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Found 40 results

  1. Hello! So, i was working with a group of people on fan-game project, but it turned into really advanced game. We decided to release it as official game. But it's highly inspired by Danganronpa series: - Gameplay is identical - Characters are really similar (Monokuma -> Mononeko, Monoraion, 16 students with "ultimate" talents (few talents are identical, but characters are different)) - Plot is really similar - All of the assets are created by our team. Is it legal to publish game like this on popular game platforms, like steam? Another question is: Our team is a group of people from different countries (Poland, America, Australia) and few of them are underage and we aren't an official game studio. Is it okay to release game like this? Thank you and greetings! P.S. Sorry for my poor english, it's not my native language!
  2. Hello, I would like to start a new company with three people. But we have a situation in which we need a tip from you. Following the starting situation: Person A: Designer & Artist who has already invested a lot of work (two years of work) in three projects (design, documentation, advanced prototypes) Person B: Producer who has been actively involved in the projects for a year and is driving the development of the company forward. Has invested money in addition to his work. Person C Is a private investor who wants to finance the founding of the company and wants to be equally involved in the projects. GOAL: We want to hand over all project values to the company. The company belongs to all three of us. This should fairly distribute the values among us. Thus, the exploitation and use rights to the products of the company. We want the investor to have 1/3 of all legal rights on the projects - no doubt. PROBLEM: The investor wants us to name him next to us as the author of the game so that everything goes fast and easy. But I am looking for the normal procedure for this kind of situation. But the authorship is not transferable in Germany, in contrast to rights of use and exploitation. By the way, authorship is an important asset for the designer as it is part of his reputation. Should a game take off, then he can not refer to it by 100% - he can only say he was partly involved, even though everything is from his pen. TL;DR: We don't want to start with a lie about the authorship just because it makes something easier. QUESTION: HOW MUST THE PROJECTS BE TRANSFERRED TO THE NEW COMPANY SO THAT EACH PARTY IS PARTIZED IN SAME WAY? Thank you for your time. Greetings!
  3. fields.of.elysium

