almost certainly still under copyright, so don't use those either.

The gameplay mechanics aren't protected. In theory you wouldn't encounter issues building your own game from scratch, with it's own name, graphics, etc. that uses Tetris-like mechanics. However, Tetris in particular is a bed of thorns.

Solitaire predates computers by several hundred years, so you are probably safe on that one :)

(That said, I am not a lawyer. If you plan to produce a clone of a popular game, it would be wise to consult one)

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

the general mechanics of game play is almost always open for any one to use (think how many platforms there are with just a character that jumps). The only thing that is protected is the name and the art work (technically the code too, but unless you get access to the original source code you can always use the clean room exception). There is some grey area in the middle when it comes to specialized mechanics (eg if you gave your character all the exact same powers as mario.), but with only a little variation you usually avoid it.  I would say if you wanted to make a snake-like, or a brick-breaker-like game by all means go ahead and do it.  The college I went to had snake as the beginning level programming final so, if a college can get away with doing it dozens of times a year, you won't have to worry about it. 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Advertisement

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

We are the game development community.

Whether you are an indie, hobbyist, AAA developer, or just trying to learn, GameDev.net is the place for you to learn, share, and connect with the games industry. Learn more About Us or sign up!

Sign me up!