As a business, game development is fraught with legal concerns and issues, especially on copyright, terms of service, and licensing fronts.

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Personal Custom Card Game [duplicate]

I had the idea, to make a custom card game based off an Anime i like. I was wondering if it would be legal to have such printed out (using a custom card/board game service) for personal use. I would ...
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1k views

Are the names of guns protected under copyright law in the US? [migrated]

So I am trying to create a military shooter and therefore must have guns. I would like to include some weapons from real life (Ak-47, M16, Glock, etc.) and I would like to know what legal issues I ...
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0answers
26 views

Can names of abilities or spells within a game be trademarked/copyright? [duplicate]

Okay, say I want to create an RPG similar to and takes inspiration from such games as Final Fantasy, The Elder Scrolls, Shin Megami Tensei, Pokemon, etc. and I would like to use familiar names in some ...
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2answers
1k views

What do I need in order to receive payments from Valve?

I'm developer from Russia and I recently passed Steam Greenlight. Now I'm stuck on the Valve program enrollment phase. From what I've seen in the Valve forms, it is not necessary to create a company, ...
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1answer
77 views

How should I license my game so others may not distribute copies?

I've created a game and I'm unsure how to license it or what that means. I've heard of Creative Commons licenses. Should I use that? I want it so that people that download my game cannot remix or ...
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1answer
105 views

How do I publish to Google Play if I'm under 18?

I've finished my first Unity and want to release it on the Google Play store but can't because I am under 18. The main issue is that Google Wallet requires you to be over 18. How could I work around ...
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1answer
65 views

Legal issues around forming an international game dev team

A friend and I have been wanting to collaborate on a mobile app game. It's a 'start small but dream big' kind of venture, where neither of us has much experience, but we're hoping that if we succeed, ...
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32 views

What do I need to release a Dragon ball game? [duplicate]

The idea is to make a dragon ball game for mobile phones, I'm developing a prototype using sprites at spritedatabase.net. However, I don't know which commercial use they have, if I'll have to pay some ...
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75 views

Am I allowed to release a fan-made version of a Trading Card Game on a fansite? [duplicate]

Consider a Trading Card Game that is currently available for play in digital format only, the game in question would be HEX: Shards of Fate, but this question is intended as a general question about ...
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3answers
994 views

How common are game engine bugs, and can I claim damages for them? [closed]

Are game engine bugs (in popular ones like Unreal and Unity, not some unknown ones) common? I know engines like Unreal, Source and Unity3D are well tested and maintained, but, for example, is there ...
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1answer
120 views

How or when to add a copyright notice in published games?

I've seen lot of videogame title screens show a copyright notice together with the company name. I'm about to publish my game and I am looking for possibilities or requirements on how or when to add ...
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1answer
85 views

Legal Implications of using Openal in Opentk Commercially

Myself and my friend are currently creating a game, which we plan on selling upon its completion. We are using opentk. I read over this: http://www.opentk.com/node/532 , and it pretty well describes ...
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5answers
831 views

Are references to other games considered an infringement of copyright?

My team frequently reminisces about the games we grew up with in the 1990s, and we'd like to include references and Easter eggs that pay homage to this decade and that will invoke nostalgia or even ...
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0answers
24 views

legality of certain game elements [duplicate]

I am considering working on a particular concept, that would involve use of terminology from the particular series and mini-game from which I gained inspiration. I am curious as to the potential legal ...
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0answers
44 views

What parts of gameplay can be copyrighted? [duplicate]

I am thinking of developping a game and my inspiration largely relies on an existing game (with not many similar existing). Which parts am I allowed by law to replicate (in my own way of course) and ...
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1answer
934 views

Am I allowed to name a game after some song?

Just to ask a quick question, which I don't know where to ask: If I were to make a game, would I be allowed to call it "Buffalo Soldier [some more words]"? Since it's a song by Bob Marley I am not ...
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1answer
3k views

Is it legal to sell or monetize games created with the Unity 3D free edition?

Is it okay to use Unity 3D programming and gaming software to create mobile game apps for Android and iOS? I am using a free version of Unity 3D and planning it to sell my current game app I've ...
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2answers
156 views

What level of use can I give to these third person IP based art assets?

I'm making my first game (2D), and while details are irrelevant it compromises lots of spaceships in and out of the screen. They are not the main character or controllable by any means (I don't know ...
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2answers
289 views

Is it legal to use Creative Commons art in a commercial game?

I would like to know if the following situation would be legal. Let's say I take some pictures on wikipedia, that are licensed under CC-BY-SA license. Then I would like to photoshop them, and use it ...
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2answers
93 views

If I released a game engine under GPL v3, can I specify what parts of their code can be released under their own license?

I have a few questions about what users of my engine could copyright in their own project. The way the engine would work would be that it would be a standalone program in Java that would load all of ...
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1answer
3k views

Do I still owe Epic royalties if I am not enrolled in the Unreal Engine subscription?

I have just started using Unreal Engine 4 and I have had a very good experience, though I have left the subscription now. I've made an Android game with it and I am planning to release it, but I have ...
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2answers
124 views

Is it OK to use player supplied music in my game?

Is it copyright infringement if I create a game based around music beats but allow the players to use their own mp3 files?
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1answer
71 views

Can I use icons, which I am not allowed to use in commercial applications, in a free game

I wonder if I can use commercially-not-allowed icons in a mobile game which will be free for download. My game will include ads. Will ads make my game a commercial product?
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Can i make Simtower III whit out being sued by EA? [duplicate]

So i whanted to make a game inspired in the awesome game Simtower only because i love the game and i don't whant to make any money of it so can i make the game or not? Thanks, Laaz.
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198 views

Making game textures from sample images - legal/copyright question [closed]

TL;DR version: Can I use samples from images online in a commercial game project? Hello, I have been learning to use blender and have gotten quite decent at making models and applying textures, but ...
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4answers
973 views

Can I take a finished game based on a licence to the holding company?

