ID:192631
 
I think fan games should be illegal on BYOND without concent from the copywriters(right word?) Theres way too many of them and most of them aren't too good. If someone is really detirmined to make a fan game then they will go through the trouble to get concent.
BurningIce wrote:
I think fan games should be illegal on BYOND without concent from the copywriters(right word?)

They are. However, it is not Dantom's responsibility (or ability) to enforce.
BurningIce wrote:
I think fan games should be illegal on BYOND without
concent from the copywriters(right word?)

If you mean 'consent', you are absolutely correct - but (as Shadowdarke mentions) DanTom does not have the obligation nor the resources to enforce such things. That would be like knife-companies being responsible for people who stab other people with their knives...

Theres way too many of them and most of them aren't too
good.

That's not reason to make a game illegal though. There are hundreds of thousands of products, from cars to condoms to carrots, that are no good. But it is up to the consumer to decide what they want to use - not the manufacturer (unless it is unsafe for some reason). The same applies to software. If it is no good, it will go away eventually. If you do not like them, then do not play them!

If someone is really detirmined to make a fan game then
they will go through the trouble to get concent.

Fan games usually do not need consent to be produced, unless they are using images or content directly from another copyrighted source (even another copyrighted game) and are intended to be sold for significant profit, not personal use and enjoyment.

If someone made a DBZ game with actual scanned characters from a published video, and was making $45 a head in selling the game, then there would be an issue of copyright (as well as other things such as taxes, business fees/licensing, etc.).

If I make a DBZ game for me and some friends to play with (at no profit), it would cost more for a copyright holder to pursue any alleged violation than to just ignore it. As long as it does not infringe upon any potential profits, a gamemaker is safe to make whatever they want...
In response to Shadowdarke (#1)
My only question regarding that is, if they're illegal, why does BYOND provide a page on the game listing for them? Wouldn't it discourage the creation if fan games if builders knew that they could never get them on the official listing?
In response to Foomer (#3)
They aren't illegal really, just technically illegal, but then again, ROMS are illegal too, but look at the pages of those you will foind out there. The Fan games that cost money are the illegal ones, like final fantasy aftermath....
In response to Ter13 (#4)
Fan games are illegal if the owner of the item they are based on says so. It's up to them to decide whether or not they're going to tolerate fan games or not. And the abundance of illegal ROMs does not make them any less illegal. (I've read the official world on ROM "legalness", so I'm well aware that the only reason they exist is because no one has resources to have them all closed down, constantly.)
In response to Foomer (#5)
Foomer wrote:
Fan games are illegal if the owner of the item they are based on says so. It's up to them to decide whether or not they're going to tolerate fan games or not. And the abundance of illegal ROMs does not make them any less illegal. (I've read the official world on ROM "legalness", so I'm well aware that the only reason they exist is because no one has resources to have them all closed down, constantly.)

Even that's falling into question -- new laws forbid the duplication and/or distribution of backup versions of software.

Nintendo, for example, made a major crackdown on backup ROMs a short while ago. Some of my favourite download sites no longer exist (or they moved onto more legal pursuits, like game reviews).

(I'll admit that I play and use backup ROMs on a fairly regular basis (though I do own most of the actual cartridges for the backups I have).)
In response to Spuzzum (#6)
i like roms they let me play games i couldnt play when they first came out, i didnt have much money back then....you're right though, more and more sites are closing or changing due to legal issues.
If you have the original cartridges, you must agree with me that nothing can beat the real thing, holding a controler and playing the game on the original system.
In response to TNT (#7)
If you have the original cartridges, you must agree with me that nothing can beat the real thing, holding a controler and playing the game on the original system.

That depends -- my Logitech Wingman gamepad is far better than the SNES gamepad (or even the rip-off gamepads that people made for the SNES).

Plus, my SNES is in a bad way. We bought it about a week after the Super Nintendo hit the market, which means that it is *ancient*. It works better than my NES, granted, and I haven't experienced a whole lot of problems with it, but every so often it'll simply refuse to run Final Fantasy 3 (US), or Chrono Trigger, etc.

And, finally, I like the higher resolution achievable on my monitor. With ZSNES and the 2XSAI engine, the games look crisp without needing to resort to scanlines on a TV.
In response to Spuzzum (#8)
true true, but graphics arent everything. anyway i dont have a gamepad for my pc. :(
I have a nes though and it still works pretty good, only the normal control pads are having trouble, the down button doesnt work that good anymore.....
In response to Foomer (#3)
Foomer wrote:
if they're illegal, why does BYOND provide a page on the
game listing for them? Wouldn't it discourage the
creation of fan games if builders knew that they could
never get them on the official listing?

