27

You're confusing patents, copyrights, and trademarks here. Without going too deep into details: Whatever you create, code, assets, or anything else, automatically has you as the copyright owner. No further actions required. It just has to require significant amount of work (depends on legislation). For example, you can't claim rights on blue rectangles, ...


17

It depends on the game and the nature of the remake. Game mechanics cannot be protected by copyright, trademark, or patent. You can freely copy the mechanics of any game you want, as the basis of a new game. (This is why there are so many clones of things like Scrabble and Tetris out there, Snake clones are a common programming exercise, and many computer ...


14

Foreword: Anything related to laws will always be in a gray area, because the case outcome ultimately comes from a handful of people. Others have accurately pointed out that game code and assets fall under copyright law and that product, company, etc. names fall under trademark law. However, although others have pointed out that you cannot copyright game ...


10

Usual disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and in this site questions about these issues have to be always taken as ideas, thoughts or experiences, never as technical advice. That said, in the US you hardly would be able to copyright (or hold a patent over) a game idea in itself. Actually, the US Copyright office says that: Copyright does not protect the idea ...


8

Great question, what better way to ask about copyright than through games, which encompass all forms of media and IP. First off, be aware that an idea cannot be patented. Second be aware that the copyright depends on the national law you are recommended to adhering as a natural citizen. There are for instance some difference in interpretation of Fair Use in ...


7

Just negotiate with them. If they're willing to take a royalty, they will. If not, you'll have to get other assets.


7

Absolutely not. Do not do this. A general rule of thumb, is that you should not use or reference any property that you do not exclusively own, e.g. you should not even be saying "This game is like a better Tetris!" or "This is a Super Mario Style Game!" The reason being, say your project that is about the DC character Batman is a complete failure, and it ...


6

You find out who currently owns the IP and you make them an offer. It's that simple, but... First complication is that the owner of an IP is not necessarily the same as the developer, who in turn is not necessarily the same as the publisher. The probability is that the IP was licensed to multiple parties during the course of making the game, and all of ...


6

While it is theoretically possible to end up with such an agreement (they sue and you negotiate this as a settlement), you should not bet on it. You obviously violated their copyright and their trademark. Why would they settle for a 50% split when they can sue for 100%, and then possibly damages and legal fees (beyond what you already have to pay for your ...


6

Are there any legal ways to acquire the rights to make a derivative video game? Yes, it's frequently done. The game is owned by a live company, so how would I contact them correctly and negotiate for the rights to the content? Find their contact information on the web. Typically with a "Contact Us" page. You're likely not going to find a "Use this ...


6

Usual caveat: I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice, the relevant laws vary from country to country, city to city, etc. The basic concepts are these: you own one instance of the truck. You can sell your instance of the truck to someone else (according to the first sale doctrine, which states that the Copyright owner's distribution rights only apply ...


5

I think this article puts it best, by presenting 5 copyright cases, including the Tetris and Yeti Town cases: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/187385/clone_wars_the_five_most_.php In conclusion, if you're doing a total and complete rip off, you're in trouble these days, but you weren't 10 years ago. In addition there are patents. Patents for concepts ...


4

Another reason why this is not a good plan: think about the people. I doubt you have a lot of funds to make that game, and as @Philipp already pointed out, to make a game that DC would be ready to put their logo on, you need a lot of money. A lot of that money goes to paying people to make the game (salaries). To make a game of that scale, you'll need ...


3

To sell the rights to something, you first have to have rights to sell. Have you filed formal government paperwork to register copyright and trademark for your game? If not, you probably still have some automatic copyright protection in most countries, but it will be a lot more difficult to sell. If you can't afford advertising or a $100 fee on Steam, you ...


2

Legally, the short answer is no, you cannot just use them. Using their labelling suggest that they have vetted & rated your product, which is presently not the case. They regulate usage their labeling in an attempt to achieve the following: BBFC age ratings (text and symbols) are identifiable, understandable, trusted and consistent in their ...


2

Vlambeer had a GDC talk about streaming development of their game Nuclear Throne that you can watch on youtube. They streamed some parts of the game that an audience would find interesting. Give it a watch it answers a lot of your questions. As far an I know they have not had any issues with people stealing their game. They still have the IP of their game ...


2

There is some fuzziness when it comes to the law concerning things like spell names. At that point, it really comes down to how closely tied the name is to the franchise. If the brand that is being pulled from has explicit claim upon a name like that, it would likely be under trademark rather than copyright so that is what you'd want to look for. There is ...


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