1. Meteor
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    Meteor Active Member

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    Based on a game

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Meteor, Jul 24, 2016.

    Hello everyone and thanks for taking the time to read this post.

    I just have a fast question I'm not able to answer for one of my friends, and one I'm having trouble finding the answer for on my own. I'm pretty sure its a copyright issue. At any rate(and I've considered this but, steered clear for seemingly obvious reasons)she wants to base her book off of a video game. A rather successful one called the Last of Us. I warned her off of the idea simply because better safe than sorry, something I deduced for myself years ago. She wants to base it around different characters, separate story line etc. just in the same world. Now correct me if I'm wrong but, even if she didn't name or connect the book directly with the Last of Us couldn't(and wouldn't)good ol'Naughty D pull copyright? I've seen stuff like this done before I guess but, it still seems legally unsafe.

    At any rate thank you guys for your time and I look forward to any answers.
     
  2. BWriter
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    BWriter Member

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    The Last of Us is an awsome game. Probably the most I have connected with computer game characters. Of course if you used the same ideas as the game they could go after you. The story of Sky going after No Mans Sky is an example of how crazy copyright law can get but it wouldn't take to much tweaking to get around I think. Change it to a little boy and older woman for example and you've got yourself a completly different story. This is just my opinion though, I'm no lawyer.
     
  3. Johncrawfordz
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    Johncrawfordz Member

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    Well, copyright is a tricky thing. However, such kind of stories are in the market and plausible to be done. Changing the setting and history sufficiently enough would throw copyright off track in my opinion (Best to consult legal or other writers before deciding). This would in fact be a brand new story but with references (that nobody but us would know hehe). Too little changes though and things won't add up so caution is warranted.

    Hope this helps
    Regards
    John Crawford
     
  4. Meteor
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    Meteor Active Member

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    Thanks for the responses guys, I'll pass that off soon.

    I agree its one of the games where I felt extremely connected to the characters and story. Naughty D. has always seemed to have had a knack for good stories. At any rate the whole idea behind the story idea is that she wants to base it around a group of young adults in the Midwest USA about two years after Joel and Ellie have their adventure. Two of said characters are being chased by some hunters. Really hasn't let me in on much else to be honest. The other thing I cautioned against was names, like calling things Clickers, Hunters, Bloaters etc. I think it'd be OK to write but, I still think publishing it would be super iffy.
     
  5. halisme
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    halisme Contributing Member Contributor

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    Use it as inspiration, don't copy the characters and try to avoid using dialogue used in the game.
     
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  6. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    There's fanfiction for video games, and that's fine as long as you don't try to publish/make money from it. (Well, it's mostly fine... fanfiction is a bit of a grey area, I guess).

    But if there's any way to trace the finished work to the game, she'll have trouble getting it traditionally published, and could have trouble with the game company if she self-publishes and has any level of success.

    (Don't be confused by the WoW books or anything similar - those are produced with the agreement of the game company. An unconnected person can't just start publishing WoW fiction without trouble).
     
  7. Meteor
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    Meteor Active Member

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    Yeah that's what I figured. I'll just reiterate that its not a very good idea unless by some miraculous stroke of luck she can get Naughty D. to either let her publish or enter into an agreement(and I do me miraculous).
     
  8. Vagrant Tale
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    Vagrant Tale Active Member

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    There's nothing wrong with using any setting as an inspiration. If they are serious about wanting to publish it, then all they really need to do is swap out names and places, be careful around certain unique setting elements (if there is any, I've never played that game unfortunately).

    The key is that they need to keep an open mind about expanding, because at the end of the day, they are free to do so. I once did this with another fantasy game, and wrote an almost 300 page long fanfiction. I loved my plot and characters so much that I just swapped everything out for original ideas, then changed it into a sci-fi setting, then combined it with the sci-fi story I was writing on the side, then used both of them to expand that setting, and at the end of the day the original story that I wrote was of a way higher caliber than the fanfiction it started out as.
     
  9. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    The Girl With All the Gifts is basically The Last of Us at its core. So now she will appear to be copying from both.
     
  10. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    No. Ideas aren't protected by copyright. The Sky case was trademark, which wouldn't apply here.
     

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