Plagiarism and Indie Game Development

KB

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
70
Reaction score
9
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMXP
So, I purchased a copy of RPG Maker XP to make Pokemon fan games and share them among the Pokemon fan game making community. I was really having fun learning about how Nintendo codes their games, but the Pokemon Essentials wiki got taken down recently, and I've decided that I'm tired of making fan games. I want to make and showcase my own stuff so that I'm free from the threat of having my games removed.

I like making Pokemon fan games, though, and I like a lot of the game mechanics. What do I need to watch out for when making my own games if I want to use some of the mechanics of a Pokemon game, like turn-based battling and quest based game play? How can I make a game with similar mechanics if source code for the games in question is copyrighted? How far does source code copyright go? How can I make sure my games are completely legal?
 
Last edited:

gstv87

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Oct 20, 2015
Messages
2,267
Reaction score
1,285
First Language
Spanish
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
you don't need the source code for Pokemon to make a game with similar mechanics.
it all comes down to objects and functions.
the very basic building blocks you have to program anything, are data structures (arrays, variables, hashes, strings, etc).
*out of* data structures, you build *objects* (characters, windows, menus, scenes, etc)
with *objects*, you build a *game*.

if you want to make a similar mechanic to Pokemon, namely "character monster becomes part of main character's bestiary when main character defeats character monster in battle", you're going to need *a <main> <character>* first, then *a <character> <monster>*, then a <bestiary>, then a <battle scenario>,....
you can't * <put> <character monster> in <main character> <bestiary>*, if you first you don't have the individual objects.
 

KB

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
70
Reaction score
9
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMXP
you don't need the source code for Pokemon to make a game with similar mechanics.
it all comes down to objects and functions.
the very basic building blocks you have to program anything, are data structures (arrays, variables, hashes, strings, etc).
*out of* data structures, you build *objects* (characters, windows, menus, scenes, etc)
with *objects*, you build a *game*.

if you want to make a similar mechanic to Pokemon, namely "character monster becomes part of main character's bestiary when main character defeats character monster in battle", you're going to need *a <main> <character>* first, then *a <character> <monster>*, then a <bestiary>, then a <battle scenario>,....
you can't * <put> <character monster> in <main character> <bestiary>*, if you first you don't have the individual objects.
Sorry, I'm new to this. Where should I start?
 
Last edited:

bgillisp

Global Moderators
Global Mod
Joined
Jul 2, 2014
Messages
13,596
Reaction score
14,322
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
Well, if you want to do a similar idea you'll need to figure out your own monsters and your own world. And don't use any phrase they have trademarked either, I think gotta catch them all would get you in trouble if you used it in your game. Also you will probably have to make up similar elements and skills, as you can't carbon copy them (though common ones everyone uses like Fireball is pretty safe), and will have to figure out your own damage formulas and states too. But to start I'd come up with the monsters myself.

As it is, you can't really copywrite mechanics. If you could, then every Diablo clone could be sued and every RTS after Warcraft could be sued, and every FPS after Wolfenstien 3d could be sued. So basic mechanics and idea you can't hold a copywrite over.
 

KB

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
70
Reaction score
9
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMXP
Well, if you want to do a similar idea you'll need to figure out your own monsters and your own world. And don't use any phrase they have trademarked either, I think gotta catch them all would get you in trouble if you used it in your game. Also you will probably have to make up similar elements and skills, as you can't carbon copy them (though common ones everyone uses like Fireball is pretty safe), and will have to figure out your own damage formulas and states too. But to start I'd come up with the monsters myself.

As it is, you can't really copywrite mechanics. If you could, then every Diablo clone could be sued and every RTS after Warcraft could be sued, and every FPS after Wolfenstien 3d could be sued. So basic mechanics and idea you can't hold a copywrite over.
Okay, see Pokemon Essentials, the program I was using to help me generate Pokemon game mechanics when I was making the fan games, can't be used for commercial development, and it directly rips source code from the games in some places I think, so my question is how can I recreate many of the popular game mechanics without using pre-written scripts like this since I'm relatively new to programming? Where should I start? It probably wouldn't be that difficult if I knew where to get my tools, but that's kind of the issue.

If I want turn-based battles, I need a script for that. If I want monster collection systems, I need a script for that. That's what I'm asking. If the answer is "just write your own script," how do I get started if I have limited programming knowledge?
 
Last edited:

WhiteW

The Murderous Clown
Veteran
Joined
Oct 16, 2016
Messages
170
Reaction score
127
First Language
EN/PT
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Pokémon fan games is an ongoing niche for years, that has it's own huge community. People make fan games and share them with others all the time - only recently Nintendo started to bother with this and apparentely according to the Pokémon Community forum, one of the project devs said that mediafire said that the "people who make pokémon games" told them to shut down the downloads, so the wiki was also doing of Nintendo.

And also, Pokémon Essentials was protected under Creative Commons, as, sure it may have used copywritted content (images, sound, etc) on it but it was just a template to make your own monster capture game more easily and based on the Pokémon systems which can obviously be changed around due to RPG Maker's flexible nature.

I think it's a shame that PKMNE got take down, honestly, I mean, we don't see authors of fan comics of comics getting sued!

Also, I don't remember his name but a guy made a library of plugins for MV to make a monster capture game, search the "Plugins in Development" forum I think, it's unfinished, but if you go learn JS you could eventually get all the fixing done I guess.

EDIT:

Found to the link to that library of plugins, it's called Beast Masters. https://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?threads/beast-masters.83796/

Also Kendra check your pm.
 

