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Katamori

Please explain again shortly: why I can't sell my ZDoom mods?

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Let's assume I wanna make a game based on the engine of ZDoom (and therefore, partially based on original Doom). Rumours said I can't monetize such games, but exactly why?

I heard something about licenses, what's the problem with them?

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There are 3 big licensing issues with the zdoom code:

FMODEX, the sound engine being used has hefty prices for commercial usage.

OPL, the synthesizer has similar issues iirc.

Build Engine code: the build engine has terrible licensing issue, and i'm not sure what the exact problems are but i've heard 1) ken silverman hates developers and 2) the build code is spattered ALL over the zdoom source. It'd be a nightmare to pick out.


This to my knowledge sums up the problems

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None of these are fully accurate; see here for precise details.

Most importantly, you don't need to bundle your mod with ZDoom itself. You're not selling ZDoom, after all.

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So one solution is to just distribute the mod's data without the engine. And another solution is to forgo some advanced Zdoom features and bundle an unencumbered engine, like Eternity.

Right?

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The licensing of ZDoom is pretty ambiguous to say the least, you would be at the mercy of multiple parties to being sued(though I might note, the chances of actually being sued for selling ZDoom are probably quite low)

You could avoid this by not distributing the engine and simply providing a download link to zdoom.org

Or you could use one of the many many available GPL ports(read: everything except ZDoom and derived ports), which explicitly allow for commercial distribution.

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If I read the license page correctly, another possibility would be to sell the game data and freely provide the engine, ZDoom, as a separate download. This could also be useful if you need to modify the engine at its source and ensure that the game has the custom executable that it needs.

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You could always just accept donations for your mod, and have the only available download link a scant few pixels directly above the download link.

You could even start referring to yourself as an "Indie Game Developer."

Aside from just selling the mod data and getting people to download ZDoom, you would have to have a way to get zdoom to recognize your "mod" as an iwad, unless you really wanted to have it only run with a commercial version of Doom (or FreeDoom.)

As for the game data in the wad/pk3 itself, you can't sell assets based on copyrighted assets without permission from the copyright owner, since they'll count as derivative works even if modified. This means no baron recolors, even if all the pixels are technically different (because they're different colors, stretched, etc), but doesn't prevent you from using a from scratch baron of hell that's based on the idea of a baron of hell but isn't traced over a baron of hell. Same with textures; you can't use anything that's a recolor or edit of another copyrighted work. This means that most community assets would not be available to you.

While you are automatically granted a copyright for "real" code and I assume the same holds for ACS and Decorate (and the other various "coding languages" in ZDoom like mapinfo, sbarinfo, etc.) I'm not 100% if copyrights work the same way for them.

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scroton said:

You could even start referring to yourself as an "Indie Game Developer."


Actually I do usually. Anyways, donation might be a good idea, but sadly people are usually not willing to pay for what they can get free especially if that's not piracy.

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Welcome to Doomworld. :)

 

It's generally a bad idea to bump threads from over three years ago. If you have a question, start a new thread. 

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3 minutes ago, rdwpa said:

Welcome to Doomworld. :)

 

It's generally a bad idea to bump threads from over three years ago. If you have a question, start a new thread. 

ok thx i did a quick look on the main page for the rules about dead posts. I didnt see anything (Im prob just blind and didnt see it right it front of me) but thank you for informing me. ^w^

 

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