View Full Version : Holowan No Porting Rule Questions?

09-04-2006, 04:59 AM
Split from this thread here (http://www.lucasforums.com/showthread.php?t=170083) in Holowan Labs... -RH

If you take any resources directly from another game this is what constitutes porting. This means from any other game not just between the 2 KotOR games. Replicating other things by making the assets yourself is allowed. You are confusing things created from scratch with things taken from other games.

Porting isn't allowed here for obvious legal reasons. Sorry but this is the way it is.

I am not the slightest bit confused by what porting is.

As for obvious, lets take a look and see just how obvious it really is... Shall we?

Porting is not illegal in and of itself, to clear up porting for the confused, porting is short for import/export,.

Doing one or the other or both, is often called porting...

I can make a picture in mspaint and export the .bmp file, thats not illegal, so porting itself, is not illegal, we do this all the time, so when does porting become illegal,,..

It becomes llegal when copyrights come into play,.

So what is a copyright? It usually refers to the tranferance of the intellectual property of an author to another medium without said authors permission..

So whether you copied it or created it, the object is still under copyright... Thus not legal, unless you have the authors permission to have done so..

So as you can see, you are turning a blind eye to what makes porting truly illegal, copyrights.

So any mods containing copyrighted material, whether its homemade or not, is still under copyright, meaning its illegal to reproduce in whole or part...

That is why I am confused, why is such a hard stance taken against the harmless act of porting, yet the actual criminal act which makes porting illegal, copyright infringement is fine..

It is certainly not because I fail to to understand the what porting is... Quite the contrary....

Let me put it another way, I notice a lot of mod authors, add little copyright sections to their mods, I can't remember if you do or not Redhawke, but lets say you do for the sake of the following example...

So keep that in mind, you don't want anyone using your mod without permission, you have copyrighted it so to speak...

If I were to release the HouseOfAmon's Exile Item Pack, and all the items looked just like yours, and I used all the same items, same everything, but I created it all myself, didn't copy your work, just reproduced it, and put my name on it...

Would you find it acceptable?

Of course you wouldnt? Because you copyrighted your work, and I blatantly ripped you off, whether I just copied your work, or reproduced it would be of no concern to you..

The fact I stole your intellectual property on the other hand would have been, and thus becomes copyright infringment... ;)

Anyways, I hope that clears up my view of the current situation, I feel we have already crossed the line into illegal, so giving users wanting to port something into kotor 1, from kotor 2(or vice versa) a hard time, is just plain hypocritical IMO...

Though I feel no need to argue, nor have I been, just stating why I look at such a rule with utter confusion, as it soars miles above and away from the law it was supposed to protect/enforce...

Well, I don't care to go on about this any longer than I already have, so take it as you will, but I hope at least now you see why I will never truly stand behind that rule, but I will listen to you out of respect, for you and the site, and the other mods as well... So consider it dropped... :)


The way I see it, is you can port the whole game so long as the end user of the mod supplies the copyrighted material, what does it matter if I play kotor 1, in the kotor 2 engine, or if I play it in its original engine,. As long as I own both, it shouldnt..

This could easily be done by slightly modifying the TSL patcher to use mdlops.. Just require the user to paste the contents of their kotor 1 directory into the tslpatchdata folder, and it can do all the modifying automatically...

PS: Sorry bout writing a short novel on the topic.. hehe.. But I felt I needed to fully explain my point of view, so there would be no confusion on the matter.... :)

Emperor Devon
09-04-2006, 02:44 PM
HouseOfAmon, I'd love it if porting were legal and could be discussed here. There's a lot of things that would be wonderful if implemented in K1, but one reason it's not allowed because it's considered distributing free content from the game. If you port one texture, what's to stop you from porting over practically the whole game and making a company lose business? It's strict, I know, but we have to live with it. :(

Princess Artemis
09-04-2006, 03:03 PM
HouseOfAmon, are you familiar with fanfiction? It skirts similar lines that creating mods based on copyrighted content from other sources does. In fact, it is similar in a way to modding KotOR in any way is. Many copyright holders tolarate it, some encourage it, while others squash it. One way or another, we're playing in someone else's sandbox already--we don't hold copyright on our mods, except for custom content that we can claim copyright over (say, for my Dustil NPC mod I and Jiara could possibly lay claim to some of the dialogue, but that's also in a fanfic way, we could only claim it completely if if it didn't have anything to do with TSL, but there's nothing else I can copyright in it...it's a matter of courtesy to the community to not use other modder's stuff without asking, especially if it is something copyrightable like a completely custom sword built from the ground up), and if they have an iron-clad rule that no porting is allowed, then to continue playing in their sandbox, we have to follow that rule.

To address your example of releasing a mod that was so obviously based on someone else's but was not, in fact, their work...that would be a lousy thing to do to your fellow modder, but it is in an entirely different class than taking their material without doing any of your own work and claiming it as your own. The difference between writing a blatant rip-off of someone's fiction and copy/pasting the whole thing down to the typo.

