How The Molyjam Failed And Liberated Pixel Cup Will Rectify

Originally from my blog. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License and uses material from the Wikipedia article “Game jam” and Liberated Pixel Cup website which are released under the same license.

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March’s Molyjam was the first I had heard of a game jam. A game jam is a gathering of developers, artists, and other creatives over a short time during which a collective effort is made to make one or more games. The Molyjam was a game jam where you could make a game based on any of the tweets of @petermolydeux, a parody Twitter account of Peter Molyneux. This caught my attention because there was a possibility that we would get free software games out of it.

Unfortunately, the licencing of Molyjam games is where it went wrong. The submission was binary only and they decided to use Creative Commons licences for software, which is not recommended. Because of this, all Molyjam games were proprietary. Separate source code releases could be done by the developers but they wouldn’t be linked on the Molyjam website.

What they should have done is allow developers to submit binary and source code, use Creative Commons licences specifically for the assets only, and allow participants to use a free or proprietary licence for the code. That would have pleased everybody.

That is why I was excited to hear about the Liberated Pixel Cup, a two-part competition and joint venture between the Free Software Foundation, the Creative Commons, Mozilla, and OpenGameArt.org. Phase one of the competition is to build a set of artwork that’s dual licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 and GPLv3. Phase two of the competition will be building GPLv3 or later games that incorporate artwork from the artwork building phase of the project. It’s first phase launched this past Friday, and I invite you to take part in it!

9 Comments
10 Comments
Posted by predator

Originally from my blog. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License and uses material from the Wikipedia article “Game jam” and Liberated Pixel Cup website which are released under the same license.

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March’s Molyjam was the first I had heard of a game jam. A game jam is a gathering of developers, artists, and other creatives over a short time during which a collective effort is made to make one or more games. The Molyjam was a game jam where you could make a game based on any of the tweets of @petermolydeux, a parody Twitter account of Peter Molyneux. This caught my attention because there was a possibility that we would get free software games out of it.

Unfortunately, the licencing of Molyjam games is where it went wrong. The submission was binary only and they decided to use Creative Commons licences for software, which is not recommended. Because of this, all Molyjam games were proprietary. Separate source code releases could be done by the developers but they wouldn’t be linked on the Molyjam website.

What they should have done is allow developers to submit binary and source code, use Creative Commons licences specifically for the assets only, and allow participants to use a free or proprietary licence for the code. That would have pleased everybody.

That is why I was excited to hear about the Liberated Pixel Cup, a two-part competition and joint venture between the Free Software Foundation, the Creative Commons, Mozilla, and OpenGameArt.org. Phase one of the competition is to build a set of artwork that’s dual licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 and GPLv3. Phase two of the competition will be building GPLv3 or later games that incorporate artwork from the artwork building phase of the project. It’s first phase launched this past Friday, and I invite you to take part in it!

Posted by Hailinel

You have an interesting definition of failure.

Posted by Panpipe

Please explain why these licenses are important.

I'm not being facetious, just curious.

Edited by AlisterCat

@Hailinel said:

You have an interesting definition of failure.

Look at his other blog. He's insane.

Posted by EchoEcho

Keep this up and you'll be a running meme around here in no time.

Posted by TheVeteran13

I respectfully decline your invitation... mostly because I have no idea what you're talking about.

Edited by kindgineer

@AlisterCat said:

@Hailinel said:

You have an interesting definition of failure.

Look at his other blog. He's insane.

He's the free browser activist nut, right? That whole thing gave me about as much of a headache as this did.

EDIT: On a side note, already knew about this competition and while I think it is cool, not much to get me out of my seat and fly to commit to it.

Posted by EXTomar

I'm all for promotion of free software licenses but I am also for using them in the right occasions. A game jam is not necessarily the right place to use completely free licenses.

Posted by tourgen
Posted by predator

@tourgen: I'll check them out.

@EchoEcho: I'll try to write up something longer about how Double Fine Adventure is the worst thing ever before the game is released. I just need more time to think about it.

@EXTomar: I can't accept that though, and the way it was done is hardly ideal. It's a problem when someone uses something like Unity or UE3, but I think my solution covers that fairly well. Improvements are welcome.