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News: Paul & Fred have reached a settlement with Stardock!

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31  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: GoG SC Rerelease on: April 24, 2011, 06:52:37 am
Unfortunately, TFB isn't getting a cent out of this.  Cry  I e-mailed Paul and Fred and Paul about this replied that Atari's right to publish Star Control expired years ago and nobody contacted them about this.  They did contact GOG about this.  Not sure what their response was.  I bought the game before I asked them and I feel a bit guilty; it's nicely packaged and distribute through very fast and dedicated file servers.  TFB really deserves to get some profit; after all, they own the most important part of Star Control:  The content!
32  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Re: Activision's Star Control Flash Game on: October 05, 2010, 05:20:11 am
You're thinking Atari, they own the name. They took their rush-job flash game down ages ago, I think.

The company that made that flash game was a small dev studio called Iocaine Studios.  They were only given a few days to complete the project.
We were asked to develop a new game for them, but with a catch. This game had to be developed within 4 days…and we were asked to do it on a Thursday, which meant it would be due on Monday. The team panicked. There was no way we could make a new game from start to finish in only 4 days. We really needed the money though. Our debt was increasing and bills had to be paid. I sat the team down and discussed our options calmly while they all looked for sharp objects to throw at me.

The requirements for the game were pretty lenient. We decided to do it in Flash since a web game could be done in a short amount of time. There was a problem. We had never done anything in Flash before. Plus, I had to convince the team to work over the weekend, which was a life threatening task, but eventually I convinced them.

Friday morning was spent learning Flash and doing a rough design of the game. On Saturday, we built the engine, made some art assets, and started integrating the gameplay. By Sunday, we had something playable, but buggy. By Sunday night, the game was fun and pretty balanced. We submitted it to Atari on Monday and made enough to feed ourselves for another month. The game is called Star Control. We were going for a fighting game with ships. Something you can play with a friend sitting next to you for a few minutes at work. You can check it out at (keep in mind it was only done in 2 days)

It's hard for me to comment on this because I have no experience with professional game development and politics.  All I can say is that completing a 4-day project in 2 days with new development tools can be hectic for anyone.  They needed to put food on the table and accepted Atari's project.

They really have nothing to do with the Atari's trademark other than the fact that Atari asked them to do it quickly.  They seem to be very passionate about video games, going as far as taking a class, making a Half-Life mod and making another game called ThreadSpace: Hyperbol which is on Steam.  Their blog is down, so I referred to

Their website is
33  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Project6014 demo release on: October 01, 2010, 03:48:28 am
Sweet.  Just fired up the demo.  Awesome stuff. Cheesy
34  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Someone's selling UQM on eBay... on: August 12, 2010, 02:09:49 am
I feel the same way.  People shouldn't be making money off of this.  I have nothing against companies such as Ubuntu or Mozilla selling discs of their own products; the money spent in this case would go towards the development of their respective products.

It's just that there could be some legal technicalities that could complicate things such as the GPL.  These auctions could be flagged for removal.  However, from my personal experience, flagging is one of eBay's downfalls.  Of all the things I've flagged a very logn time ago, I don't recall any of them being taken down before the auction's end date.  TFB still owns the SC2 content and is simply allowing the UQM team to use and distribute it for a non-commercial purpose.  It sounds sufficient enough to show that the eBay auction is violating the content's CC license.
35  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Someone's selling UQM on eBay... on: August 12, 2010, 12:31:55 am
I've seen stuff on Amazon as shady as this.  Someone has been copying Wikipedia pages and selling them as a book on Amazon.  Someone made a book about a bunch of devs that make games for Activision.  It was suspicious to me so I looked up the ratings for that publisher.  That had some bad ratings revealing this.  Wikipedia text is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike and does not necessarily

I've noticed those eBay auctions too.  This user is selling other free software such as GIMP, Tux Racer, Battle for Wesnoth and even Open Office.  According to the GPL, selling GPL license software is allowed, provided they state that it's covered under the GPL.

To be fair, getting a truckload of good freeware on a disc may even be worth the money to some people, especially if they are having trouble finding good stuff or their Internet access is somewhat limited. In the case of UQM, the GPL allows distribution of the code in this manner. The non-commercial clause in the content licence, CC BY-NC-SA, is:
You may not exercise any of the rights granted to You in Section 3 above in any manner that is primarily intended for or directed toward commercial advantage or private monetary compensation.
Here, Section 3 is what permits you to distribute the work and derivatives thereof. A good lawyer might be able to make a convincing argument that the price, being as low as it is, is merely to cover the costs of collecting the software and disc duplication, although I'd say it's pretty clear that "private monetary compensation" is clearly involved.

