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Gal Guardians: Demon Purge
1
Originally, the game was going to be titled "Grim Guardians: Demon Purge", but had to have its name changed due to disputes regarding the trademarked term "Grimguard".
Inverse Ninjas vs. The Public Domain
2
According to the game's official Twitter account, the developers claimed that the only characters they would not add to the game if they became, or were discovered to secretly be, public domain were Calvin and Hobbes from the comic strip of the same name. While the characters are still copyrighted thereby ruling them out, the reasoning for refusing to consider them was out of respect for creator Bill Watterson and his refusal to license the comics for merchandise despite their popularity, feeling that it would go against the strip's ideals and ruin its authenticity.
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month April 27, 2024
Wild Woody
subdirectory_arrow_right Shady Lewd Kart (Game)
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4
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month April 2, 2024
Wild Woody DLC Trailer and Relevant Comment:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5rt4euYklQ&;lc=UgyOefebHRpsBZIVxgp4AaABAg.A1glMtsdAWZA1gm16bux7r

DLC Page:
https://store.steampowered.com/app/2900500/Shady_Lewd_Kart__Wild_Woody_Character_Pack/

Developer tweet denying April Fools association:
https://twitter.com/datshadycorner/status/1774788107986162017
BFDIA 5b
subdirectory_arrow_right Battle for Dream Island (Collection)
1
BFDIA 5b marks the second time in the Battle for Dream Island series where a copyrighted character is used in a way beyond simply being a recommended character (fan characters that are submitted to the production team by fans of the series to potentially appear in official content). Specifically, the 31st level in the game "Encounter" features Lego Brick, who first appeared as a recommended character in the Battle for Dream Island episode "Vomitaco" and is a reference to the LEGO toy brand. The first instance was in the episode "Reveal Novum", where Dora (a stick figure based on the titular character from the animated series "Dora the Explorer" who also first appeared in the episode "Vomitaco") was one of the recommended characters who had a chance to join the competition, but failed due to only having nine votes: she would, however, compete in the show's second season "Battle for Dream Island Again". Additionally, a copyrighted character appearing in a major role would not happen again until years after BFDIA 5b's release, with the release of the spinoff series "BFDI Mini Replicas". In that series, one of the contestants is Ender Rocky, a variant of the main series contestant Rocky who first appeared as a recommended character in the season one finale "Return of the Hang Glider" and is based on the Endermen from Minecraft.
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month March 29, 2024
BFDIA 5b Level 31:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dAXojdBrAl4

Battle for Dream Island - "Vomitaco" (first appearance of Dora and Lego Brick):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pf9FHBM0SLQ

Battle for Dream Island - "Reveal Novum" (first major appearance of Dora):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4K1xKHwp0E

Battle for Dream Island - "Return of the Hang Glider" (first appearance of Ender Rocky):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ye_HKD_C5o0

BFDI Mini Replicas - "Cross the Gorge" (first major appearance of Ender Rocky):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRylw-JJqlo
Pokémon FireRed Version
subdirectory_arrow_right Pokémon LeafGreen Version (Game)
3
Attachment Shortly after the game's release, a screenshot started circulating online depicting the Seagallop ferryman in Vermilion City telling the player: "By the way: if you like this game, buy it or die." Those who posted the screenshot claimed that it was a hidden message which was only triggered if the game detected that it was running a pirated copy. This claim appeared to be further corroborated by people claiming that they had encountered the message themselves when playing the game with unofficial Game Boy Advance emulators or when hacking legitimate cartridges with cheat devices, and attracted further popularity after being disseminated by various gaming YouTubers.

However, while the screenshot was not photoshopped, the claim that it was an anti-piracy measure was not true. Rather, the text was added into the game's code by an anonymous individual who distributed a ROM of it online; the claim that it was an anti-piracy feature was most likely used by the individual to circumvent ROM distribution sites' restrictions on modified games. This explains why anecdotal reports of encountering the text were so much higher than what would be expected from a complete hoax, as well as why the text is absent when examining an unaltered ROM of the game in a hex editor.
person VinchVolt calendar_month March 21, 2024
DidYouKnowGaming video which mentions the rumor (before it was debunked):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4HsxuGMWnXM

YouTube video by Tech Rules debunking the rumor:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0XjHZ-V4ooA&;t=604s
DanceDanceRevolution
1
In August 2015, location tests for DanceDanceRevolution (2014) were held in North America. This marked both the first time the series was location tested in North America since Dance Dance Revolution X2 and the first time eAMUSEMENT was officially supported in the region. The English translation was a more completed version of the one present in the Korean version. Furthermore, 47 songs were removed from this version due to copyright restrictions, mostly being licensed songs from previous entries and all the "U.M.UXBEMANI" songs.