Ok so I went through 11 pages on here and have done a decent amount of Google searching, but found nothing specific to my question. I'm working on a game based on a movie. For the purpose of this I'm ...
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2answers
300 views

Issues using real names in a soccer player game [duplicate]

Is illegal to use the real player and team names in a game? When I say game could be and desktop, mobile or fantasy game. If is illegal, is ok to change a little bit names? Instead of using Messi ...
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2answers
148 views

Is naming an app similar to another app legal? [closed]

I just finished my first ever app after 1 month of programming it and I'm ready to put it on the app store/google play. I searched the stores to see if the name i wanted to name my app was still ...
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1answer
253 views

Can I put real people in my game?

When and how can I use the likeness of real people in my game? What are the legal restrictions involved? Real people are rarely found in games because it's hard to present them tastefully, but they ...
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3answers
341 views

Is a warning about IAP in freemium games on iOS required?

When I launch the successful iOS game "Clash of Clans", right in the beginning I get the following message in an iOS info pop-up: "Clash of Clans is free to play, but you can speed up your progress ...
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1answer
140 views

Why are payments for a game sometimes called “donations”?

Why are money payments (by SMS, or VISA) sometimes called "donations", and not "payments" or "purchases"? Is it a legal part of monetization (some details will be appreciated in this case), or just a ...
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237 views

Version Not Final, Does Not Represent Actual Game Footage?

Just curious about this. Frequently, a lot of gameplay videos from big studios have small subtitled text at the lower part of the screen, reading something like: Pre-Alpha Gameplay -- Footage not ...
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357 views

Can I use the names or logos of real football teams in my game? [duplicate]

I am developing a football game and I want to know if it is legal to name teams after real football teams. What about their logos?
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169 views

Using real football player photo in a trivia quiz game, is it legal? [duplicate]

I don't know whether this question was already been asked before, but my team is currently developing a trivia quiz game about football (soccer not NFL). And we want to put player's images or club ...
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2answers
188 views

Copyright and patents on game design and names?

We all know that each game has elements from another game but when does one cross the line of copyright? I have a view particular questions about this since this "line" is very vague. While looking ...
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4answers
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Can I legally remove the default Unity splash screen by removing it from the APK?

While using Unity I export an Android game as an APK. When the APK is run, the first thing that is displayed is the Unity splash screen. I worked out that I could replaced that image by opening the ...
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256 views

How do you fully publish a game under your name, under 18? [closed]

This has been a week of stress in trying to get things done correctly. It's all tied with keeping things legal and making sure I don't lose out on benefits of any kid. I have just recently finished up ...
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1answer
129 views

What is the proper, legal way to make a derivative video game?

I want to make a game derived from an existing game. That game is owned by a live company. How do I go about contacting the rights owners correctly and negotiating for the rights to the content?
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2answers
255 views

FOSS games using original assets, is it legal?

Can I make a game that uses the assets of another game on the users' computer, without legal issues? For example, I make a game that requires the user have game X installed, and I use the assets of ...
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203 views

Is it legal to use the Source Engine out of Steam?

I would like to create a game that uses the Source Engine on Desura, the problem is that I am afraid that it is illegal to use the Source Engine in other platforms are not managed by Valve
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1answer
249 views

Is it legal to record music with a synthesizer and use it in my game? [closed]

I want to make music for game on my own because I don't have professional composer hired. I have found some softwares for making music, but most of them cost some money. I have an idea to record ...
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1answer
308 views

Is it legal to make a game out of a book? [closed]

I want to learn what legal constraints are on the copyrighted material. If I want to make a Quidditch (the fictional game in Harry Potter series) game, should I pay some kind of copyright to the ...
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2answers
138 views

Game Trailer Reference other Games

I am currently developing a game that pulls in the basic ideas and concepts from 3 other games. I want to make a trailer, and can I put in the trailer something like this: Pulling Game Concepts ...
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1answer
1k views

Can I use Playstation controller button icons in my game?

I'm currently working on a game that will be released on PC with controller support, and I'm trying to find a way on how to best represent controller icons within the game. I'm assuming I can't ...
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1answer
762 views

Do I need licensing to use real city names in my game?

I want to allow people to go to real places (Seattle Washington, Portland, Maine, etc.) in my game. Will I need licensing to make those places and use their names?
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1answer
433 views

Showing “Please buy” screen to pirates [closed]

I recently saw this and this, and that got me thinking When publishing a commercial game without DRM, would it be a good idea to upload a slightly modified copy of the game that shows a screen like ...
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2answers
239 views

How not to break licence laws? [closed]

I have an idea for a game. Also I have almost everything worked out considering coding. What interests me the most is how can I know if that game can be published. As it would be for iOS and ...
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1answer
258 views

Using real football (soccer) names from the past?

Is it legal to use really old names in a manager style game? It there an expiration on name license rights?
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219 views

Using name of real products in games

My friend and I are creating a Computer Tycoon game. We're using graphics cards and other real CPUs in the game. So can we use names like GeForce_210 in the game without issues? Also, if the above ...
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2answers
321 views

How to create a legally valid timestamp of unpublished game artwork

Before publishing promotional material of my first indie game I wanted to mark all my artwork with a legally valid timestamp. There are two ways I know to do this: 1 go to a sollecitor/lawyer and ...