    Underage Developer

    Hi all, I have a legal question. We are a small team of independent developers just beginning work on a PC game title that may one day end up as a commercial project. I expect the game will eventually have a PEGI rating of 18 due to mature content. The trouble is, one of our developers is 16. At this stage, I assume legal responsibility falls on the parents, but should we form a company or release commercially, what then? However, it may be some years before the project reaches that stage. Has someone else faced a similar situation and could give some advice?
  4. Terry Nagy of Apogee Software discusses lessons learned in operations, legal, business development.
  5. Legal firm Morrison Rothman have announced that they will be offering free legal services to qualifying indie developers as part of their new "Jump Start Program". Further details are still to be provided, but we currently know that the firm will be starting out offering pro bono (free) services to three developers each month and "will work with each one to complete the legal needs smaller dev teams often cannot afford", with plans to hopefully expand this to include a larger number of developers in future. The program also aims to support and encourage more diversity, and so will prefer studios who exhibit a commitment to diversity either through their work or their studio's leadership. Founding partner Ryan Morrison goes by the online handle of Video Game Attorney on Twitter and Reddit, and is well known for his popular legal AMAs (Ask Me Anything) which are normally done a few times per year. View full story
  6. Hello, I know non competes are usually used for for ensuring a person doesn't compete after a job, but what about during? A few of my team members say they can't help because someone at their company said, or had them sign something to say they aren't allowed to work on any other projects while they are part of the company. This worries me, because if I ever get an official job in the industry, they might ask me to drop my current project. (We are mainly hobbyists.) I'd consider it, but I'd prefer not to be put in that situation to begin with. So how common is this? I understand the point of making sure people aren't working on other projects on company time and resources, but what about if your working on a side project at home?
  7. Nice to meet you! First of all, it is a pleasure to be around and thank you for the available help! Basically, I am working on a new project and I would like to share some concept arts on my Twitter. The point is I am quite confused as to what I need to do to protect the general game idea, assets, and my company logo from being stolen/used unproperly by other people. I will definitely make great use of such information!
  8. I've read that it's a bad idea to use brand names in a game. My game character says "I like the movie Idiocrazy." Is this already illegal? or sue-able?
  9. Questions :- To sell a C++ game library/framework/engine, does it usually have to be open-sourced? For a C++ template class (real template), it is quite hard not to be open-sourced, correct? If it is open-sourced, how to protect the copyright? How to enforce people to just use it, but not copy? ... I think it is practically very hard, because people can see the source code, and "rewrite" it. Does a shop like Unity's asset store make thing safer? If so, how? Arrogant assumption :- The game library/framework/engine is high-quality, well-documented, and it would be marvellously sell well. Besides some free libraries like Bullet and Ogre, it is developed all by myself. The library/framework/engine is not bound to any legal obligation (e.g. the most restriction is MIT). I have these questions after reading a news :- Muhagames develop a game named Thea Awakening (C#). The company use its own Honey Hex Framework (C#) as a library to develop the game. The company sell Honey Hex Framework via Unity's asset store to boost its financial position. There are also others old examples e.g. Unity itself or Unreal, which is now open-source ... How do they protect it? Actually, I don't plan to sell any library. I am just curious.
  10. Hi guys, As the title reads, I built a game with some other people during college and I'm trying to get it published on appstore and google play. The team agreed they would give me the rights to publish the game under my own business and receive 45% profit share. I now just need to know what contracts I need to write. These are the conditions they agreed to: Game will be put up for free with ads Net Profit split: 45%(me), 15%x3(ppl), 10%x1(person) 2%x0(ppl) every 6 month if game net profit exceeds $250 for 2 years If the games Total Net profit after 2 years does not exceed $2500, all shares will go to me so I don’t have to do legal stuff anymore. If the total net profit exceeds $2500 we do the same business but for 1 year. Everyone keeps rights to their own IP, however I get rights to the IP indefinitely for the purpose of publishing the game under my business xxxxxxxxxxxxx. I'd appreciate any help because I worked hard on this game and I would really like to get it published but being in a team has made it very difficult. Cheers
  11. I have some graphics from a graphic designer of full screen gameplay mock-ups. Unfortunately he is no longer available to work on the project but I still like his concept. Would there be any problem with myself or another graphic designer using his design mock-ups as the basis to create the actual graphics for a game? Essentially it would mean copying / recreating the individual graphical elements to use in game. My instinct is that it should be fine but I don't want to step on any legal toes.
  12. Hi all, hope this is okay to post here. There seems to be a myriad of open source licenses these days and then multiple versions of each one so it begins to become confusing as to which you should use and when. My scenario is I have been working for some time on a rogueish engine that I've always intended to open source when the base engine is finished and release to whomever is interested in it. People would be welcome to use it to make their own (non-commercial) games out of it as per the norm. The engine is very modable before you even get to the source so its flexible for multiple types of project. To that end, in the back of my head I'm thinking one day I could REALLY polish it up and make something commercial with it as the base engine. But do I lose my right to do that if I've given away the source as "open" for other peoples non-commercial ventures? Would I be obliged to share my changes, if any, to the base engine? It seems obvious that if someone else submitted code to the open source public repository that i COULDNT use that without permission and thats fine. But what if someone contact me and said hey I really like the work, could I license this to do something commercial? I'm guessing I could license *my* version of the source as long as it had no one elses contributions included? This project is not in the wild yet for what its worth, I'm just trying to get a more solid understanding of what actually happens to your rights as author after you've declared "open source".    Thanks for your time! :) 
  13. grumpyOldDude

    Legal Does NDA really work?

