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Posts posted by zircon

  1. I think an N64 or PS1 *style* expansion (maybe SAC 2?) would be cool, much like how we approached SNES. Licensing is also more of a possibility given that the publishers involved in that era are more likely to be around. I get what you're talking about - sounds that are real-ish but still fake... kind of. It's charming!

    But in terms of immediate plans, retro PC systems are next in line :)

  2. Yes, feedback is extremely appreciated! That's the #1 reason I'm posting these builds. It's still very early on but I nonetheless want the game to be polished and bug-free.


    Why doesn't a weapon break when its durability hits 0? It just stays in your hand with no general change, maybe the damage goes down? not sure... either way; should be an alert or something to notify for a broken weapon.

    This is a bug, I must have caused it in a recent build. What's supposed to happen is that the weapon breaks, is destroyed, and a message appears saying its destroyed. It should be totally removed from your hotbar, equipment, inventory etc :P


    Is it possible to aim/direct abilities with just the keyboard? seems like a mouse is required.

    Oh you absolutely can, just use the arrow keys / numpad keys. The game can be played entirely with keys - that's how I play it. 


     On windowed mode with smaller resolutions, sometimes the ability text and 'combat log' intersect - they are both white text with no backshadow, so they overlap and become nearly impossible to read.

    The UI scaling needs some work - this is an area I'm the least experienced with, so this is noted and it will be fixed. 


     Would like to see 'i' open the equipment screen, as a PC nerd, I'm used to pressing it for inventory.

    Agreed, and also I know the equipment/inventory screen needs work. Almost all the UI is programmer placeholder, and I'm not an artist...


    I feel the skill screen is pretty confusing. It took me awhile to get my bearings. Like, when i purchase a skill, why is there a small x next to it on 'learned skills' ? Also, can I ever only gain 8 skills? Also, when I go to learn new skills, I see the ones i've already learned - why? Would i waste JP if i learned these skills that I already have?

    Sorry again this is just my shitty placeholder UI which means it's not nearly as informative as it should be. It's also not actually a complicated system, but the in-game help / tutorial is also not as good as it should be. Let me explain:

    • Every job comes with 4 core abilities.
    • To take an ability to another job, you have to spend JP. Once you do this you "Master" the ability, and you'll have it even if you switch jobs.
    • So for example if you start as Sword Dancer and master Flame Serpent, then switch to Brigand, you will take Flame Serpent with you. If you don't master it, you'll lose that ability when you switch jobs. 
    • Right now you can master any number of abilities.

    You should be able to scroll the skill list with the arrow keys. If that's not working then... oops!


     Why do I randomly get an extra turn?

    The game uses a Charge Time system. When you hit 100 charge you get a turn. But you can also gain more than 100 CT per turn - various effects and abilities can influence this. Thus when you accumulate 200 CT you will take a turn, and then another turn. Your character sheet (C) shows your current CT and CT gain.


     I've had some really odd interactions with 'Hold the moon' sometimes enemies can attack me from multiple tiles away, as if i haven't really moved after using the ability.

    This is probably a bug... If it happens again and you stop playing, can you send me your game log? On Windows I believe it's in users/____/AppData/LocalLow/Impact Gameworks, something like player.log or similar. 

  3. To predict the capabilities of the Switch it may be worth looking at the iPad Pro, which AFAIK is the most powerful ARM-based tablet. The Pro has a faster CPU than the PS4 or Xbox One but an inferior GPU. It's also $800.


    Now, the iPad Pro has a display of 3.1million pixels and a 9.7in screen. The Switch will be smaller and cap at 720p, so it need only display about 25% of the pixels. The display will doubtless not be of the same quality as an iPad Pro in other ways (i.e. will be cheaper.)

    The Switch would also not need some of the hardware of the Pro. No high-end camera, fingerprint sensor, etc.

    If the GPU of the Switch is something like a GTX 1050 in terms of performance - that would be the low-end of Nvidia's Pascal architecture - it would be at least on par with the PS4/Xbox One... And a 1050 has relatively low power draw and pricing...

    I'm cautiously optimistic!

  4. Tangledeep is now on Kickstarter! 

    We're raising money for extra animation polish like walking & attacking animations, plus special guest composers like Hiroki Kikuta (Secret of Mana / Seiken Densetsu 3) who is already onboard!!! If you want to get access to pre-release builds after April, get the digital soundtrack, Steam key, or immortalize yourself in the game, check out the campaign!