In the end, DanceDanceRevolution (2014) was not released in North America, with the following game Dance Dance Revolution A becoming the first Arcade release in North America since Dance Dance Revolution X2.
person aa1205 calendar_month March 8, 2024
Nicktoons MLB
1
Attachment Nicktoons MLB's loading screens include cameos from a variety of Nicktoons characters, including those from cartoons not featured on the playable roster. One of these characters is George Liquor from The Ren & Stimpy Show, a character that series creator John Kricfalusi retained the rights to after being fired from the series, and would use in a variety of cartoons up until his blacklisting from the animation industry in 2019. Since Kricfalusi is not credited in the game's copyright screen (though he is still listed in the special thanks credits alongside all other show creators), it seems that Liquor was included by mistake.
person Rocko & Heffer calendar_month February 13, 2024
Set of loading screen screenshots:
https://twitter.com/RyanRibbity/status/1163286123470213121

Copyright screen (game credits at the end of this video):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwgqS3gMqJA?t=17
Lemmings
subdirectory_arrow_right Scooby-Doo (Franchise)
1
Attachment Lemmings was originally going to use a soundtrack of plagarised copyrighted music, something that was common in microcomputer games the decade prior, including pop songs and television theme songs. In the final game, these were swapped for public domain songs, though a sample of Don Messick as Scooby-Doo used for a cover of the Scooby-Doo & Scrappy-Doo theme song would be retained in the How Much is that Doggie in the Window? music track. The Mission: Impossible theme seems to have been chosen in reference to a fad on British television at the time of showing squirrels performing stunts to the song.
Palworld
1
Following the Steam Early Access release of Palworld on January 18, the developers faced accusations of copying Pokémon models for the designs of the game's Pals. The allegations were made by a Twitter user named byofrog, who claimed that some of Palworld's creature models were directly copied and edited from 3D models ripped from Pokémon games. These allegations were criticized for scaling the Pokémon and Palworld models to be comparable in size, leading to claims that edited models were not reliable or accurate evidence. byofrog claimed in response that because the models from each game loaded into modeling software at different sizes, scaling them appropriately were the only necessary edits made to compare them, and that the models' meshes, proportions, and other fundamental features were not edited.

Takuro Mizobe, the CEO of Palworld developer Pocket Pair, denied the allegations, calling them "slanderous", and also stated that Pocket Pair has "no intention of infringing upon the intellectual property of other companies". On January 25, The Pokémon Company released an official statement confirming they were aware of a flood of inquiries about "another company’s game released in January 2024", and that they were currently investigating them.
person ProtoSnake calendar_month January 25, 2024
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles
2
Due to long-standing copyright issues regarding the character Sherlock Holmes brought about by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's estate (which had previously delayed the games' release), the international release of The Great Ace Attorney games changed his name to "Herlock Sholmes". According to series creator Shu Takumi, this was done as an allusion to "Arsène Lupin versus Herlock Sholmes", a story collection by Maurice Leblanc.

Following the announcement of the name "Herlock Sholmes", various memes came about surrounding the character and the circumstances for the renaming in regards to copyright law. This got to the point where major news outlets began covering it, with some noting that the goofy-sounding name "fit with the comedic and sometimes irreverent tone of the Ace Attorney series, even if it does leave a few things lost in translation."
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month January 24, 2024
Diddy Kong Racing
2
Attachment The racer Krunch wasn't originally designed as a Kremling. According to former Rare artist Kevin Bayliss (in a now defunct Facebook page for Rare alumni), the character predated the conversion from Pro-Am 64 to Diddy Kong Racing and was originally a generic crocodile character, brought in to introduce a "bad guy" into the game's roster.

