RPGWatch Forums - View Single Post - Ultima IV - Of DMCA Takedowns and Reboots
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March 30th, 2011, 11:33
Originally Posted by skavenhorde View Post
So they need to protect their IP from the horrible fans.

It's just odd they went after this flash version. It's not making any money and even though it changes a few things the majority of it is exactly like the original.

Even with that said he doesn't own the IP so it's their right to take it down. It's just odd they went after that guy when there are so many fan made mods and fan made games in the Ultima universe.
I think the issue about the Flash based U4 is that in the end it is basically a 1:1 remake still using assets (and in all likelyhood data files) from the original game – so from a legal standpoint this is problematic.

Which is why they don't go against stuff like Exult or xU4, because while they use the original game assets – they require the player to own a copy of the game to use the engine, just like all engine recreations. So they don’t distribute anything belonging to IP Holders. Ditto for game modifications like Forgotten Worlds (You still need Ultima IX for this) or remakes like Lazarus and U6P (they're different games altogether).

But for what is basically a port, I can see the issue. When the game was mistakingly and widely believed to be Freeware it is understandable for such a project to exist… but since it is not, it becomes an issue. Perhaps some agreement could be reached down the road with EA, but at this point I understand why the game had to be taken down.

Also someone mentioned the possiiblity earlier in the thread they might also be ramping up for some form of re-release of the original games through GoG or something (there were rumors that some people at Mythic really want to do this as DosBOX packages) which would explain while they'd want to limit the free availabity of Ultima IV (through it should be noted it is still legally available through a couple of site yet).

Without a formal permission it was just not worth going for it, and this news bit just confirms to me that it was the right decision!
Actually considering both Lazarus and U6P were released, got a lot of attention and never got any troubles with EA - I think it's pretty obvious on the other end that "A Legend is Reborn" could have been released without risking anything from EA. Though I'd grant it couldn't have been known at the time.

Last edited by Sergorn; March 30th, 2011 at 12:07.
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