I had an interesting chat with some Toronto game devs; it wasn't about anything in particular, but rather about cloning in general and how it's generally a shitty thing. It was also about how one of us thought there were far too many game devs who seem entirely okay with cloning.
Anyway, here we go. I'm going to list four games. In my eyes, a single pair of them have an ORIGINAL-CLONE relationship although many of them have been accused of being such.
MINECRAFT IS AN INFINIMINER CLONE was the first accusation to be thrown around, and it's entirely false! To this day I have no idea how people cling to that argument.
Infiniminer was an interesting team-based competitive mining thing with lava and explosions. People built crazy stuff, and while it wasn't the goal, they did it all the same.
Minecraft started out as a vague little engine that took from Infiniminer the platform on which it laid: 3d and block breaking, making. It was a big deal, sure, but even in creative mode it had a focus on building, and a wide variety of blocks, and pretty generated maps.
I don't even really want to talk about Terraria/Minecraft. I don't enjoy Terraria at all but that's just me (really, it's just me). They share even fewer similarities than the above two.
OKAY AND THEN THERE'S FORTRESSCRAFT
Here is what I actually care about at all. This game released as a clone of Minecraft: its style is exactly the same. It stole, blatantly, just about everything that made Minecraft successful despite planning 'in future chapters' to add new stuff.
This is a bad thread about me venting because I'm not yet ready to send the guys who made FortressCraft a "you guys are basically terrible people I hope you know that" e-mail.To make this thread an actual thing for discussion, read this!
I think cloning is terrible, regardless of how much success it acquires. However, when something like FortressCraft makes a million bucks, it kinda infuriates me to see a clone do well.
If it's a "clone" that has its own idea and simply takes cues from another? Cool. That's fine, and not nearly a clone. In the case of Terraria, it's clear that even if the guy was inspired by Minecraft, there are a lot of elements of the game's own. It also plays radically differently. (Same with Infiniminer -> Minecraft, really, just without the perspective & dimension shift)
Hell, even if it's a "clone" that expands upon an idea -- before it's sold and presented as its own full game
, not 'planned for future developments' -- that's cool, too. Take an idea and, even if it starts off as clone, if you take it in a nice, new direction? Even if it sucks, if you're trying your own thing, I support.
If it's a "clone" that is a copy of a game with inconsequential added details (i.e. fortresscraft has ropes and hand-held torches from the trailer i saw a million years ago, which are incredibly minor details in the grand design of things) or even with lost
design (i played the worst clone of Star Guard
(amazing game) a while back, called Space-Ninja or something. it was horrible), it has no purpose. It should not exist, and it should not
be sold for moneys.
It's ironic and disappointing and clearly makes sense that the people who do this kind of cloning are generally in it for the money.
Don't stand for the mindless, heartless kind of cloning that exists and seems wholly accepted. Do you care about it at all? Am I overreacting? I
don't think so: if we don't take a mental stand against the bane of creativity that is cloning -- we, who gather around games because we actually care (in our own little ways) -- I don't know who will
(hahaha this one is the worst