Promising Star Wars: KOTOR Fan-Made Reboot Gets Shuttered by Lucasfilm

Discussion in '[H]ard|OCP Front Page News' started by Megalith, Oct 13, 2018.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

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    Lucasfilm has shut down Knights of the Old Republic: Apeiron, a fan-made reboot of BioWare’s classic Star Wars RPG. Naturally, the complaint stems from the unlicensed use of intellectual property: being the “exclusive owner of all intellectual property rights in and to the Star Wars major motion pictures, games and any other Star Wars content," Lucasfilm fears that Apeiron would be confused as an official, affiliated product.

    The Apeiron website describes it as “a remake and remastering of the original game with added content, new worlds, missions, HUD, inventory, items, and companions,” created by “a group of dedicated programmers, artists, voice actors, world builders, and writers that have all come together to breathe life back into a wonderful game.”
     
  2. Paul_Johnson

    Paul_Johnson [H] PSU Editor & Admin Staff Member

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    I wonder why people keep doing things like this. Yeah it sounds great, but did they really think that Lucasfilm was NOT going to go after them?
     
  3. NeoNemesis

    NeoNemesis 2[H]4U

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    If you're going to do something like this. Keep it secret right up until it's done and then release it.

    Once it's in the wild there isn't a damn thing anyone can do to stop it from spreading.
     
  4. Chris_B

    Chris_B [H]ardness Supreme

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    They probably think it'll be looked upon favourably as a fan made project. Delusional thinking where money is concerned.
     
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  5. PhotoBobBarker

    PhotoBobBarker [H]Lite

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    I really wish they would change the standard for I.P. protection to something along the lines of having to be still available for sale from the creator in volume (as in they can't keep 1 copy for 50 years to protect themselves). The whole point was to protect/allow the originator to make profit off of the creation. If they are no longer selling it/making available for sale... The protection should no longer be valid. When was KOTOR last for sale from the distributor (not including GOG)?
     
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  6. NeoNemesis

    NeoNemesis 2[H]4U

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    It's not entirely without precedence though. Valve allowed Black Mesa to remake HL1.
     
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  7. Yaka

    Yaka Gawd

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    sega as well did like wise with sonic

    lucas arts should stop being cunts, release kotor source code let fans take up projects like this
     
  8. Teenk9

    Teenk9 Gawd

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    That's because Valve no longer has any intention of putting the resources for another HL game. They make magnitudes more money with Steam to care about monetizing HL IP again. Disney on the other hand intend to make bank with their SW investment.
     
  9. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    What I don't understand is why won't companies acquire these projects instead of shutting them down, if they fear they'll be too good. Or do they fear it will be crap and damage their reputation? their reputation is already bellow 0.
     
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  10. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    lucasarts has stopped being anything since they were closed years ago :)
     
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  11. Azphira

    Azphira [H]ard|Gawd

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    They can't do that, they are Disney now.
     
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  12. AtomClock

    AtomClock n00bie

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    Quick fix...
    1. Change the project name
    2. Change character graphics so they are different from the original
    3. Rename a lite saber to plasma sword.
    4. Tell Lucas to pound sand

    Problem solved!

    For the name do what 2001 A Space Odyssey did. IBM -> HAL, KOTOR -> LPUPS
     
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  13. Stoly

    Stoly [H]ardness Supreme

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    I think you answered your own question.
     
  14. SPARTAN VI

    SPARTAN VI [H]ardness Supreme

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    They were basically recreating the entire game in Unreal Engine 4, but using the original game rules (D20), original story, and original sound files. They tried the "it's technically a mod" angle, but it was definitely more of a "remaster" than a mod at this point. I watched a few of the developer streams, and the environments that they were building weren't remotely similar to the original KOTOR environments. For instance, lower city Taris looked straight-up like Nar Shadaa, and Tatooine looked like it was straight out of the original trilogy (the movies). They're a very talented team, and I hope they work out a licensing deal or something to bring this to market.. but I'd wager the chances of that actually happening are less than 1%.
     
