Paradox Opens Up Vampire: The Masquerade IP For Anyone To Develop, But On Questionable Terms
Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 had a tough development cycle to say the least. The development cycle has seen multiple delays, a series of layoffs, an entire dev team change, and almost getting scrapped entirely. It seems that Paradox Interactive has had enough of the development trouble and will now allow anyone to make a video game based on the IP.
Unbound is a program via which any developer can create a game using the lore and universe of the Vampire: The Masquerade. "Use Vampire: The Masquerade IP and create your own world within it," says the World of Darkness website. "In Unbound, you are responsible for the game you want to create and its contents, as long as you adhere to our Licensing Agreement and itch.io rules."
Developers will retain "upto 67%" on any monetized projects, and will also own any assets that do not feature IP elements. In other words, if you develop a game via this program and make a bunch of money, you'll have to shell out 33 percent to Paradox interactive. This is compounded by the clause which doesn't allow prospective developers to seek funding for the game. And add to that whatever you'd have to pay itch.io to feature the game. Additionally, you can't really market the fact that it's based on Vampire: The Masquerade, because according to the agreement, you don't own any assets with those elements on it.
Expectedly, this has not gone down well with indie devs and the general public, who are calling out Paradox's attempt to leech off the hard work of others via the unfavourable terms of the Unbound agreement.
"Following the Vampire Jam last year, we realized how passionate our community is about creating Vampire: The Masquerade games," World of Darkness community developer Martyna Zych said about Unbound. "While we could only award one grand prize to Heartless Lullaby, we knew we had to create a platform that empowered our community to work on the projects they love while giving them the support they need to be successful. As long as World of Darkness fans continue making great games, there will be more titles coming through Unbound."
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