KB

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
70
Reaction score
9
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMXP
Pokémon fan games is an ongoing niche for years, that has it's own huge community. People make fan games and share them with others all the time - only recently Nintendo started to bother with this and apparentely according to the Pokémon Community forum, one of the project devs said that mediafire said that the "people who make pokémon games" told them to shut down the downloads, so the wiki was also doing of Nintendo.

And also, Pokémon Essentials was protected under Creative Commons, as, sure it may have used copywritted content (images, sound, etc) on it but it was just a template to make your own monster capture game more easily and based on the Pokémon systems which can obviously be changed around due to RPG Maker's flexible nature.

I think it's a shame that PKMNE got take down, honestly, I mean, we don't see authors of fan comics of comics getting sued!

Also, I don't remember his name but a guy made a library of plugins for MV to make a monster capture game, search the "Plugins in Development" forum I think, it's unfinished, but if you go learn JS you could eventually get all the fixing done I guess.

EDIT:

Found to the link to that library of plugins, it's called Beast Masters. https://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?threads/beast-masters.83796/

Also Kendra check your pm.
Thank you. I think I will take a look at this!
 

bgillisp

Global Moderators
Global Mod
Joined
Jul 2, 2014
Messages
13,596
Reaction score
14,322
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
Yeah, the idea for the Pokeman Essentials would have been ok, if it had not included ripped graphics from the games. That's where it ran into copywrite trouble, as it did illegally use the sprites and graphics from the game without permission.
 

Pixelent Games

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Sep 9, 2017
Messages
90
Reaction score
71
First Language
Eng
Primarily Uses
RMMV
You could create totally different characters, in the end people will know that your game (or any other game for that matter) is based on Pokemon, Zelda, Metroid, whatever, but that's ok!

AP
 

CleanWater

Independent Developer
Veteran
Joined
Apr 8, 2017
Messages
637
Reaction score
739
First Language
PT-BR
Primarily Uses
Other
As long you have your own world setting and the game is not a complete rip off from the original, there's no problem. :wink:
 
Joined
Oct 7, 2013
Messages
307
Reaction score
365
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Monster Crown is a good example of a Pokemon like game thats very much still doing its own thing. Theres nothing stopping you from making something like this, hell its even coming to the Switch so have at it!

 

KB

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
70
Reaction score
9
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMXP
Monster Crown is a good example of a Pokemon like game thats very much still doing its own thing. Theres nothing stopping you from making something like this, hell its even coming to the Switch so have at it!

That sounds great, but there's still the problem with plug-ins. Pokemon Essentials provided all of the scripts and stuff that I needed to make games like Pokemon. Without those scripts, RPG Maker XP doesn't seem nearly as impressive. Where can I find good open source scripts for turn-based battles and random battle encounters, for example? The developer of Pokemon Essentials has made it clear that PE can't be used for commercial purposes, and I don't want to stick to just making fan games.

I would actually like to incorporate MUGEN style battles to further differentiate my game from the source material, but again, codes. I don't know where to find them or how to write them.
 
Last edited:

LadyBaskerville

Hell-poodle
Veteran
Joined
Sep 12, 2016
Messages
645
Reaction score
527
First Language
German
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Both random encounters and turn-based battles are already part of the default RMXP engine, no need for scripts there :)

For other features you need that aren't part of the default engine (like the monster capture system) you can either try to recreate them with events or look for scripts that implement those particular features. I haven't used RMXP in ages and don't know any scripts to recommend, but a good place to start looking is the RGSS script section on this forum. Just make sure the scripts are compatible with the RPG Maker you're using - RMXP uses RGSS as its script language (not RGSS2, RGSS3 or Javascript).
 

KB

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
70
Reaction score
9
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMXP
Both random encounters and turn-based battles are already part of the default RMXP engine, no need for scripts there :)

For other features you need that aren't part of the default engine (like the monster capture system) you can either try to recreate them with events or look for scripts that implement those particular features. I haven't used RMXP in ages and don't know any scripts to recommend, but a good place to start looking is the RGSS script section on this forum. Just make sure the scripts are compatible with the RPG Maker you're using - RMXP uses RGSS as its script language (not RGSS2, RGSS3 or Javascript).
Yeah, I'm getting the impression that RMXP is an older program. Is there anything else you would recommend?
 

LadyBaskerville

Hell-poodle
Veteran
Joined
Sep 12, 2016
Messages
645
Reaction score
527
First Language
German
Primarily Uses
RMMV
In general, just familiarize yourself with the engine, try out a few things, see what you can create with the base features and whichever scripts you find that fit with your needs. Maybe even learn scripting yourself if you find it would be helpful and programming is something you are somewhat interested in.

Unless you're asking if a different RPG Maker engine then RMXP would be better to use? In that case there are a few threads in the Product Discussion subforum discussing that or similar questions iirc - maybe have a look there. Script/plugin support is certainly better on the newer makers (VX Ace and MV), and some of their database features are more powerful. RMXP (in my opinion) still has better mapping capabilities, though.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Latest Threads

Latest Profile Posts

HexMozart88 wrote on Citali's profile.
Kikuo!
The lack of bike trails and bungee jump areas in this city should be criminalized.
SF_Actor3_8 added!



A recent screenshot that I also shared on Reddit and the likes, links in my signature if you want to follow :)


I am starting to get a hang of this parallaxing mapping business. Still inexperienced, but at least I can be a lot more creative now :)

Forum statistics

Threads
107,416
Messages
1,029,537
Members
139,541
Latest member
Medeina
Top