When it was decided to incorporate Diddy Kong into the game and change the title to Diddy Kong Racing, it was also decided to turn the crocodile character into a Kremling named Krunch, perhaps to better tie it into the new Donkey Kong-infused lore. The decision to turn Krunch into a Kremling, a Nintendo-owned species, also automatically gave Nintendo the rights to the character as well, even retaining said rights after the Microsoft buyout in 2002, whereas all the other Diddy Kong Racing racers outside of obviously Diddy are now owned by Microsoft.
person Dinoman96 calendar_month January 19, 2024
Source Gaming article on Krunch's history:
https://sourcegaming.info/2017/11/15/new-content-approaching-krunch/

DKVine article on Diddy Kong Racing's copyrights:
https://dkvine.com/?p=news_body&;post=6391

Rare scribes confirming that Krunch is still owned by Nintendo:
http://web.archive.org/web/20070628215552/http://rareware.com/extras/scribes/25jun07/index.html
Disaster Report 4: Summer Memories
subdirectory_arrow_right Steambot Chronicles (Game), Poncotsu Roman Daikatsugeki Bumpy Trot 2 (Game), Granzella (Company), Irem Software Engineering Co. (Company), Zettai Zetsumei Toshi (Collection)
1
In the aftermath of the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, Irem Software Engineering was forced to cancel the majority of its video game projects, most notably Disaster Report 4: Summer Memories and a sequel to Steambot Chronicles titled "Poncotsu Roman Daikatsugeki Bumpy Trot 2". They then refocused their resources into the slot-machine and pachinko industry, which they were initially a part of prior to becoming a video game company. This led numerous Irem designers (including producer Kazuma Kujo) to form a new company called Granzella to continue creating video games. Notably, they acquired the IP rights to the Disaster Report series and revived Disaster Report 4. Additionally, while no longer involved in the development or release of new games, Irem is still involved in the games industry via licensing their IPs to other companies.
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month January 6, 2024
Star Fox: Assault
subdirectory_arrow_right Assault (Game)
3
The subtitle of Star Fox: Assault was suggested by Nintendo of America. Initially, there were legal concerns as Namco had already trademarked the name "Assault" for their 1988 arcade game of the same name. Fortunately for Nintendo, the trademark was only valid within Japan, and Namco, who were already the developers for Star Fox: Assault, had granted them permission to use the title.
Inverse Ninjas vs. The Public Domain
subdirectory_arrow_right Mickey Mouse (Franchise)
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3
person Rocko & Heffer calendar_month January 1, 2024
Metal Gear Solid
subdirectory_arrow_right One (Game), Gran Turismo 2 (Game), Tekken 3 (Game), Xbox (Platform), Dreamcast (Platform), PlayStation (Platform), PC (Microsoft Windows) (Platform), Sony Interactive Entertainment (Company)
2
Attachment Bleem! was a PlayStation emulator released for Microsoft Windows 98 and the Sega Dreamcast. Unlike the vast majority of emulators before and since, it was released as a paid product on store shelves. Bleem!, although very impressive for the time and capable of running on low-end PCs, had many compatability issues, with the only game that ran perfectly on Windows Bleem! being the US version of One, while the only games that could be run at all on Dreamcast were Tekken 3, Metal Gear Solid, and Gran Turismo 2, all with specialised emulators released on their own "Bleemcast" discs.

Sony would sue Bleem! twice over alleged copyright infringement, and despite all odds, Sony lost due to Bleem!'s use of screenshots in promo material and the PS1 BIOS being protected by fair use. However, a mix of legal fees and Sony threatening retailers stocking Bleem! products with subpoenas would force Bleem! off of shelves anyway, and its website would be replaced with an image of Sonic the Hedgehog mourning at a grave with the Bleem! logo carved on it. Bleem! would countersue Sony for anti-competitive activity.