    It's a 16-bit, FF/Square-inspired dungeon crawler. A true roguelike that takes inspiration from classic western games and JRPGs alike. Tactical turn-based combat, procedural generation, deep customization, lots and lots of loot, and monsters to battle. I've been working on this for over a year now and I'm about 40% done - your feedback is appreciated! The game is playable on Mac and PC right now, but eventually will be on Linux and possibly consoles/mobile too.

    I'm doing all the code & design for the game (along with music, of course) while @OA is doing beautiful UI, environments and tiles, and a couple other artists doing characters, battle FX, and items. We're hoping to release the game by the end of the year!

    As of now, though the game is definitely shaping up, it's still pre-alpha with some placeholder art and lots of content yet to be made (and balancing to be done).

    Tangledeep Discord: https://discord.gg/4q5kjUm

    Bug Tracker: http://git.impactsoundworks.com:617/isworks-andrew/tangledeep/issues

    Twitter Devhttp://twitter.com/tangledeepgame

    Full Dev / Change Loghttps://forums.tigsource.com/index.php?topic=57600.0

    WIN: http://tangledeep.com/builds/Tangledeep-LatestWinBuild.rar

    Today we have a wide spread of new art, polish, bug fixes, balance tweaks, and content. The biggest game experience changes are that you now start in the town, and you now have a permanent 'town portal' item that can be used anytime to return to town. You can then take a portal back to where you were. We're also experimenting with walking sprites - starting with the Hunter - which look pretty amazing, in my opinion! 

    The current cast of characters, monsters and NPCs. Some new art + palette improvements here!

    A snapshot of the world as it looks now. Improved grass, trees, better lighting, better fog of war.

    Walking animation!?

  5. 1. Whether or not you use VGM samples, a publisher could still send a takedown or flag the video. The use of a few samples here and there would not make a difference one way or the other. As for exactly what we would do, the situation has not yet come up so it's hard to say. We would consult with our multi-channel network (MCN) who has far greater resources to see what they advise. Chances are we would contest the claim in some way. Worst case scenario, the video stays claimed/down and that's it.

    2. A claim on OCR's channel would not affect you in any way regardless of the outcome.

  6. The purpose of this thread is to give people a clear idea of how OCR operates, how revenue is generated (and where that revenue goes), and the relationship between OCR, its operations, and the people that contribute to it.

    Is content on OCR licensed?

    No. We do not license the ReMixes distributed on our site (and through channels like YouTube). (There is one exception, which is described below.)

    Why aren't the remixes licensed?

    It's simply impossible to do this for several reasons.

    1. Mechanical licensing via the compulsory licensing permission (the one that does not require publisher permission) requires that the source material be published commercially in the United States prior to licensing. Many remixes on the site are of source material never released in soundtrack form in the US, therefore they cannot be licensed.

    2. Even if the music could be licensed, since OCR is founded on the concept of distributing music for free, it would be impossible to support the massive licensing costs necessary for all remixes on the site. To use some napkin math: assume 3400 remixes are each downloaded 100 times per month, which is a gross under-estimate. At 9.1 cents per copy downloaded, this would require licensing fees of over $30,000 a month - for downloads alone.

    3. No established license mechanism could cover free downloads of MP3s and ad-supported streaming. Compulsory mechanical licensing only covers downloadable copies; as a result, custom licensing agreements would need to be made with every publisher (which they could simply reject, unlike a compulsory license.)

    For total emphasis, there is no conceivable way that the content on OCR could be licensed, and especially not while remaining compatible with the site goal of distributing free music.

    Does that mean OCR is illegal or infringing copyright?

    By default, any use of copyrighted material without express permission of the copyright holder is considered infringement. However, US copyright law makes provisions for "fair use" of copyrighted material as a defense to infringement in a court of law. Fair use is the legal principle that allows for things like educational usage, commentary, parody, and satire, among other uses. While fair use cannot be established except in a court of law, and there are no strict guidelines allowing anyone to decide whether a use is fair or not outside of the court system, it's possible to make an educated guess as to whether a use is fair or not.

