Atari’s Dodgy Competition

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Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby News Portal » 29 Feb 12, 9:31 am

Right now, Atari are offering budding developers the chance of a lifetime with their Pong Indie Developer Challenge. Sounds like fun and possible profit, right? Make a new Pong game, maybe Atari likes it, then fame and fortune come calling. Sort of wrong. Gamasutra have since taken a closer look at the Official Contest Rules, and they read very much in favour of Atari taking advantage of the whole situation. More so than is usually expected in these kinds of contests, at any rate.

Read full article by Toby McCasker
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Artful-dodgeR » 29 Feb 12, 9:38 am

Someone called?

Holy hell those entry conditions are bad.
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Dexterian » 29 Feb 12, 9:46 am

This means that Atari has full ownership over every entry submitted, regardless of whether or not the entry is a finalist or wins the comp.


Sounds like they took a leaf out of Facebook's terms and conditions. They basically own all your photos, status updates, blah blah blah unless you delete your account. Even then are you still sure??

It's a shame these Devs can't delete their App once Atari has it.

GG - they were probably hoping no one would read the terms!
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby bundyraider » 29 Feb 12, 9:56 am

The royalties are also only awarded AFTER Atari has dedected their marketing costs, etc. lol

Can't wait to see Indies go off and just produce Pong based variants outside of the comp. just to spite Atari over this. haha
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Breakin » 29 Feb 12, 10:27 am

seems to me the big Publishers are getting scummyer and scummyer in this new day and age
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby DeathMist » 29 Feb 12, 10:36 am

*Hides pong game I made last week* :|
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby InAUGral » 29 Feb 12, 11:07 am

I hope the entrants read the fine print.
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Mythor » 29 Feb 12, 11:31 am

That "promoter owns whatever you submit" thing is standard for competitions. GON/Internode claims ownership of your entry when you submit stuff to try and win comps here, even. So if you think Atari is evil for that then congratulations, you also think GON is evil. :)

If you've got a Pong-related idea you think could make serious money why would you submit it to this comp anyway? There's so many alternate routes for an indie dev to publish their game nowadays.
Or submit it to Atari and potentially get $50,000 straight up.

Either way, you release a game that captures the right person's attention and you might not have to stay indie anymore if you don't want to.

Atari are real scumbags for organising a payday for people. :P
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby InAUGral » 29 Feb 12, 12:44 pm

Mythor wrote:That "promoter owns whatever you submit" thing is standard for competitions. GON/Internode claims ownership of your entry when you submit stuff to try and win comps here, even. So if you think Atari is evil for that then congratulations, you also think GON is evil. :)

Yeah except I dont mind if GON owns my opinions on what I write as to explain what my Game of the year is. I mean they cant sell that.
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Ash_Williams » 29 Feb 12, 1:07 pm

Wow.. I expected this of Activision first..

EDIT: No wait, EA is into farming data these days =P
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Jez » 29 Feb 12, 1:17 pm

Mythor wrote:That "promoter owns whatever you submit" thing is standard for competitions. GON/Internode claims ownership of your entry when you submit stuff to try and win comps here, even. So if you think Atari is evil for that then congratulations, you also think GON is evil. :)


I think you're comparing apples and oranges in that there's a proven market for indie games that take an existing formula and refresh it, whereas I doubt anybody would be willing to pay for a GON member's survey answers or Bioshock fan faction.
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Mekon » 29 Feb 12, 1:34 pm

Jez wrote:I think you're comparing apples and oranges in that there's a proven market for indie games that take an existing formula and refresh it

In which case... why participate in the competition, why not just release it yourself? Assuming you don't get Atari's lawyers blocking release due to infringement of their IP/brand.

At the end of the day, it's pretty upfront - Atari is going to grant you a license to the PONG brand. If you produce one of the 10 best modern variants of *their* IP, you win money ($50k for the top 3, $5k for the next 7), they will market it for you (using the backing of an incredibly well-known brand) and give you a share of the royalties... which admittedly is rather odd, in that all 10 finalists share equal parts of the (close to industry-standard) 20% royalty share. Which has some additional gotchas in the sense of being capped and time limited, but that is their prerogative, what with it being their brand.

It's not a case of submitting your own new IP and them stealing it from you, you're being given a license to theirs. It's something Gamasutra has apparently glossed over in their analysis (eg. references to "if you come up with a great idea for a game").

Not saying it's a great deal, but it's hardly as evil as some are making out.
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Craw » 29 Feb 12, 2:01 pm

Pong FPS. :2gunsfiring_v1:

How could you lose.
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby Aussielauren » 1 Mar 12, 7:43 am

Although atari would have ownership, you still have creative rights under copyright. That is, you could say: "I do not wish it to be used commercially - it is an art piece only"

And when they ignored you, you could sue them for all the royalties (a pittance) plus costs (a lot).

But it is a pretty bad T&C; for a creative comp. Have a look at something like tropfest; the exclusivity rules only engage if you are a finalist, and although they get distribution rights for 2 years, you still own your unique IP and film
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Re: Atari’s Dodgy Competition

Unread postby sloppywalrus » 1 Mar 12, 7:59 am

Mythor wrote:That "promoter owns whatever you submit" thing is standard for competitions. GON/Internode claims ownership of your entry when you submit stuff to try and win comps here, even. So if you think Atari is evil for that then congratulations, you also think GON is evil. :)


i like what you say blue man with cookie on your stomach (a reference to your pic)
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