The Source
09-04-2006, 03:42 PM
When it comes to KotOR I & II, there are hundreds of similar textures and models that both games utilize. In some cases, KotOR II just shut them off.

If you look at KotOR II's Appearance.2da file, you will find cells for Mission, Juhani, Jolee, and many others from KotOR I. All they did is shut them off, and not add the models and textures into the game. As you continue to read the Appearance.2da file, you will notice Obsidian used the same file designations and just added newer characters. While reading through the scripts (.nss & ,ncs), several of the scripts in KotOR II say: Copywrite BioWare, and they can be identified as a KotOR I file.

Behind the scenes they are the same game, but Obsidian justed added to what was allready there.

KotOR II could be considered a Obsidian, Lucas Arts, and BioWare game, which carries KotOR I's files.

KotOR I & II are so similar at the core, and there really is no black and white areas. I cannot see how implanting a KotOR I file into KotOR II would be illeagal. Since several of BioWare's copywrite information is all over KotOR II, this wouldn't really be porting. You would just be activating non-used scripts and designations.

Bastila, Carth, and Malek are the models from KotOR I. Korriban is the original map found in KotOR I with changes. Most of KotOR II's Dantooine is from KotOR I.

In reality, KotOR II could have been a Large Expansion Pack.

Jae Onasi
09-04-2006, 04:38 PM
I imagine that Obsidian got LA/Bioware's express permission to use/leave some of that in the game. That may have showed up in some contract with Bioware and/or LA. And they're giving their source credit, obviously.

Let's turn this around--say you created a game. Would you like someone exporting your stuff to make another game without giving you credit or getting your permission? What if you only make Teen-level games, and someone ported your material to an M game? Your reputation could be affected.

LA wants control over their material, and I think that's reasonable.

09-04-2006, 08:59 PM

I was going to explain to each of you why you are wrong, but instead let me show you.... ;)


Case and point, there is a game called Postal 2, someone made a mod for it that allows you to play the main game, plus the expansions in one game, and use the expansion weapons in the original, it only requires you own both games for it work...

Now this modifies, two games, even though one is an expansion, its still considered another game... Because they worked independent of each other, meaning you couldnt play the first game, with the same .exe file as the second game...

Nor did it install in the same directory, it was an independant game.. A sequel... Much like kotor 1, and 2....


Now this is exactly what I am asking for, this author has got in no trouble for doing this, he just made you supply the needed files...

This mod was developed on the RWS site, they own the game, and did not care that he did this, because you had to own all of the games to use it anyways, which if anything bolstered their sales...

Go ahead look into the mod, all the press it got awards, etc...

Here is the mod of the year award it won...

BTW, Postal is one of the most awesome games ever made, you should try it out, if you havent, part 2 is the best though..

09-05-2006, 12:23 AM
That's one case but I will give you another one: the Morrowind/Oblivion mods. Even if the same company made both games (Bethesda) and even if they have released modding tools, they stricly forbid porting any assets from one game to another.

I'm not going to discuss the legal aspects of this on the boards for professional reasons but in any event, what other companies do and whether or not people got into legal trouble for this in the past doesn't matter here. Our forum rules are clear: we do not accept mods containing ported assets and we do not tolerate discussions about how to port assets from one game to another. This rule is there to stay and we will make no exceptions.

09-05-2006, 02:13 AM
That's one case but I will give you another one: the Morrowind/Oblivion mods. Even if the same company made both games (Bethesda) and even if they have released modding tools, they stricly forbid porting any assets from one game to another.

I'm not going to discuss the legal aspects of this on the boards for professional reasons but in any event, what other companies do and whether or not people got into legal trouble for this in the past doesn't matter here. Our forum rules are clear: we do not accept mods containing ported assets and we do not tolerate discussions about how to port assets from one game to another. This rule is there to stay and we will make no exceptions.

Thats fine, don't change your stance, but see that this doesnt fall into that category,..

I have never asked you to change your rules, only accept that this falls outside of them, its not a matter of how to accomplish this we all know how to do that, so what discussion of how?, and the mod would not contain any assets whatsoever, so there would be no assets being transferred, so as you see, this does not fall into that category..

It does however fall into the category of modding.. Which is what I thought we did here... ;)

As for morrowind, I modded for that game almost since it was released, I know all about morrowind modding, and quite frankly your response doesnt make sense, morrowind, and both expansions carried over data from one to the next, meaning it was all accessible anyways, so you didnt need to transfer assets as they were already present,..

So long as you owned the games of course...

And yes, you were allowed to use any data or script from morrowind to make mods for the expansions and vice versa..

You only had to own each of the games to be able to use mods that did so... Or else you couldnt load the .esp file because you didnt have the required .esm... ie, morrowind.esm, tribunal.esm, bloodmoon.esm....

Note Notice the statement "own all of the games", that is key difference we are debating, they allowed you to use data across the games, if you owned them all..

If not they were simply unusable, because the required data was missing...

So I hope this isnt what you were talking about, if so you know nothing of which you speak.. Because that was very clearly allowed, tolerated, and accepted...

