Saturday, September 21, 2013

Definition of Hypocracy

One fine day Scorpion42 asked for the source code to Super Mario Crossover on the Exploding Rabbit forums.

Seems to be a pretty reasonable request. And the response from Jay Pavlina from Exploding Rabbit about the Super Mario Crossover source code was

So Jay Pavlina want's control over what he created, Super Mario Crossover. Makes sense, and that's actually why copyrights exist so that the creator is the only one with the right to copy what they created.


Jay Pavlina seems to have no issues taking that right away from Nintendo when he uses their assets in Super Mario Crossover.

That's all ladies and gents, what do you think?

Is Jay Pavlina a good Project Manager

Image from: stock.xchng

Kickstarter is used to gain funding for a project like Super Adventure Squad, like you would go to a bank and apply for a loan.  A bank has a strict set of rules and requirements that have to be met before they will grant the loan.

It is probably safe to say that most backers on Kickstarter have never been a loan officer at a bank or have any experience with venture capital or anything like that so it is understandable they are not aware of the many pitfalls.

The first thing you need to look at is the character and abilities of the team. Jay has demonstrated that he works well individually and can make a fan game on his terms, that is about it.  This should be a red flag though.  What it says is that Jay has some game in his mind, and he is going to make it the way he wants, on the timeline he decides.  His questionable ethics also come into play.  Even though Super Mario Crossover is most definitely illegal, he flaunts that he "believes" he has found a loophole by not "directly profiting from Super Mario Bros Crossover." Even thought that is irrelevant, it is still copyright infringement whether you make money or you do not.  The penalties for copyright infringement while profiting are just higher and could even result in criminal (on top of civil) penalties. He also consistently demonstrates he is going to do things his way and that it. Which is fine for Super Mario Crossover, but people paid for Super Retro Squad (before he changed the name to Super Action Squad).  The information on Kickstarter is there as promises for what you will get from your backing. Including a release date, which Kickstarter forces you to pick because a solid project will have realistic goals and deadlines that will be achieved. It is meant to weed out deadbeats and those unwilling to commit to their backers so that for example a game can'' take as long as it wants to make."

But let's not go with what I say, how about what Jay Pavlina from Exploding Rabbit has to say about changing the name from Super Retro Squad to Super Adventure Squad.
Pay special attention to the
"Most people don't seem to like it, AND THAT'S FINE"
Jay Pavlina is in it for Jay Pavlina, and that's it.

An Example
I mean just think, GTA V just came out, what if Rockstar just stopped responding to the press, fans, everyone and didn't realease the game when they said they would.  Later they finally say "we just started the game, it'll be out whenever." Rockstar would be torn apart (like 3D realms for example) and would probably have difficulty making another game.

Advice for Backers
Just simple advise to all. If your going to back something, demand the following and hold them accountable and know that these requirements are way lower then what a bank would require for a loan;
1) Who is the project lead, what is their education, their track record of project management
2) Who is the team, how much will they be paid, what are their qualifications
3) What is the timeline, meaning definite milestones and release date
4) Define the project, what are you getting for backing (this is the description and stretch goals)
5) What is the money for, where will it be spent, does it make sense to spend it on that?
6) How will communications be made and how often
7) Who will approve scope changes

Anyway, if you want to back Super Retro Squad, now renamed Super Action Squad, go right ahead.  Just keep in mind, you will not be treated as a stake holder, you are mostly giving Jay money for an illegal fan game, Super Mario Crossover, or funding his dream of having a game company, don't expect anything else.  That's all well and dandy, but usually you have to have a proven track record and solid games before you would consider something so major as getting office space for example.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Super Mario Bros Crossover Legality

Image from: stock.xchng

Now, I am not a lawyer and this sure ain't legal advise. But at a certain point you really have to wonder. The game Super Mario Crossover uses illegal assets and the owner Jay Pavlina seems to be no literally bragging that he makes money from the game. It even seems that the revenue from Super Mario Crossover supports him so he doesn't have to work a job like normal people.

It looks like a Kickstarter backer, Dag Härdfeldt, has even let Nintendo know about this.

Honestly, if Nintendo knows about Super Mario Crossover and that Jay Pavlina makes money from it and it has not received a cease and desist, it is almost like Nintendo has said, sure its ok, go ahead and use our assets and profit from them. We'll see what happens I guess.

Though how would Nintendo even contact Jay? He hides behind a "contact form" on his site with no email address.....

Super Action Squad - What happened to the money

Lowered resolution image used to demonstrate the subject of this post

So here is what it seems like happened

1) Jay got money from a successful Kickstarter which reached many stretch goals for a game called "Super Retro Squad" and was due to be released by March 2013 (5 months ago from today).  It has been suggested this was a thinly veiled attempt to make a profit from the illegal game Super Mario Bros Crossover.

2) Jay and some people bought a house, made a video about it

3) They made a dance video and Jay did a let's play video

4) Radio silence from Exploding Rabbit for months.

5) Jay makes a video to ask for MORE MONEY with nothing whatsoever delivered besides a few mock ups and what appears to be a very basic simple demo of a character jumping and collecting coins.

6) An update to the illegal game Super Mario Crossover was released, and as stated by Jay Pavlina, for the strict purpose of making money and attracting people to his site to make ad money.

7) Now people have been told development BEGAN in August 2013 and the scope of the project has changed significantly with no discussion with the share holders (Backers)

madness ladies and gents...

Doing our part

So there is a lot of upset people over on Kickstarter talking about what happened with the Kickstarter funding for "Super Retro Squad" which has been renamed to "Super Action Squad" now.

We want this blog to be about updates on what they are doing, well or rather are not doing and the comments can be anonymous so anyone can say what they want about this. Comments on YouTube can be "removed by the author" for example so you may not even be able to get a comment in.... geeze.

That's it, have fun.....