We learned earlier this week that AM2R and Pokemon Uranium have been removed from the fan creation reward for The Game Awards 2016 out of the blue. To nobody’s surprise, it was completely Nintendo’s fault, but the story goes a bit wider than that. If Geoff Keighley had decided to keep those games in the show, there was actually a chance the entire The Game Awards 2016 show could have been shut down by Nintendo legally.
That’s obviously not water in which Geoff Keighley wants to tread, though he left some encouraging notes for Nintendo and fans to try and come to some common ground on the type of works benefit all involved. Here is what he officially stated in a Twitch stream:
“I think the big challenge that we face as a show is that everything in the show has to be legally cleared by the game companies in question. So one of the things that we go through is this clearance process where we have to get basically rights from everyone that owns the IPs of the games, but we don’t tell those companies in advance who’s nominated, and we find out together. It became clear once we announced the nominees that we weren’t going to be able to get clearance on those games from Nintendo, understandably so, it’s Nintendo IP, they’re trying to protect their IP, and those creators had sort of taken those games down. So from a show perspective, those games had been I think issued take downs, and if we include those in the show, then the show is potentially at risk for take down as well.
I think the fan creations are amazing things that fans do, and I hope that game companies and fans find ways to continue to create that content, and I would like nothing more than those creators and Nintendo to figure out a way to collaborate on content, but from a show perspective, it’s a bummer because I think those things are amazing efforts from fans, they created it, but at the end of the day, they are illegal use of IP and different game companies have different approaches to that… I think fan creations for me, we have to make sure those creations are legal creations or at least creations that are not subject to take down to be in the show. It was a bummer to see that happen, but it was something that unfortunately from a show perspective we had to remove them because we couldn’t obtain the clearance.”