    Apart from glancing over the first page, I haven't search much so I don't know (and apologies) if something similar has been asked recently,   Anyways ....   NDA is suppose to allow you to discuss confidential details of your ideas, products or business with outsiders with the knowledge that the signatories would be deterred from being sued if they 'copy' or 'use' what is being discussed.   But what if the signatories pass it (or sell it) on to 3rd parties who, though covertly linked to the signatories, has no links that can be proven in a court of law. And of course these 3rd parties would also claim their ideas, though similar, was developed independently.    There may even be other ways of circumventing NDA, like modifying or tweaking the idea, with some core remaining the same, and passing on to 3rd parties.    To me NDA doesn't seem to worth as much as people make it to be , what do you think? 
  14. I have several Unity Assets I'm planning to publish through my current employer to the Unity Asset Store. But I'm worried about legal protection. I'm not really sure how to protect myself or my company from potential law suits. Not that I'm expecting them. It seems like I need to hire a lawyer to draft a EULA, but I'm wondering if there is some standard EULA that basically says use at your own risk. Or if there is an article that talks clearly to this topic. - Thanks. The products will be 100% self developed code, and self developed models, no fan art With Source Code included
  15. Hello, this is my first post, and originally I wasn't going to even join this community, but I thought it would be a good idea. Especially because the people at Reddit ignored my post completely. Being a Minor (I am about to be a sophomore in high school), I have about three years of coding experience. I also have been composing music, and I have many friends who do many other things that happen to coincide with game development (I will get to this next). Currently, me and two friends are wanting to start a development company. I have had a good amount of experience in Unity, and I am well versed with JavaScript, as well as learning C#. I have a friend who does a lot of art and pixel art, who also is well versed in JavaScript (no experience in anything other than Pocessing.js) and a friend who has the same if not more experience with JavaScript, as well as advanced GameMaker skills. In terms of technology, coding levels, music, art design, and pretty much everything else that actually creates the full game experience, we are set and ready to go. The problem is legal issues. My parents are not too fond of me starting a company now, because they think school is more important (I go to a special program at my school, which is similar to STEM mixed with avid, but includes all classes, which I could easily do this for projects), and legally, none of us are old enough to actually create a company (I have researched into LLC's, DUNS Numbers, Apple Developer, and a lot of the other publishing/marketing stuff we'd need for a company and actually publishing the apps). I know, if we continue, we will probably need legal advice from an actual attourny (especially because laws vary by state so a lot of information might not be correct on the internet), but I was wondering if any of you either have experience starting a company/software development company as a minor, or if any of you know anything that might help us on our endeavor legally so we can have our own business. We already have options of people who are above 18 who will help us with this and will more than likely help us with being the legal organizer of the company, but other than that, we are a little blind. If you have any information that would be helpful, that would help us so much! Illegal Seagulls LLC (Hopefully at least!)
  16. Can somebody explain why some fan-made games (Pokemon, Yugioh,Dragon Ball) get taken down while others don't? I just don't get the logic of it? Does favoritism play a role in the decision of ip owner taking legal action? Is there a bar fan-made games must not pass? I would like to know because I am contemplating on making a fan-made card game based on an anime. I've already read the legal portion of sloperama document and am aware of the legal actions that can be taken and why i original is the best way. I just want to know why some popular fan-made games make it and other don't? I've have seen many Pokemon fan-made games using copyrighted material and never get shutdown. And they have been up for 5-10 years. 
  17. Hi I am UK based and I'm recently forming a team to develop a game. I'm the lead developer and will be bringing on ~5 other artists to create content such as models, textures and music.   For the moment, I have not formed an official company, to avoid the time sink of all the paperwork, contract writing and so on. But without agreements/contracts/licences in place as I understand it, an artist on my team could pull out at any moment and reserve the right to take all their content with them.   To prevent this, I would like to have them upload their content to my website when they are done with it, and to include a licence in that directory that says something along the lines of   "By uploading your content files to this directory, you agree to transfer ownership of your files to the lead developer Alex Lynch, in exchange for payment from the revenue of the game".   I hope this would be enough, until I form a real company and get signed contracts from them.
  18. Anyone who was thinking of "honoring" Nintendo IP with a fan game, do something else instead. http://twinfinite.net/2016/09/nintendo-dmca-500-fan-games/ http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2016/09/nintendos-dmca-backed-quest-against-online-fangames/ http://bgr.com/2016/09/02/nintendo-dmca-fan-games-game-jolt/
  19. Legal firm Morrison Rothman have announced that they will be offering free legal services to qualifying indie developers as part of their new "Jump Start Program". Further details are still to be provided, but we currently know that the firm will be starting out offering pro bono (free) services to three developers each month and "will work with each one to complete the legal needs smaller dev teams often cannot afford", with plans to hopefully expand this to include a larger number of developers in future. The program also aims to support and encourage more diversity, and so will prefer studios who exhibit a commitment to diversity either through their work or their studio's leadership. Founding partner Ryan Morrison goes by the online handle of Video Game Attorney on Twitter and Reddit, and is well known for his popular legal AMAs (Ask Me Anything) which are normally done a few times per year.
  20. Serghei Tricolici

    Can I copy a game?

    Hi Guys, My name is Serghei, I live in Moldova and I have a question: Can I copy a game's functionality legally? What I mean is that I want to make a game based on another game's idea/functionality. The game I am referring to is http://utopia-game.com initially my game will be 90% the same, in the future I will make changes and it will become slightly different, but initially I want to keep it simple. I don't want to copy the game's graphics or soung, just everything else Thanks for your time, have a nice day