I really doubt it because you can write and publish and play BYOND games with needing them to be listed on the site...

In response to Spuzzum (#8)
Spuzzum wrote:
every so often it'll simply refuse to run Final Fantasy 3 >(US), or Chrono Trigger, etc.

My God... Insanity I tell you!
In response to Foomer (#3)
Foomer wrote:
My only question regarding that is, if they're illegal,
why does BYOND provide a page on the game listing for
them? Wouldn't it discourage the creation if fan games if
builders knew that they could never get them on the
official listing?

Before I say what I'm going to say, let me just assure you that I understand the legalities of this issue quite well. I understand that it's illegal to use the images, characters, copyrights, and trademarks of a company without their permission.

HOWEVER, there's no real difference between using these things in a fan game, and using these things in a fan web site. Fan web sites FLOURISH. They're EVERYWHERE. And though they survive only by the good graces of the company that owns the license in question, you're not likely to see the company clamp down on them with an iron fist, unless they somehow weaken the strength of the license.

Why? Because you risk alienating your fans with such a heavy-handed approach, when all they're trying to do is celebrate the rich, creamy, nougatty, goodness of your creation. And it's just not worth it from a monetary standpoint. Bad PR and no fiscal incentives combine for a pretty good reason not to sue.

So when it comes right down to it, fan creations are only as illegal as the licensor decides to make them. The spirit of the law, and not the letter, is what wins out here. Quite frankly, I'm glad that Dantom realizes this.

Regards,
Corporate Dog

PS: Just to make things clear, I vehemently disagree with trying to make a PROFIT from such fan activities. That swings the pendulum right back to the letter of the law holding more importance. When you try to make a profit, then you AREN'T in it soley for love of the license, and you're in fact competing with the same company who created the license in the first place. It also makes it more likely that they WILL pursue legal action against you, and potentially screws things up for the rest of us. If you're trying to profit on someone else's license, you're a thief plain and simple.
In response to Corporate Dog (#12)
Corporate Dog wrote:
HOWEVER, there's no real difference between using these things in a fan game, and using these things in a fan web site. Fan web sites FLOURISH. They're EVERYWHERE. And though they survive only by the good graces of the company that owns the license in question, you're not likely to see the company clamp down on them with an iron fist, unless they somehow weaken the strength of the license.

Why? Because you risk alienating your fans with such a heavy-handed approach, when all they're trying to do is celebrate the rich, creamy, nougatty, goodness of your creation. And it's just not worth it from a monetary standpoint. Bad PR and no fiscal incentives combine for a pretty good reason not to sue.

I agree that legally, fan sites and (free) fan games are much the same.
However, you should probably be aware (if you weren't already) that such crackdowns on fan sites have in fact happened. Viacom ticked off half the Trekkies in the world when they went after Star Trek fan sites, insisting the official site should now and forever be the only one out there. I think eventually they backed down from this.

Warner Bros., which never met an obnoxious trademark/copyright policy it didn't like, did the same thing with Buffy sites. They even got to the point where they were shutting down Buffy discussion boards, and even took their threats directly to EZboard (who ran the server that housed most of those discussion boards). I suspect Warner Bros. has only partially stepped back from this position, but won't fully do so until it suffers a major black eye for it.

So when it comes right down to it, fan creations are only as illegal as the licensor decides to make them. The spirit of the law, and not the letter, is what wins out here. Quite frankly, I'm glad that Dantom realizes this.

I agree, and I think the letter of the law (the DMCA aside, which is absolute unconstitutional crap) makes Fair Use pretty clear. Essentially, fan sites practice fair use policy in the way they use images.

PS: Just to make things clear, I vehemently disagree with trying to make a PROFIT from such fan activities. That swings the pendulum right back to the letter of the law holding more importance. When you try to make a profit, then you AREN'T in it soley for love of the license, and you're in fact competing with the same company who created the license in the first place.

Good point. Once you're making money off it, it's a clear violation.

It also makes it more likely that they WILL pursue legal action against you, and potentially screws things up for the rest of us. If you're trying to profit on someone else's license, you're a thief plain and simple.

Agreed.

Lummox JR
In response to Ter13 (#4)
Ter13 wrote:
They aren't illegal really, just technically illegal, but then again, ROMS are illegal too, but look at the pages of those you will foind out there. The Fan games that cost money are the illegal ones, like final fantasy aftermath....

Roms are a different legal area. The term used for this is "abandonware", and basically the situation is that pretty much nobody is selling these things anymore, and the company isn't making money off it anymore. The concept behind abandonware is simply recognizing that at this point there's nobody left to be ripped off by making an original NES ROM available for download--not unless Nintendo or the game manufacturers chose to make it available for a small fee. The concept is actually very similar to buying an old item at a flea market, except that this old item can be copied infinitely.