    This educated guess is based on an evaluation of the factors evaluated for determining fair use, and precedent. The biggest of these factors are whether a work is transformative, and whether it is 'commercial'. These are both loose and nebulous terms, but that being said, our strongly-held belief (reinforced by the belief of consulted legal counsel) is that OCR's distribution of fan-created arrangements for non-commercial educational purposes is fair use. This has been discussed at length in other posts but suffice it to say that when analyzing all these factors, we've made a very strong case for this if a court case were ever to happen.

    Isn't it worse to upload music to YouTube, especially if it's monetized?

    No. If fair use applies to OCR's activities, it would certainly extend to YouTube. If it doesn't apply, then the site's current activities (on and off YouTube) would be considered infringement, in which case it's a moot point.

    YouTube is actually a better place to address issues of infringement than elsewhere, because Google provides content creators with several tools: the ability to claim a video (which grants the publisher/claimaint all further revenue from the video) or issue a takedown. Both of these would not entangle either party in the court system, as Google/YouTube mediates any disputes, avoiding a costly legal battle. In short, we'd much rather defend ourselves to YouTube, ON YouTube, with the assistance of YouTube specialists who have extensive experience in copyright disputes.

    Also, keep in mind that on YouTube (and off), a creator can claim infringement regardless of whether someone is generating revenue from a work or not. My own personal experience with YouTube claims and takedowns has exclusively been with un-monetized videos. In short, if a publisher took issue with OCR, not running YouTube ads would not protect us in any way.

    Does OCR generate revenue from its content?

    Yes. Since the early 2000s, ocremix.org has run ads throughout the site. Other revenue is generated from sales of OCR merchandise (not music; music on the site is not sold commercially) such as t-shirts and hoodies. Within the last few years, OCR launched a Patreon page which also generates revenue. Ads were also enabled on <1% of videos on OCR's YouTube channel from June-August 2016 for testing purposes, which has also generated a small amount of revenue. Until OCR officially becomes a registered non-profit organization, and YouTube ads are discussed further with the community, YouTube ads will only be served on the videos of ReMixers who have given OCR their explicit permission.

    Why does OCR need to generate revenue?

    OCR as a website has technical costs, such as the cost of a dedicated server, mirrors, and bandwidth. These expenses are necessary for the basic operation of the site. Revenue is also needed to create promotional materials for the site: that includes merchandise like t-shirts and hoodies, as well as strictly-promotional physical copies of album projects. (These promotional physical albums are not sold, and the content on them is available for free on ocremix.org. They are given away at conventions). OCR has also been attending conventions such as Otakon, MAGFest, and PAX (among any others) to evangelize video game music, promote recent album releases, and give away free stuff. Expenses directly related to OCR panels at these conventions (such as technical equipment needed for panels) are sometimes covered by OCR as an organization.

    There are also many plans for the organization that require revenue to achieve. For example, the OCR YouTube video template has not been updated in many years and looks dated. We're in the process of commissioning custom visualization software to produce better-looking videos strictly for the enjoyment of viewers and fans. Also, we're looking to obtain true non-profit organization status, which we believe will take a substantial amount of money to file and maintain properly.

    Where does surplus revenue go?

    For a long time, there was no surplus revenue. Expenses were often paid out of pocket by Dave and other staff. Now that revenue is exceeding expenses, the revenue... isn't going anywhere. It's staying in OCR's accounts until it is used for purposes like those described above. The aforementioned non-profit filing process will likely take most if not all saved money.

    So is OCR a non-profit organization?

    From our submission agreement: OCR legally cannot distribute submitted materials for for-profit endeavors. Furthermore, OCR is legally bound to spend any revenue on costs directly associated with operation and promotion of OverClocked ReMix.

    However, OCR as an entity does not have true non-profit status - 501(c)(3) - which is why achieving that official status is a major goal.

    Are any ReMixers or site staff paid for their work?

    No. Nobody has been paid for their work contributing to the site either as a remixer, staff member, or administrator, djp included.

    (Fine print: OCR has released one commercial album, For Everlasting Peace: 25 Years of Mega Man, as an officially licensed release in partnership with Capcom, with Capcom retaining ownership of the music. ReMixers were paid for this release, which was licensed directly with the publisher. This music is not available on the site and was not submitted through the normal channels, so it's an outlier.)