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  15. kamxam

    kamxam [H]ard|Gawd

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    Lucasarts: Because ONLY we can screw it up the only way we can! (y)
     
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  16. Jim Kim

    Jim Kim 2[H]4U

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    I kinda think you're comparing apples and oranges.
     
  17. joobjoob

    joobjoob Limp Gawd

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    Let's not blame Lucasfilm these projects proceeded with only reasonable speed bumps under George Lucas
     
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  18. Nimisys

    Nimisys PM Kyle for the TItle You Pick.

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    Maybe someone, somewhere is looking at this from the BG remaster angle, and the first step will be to kill it publicly before it gets out.... Then bring the team and their assests in and re-monetize the IP.
     
  19. Nenu

    Nenu [H]ardened

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    It could be worth the court appearance to establish whether that has any merit.
    I wouldnt confuse them and steps could be taken to make it clear.
     
  20. Icon_Charlie

    Icon_Charlie [H]Lite

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    You know head hunters still look at things like this type of content...

    Next a lot of Eastern European/Asian region really do not give one damn about copyright infringements. And head hunters over there will look at this type of content too.
     
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  21. Hakaba

    Hakaba I Think I am Funny, but I'm Not

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    Because they have EA... Who always makes wonderful Star Wars games... :vomit:
     
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  22. MV75

    MV75 Gawd

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    They're shutting it down because it's not woke enough. They could get chuck in, I hear he's got not much on right now.
     
  23. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Oh, yeah Battlefront. I completely forgot that existed. 'Perhaps' because I give zero fucks about mp games.
     
  24. Zion Halcyon

    Zion Halcyon 2[H]4U

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    As much as this sucks, I saw it coming.

    This isn't the 1990s anymore, where video game developers allowed mods aplenty.

    Nowadays you have singular corporations running everything and instead of a bunch of different video game studios, you have production houses like Activision, Ubisoft, and Electronic Arts, who technically own the Star Wars license and would have been the ones responsible for shutting this down, not necessarily Disney.

    with major Production Studios involved, they more aggressively pursue any perceived breach of IP, and the days where mod making was a big deal and a feature of PC games has long since passed by. not to say there aren't one-offs here and there for minor games that hit big from minor Studios where there isn't this major publisher oversight, but those tend to be the exception instead of the norm.

    I say this as someone who used to create MP levels for Jedi Outcast, fan made. For the most part those days are dead now.

    It's really sad but nothing can be done about it.
     
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  25. Eshelmen

    Eshelmen 2[H]4U

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    If it's not for sale, why would it matter?
     
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  26. Hakaba

    Hakaba I Think I am Funny, but I'm Not

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    Gotta protect your IP, even if it doesn’t threaten you at all. If you do not it probably weakens your case when you go after someone who does.

    My 2c
     
  27. Joust

    Joust [H]ard|Gawd

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    If I paid - what was it, $4b? - for IP, I also would not be keen to let others use it.

    I'm not saying it doesn't stink from a consumer perspective - that goes without debate. However, it is what it is.
     
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  28. Derangel

    Derangel [H]ardForum Junkie

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    It sucks, a lot, but I can't blame Lucasarts too much here. The project definitely boarders on what would be acceptable under fair use and mods are already a legal grey area. Even with it requiring the original game they are skirting things quite closely.
     
  29. DrBorg

    DrBorg Gawd

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    I'm happy they only made the three star wars movies; prequels and sequels would only suck.

    Much like they only made the one Matrix movie; sequels would have just gotten lame.

    :)
     
  30. Nobu

    Nobu 2[H]4U

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    LucasArts and LucasFilm are two separate studios, please stop using their names interchangeably.
     
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  31. Delicieuxz

    Delicieuxz Gawd

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    Poem Studios could seek a license from Disney, or could even seek a publishing agreement from Disney and turn it into a commercial project. PS could also remove all Star Wars / LucasFilm / Disney trademarks and IP content from the project and continue making it under a different name, like Galaxy at War is doing with their formerly Star Wars project.

    Poem Studios may have done something like that, judging by their announcement that they've got another project in the works and that transitioning to that other projects has been pretty easy for them.