And die-hard collectors will still look for the original cartridges anyway, so there's still demand for the very tiny number of originals left, which means there's not really a huge problem here. The same goes for arcade cabinet; some people like the whole cabinet experience, and will shell out a few hundred to several thousand bucks on a cabinet with the game of their choice--yet those games do exist on emulators now, too, and work relatively well in most cases. The game economy isn't being hurt by this because emulation fills a kind of demand that was unaddressed by the market; nobody was supplying.

Lummox JR
In response to Lummox JR (#14)
Lummox JR wrote:
Roms are a different legal area. The term used for this is "abandonware", and basically the situation is that pretty much nobody is selling these things anymore, and the company isn't making money off it anymore.

I'm not aware of any legal distinction for this. The illegality is the same, to my knowledge.

Abandonware is one of the few cases where I do see a moral difference however, and I am happy to play ROM games once in a while, in the knowledge that I absolutely would pay for a new release of Tai-Pan if they put it out.

I also think the sometimes-made argument that people using the ROMs weakens the market for that game and therefore reduces the company's ability to put out an updated commercial product is totally bogus. Use of the ROMs keeps the market in existence, and, in my opinion, increases the market for a future commercial product.

As to the question of BYOND having a Fan Games page...I believe I suggested that, and I do police the requirement that fan games actually get listed on the Fan Games channel and that they don't require a subscription (I hope I haven't missed that part on any of them). I can't speak for Dantom on the legal issues, but my personal feeling is that these are allowed to be on the channel in the assumption that the companies who own the copyright won't mind free games, but that if the company requests that the games be removed, they would be immediately.

We've already had a case where a diligent game author contacted the copyright owner for permission after posting the game, and the copyright owner refused permission. The author notified Dantom, that incarnation was removed, and the game was modified by the author so it wouldn't violate copyright.
In response to Lummox JR (#14)
lol, sounds like me, I still have my old NES, Dragonwarrior 1, Dragonwarrior 2, Dragonwarrior 3, Dragonwarrior 4, Zelda, Zelda 2, Final Fantasy, and A Bard's Tale, All of which are hard to find these days, and have been named, THE origional RPGs... But I was really talking about Playstation ROMS, as a matter of fact, I have Final Fantasy 7-9 on my computer right now, BUT they are all legal, I own the origional games, they are just backups just incase my discs get messed up, I also have a second playstation with 2 mod chips in it, just so I can play them on burnt CDs. I do not break the copywright, and I do not sell burned copys at all, as a matter of fact, I have never had to copy them.
In response to Deadron (#15)
Deadron wrote:
Lummox JR wrote:
Roms are a different legal area. The term used for this is "abandonware", and basically the situation is that pretty much nobody is selling these things anymore, and the company isn't making money off it anymore.

I'm not aware of any legal distinction for this. The illegality is the same, to my knowledge.

That could well be the case, but to my mind reviving a dead work doesn't violate the spirit of copyright law, as long as you don't profit from it or hurt profits for the author.

Abandonware is one of the few cases where I do see a moral difference however, and I am happy to play ROM games once in a while, in the knowledge that I absolutely would pay for a new release of Tai-Pan if they put it out.

I also think the sometimes-made argument that people using the ROMs weakens the market for that game and therefore reduces the company's ability to put out an updated commercial product is totally bogus. Use of the ROMs keeps the market in existence, and, in my opinion, increases the market for a future commercial product.

Not to mention, emulation is always inferior to a polished commercial product. People who resort to using ROMs generally do so because the exact thing they want is simply not available. ROMs tend to be the only thing exploiting a niche market that would otherwise go completely untouched; they fulfill demand as well as they can.

As to the question of BYOND having a Fan Games page...I believe I suggested that, and I do police the requirement that fan games actually get listed on the Fan Games channel and that they don't require a subscription (I hope I haven't missed that part on any of them). I can't speak for Dantom on the legal issues, but my personal feeling is that these are allowed to be on the channel in the assumption that the companies who own the copyright won't mind free games, but that if the company requests that the games be removed, they would be immediately.

That seems perfectly reasonable.

Lummox JR
In response to Deadron (#15)
no subscriptioon in fangames? You missed one, Final Fantasy Aftermath! and a dragonball Z one too, 'Just 50 dimes for life!', I forget the name, I'll look for it again.

[edit] Dragonball majins and mystics
Dragonball New era
In response to Deadron (#15)
Which game was this?
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