    Will ReMixers ever be paid?

    Not for regular submissions to the site, which are distributed for free. Not only would the logistical overhead be unmanageable, but it would invalidate our fair use case, as it would be impossible to justify those payments as necessary to the direct operation of the site as a non-profit entity. However, we'll continue to explore separate licensed projects like MM25, or officially licensed commercial albums through our sister site OverClocked Records. We view these as separate from the core work that OCR does: distributing and evangelizing free music.

    Will site staff ever be paid?

    There is absolutely no plan to do this, nor has it been seriously discussed among site staff in all years of operation. It's conceivable that it could happen someday, after 501(c)(3) status is achieved and we're complying with all regulations for transparency, corporate bylaws, etc. djpretzel wants there to be a plan for the site should anything ever happen to him, and operating a 501(c)(3) will require more administrative duties for things like bookkeeping and accounting. Again, if it were to ever happen, it would be executed properly to the letter as per federal guidelines for non-profit organizations and in full compliance with our own legally binding submission agreement.

    Is there anything to prevent revenue from being distributed as profit to staff now?!

    Of course. Just because OCR is not a 501(c)(3) yet does not mean our submission agreement isn't legally binding: it is. And that agreement, which applies to OCR as an organization, strictly limits how revenue can be used. Again, site staff have never been paid nor are there any plans to do so.

  7. I don't know if there will be any kind of opt-out for monetization of videos. It hasn't been discussed. Dave can speak to it more since it's ultimately his call.

    Re: legality, again if you want to take a hardline stance, not only has OCR been "illegal" by making fan arrangements from day 1 (1999), but every arrangement you (Brandon) have made is also "illegal", meaning you infringed copyright as well, along with every other remixer on this site, on YouTube, and SoundCloud, ever, regardless of monetization, regardless of whether they were distributed free, downloadable, streaming,e tc., unless the works were explicitly licensed (and I can guarantee of all published fan arrangements on YouTube, less than 1% are licensed.) That interpretation of "illegal" is - imo - unproductive as a result. 

    A more productive conversation is ethical vs. unethical, and why people feel that way.

    • Most of us would probably agree that outright selling (charging money for) an unlicensed game arrangement and pocketing the money for yourself is unethical. People have been doing this for years on Bandcamp, btw. 
    • Most of us would probably agree that making a fan arrangement and distributing it for free is probably not unethical. This is what OCR has been doing since 1999. It's also what the vast majority of fan artists do. They make fan works and give them away.

    The spectrum in between that is what we're talking about. OCR has generated revenue from ads for a long time. Nobody seemed to think this was unethical, especially given that the money was (and still is) used to pay for operational costs, those being things like the dedicated server, software, mirrors / bandwidth, and promotion (such as OCR t-shirts, or promotional album giveaways.) So before even addressing YouTube specifically maybe it's a good idea to think about whether one thinks its ethical, or not, for OCR as an organization to distribute work for free but use tangential revenue (ads, patreon) to cover those operational expenses.

  8. Quote

    In short, OCR management are going to do what they decide they need to in order for the site's continued existence and improvement within the bounds of the website's terms, regardless of the feelings, criticism, or different views on what is fair or unfair, morally right or wrong, etc. by the community.

    If that were true, then as Dave said, we would have monetized all the videos and not asked for the community's opinion on the matter. Why the assumption of bad faith? What has anyone done to merit thinking the worst? 

    Brandon no doubt has me on ignore but someone can again tell him that the entirety of the site's library will not be licensed, nor will remixers be paid, with exceptions like MM25.

  9. I want to re-pose a question I asked before that nobody answered, for those that are against YT monetization. Google ads are already almost dead. In a year let's say they are completely dead. Now imagine Patreon goes away, because maybe Patreon itself is shut down or gets purchased. Who knows? That kind of stuff happens every day in silicon valley.

    How do you expect OCR to keep running in that scenario?

    Now go a step further - imagine the trend continues of fewer and fewer people coming here and downloading MP3s, and more and more people going to YouTube. Imagine that the audience here shrinks to almost nothing while the YouTube channel becomes the #1 source of consuming the content. 

    Again: How does OCR keep running in that scenario? 