    The C&D letter arrogantly 'demands' that Poem Studios delete the code and assets they made for Apeiron - something which Disney and its subsidiaries have no authority or power to demand and enforce. Poem Studios could continue making the project using all the Star Wars stuff it has in it, and keep showing screenshots and video, and simply say it's not for public release but is only a personal project, and Disney couldn't do anything against the project. It's only if the project is for distribution and could therefore potentially threaten Disney profits, ownership, or reputation that Disney could take action against it.


    Alternatively, an IP-holder can grant a license for a fan project so that there's no risk to IP authority. Though, I'm not aware of any case where not intervening and stopping an earlier use of an IP undermined a future effort to stop another use of an IP. I've heard companies like Bethesda make the argument you did, but I've never seen proof that the argument is valid. I think that if someone owns an IP, they can pick and choose what they want to stop and what they don't. I think that the 'if we don't stop this project then it weakens our future position' argument is only an excuse meant to mitigate negative PR over shutting down a project that had a lot of fans.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
  32. Nenu

    Nenu [H]ardened

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    Did you mean 'no' risk?
     
  33. Delicieuxz

    Delicieuxz Gawd

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    I did. Fixed it, thanks.
     
  34. Lakados

    Lakados Gawd

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    It still is available for sale, they have it on Steam, they even patched it for wide screen and fixed the video playback in Windows 8 & 10.
     
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  35. TangledThornz

    TangledThornz Limp Gawd

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    This is dumb. What is also sad is I hadn't played a good Star Wars so far this decade. The last good Star Wars game I played was Force Unleashed and that was released in 2008!
     
  36. Lakados

    Lakados Gawd

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    It's good practice, it was complete to a stage that it could go as an item on a resume.
     
  37. Delicieuxz

    Delicieuxz Gawd

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    KotOR 2 was patched for widescreen. I tried but couldn't get widescreen to work properly in KitOR in Windows 10, like, last night. I tried a bunch of different guides for it.
     
  38. Silverlok

    Silverlok [H]Lite

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    let's see, Lucas arts, once upon a time a developer people held their breath in anticipation for acquired by Disney and inducted into EA is now a developer that one holds their breath while walking past has started going out of it's way , and by that I mean actively reaching out , to piss off and shit on LOYAL, dedicated fans.

    the Purge of the fan base must continue no matter the cost eh Disney?

    It worked for Star Wars right?
    It worked for Star Trek right ?
    It worked for mass effect right ?
    It worked for battlefront right ?
    It worked for ghost busters right ?
    It worked for Marvel comics right?
    It worked for :
    Bullfrog
    Westwood studios
    Origin systems
    NuFx
    Pandemic studious
    Playfish
    Blackbox games
    Dreamworks interactive
    Phenomic game development
    Victory games
    Mythic entertainment
    Maxis software
    Headgate studious
    Viceral Software
    right?

    HOpe the Aperion boys take out the trade mark stuff , release it ( I would pay for that ) and then someone ( cough ) releases a Star wars themed mod for it

    The Bitch of this whole deal is every time I go to my local diner for steak and eggs ( excellent BTW ) the bill comes out to exactly $13.13, it's like a kick in the teeth everytime
     
  39. Derangel

    Derangel [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Except in situations where pre-existing contracts prevent this. Lucasfilm and Disney sold EA exclusive rights to make console and PC Star Wars games. Even if they wanted to, they could not authorize Poem without breaching their contract with EA.
     
  40. Silverlok

    Silverlok [H]Lite

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    dude Lucasfilm is the one that sent the cease and desist: https://pp.userapi.com/c847217/v847217429/100dde/kxrZdv5wKfU.jpg
    SO this is totally kraykray KK lashing out at fans ,

    a smart business person wold have realized a) that a huge and rather expensive chunk of development was done for free and b) there is clearly demand for the product ; so working up a license and distribution deal , you know , might, be pretty lucrative.

    I think the telling bit is LF telling them to delete files...it's not legal , so why add it to the C&D? because someone at LF is being extremely vindictive ( and stupid , but no surprise there)