If you meant between morrowind, and oblivion, then I can show you about 20 mods that use morrowind data in oblivion,....From icons, and meters, to items, and weapons,..

I even seen a mod that places the town of caldera in oblvion.. The person obviously ported that directly from morrowind, then updated the textures... It was too precise to be hand made, it was identical. There is a tool for doing this btw..

There is even a mod that is supposed to bring morrowind, tribunal, and bloodmoon into oblvion.. I doubt they will ever finish it, but they were supposed to be doing it....

So despite your claim that they supposedly strictly forbid doing it, you can go to their forums right now, and see mods that do it.. And they do monitor the forums, so they know whats going on...

So neither of those defenses have a leg a to stand on... As for it being against the rules, I think I explained quite clearly that it falls outside of that rule..

Then look at Grand Theft Auto, there is a mod that allows you to go to all three games, from San Andreas, to liberty city, and vice city,.. This mod is in the works too,, It jsut requires you own all three games..


Are you seeing the pattern yet.. This is totally acceptable everywhere else, with every other game, and you guys just wont admit it..

I could go on, and on showing cases of games being merged in this way.. And not once has there been a problem with doing so, because its not illegal if you own the games being merged... :P

Nor is the discussion of doing so for your information, tell me, if we did discuss this, what would happen, someone reads it who doesnt own one of the games then, they go gee, I wish I could merge these 2 games, but I only own one, so I dont have the required files to do so, so I cant. duh.. I mean fu*k... Come on ppl, I know you are smarter than this..

A two year old could figure this out.. Gee, I want to make chocolate milk, but I only own milk... Hmm, I guess i need to by some chocolate syrup/powder so I can merge them into chocolate milk... ;)

Which is a simple way of seeing this situation, I mean do you honestly think the Nestle is going to sue you for mixing their copyrighted chocolate syrup with milk.. No, they are not, you bought it, its yours, squirt it on your toes and suck it off for all they care..

I gotta go, this is making me angry...


Jae Onasi
09-05-2006, 02:37 AM
With respect, it doesn't matter what other companies and games allow. It's what LucasArts allows for Kotor and TSL. If LA says no porting, then that's the rules we all have to follow here.

Emperor Devon
09-05-2006, 02:59 AM
...and breaking the rules can result in the shutting down of LF and legal action against you.

09-05-2006, 03:14 AM
I guess, but according to those games eulas, its not allowed either, but you know what, some modders said fu*k it, and did it anyway, and no one said a word about it...

Plus I don't remeber george showing up and saying hey, don't merge my games now... You heard me ppl, dont..

I dont remember that meeting, I must have been absent that day...

Its just a part of the standard eula some lawyers typed up, morrowind the most modding friendly game there is has the same eula,. if look, it says right in it you cannot modify the game.. lol.. And it comes with a construction set so you can.... haha..

So its like I said, no files are being transferred, discussion of such is of no consequence, as we all mod the games, so cross modding discussion is irrelevant to someone who doesnt have both the games anyways, if you dont own it you obviously cant mod it...

So us discussing it really clearly doesnt matter..

But whatever, do it, or don't, go ahead bow down to some standard eula licensing agreement, rather than the common fact that those mean squat, unless the company is just being stupid about it..

I mean honestly, what do they care, they already made their money..

So you decide, Im sick of arguing common sense, they don't care, I don't care, if they do, woo, a cease and decist letter, ok, I'll cease... Oh, and good job being pricks to your customers btw, but I'll stop....(purchasing your games that is) what, oh I didnt say anything..

Seriously, I am done though, whatever dont make the mod, I assure you they don't care.. And if they do care, they will let you know quick fast and in a hurry.. It's just a letter that says stop..


...and breaking the rules can result in the shutting down of LF and legal action against you.

Tell em to ****ing bring it on, I own both games, I will straight ****ing embarrass them in court... I will be suing them by the end of that day.. I assure you..

And they can't shutdown a lucasarts sponsored mod forum, because you modded.. sorry.. they cant, thats the forums purpose..

But whatever..

09-05-2006, 12:45 PM
First of all, concerning TES, I was not talking about the expansions but porting assets from Morrowind to Oblivion. Btw, here are their forum rules concerning porting and they are pretty clear: http://www.elderscrolls.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=262788 (And get your facts straight: the Caldera mod uses assets from Oblivion, it is not a simple retexture.)

Tell em to ****ing bring it on, I own both games, I will straight ****ing embarrass them in court... I will be suing them by the end of that day.. I assure you..
I see that you've not been to court many times...

These forums will not change their rules for you and the fact that you own both games is irrelevant. If you're not happy with this and want to talk about porting assets from a game to another, then do it somewhere else. These forums are owned by a private corporation and if we want to ban discussions about porting, carrot tops or whatever, we can do it. Period.

This thread has outlived its usefulness (if it had any to begin with).


So as to not to bump a closed thread I'll post this here, HouseOfAmon you do not 'own' the games you simply have purchased a licence to use the software.

Your legal knowledge is astounding HouseOfAmon... :roleyess: -RH