The popularity of Bleem! would lead both Sega and Microsoft to attempt to work with Bleem! officially to make PS1 games run on Dreamcast and Xbox, though these plans fell through due to Sega being afraid of Sony's litigation, while the developers of Bleem! simply felt Microsoft wasn't paying high enough for the license for Bleem! (something they had come to regret in the years since).
person Rocko & Heffer calendar_month December 28, 2023
Portal 2
subdirectory_arrow_right The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Game), Pokémon Uranium (Game), AM2R: Return of Samus (Game), Pokémon (Franchise)
1
From 2014 to 2016, The Game Awards featured a "Best Fan Creation" category. The 2014 winner was "Twitch Plays Pokémon" (a social experiment featuring a crowdsourced attempt to play through various Pokémon games), and the 2015 winner was "Portal Stories: Mel" (a modification of Portal 2). During 2016, however, two of the nominees for the category were removed prior to the show's airing: AM2R (an unofficial remake of Metroid II: Return of Samus) and Pokémon Uranium (a fan-made video game based on the Pokémon series). During a stream prior to the event, host Geoff Keighley explained that this was due to the fangames not being legally cleared by Nintendo, who owned the rights to the games they were based on. Additionally, "Best Fan Creation" would end up being the only category to not have its winner (Enderal: The Shards of Order, a conversion mod for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim) announced during the ceremony itself.
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month December 23, 2023
Maimai DX Universe
1
The background used for the song "竹" (Take, pronounced "Ta-ke"), is changed from the original video created for the song. Alongside being adjusted for Maimai's circular screen, some scenes were altered in order to remove references to copyrighted material. For instance:

• At one point, the girl in the video is seen wielding a bamboo gun shooting black ink and modified to resemble the Bamboozler weapon from the Splatoon series. The added details were removed and the ink changed to water.

• The girl has a piece of bamboo tied around her mouth, and shows off super strength against a bamboo pole, alluding to Nezuko Kamado from popular manga and anime "Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba". This is instead replaced with a joke about a piece of bamboo being used to cook rice.
2
In the aftermath of Ken Penders' lawsuit against Archie Comics that led to their Sonic the Hedgehog comics getting rebooted, a common misconception among fans is that one of the characters he acquired the rights to as a result was Fiona Fox. This is not actually true: while Penders did help "recreate" the character, the initial character (an Auto-Automaton dubbed "Auto-Fiona"), was created by another former writer, Michael Gallagher. While it's uncertain if that he means he owns the character, Penders has stated that he did not want to claim a character that he did not create.
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month December 3, 2023
Sonic the Hedgehog Issue #28 where Michael Gallagher created the character:
https://readcomiconline.li/Comic/Sonic-The-Hedgehog/Issue-28?id=20261

Knuckles the Echidna Issue #26 where Ken Penders redesigned the character:
https://readcomiconline.li/Comic/Knuckles-the-Echidna/Issue-26?id=50225

Ken Penders tweet:
https://twitter.com/KenPenders/status/428688547114004481
Millipede
subdirectory_arrow_right Balloon Fight (Game), Stargate (Game), Joust (Game)
2
Attachment The Nintendo Entertainment System versions of Defender II, Joust, and Millipede were all conceived as part of a failed deal between Nintendo and Atari to distribute the Famicom internationally. Development was outsourced to HAL Laboratory, who decided to publish the games themselves in 1987 after Nintendo took international distribution of the console into their own hands two years prior. One additional title was put together as part of the Atari deal, but it was never released, with none of the parties involved revealing what it was.

Because of the circumstances behind their conception, the Japanese versions of these three games all feature title screens reminiscent of Famicom launch titles, with the copyright information uniformly reading "COPYRIGHT 1983 ATARI". When Nintendo of America exported the games to North America in 1988, the title screens were made more elaborate and the copyright info was updated. The ways of accessing the game's modes are also changed in the North American release; instead of having them all available on the title screen, the player must press Start in Defender II and Millipede to bring up a menu (itself displaying additional copyright information). In Joust, pressing Start skips the menu and automatically begins Game A; the player must press Select in order to access the menu.

The development of Joust as a launch title for an Atari-distributed system would have a prominent knock-on effect on HAL and Nintendo's future. The game was one of the first titles to be programmed by Satoru Iwata, who would go on to become a vital asset to HAL thanks to his coding skills before becoming Nintendo's president in 2002, and his experiences developing Joust would help him program Balloon Fight.
person VinchVolt calendar_month November 28, 2023
The Cutting Room Floor articles:
https://tcrf.net/Defender_II_(NES)
https://tcrf.net/Joust_(NES)#Regional_Differences
https://tcrf.net/Millipede_(NES,_HAL_Laboratory)
Pengo
1
Attachment The first two versions of Pengo use "Popcorn" by Gershon Kingsley as the background music, in the third and fourth, they were swapped for an original tune.
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