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PUBG and Fortnite's argument raises the question: Can you own a genre?

PUBG and Fortnite's argument raises the question: Can you own a genre?
From N4G - September 26, 2017
rainslacker2d ago (Edited 2d ago )

Epic's business relationship does not preclude Epic from making their own games using whatever genre, or with whatever knowledge of tech they can create. Even if they create the tools to make their game better, and release their game first, they are not obligated to release those tools first to any developer.

Epic has a long history of not witholding tech they create from their engine, and often whatever they create for their own games is made available to developers before they release their game. Obviously, they will be ahead of the curve since they implemented it in a game before release on their engine, but that's just the nature of the development process.

Epic has never been accused of witholding tech to try to gain an unfair competative advantage. They have absolutely no need to do so as they make most of their money from their game engine, and their games get enough attention and sales to not try and pull down others.

With this whole legal thing, Bluehole has nothing to stand on unless Epic actually did something of that nature, and even then, they'd be sh*t out of luck because Epic's own TOS on the use of Unreal Engine does not in any way gaurantee that Epic wo not make something similar to what one of their licensee's may be working on. Such a term would be completely impractical for Epic, and they would never be able to release a game, because at any given time, there is every kind of genre and concept being made on Unreal Engine.

I think you may misunderstand the business relationship that Epic actually has with developers. That relationship is simply they provide the engine and tools and support for developers to make their games. They have no other obligation beyond that unless it's explicitly written out in a contract that goes beyond the standard boilerplate TOS.

If Bluehole made some technology that epic was using without permission to create their own Battle Royale mode, that'd be one thing, but that's not the case here. As it stand, the people at Bluehole used plenty of tech provided by Epic, and they paid to use the engine, and they have no protection against competition from others, or Epic itself. That is not Epic's responsibility, and if the dev thinks they are special snowflakes that deserve more consideration, then they are deluded. Epic treats all their licensee's the same. They make their own games at the same time. No one tried to complain that Epic made Gears of War, and somehow might make take which would give them an unfair advantage for other TPS or cover shooters. It's a silly notion, and completely irrational.

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