Agreed.  The seller is also getting star ratings with each item sold.  Here's what the COPYING.txt states regarding the UQM content, if anyone's interested:

   The content -- voiceovers, dialogue, graphics, and music -- are
    copyright (C) 1992, 1993, 2002 Toys for Bob, Inc. or their
    respective creators.  The content may be used freely under the
    terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike
    2.5 license (included below, and also available at  The content
    may also be copied freely as part of a distribution of The Ur-Quan
36  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: NEWS: Toys for Bob go for a new Star Control and need your help (READ!) on: June 30, 2010, 06:14:59 pm
does the TFB website have an rss feed or something so I get an email when they update it??
A long time ago, I made a script that converts their news XML to RSS Format.
It's been over a year since they've updated the news page.
37  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Technical Issues / Re: Debug Key in UQM on: May 16, 2010, 08:53:59 pm
Awesome.  Works great.  Thanks everyone.
38  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Technical Issues / Debug Key in UQM on: May 08, 2010, 03:32:56 am
I remember a few years ago, I read some instructions and I added something to UQM 0.5.0 so that when I pressed F4, the flagship would be instantly upgraded and the spheres of influence would be revealed.  This wasn't intended for cheating as much as a way of testing a UQM build and any modifications.

I remember editing keys.cfg and adding the following line:
Debug: key F4

I've tried it with 0.6.2 and I haven't been able to do this.  I even copied the latest from SVN and copied over the exe files and content.  Does anyone else remember anything like this?

- Anthony
39  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Vote SC2 for PC Gamer Top 100 on: December 27, 2009, 05:26:11 am
PC Gamer magazine wants to list the top 100 PC games of all time chosen by readers in their March issue.  Their website for voting lists the Editorial Top 100, which lists Star Control II at #54.

The great thing is that you can select your top 5 games to vote for.  For example, you can choose Star Control at #1 and select 4 other games for the remaining 4 positions.  With the campaign for a new Star Control in progress, it would be great to say that Star Control II is one of the top 100 PC games of all time according to the March 2009 issue of PC Gamer.

The website is at

What are your thoughts and feelings about this?
40  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: A campaign for a new Star Control on: December 08, 2009, 03:08:52 am
For awhile I hoped the Genesis version of SC1 would make it to the virtual console and that would spark some interest in Star Control, but it seems the copyright to that is a big tangled mess.

I'm not sure if it would ever appear on Virtual Console.  The Genesis version of Star Control along with Accolade's other Genesis ports were unlicensed.  I'm not sure if Nintendo would let it appear on VC.  The Genesis version is slower and choppier then the PC version:
Comments by Fred Ford: We occasionally enjoyed a strategy game with crazy modifications to ships. There's nothing quite like a super-fast VUX that can turn on a dime. Of course, relics on every star make for very unbalanced and unpredictable games. So it didn't make sense for this to be an obvious option and thus we added it in as a cheat. I feel a little guilty that so many people like the Genesis version of SC1, because after we had completed essentially a bare bones port of the PC version in three months Accolade just wanted to publish the game. We wanted to optimize it for the Genesis to make it run at speed and add more console-like features. Sigh.
41  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: A campaign for a new Star Control on: December 07, 2009, 04:20:23 am
I think this campaign of collecting info for showing that a new Star Control game is profitable would be a great idea.

I wrote a few articles where either Star Control was mentioned in an article or someone in the game industry showed some support for Star Control that might be interesting:
Star Trek DAC is not Star Control
Star Control Influences in Spore?
If any game deserves an HD Remake...
Michael Pachter Says Star Control Has Potential
Infinite Space Compared to Star Control II
Blizzard Wanted to Copy Star Control?
Star Control III sounds like it could be pretty sweet
Duke Nukem Loves Star Control
If TFB's current project is a success, that will show that if they can pull that off, they can pull off a new Star Control game as well.

EDIT: Added Duke Nukem voice clip.
42  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: How did you find out about UQM? on: November 25, 2009, 04:37:54 am
While I was playing the DOS version, I read somewhere that there was a version of Star Control II that had voices and different music.  I was on an IRC channel and I asked about it and someone gave me the link to the UQM sourceforge page.
43  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / Starbase Café / Re: zarla sheenaza - a tribute to StarCon Goddess on: October 23, 2009, 03:02:29 am
Zarla is awesome.  She even made a DDR cartoon and added Star Control characters in it:
44  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Toys for Bob RSS on: August 16, 2009, 09:37:05 pm
I was talking about SC fans, not TFB... What I was saying is I don't think Activision would think it wise to allow TFB to create a sequel to Star Control II, in favor of fresh new games with modern gameplay.

Activision's current CEO (Bobby Kotick) only wants to publish games where obvious sequels can be made and push sales on as many platforms as possible.  The only real fresh new game Activision published is Prototype, and some people would say that it's just another trend in the "open world superpower" game.  Everything else was either canceled, moved to another publisher or is a sequel.
45  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Toys for Bob RSS on: August 03, 2009, 03:21:52 am
This would be a good idea if the TFB site was actually updated more than once twice a year.
Unfortunately, it is not.. so that RSS-scraper is not very useful Wink.

Agreeing with this.

I see what you mean.  Cheesy  Whenever news updates start popping up more frequently, the RSS feed will be ready.  Now to play the waiting game...
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