Have you ever worried about someone "stealing" your ideas?

HankB

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Personally, I think there are not many original ideas left to be stolen. Almost every time I come up with a "new idea", I google it and see that someone else had the same idea 20 years ago. Or 20,000 years ago, in some cases. But I suppose it's theoretically possible for someone to come up with a game idea that hasn't been done yet.

Ecclesiastes said "there's nothing new under the sun", but that was a long time ago, and he wasn't exactly the brightest bulb on the tree.
 
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There are lots of ways to come up with something new. A good way to find them is to do research into topics not normally associated with the genre of game that you have in mind.

Not everything new is something people would enjoy playing though.
 

SoftCloud

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Better to create something you adore than strive to make something new, of which you may have little emotionally attachment. It can become especially troublesome, if later on in development, you find someone has already used your new idea.
 

ATT_Turan

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It is a very common state of mind for people who are not very knowledgeable when entering a new creative field to be afraid people will steal their ideas. I see it here, on board game design forums, in places about writing.

I don't mean that no kind of idea theft has ever happened, but many people seem to think there are other people lurking around just waiting to see their perfect idea, pounce on it, and market it before they can.

In reality, anyone who has the skills to do that will already have something marketable without needing you, generally speaking. The people with those fears also tend to be under-educated on the particular market, thinking their ideas are more unique and groundbreaking than they actually are.
 

Andar

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no, because by themselves ideas are worthless.

What gives an idea its value is the work on implementing it, on making it more than a vague idea.
That work is the key to everything.

As said above anyone who has the creative abilities to implement an idea usually has more ideas on his/her own than time to implement them and no need to steal ideas.
And if someone doesn't have those creative abilities to make an idea have value, then any stolen idea will never get any value at all.
 

vietanhdang2017

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But the truth is no one reveal their idea but only give away some faint hints about it. As you revealed the mystery, the magic also lost its power. If you go and explain your idea
and decide to go with it later, it may lose surprise element later to people who had known about it before hand
 

TheoAllen

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After countless prototypes and experiments, no, I'm not worried at all.

An idea that sounds cool may not be as cool as it seems to be when you are actually doing it. Realizing the idea into something tangible is something worth recognizing. But if a person claims that they have the best idea in the universe, I'm not impressed until they actually achieve it.
 

Tai_MT

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I don't worry about people "stealing my ideas". Mostly because most people are far too lazy to ever implement them as well as I would. This is why I've largely spread my ideas all through the forums here. Guess what? Not a single person has attempted to take them. Why? Probably because they're not good. Also, they're a ton of work.

Besides, I've always been of this singular opinion:

"It's amazing what can be accomplished by the human race when people stop caring about who gets the credit for something."

As for "no new ideas", I always laugh at that one. There are always new ideas out there. New ground to tread. The people who believe there aren't tend to be the ones who aren't all that creative to begin with. Or, rather, they lack imagination. Someone always comes along to "break the mold". Then, everyone follows them once they have.
 

Trihan

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I've been working on my game for 20 years, so I'd be surprised if none of the stuff in it had ever been done before. I've seen a few games that touched on very similar notes, particular thematically, but nothing that does it quite the way I am.
 

Milennin

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People who come on these forums do so because they're working on the game they want to make. Why would anyone here even need to steal ideas?
 

The Stranger

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Nope! I get a lot of inspiration from countless places (including the creative works of others), so why would I care if someone likes something of mine, takes it and turns it into something of their own design? Now, I might be pissed if someone outright stole my work and claimed it as their own. However, just ideas on their own? Nah!

Besides, if I wanted to keep my ideas safe, I just wouldn't share them with anyone till I had finished implementing them into whatever I was working on. If I share an idea with someone and they think it is cool, and then go off and use it in their own work, I wouldn't mind in the slightest.
 

ScorchedGround

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Well there is a distinction between "stealing" ideas and "taking inspiration" from ideas.

I think a 1:1 implementation of an idea (i.e. stealing) will never work out by itself, atleast not without some kind of "conversion" or "expansion".

And at the moment you transform an idea to suit your own vision, it no longer is stealing, but rather taking an existing idea, and innovating/expanding upon it (i.e. taking inspiration).

Obviously there is a grey area here, depending on the grade of "innovation".
You know the meme: "You can copy my homework, but don't make it too obvious"

And the truth of the matter is that it is very difficult to come up with completely "original" ideas.
Most of the stuff we think up is basically a derivative of something that has been done before.
 
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The Stranger

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I think a 1:1 implementation of an idea (i.e. stealing) will never work out by itself, atleast not without some kind of "conversion" or "expansion".
I fully agree. Sure, you can lift an idea or something from a game, movie, or novel wholesale, but if you don't change it in some way to make it work properly, it'll end up jarring and crappy.
 

Arctica

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I don't worry about it, because my ideas are more so inspired from existing ideas. My game is like a mesh of several things borrowed from some of my favorite games. I think most of us here do that anyway.
 

Quexp

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No, I don't worry about it. It would be neat to see someone else's spin on things though. There can be several "flavors" for one concept.

There's more than one way to bake an apple pie, right? :)
 

HexMozart88

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I personally don't worry about people stealing anything of mine (except for maybe music) when it comes to games because I've literally never made a good game in my life. People would have to be pretty desperate to steal from me.
 

JoePal

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I personally don't worry about people stealing anything of mine (except for maybe music) when it comes to games because I've literally never made a good game in my life. People would have to be pretty desperate to steal from me.

Actually someone stealing music is very different than someone "stealing" an idea. If someone took something you made and weren't offering for free use (like assets for a game or whatever), then you've entered into some actual problem/legal territory. If you wrote a book and then someone photocopied it all and stuck their name on it and pushed it as their own, that's outright stealing and not trying to swipe some kind of abstract and ill-defined mental property concept.

On the whole "no new ideas" front, I'm going to echo what many are saying and say this isn't really a thing. A vast amount of ideas (for anything from games to movies to inventions) are just newer/changed/reworked versions of older concepts (or a bunch of older concepts brought together with new concepts). One of the best examples of this is "Star Wars." The literature and mythology expert Joseph Campbell discussed story archetypes at length in his lifetime and the "hero's journey" is one of his more famous theories. "Star Wars" follows the prototype of the hero's journey quite closely. Is "Star Wars" ripping off every hero's journey before it? No. Was it a totally original concept? No. But it was wildly successful. Just like plenty of other stories/games/movies that follow the same pattern.

A good lesson in life: It isn't what you're working with, it's how you use it.
 

HexMozart88

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Actually someone stealing music is very different than someone "stealing" an idea. If someone took something you made and weren't offering for free use (like assets for a game or whatever), then you've entered into some actual problem/legal territory. If you wrote a book and then someone photocopied it all and stuck their name on it and pushed it as their own, that's outright stealing and not trying to swipe some kind of abstract and ill-defined mental property concept.
Oh, definitely. I've thankfully never had that happen (that I know of). I've had plenty of people steal my ideas before (for example, someone ripped off my game for a DnD campaign that I was in). It sucks, but it's not as bad as people stealing the finished product. It's a lot easier to come up with ideas than it is to make the game.
 

The Stranger

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for example, someone ripped off my game for a DnD campaign that I was in
This is very common. It also happens in reverse; people will rip off games, movies, and novels for their TTRPG campaigns. I know I've done it when hosting VTM games. lol. It's surprising how few people even recognise these plots or characters from more famous works, too.
 

Drake616

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Nah I talk about them openly in servers and what not, the idea doesn't matter nearly as much as the execution.
 

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