Tecmo tackles Dead or Alive nudists
28th Mar 2003 | 18:52
Dead Or Alive and in the buff...An Xbox hack allowing you to play DOAXBV with ladies in their birthday suits has appeared. The shock of it! Needless to say, Tecmo is wringing its hands over the affair.
Tecmo isn't the slightest bit happy about the "naked" DOAXBV modification that's materialised on various websites, and doesn't think it's fun at all.
On its own game forum it has laid down the law. According to 'Brian' that is, an administrator on the Tecmo User Forums, who posted a topic titled: "We're watching you!"
Tecmo is seriously clamping down on people creating game modifications (mods) and game hacks to adjust the way the games play and looks.
According to their User Forum, Brian from Tecmo raised the stakes by bringing in legal issues. He has stated that if anyone posts anything about "Nude Patches" or any other "hacked information" on the Tecmo website they will be "punished to the fullest extent of the law." Ouch!
This sounds awfully strong, but could Tecmo have a strong legal position? Should they win a court case to this effect it could have serious repercussions in the gamming community. No new maps, no new levels, no new skins in games? In the PC FPS world, this could (purely technically) mean no Counter-Strike.
Counter Strike is a modification of the PC shooter Half-Life, adapting the code, characters and levels of the original FPS - and improving on it. Is this considered a breach of copyright?
This week CNN Money talked about how a group of modders changed the code for Electronic Arts' Battlefield 1942 to create a more recent version. This includes the previous Gulf War and the fans creating the mod have actually been approached by publishers to sell it in-store as an expansion pack. Hardly on a par with threats of legal action.
The launch of Xbox Live could potentially open up the option of game modifications for Xbox, letting tech-savvy fans of the games update them for their consoles, creating new levels and adaptions, then sharing these with friends around the world.
Surely, if Tecmo's clamp down lead becomes concrete then the case for the 'bedroom programmer' level designer wouldn't even be allowed out from under the quilt for console games.
This puts Microsoft in a bit of a pickle, especially regarding downloads and modifications. It desires community and the online aspects of Xbox Live, and needs specific downloadable code, levels and 'additional extras' but maybe the mention of 'hacks' and piracy may spook them. At the time of press, we couldn't get an official Microsoft comment.
It's a bit worrying when Brian on the Tecmo Forums states: "We're watching you very closely! Please do not post things that infringe copyrights and legal issues. So far we're tracking one suspect, anybody care to be the second?"
They may be looking closely, but they're certainly not listening. After two days of extreme 'telephone' beach volleyball, we couldn't get any official comment from Tecmo.
We can comment though. Of course, a nude patch is a bit naughty, but it seems ridiculous for Tecmo to protect DOAXBV from being seen in a negative light, as the game isn't best known for its gameplay. However, the major marketing push behind the game seems to be 'hey! It's young ladies in skimpy bikinis.'
Is Tecmo telling us it's to protect either the modesty of their characters or our sinful eyes, or maybe protect their rightful copyright? We wanted to ask them but they weren't available - anybody - maybe next week?
At least the DOAXBV characters look familiar but it gets a bit blurry copyright-wise when you compare 'trims' as the latest hack gives the ladies a bit of a wax...
We don't condone adapting Tecmo code, but gaming modifications are surely a healthy way of building gaming and interest, one only has to look at the success of the FPS genre to see the importance.
Although near-pornographic skins for DOAXBV is an extreme example, it's generating even more interest for the game that originally earned its reputation from young things with a pair of wobbly things. That's all a bit fresh. Or is it?
What do you think? Let us know on the 'Comment' button below and we'll follow this up soon...