  10. 1. The remixes have already been on YouTube for years. If anyone had a problem we would know by now. I have dealt with this stuff myself and if a publisher has a problem with your content they will claim it or takedown regardless of whether you are monetizing (I've seen & dealt with this multiple times, and it was always unmonetized content.) As I've been saying over and over, offering downloads is definitely worse.

    2. Monetizing the content on YouTube does not do anything to increase its visibility.

    3. If a company did have a problem, dealing with that problem on YouTube is FAR better for OCR than dealing with it outside. If a company has an issue with OCR MP3s they have no recourse other than directly reaching out from their legal team. That's very very bad for us. On the other hand, on YouTube, they can use existing systems like content ID/claims or takedowns. These don't require anyone to have legal counsel to deal with, and it allows OCR to defend its usage with Google as a mediator - no courts needed. Furthermore, on YouTube, we have the benefit of an MCN that has its own resources including connections at Google itself. 

    Here is where I will (again) point out that people have been monetizing arrangements on YouTube for years and years, including big channels, unlicensed, with no issues, and those are people actually turning a profit and pocketing 100% of the money. 

  11. OCR staff are volunteers. None of us are, or have ever been, compensated for our work (including but not limited to judging, moderation, running projects, etc.) Site revenue goes to things like hosting costs (dedicated server + mirrors), merchandising (OCR shirts, hoodies), promotional albums (which are not sold, but given away as prizes at cons to help promote the music), and similar.

  12. Nintendo is not going to sue for copyright infringement. There is no pattern of behavior on their part to support thinking that way. They do C&Ds and takedowns, as do basically all other publishers and developers. Nobody wants to go to court. Legal proceedings are costly, both in terms of time and money, for all parties. Again that's not to say publishers do nothing to protect their IP... But they do it using tools like cease & desist letters for fan projects, content ID on YouTube, or DMCA takedowns.

    I'll reiterate also that YouTube in particular gives more tools to copyright holders to deal with infringement, by allowing them to automatically claim or take down videos through Google's system. It's actually very friendly to big companies with lots of IP for that very reason, and further reduces the chance that any legal action would happen. At the same time, YouTube also offers creators unique ways of defending and protection uses which might be fair. For OCR specifically, working with a MCN would give us even more shielding from liability.

    All in all, it's far better for a copyright claim to happen on YouTube than off.

  13. Again. OCR has been using monetized ads (on all pages, including remix pages) for.. I think 10 years now...? So it's not as if this would be pushing the line somehow further. Especially since offering downloadable MP3s has traditionally been viewed more harshly than non-downloadable streams.

    There is absolutely no reason to think that YouTube would be any worse, or put OCR in a position of great liability. Again, let me go over this:

    1. YouTube has tools for content creators to take down (or claim) infringing content via content ID/claiming and takedowns. These are always the first tools used and a copyright holder will use them as opposed to pursuing legal action outside of YouTube. Happens every day.

    2. OCR itself is more shielded on YouTube by being part of a multi-channel network with greater resources and connections.

    3. If what OCR does is infringing, then it is infringing with or without YouTube. There are tons of developers + publishers (not to mention composers) whose works have been arranged on OCR. Many of them have offered their explicit approval and endorsement, and nobody has taken any legal action in all this time.

    Since Fair Use is a defense, it's true that the only way to be 100% certain is to be brought to court. But Dave has been doing this for a long time and not without legal counsel. He believes (and I agree) that if it EVER came to that, OCR would have a strong case for Fair Use. That case has not changed since day 1. The material is highly transformative, it's offered free of charge, it adds to the original works, etc. 

  14. Will: Check out my response on the previous page. The available information and evidence suggests that YouTube ads aren't any worse than what we have now (web ads). Either way, it's online advertising. If I were a copyright holder, I would be much more concerned with downloadable MP3s than streams.

    Actually, I would strongly argue that YouTube is a better platform to be shielded from liability, since it has multiple pre-existing systems in place for copyright holders to address infringement: content ID and takedowns. Any developer or publisher will use these tools instead of going to court, since even if they are sure to win, it's time, money & hassle for them to pursue it in the courts. Hence why it's extraordinarily rare to hear of anyone on YouTube being sued, but relatively common to hear about content ID and (to a lesser extent) takedowns.

    Those extra shields from personal liability are made even stronger by MCNs, like I mentioned, which would help protect ALL remixers whose music is uploaded by OCR.

