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Taking competitors' titles and reskinning them is a time-honored tradition in video game development, and it's seen a bit of a renaissance on the iPhone. It's just a little surprising when the guilty party is as big as Capcom - the publisher's new game, MaXplosion, is a direct 'Splosion Man clone.
Above: Taking inspiration is normal - it's how the medium grows - but this seems a bit much...
Twisted Pixel, the creators of 'Splosion Man, are none too pleased by Capcom's mimicry. CEO Michael Wilford told Joystiq, “I think the similarities are pretty nauseating.”
He also said that they would not seek legal action against Capcom because Twisted Pixel is too small... not that Twisted Pixel would necessarily have a case if it wanted to sue - as much of an obvious ripoff as MaXplosion is, it's unlikely that the similarities constitute use of Twisted Pixel IP. If MaXplosion were an unlawful infringement on Twisted Pixel's intellectual property, Activision and EA would have sued Gameloft out of business for similar copycatting years ago.
“...we owe them [Capcom] one for inventing Mega Man, so we'll let them slide. I just hope they're not counting on the fact that indies can't fight back," continued Wilford, adding later, "We just need to keep our heads down making the next thing so that Capcom has something to steal next year.” At least he has a sense of humor about it.
Wilford also revealed via Twitter that Twisted Pixel had initially pitched 'Splosion Man to Capcom, and Capcom passed on it. OK, so maybe Twisted Pixel does have the beginnings of a case. Speaking of Twitter, how does the gaming community feel about the whole thing?
Mostly like that.
Jan 13, 2011
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