While things like music, talent mapping, and voiceover are examples of some of the most obvious forms of licensing found in the gaming industry, there are lesser-known examples like game engines. A game engine is development software that is specifically used to create the multilayer facets of a video game. Every video game development studio has a game engine in its arsenal, whether it`s a 2D arcade like PACAI NAMCO Entertainment`s Pac-Man or a virtual or augmented reality game like Half-Life: Alyx or Niantic`s Pokémon Go. Game development studios will license game engines such as Unity Technologies` “Unity Engine” to help them with things like rendering, animation, in-game world-based physics, character models, and even sound. It`s fair to say that if Ubisoft had licensed a game engine other than the “Unity Engine,” Assassin`s Creed games would be radically different from what we know today. The parties must agree on a royalty for the licence granted. The type of licence fee must be specified. For example, royalties may be paid at a fixed percentage of total revenues over a period of time or as a certain percentage of the revenue generated from the sale of each licensed product. In addition, the method of payment, the currency of payment and the deadline for payment of royalties must be specified in the agreement. Licensing in the world of video games can be a 2-way street. Things created either completely original or by other means under license can be sublicensed to other gambling companies: the licensor must specify all the uses allowed by the license. The licensee`s right to sublicense the license granted must be described in this clause. Where the licensee has the right to sublicense, the details of that sub-licence, as well as the frequency with which the licensee may grant a sub-licence, should also be included in the agreement.
The video game industry is also experiencing a battle royale of disputes between different titans of the industry. In 2018, “PlayerUnknown`s Battlegrounds,” popularly known as PUBG, filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against its arch-rival, Epic Games. The indemnification clause of a video game license agreement should be formulated with the utmost importance. Licensee shall indemnify licensor for the use of its intellectual property and indicate that licensee will not infringe the intellectual property licensed to licensee. Copyright is the heart of the intellectual property involved in the development of a video game. Compared to other entertainment sectors, the video game industry is not harmonized with enough laws to protect intellectual property. Now let`s discuss some key clauses that make up a license agreement for video games: the licensor can also prevent the use of the license on certain platforms or devices. For example, some features of “FIFA 19” are different for different devices such as mobile phones, PCs and PlayStations. Apart from that, FIFA can only include a provision that prevents EA Sports from publishing the game on certain platforms such as Sony`s PSP or Microsoft`s Xbox. LAS VEGAS –(BUSINESS WIRE)–Hasbro, Inc. (NASDAQ: HAS) today announced that its global licensing program for the popular MY LITTLE PONY brand will reach all major categories that immerse girls in fun, imaginative, elegant and entertaining MY LITTLE PONY lifestyle experiences. Game publishers should consider whether they are able to handle the complexity of these different types of agreements from a variety of different ip and trademark owners.
With the introduction of new technologies and methods of monetizing content, licensing agreements and their subsequent royalty calculations become much more complex. The demand for accurate and transparent reporting to all stakeholders is increasing. Video games are distributed to end users through an end user license agreement. The sale and distribution of unauthorized copies of video games, as well as issues such as decompilation and modification of source code, remain a widespread problem in the industry. Video game licensing is an important part of the successful production, distribution and sale of video games. Copyright is an important first step in the licensing process. A copyright gives you ownership of your video game. As the legally recognized owner of the game, you can enter into license agreements to distribute and sell your work. Licenses must be executed and designed in accordance with various laws to ensure the protection of the developer`s rights and interests. Video game companies and independent developers must protect their intellectual property through copyright and licensing to prevent misuse of their product. The presentation clause specifies all the licenses that the licensor has acquired in connection with the video game.
In addition, the representation clause sets out all the rights of the licensee. Activision Blizzard has always used actor similarities and voiceover skills for its long-running and successful Call of Duty franchise. The above narrative is no exception and was inspired by one of their new installments of their zombie defense game Call of Duty: Black Ops 4. GameSpot has detailed this list of the biggest Hollywood names that appear and talk about video game characters. Granting intellectual property licenses for video games with a combination of content licenses and content licenses is a powerful mechanism for a game publisher to create a competitive advantage for its games and unlock new revenue streams. However, it is important to have a robust infrastructure to manage IP licenses and royalties to support, not hinder, this innovation. Therefore, it is important that there is a well-written video game license agreement for the release of video games. In addition, a video licensing agreement plays a crucial role in the production, advertising and marketing of video games.
A video game cannot be distributed efficiently by saving on the necessary licensing agreements. Similarly, the core of a video game, i.e. the gameplay, is usually not patentable. Industrial designs protect graphic surfaces, colors, lines, and shapes from the various attributes used in video games. Amid intense competition, the video industry also includes other forms of intellectual property such as trade secrets and confidential information. It prevents employees of a gambling company from revealing their secrets when migrating to a competitor`s company, thus ensuring their competitive advantage. Copyright protects the game`s characters, source codes, and the programming language in which the game is written. It protects all creative works such as art and music involved in video game gameplay. India`s Copyright Act 1957 does not specifically mention video games. Epic Games are the developers of Fortnite and the lawsuit was filed in Seoul, South Korea. PUBG claimed that Fortnite has copied its Battle Royale concept into its gameplay. Epic Games responded that the Concept of Battle Royale was not developed by PUBG Corporation.
Gone are the days when video games were a matter of youth. The video game industry has exploded in recent years, taking on pioneers of the entertainment industry such as the traditional film industry and the music industry. The gaming industry has attracted a lot of popularity and monetary value in the recent past. Popular titles like PUBG, Fortnite, and PES don`t need an introduction. Video games are a creation of the mind and fall under intellectual property laws. The dynamic force that drives this multi-billion dollar industry is intellectual property. A variety of intellectual property such as copyrights, trademarks, patents, designs and trade secrets are the cornerstone of the video game industry. Intellectual property is strongly involved in the contractual relationships between different companies, from the creation phase to the distribution phase of a video game.
They must also ensure that certain restrictions are imposed on the end users of their creation in order to maintain the marketing and commercialization of the video game. Meanwhile, there are entities such as sports and media organizations whose licenses are required. In the representation clause, the Licensor represents and specifies all the rights it has. For example, Electronic Arts, commonly known as EA Sports, receives licenses from FIFA for the use of the FIFA brand and other related trademarks. Therefore, EA Sports may use FIFA`s name and trademarks in its game. However, Article 2 (ffc) of the Copyright Act covers computer code and languages that fall within the jurisdiction of copyright. The trademark protects the names and logos of the associated games. In general, few brands are associated with each game. The brand helps to communicate the identity of the gaming company with the public. For example, every game developed by EA Sports has its brand and logo written on it. The parties must also agree on the conditions under which licensor may terminate the Agreement.
In such cases, provisions for the processing of unsold copies of the Products/Games must be specifically provided for in order to avoid any uncertainty. Licensor may also add a provision that gives Licensor the right to terminate the Agreement if Licensee has not been able to bring the Licensed Product/Game to market within the specified time frames. In almost all video games, there is usually some level of license that can be found. Similar to film production, many things go into creating a video game. There are writers, producers, actors, composers, a variety of developers and even directors; and anyone could create something that could eventually be allowed. .