  15. Well, let's go over the 4 factors for fair use that courts use to determine whether a use is infringing or fair, and how web ads vs. YouTube ads would make a difference.

    1. Purpose and character of the use

    This asks whether a use is of a commercial nature, or for nonprofit educational purposes. At the same time, it also favors transformative uses over non-transformative ones. Well, the transformative factor of the use (remix of copyrighted material) is no different whether it's viewed on our site or on YouTube, so that's a wash. That leaves commercial vs. non-commercial. We know that obviously selling something is commercial, but is showing ads alongside something commercial? There's no hard line rule on that, however...


    Creative Commons commissioned a professional market research study to determine people's views on this matter. What they found was that:

    • Both creators and users generally consider uses that earn users money or involve online advertising to be commercial. My take: Based on this, as far as OCR is concerned, it wouldn't make a difference whether the "online advertising" is on a website or on YouTube.

    2. Nature of the copyrighted work

    This is not relevant here to questions of OCR on its own site or YouTube as it has to do with the source work.

    3. Amount and Substantiality

    Same thing. The content of the remix is no different in both cases.

    4. Effect upon work's value

    Does an infringing work affect the copyright owner's ability to commercially exploit their original work? Once again, OC ReMixes being freely available for download already, I don't see how YouTube would change anything. In fact, if I were playing devil's advocate, I might say that offering downloads is a lot more harmful than non-downloadable streams (videos).


  16. Re: legal stuff. A lot has been said on this. Here's a quick primer. Any and all use of copyrighted materials, by anyone for any reason other than licensees or copyright holders, is de facto infringement. Let's get that out of the way. If you make a fan remix and upload it on YouTube with no monetization, that is by default considered to be infringement. Let's make that 100% crystal clear. 

    Fair Use is a legal concept that exists as a defense against claims of copyright infringement. So if Party A uses Party B's copyrighted material, and Party B says "Hey, I'm going to sue you", Party A can say "nuh-uh, it was fair use." Whether or not that defense is valid is determined on a case-by-case basis. There are no universal rules, just standards that are used to evaluate each case individually.

    So if you want to take a hardline view, then OCR since day 1 (with or without ads) has been infringing copyright. But obviously that's not the whole story, since in all of OCR's lifetime and even after considerable publicity, it has never been sued, despite many major copyright holders being well-aware of the site's existence. That's because Dave has done his homework, consulted with lawyers, and come to the conclusion that OCR would likely fare well in court (if it came to that) with a Fair Use defense. And chances are those entities have taken no action because they believe OCR's use is in fact fair, and does not interfere with their own rights to commercialize their work.

    My own view, as a music industry professional (though not a lawyer), is that having monetized videos on YouTube is not going to make any material difference in a court of law compared with advertising on the site itself. If a copyright holder believes that OCR's use of copyright is infringing, my own (educated) guess is that they are not going to say that site ads are OK, but YouTube ads aren't. Very unlikely, especially given the extreme proliferation of unlicensed covers on YouTube including some on major channels. 

    Put simply: in my view, informed through my experience in the industry, if you think YouTube video monetization is illegal, or otherwise infringing/wrong, then everything OCR has ever done is illegal.


    On the topic of YouTube and shielding from liability specifically, the advantage of YouTube in that department is that you can work with multi-channel networks (MCN) who have the resources and connections to take care of copyright issues. That's why so many major channels are part of networks, so that when a developer or publisher flags their Let's Play video (or whatever), they have a team that can deal with the claim and come to an arrangement. That was one big reason why Dave was considering this at all, because we'd be able to work with an MCN.


    It's not impossible to prove, it just involves transparency and being responsible.. maybe impossible for specific people, but not in general. We need an audit, we need someone to go over the financials, and the horrors within need to be disclosed. Chimpazilla already offered to help, and nobody responded to her. What are they hiding? 

    There's the conspiracy theory explanation, and then there's the explanation that Dave (the only person who has any actual authority related to the site, its financials, etc.) is married, with a full-time job, and two very young kids, on top of existing responsibilities running the site, that have taken up the majority of his time and he hasn't gotten around to having a deep conversation with Chimpazilla on this. I was talking to her today and I'm sure Dave would have chimed in, were he not en route to Otakon. 

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