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It was only recently that we picked up the news of both GTA III and Vice City getting a fully working reverse engineered game engine, along with plenty of upgrades. Sadly, and expectedly, it got nuked from orbit.

Even though it required you to own the game assets, so you would have needed to purchase a copy of either to use the re3 and reVC game reimplementations that wasn't enough to satisfy Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc., the parent company of Rockstar Games. They've now given it the DMCA treatment, with the main repository and all known forks at the time to be taken offline on GitHub.

Sad but fully expected. Big publishers really don't like these sorts of projects, even though they can help revive their older games and perhaps even get them more sales. Copyright and Intellectual Property Rights are a legal minefield at the best of times, so the only way we may get this treatment in future is a fully clean-room reimplementation more like OpenMW for Morrowind or OpenRA for classic Westwood RTS games.

Perhaps now someone can pick up OpenRW again.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Game Engine, Misc
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46 comments
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mirv 2 days ago
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Quoting: crt0mega
Quoting: mirvAnd of course the great irony being that the project will be likely far more widely distributed now that it's made headlines and everyone will be looking for it.
Streisand effect ftw :D

Quoting: mirvCheers - to be absolutely clear I have no moral objections and really dislike the dmca slapdown to begin with, it's just a risk thing that I've seen go sour before.
While I don't think that they can do much harm with their DMCA in the UK, I'd also be ... cautious.

There are sort of equivalent laws in the UK, although what they'll look like 6 months from now who knows!
pcavalcanti a day ago
How can those companies be so dumb? I've never played those games but as soon as I read the article I went to steam to see the price of the games and was seriously considering buying one of them. No money from me now.
crt0mega a day ago
Quoting: mirvThere are sort of equivalent laws in the UK, although what they'll look like 6 months from now who knows!
Good to know, thanks!
Avehicle7887 a day ago
Not a legal expert but whether it's a clean room reverse engineer or not, the point remains that these people brought the game to native platforms, at the expense of their own time and 0 costs. They kept it open source and clearly stated you need to own the game to play, it's not like they were including the assets too. If I was Rockstar/Take Two, I'd give these people my blessing and let them do their thing as long as it's not harming anyone.

I considered buying these games solely thanks to this project, looks like I'll save my money from the greedy bullies.


Last edited by Avehicle7887 on 23 February 2021 at 7:19 pm UTC
Mordrag a day ago
Really sad to see...
Out of curiosity, if now someone would write specifications based on that code, and another one would write another engine reimplementation based on that specifications, would be it legal ?
slaapliedje a day ago
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Quoting: MordragReally sad to see...
Out of curiosity, if now someone would write specifications based on that code, and another one would write another engine reimplementation based on that specifications, would be it legal ?
Depends on how many lawyers get involved. The thing is, clean lab reverse engineering is perfectly legal. From my understanding of it, if it wasn't the PC as it is today would not exist, as IBM's architecture was open, but their BIOS was not, and it was reverse engineered.
In this day and age though, all that needs to be done is for a company to cry foul (claim DMCA) and the project goes away.
The process that is illegal is if they had someone from tge original project working with them, then it would not be considered 'clean'.
(Not a lawyer, juat remembered it from reading things years ago when people were doing similar things with other games.)
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