Nintendo Striking 500+ Fan Games

This is a recorrent reason of why you should forget about making “fan games” or “fan mods”…

Once again, Nintendo shuts down more than 500 indie games that was using their IPs:

I don’t get why fans insist so much on these kinda illegal game projects anyway.

Well my friend there are also sega based ip based games also striked by sega,but not for sonic the hedgehog.You can’t stop it besides bad nintendo manners on closing their fangames based own games I still like/love Nintendo.All I know I should avoid Nintendo fanboys having another opinion.

yop, read it yesterday and just make me sad for all the fan-hobbyists that get hurt just by greedy-selfish big company that want just to keep the bankable IP for themself to max the money they get from it.

^^ passion and fun don’t relie on making money and all the legal stuff.
it’s about living that passion and sharing it ! (if you like drawing, you can draw fan art, if you like coding and game, you can make fan game)

IP is a twoway thing; need creator, but you also need people that get feelings for that creation.
todays it got perverted by industry and lawyer. It’s sounds more like drug dealer !

Nintendo was always cracking down on fan made games.

exactly jaandoe

One of the important things to note however from the DMCA itself is why they went after Game Jolt so directly, I mean sure Nintendo have always been tight on their IP, but this was a large scale take-down.

From the DMCA notice:

So Game Jolt was earning a, potentially decent profit, not intentionally off of Nintendo IP but since the revenue is enable site-wide it definitely was a factor. It’s also worth noting that Game Jolt offers up to (I think) 30% (number may be off) of AD revenue on a game to the developer should they choose to have it. It’s likely that many of these developers were accepting it as well, which would mean they’re not exactly innocent.

The other big thing of note is Nintendo is about to have their new console out, and since first party IP is really all they have to their name right now they’re probably performing a brand cleansing to (hopefully) focus attention on their upcoming releases.

@Sylvain_l Copyright hasn’t really changed too much in this case from it’s earliest days to be honest. The biggest thing would have been Disney lobbying to extend the expiration of copyrights in order to keep Mickey Mouse from entering the public domain after Walt Disney’s death. That’s been one of the biggest strangleholds on the creative industry. It’s also important to understand that even prior to that a creator of a work had exclusive rights to it for about 50 years, essentially long enough to maintain control of it for their own lifetime, before it would hit public domain.

Fan work is not remotely protected by any copyright law and never has been, not when using the actual branding and content of the IP in question. But the mechanics of game-play don’t actually have anything copyright-able to them, a perfect example of this is the 1981 case of Atari VS Amusement World over their game Meteor, which was even by the courts admission an Asteroids “clone”. But it was determined there were not enough visual similarities nor any code plagiarizing to actually qualify the game as copyright infringement. But that’s the thing, for all intents and purposes these were the SAME game, but since they didn’t infringe on the assets or actual IP, the case was thrown out.

Also take the recent No Mario’s Sky (the Mario meets No Man’s Sky parody). It too got hit with a DMCA from Nintendo during this wave. But the creators basically knew it would happen, and prepared new assets ahead of time to replace anything with a visual likeness to Mario or anything Nintendo and then renamed the game “No DMCA Sky”(sp?) and put the game right back up again. In doing so, it’s still the same game they made, and wanted to make, but it doesn’t hold the brand-name and visual content that got them in trouble with lawyers.

These people who want to make fan-games just need to accept that they can make homages to their favorite brands, even that have the exact same mechanics, but they can’t plan to ride on the brand-name or IP itself.

There is one exception, and that’s made in the case of parodies - but even so there’s a fairly grey line as to what is valid use of material in parody, and what is not.

True, however I referred to the actual content of the IP, such as the ripped assets, which is super common with fan works. And I’m fairly certain that would put something a risk of not being accepted as “parody”.

It should also be noted that No Mario’s Sky was DMCA’d over music tracks they recreated, but that were still the same almost note for note as existing Mario tracks, so despite being a parody was still hit, and still ran into trademark issues as well.

Like with the Rachet ‘n’ Clank Unreal Tutorials series on how to build your own Rachet ‘n’ clank game mechanics for your game which those game mechanics may be protected under patent laws since its a very popular game. Patents protect the game mechanics and ideas in the game so other game developers cannot copy the game mechanics without getting into trouble with these companies, so its not just
only about copying the graphics., Copyright just protects only the presentation of those ideas since ideas cannot be copyrighted BUT this is where patents come in if the company has filed for them and if they are given the grant for the patent then they can stop anyone from
developing any clones or fan-made games which ,may be a violation of both patent and copyright law… So this makes it even HARDER, not easier for game developers to come up with their own original ideas and concepts for their games when all these companies are filing patents applications to try to stop others from stealing their ideas.

Very few companies have patents on game mechanics nowadays, and the majority of those that do, did so back in the 80’s and many of those came about from arcade cabinet games. Patents are expensive and often convoluted to obtain, so most companies reserve their use for consoles and peripherals, rather than mechanics themselves.

Game mechanics cannot be copyrighted or patented.
You can patent the hardware and copyright the game “presentation” as whole; but you cannot enforce a takedown on games that have the same mechanics as yours unless everything else such as assets are also the same.
If you could do that, there would be only one FPS, one MMO, one RPG, one RTS and so on…

I think the reason why all the fan made games get into trouble with big companies like Nitendo is because its all over copyright and patent laws and possibly trade mark laws as well. is because patents offer a more broad level of protection than what copyright offers. That’s why the fan sites get told by Nitendo to shut down and to cease stealing their mechanics and ideas from out of their games. But the way I see it, that the more patents that get filed out to try to stop any cloning of any game idea or feature that is in a game, the more restrictive and limited the game creation will become for others. So there seems to be two levels of protection, The Patents which offer up to 20 years of protection against any copying of a new idea if companies go through the trouble to obtain them, and Copyrights which offer 95 years of
protection. So the way I see it, these companies have got everything all locked up tight as a drum.

Let me say that again:

Nobody can patent or copyright game mechanics.
You can make a game that plays exactly like Mario and Nintendo can’t do **** about it.

It thought it would be more wiser to just create your own mechanics instead to avoid legal friction with other game companies, I couldn’t care less about Mario.


The US laws seem to determine what games get produced but, it might be different in other countries.

I wanted to make a fan game, I changed my mind for this very reason.

Signatories of the Berne Convention:

Most of the non-signatory countries uphold otherwise very similar legislation, so unless you want to develop and sell your game in Western Sahara, you’re going to have to respect copyrights.

China is the funny guy on that photo…

Yeah its a complicated system. unfortunately and we haven’t even touched on Export embargos yet. where you can only sell games in certain countries and not in others. always wondered about that.

Its better to make your own original game than to try to copy or clone someone else’s commercial game… or what they call Remakes, or Fan Games.