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Google Play-giarism: It's not tracing, it's referencing!


Part two of what I expect to be a very short-lived series. 
Read part one here: Google Play-giarism: Knockoff King of Fighters 

I've been very on and off when it comes to drawing as a hobby. During the earlier half of this year, I tried to make an effort in practicing how to draw on the computer using this cheap graphics tablet that I've had lying around the house for quite a while now. I haven't really done much past June. The last thing I did was this drawing of Valerie from Pokémon X/Y.

As you can see, I've got a long way to go before this is done. The outlines are rough and not yet finalised, it's still lacking in detail and I still don't know how to colour properly and efficiently. I gotta get around to finishing it someday and overall get better at this. She's supposed to be holding a Poké Ball. For some strange reason, I keep gravitating towards Pokémon gym leaders whenever I'm looking for a character to draw.

While practising and searching for better drawing techniques, I suddenly took an interest on reading about art plagiarism. As someone who's just starting out of course I often looked at or even tried to copy already existing works. I realized that that might not be the best way to go about things if you really want to get good. Using an image as reference is one thing, but tracing over or completely copying an image or even just a part of it is another.

Poses are another thing I greatly pondered on because you really can't claim ownership of certain poses, especially common poses that almost everyone does and aren't that distinct. I haven't really found a definitive answer to it, but I figured that it's alright to recreate a pose from a piece of work so long as it's, of course, not a direct copy or trace and that it's not a pose that people immediately attribute to said work, like a character's trademark pose for example. Stuff from JoJo or Power Rangers come to mind.

Wait. What was this blog post about again? Right, Google Play Store knockoffs. Well in relation to that, here are some examples of how not to use an image as reference.

Horde of Heroes

Clearly inspired from Castle Crashers, looking at the body proportions in addition to the helmet shape and design (which itself was based on the classic Knights Templar design).

While I could say that the pose came from this knight's pose in the lobby screen, it could've been from any raised shield, charging medieval knight man picture out there, to be honest. The game itself doesn't look too shabby though.

Battle Nations

Doesn't really require much explanation. It really does look like they drew (or traced) the 2D art themselves, though it still doesn't make it any less of a ripoff. I wonder if the non-TF2 characters are also borrowed from somewhere else? Like with the previous game, the game itself doesn't look half bad. It's some sort of turn based strategy game.

Battle Of The Saints II

Just one look and I can already tell it's from Warcraft. That's basically the Dranei logo with the bottom portion cut out. Crossed axes and "shield" from the Orcs logo. Frost marks and horizontal rod from the Scourge logo.

Looking at the screenshots, the requisite sexy female RPG character also looks familiar. Her outfit is incredibly similar to the one worn by the requisite sexy female RPG character from Shaiya, some free-to-play MMO. I only know about that game because every other internet cafe here had that poster. Gameplay-wise, it looks like your typical Diablo clone.

How to Train a Draco: The Game

It's not just fellow games that get copied, of course. The title of this one sounds like an M-rated Harry Potter fanfiction. Welp, there it is. Why am I not surprised?

Not exactly the same pose but clearly inspired from it. Note the visible tail, symmetrical wing position and the asymmetrical arm position. Toothless is in a more descending angle in the original.

Oh, what's that in the background? It's twin-headed dragon, skinny dragon and chubby dragon.

Angry Cats

Aside from swapping and editing their colour scheme, they also decided to steal another image for Jerry, which is kind of weird since he's already doing a similar pose in the one where they took the Tom image from. Also notice how Tom's left arm, right index fingertip and the end of his right foot are hidden from view because the original image didn't draw those parts as well.

Super mary Go

Raccoon mario from the box art of Super Mario Bros. 3, but the shape of the legs suggests that it was traced from the New Super Mario Bros. 2 version instead. This thing's a Flappy Bird, by the way. I can probably make a whole article on Mario clones, but there's really not much to be said about them really. But you gotta give credit to the one guy who had the balls to just straight up name their game "Super Mario". Now that I think about it, you could actually do that because the original was called "Super Mario Bros". Sleazy but smart.

Super Sonic Runner

I'm really starting to run out of things to say about these. I will give them extra points for ripping art from a not so famous Sonic game, Sonic Rivals. It took me a bit longer to find the exact images that they used. Unlike...

Vampires: Todd and Jessica

This is literally the first thing that comes up when you type "Twilight" on Google image search.

Manga Rush

You know, considering that one of the key selling points of the game is to play as your favourite anime characters, there really was no point in mixing and matching them like this. I gotta say though, something about the combination of short pink haired anime girl and Attack on Titan uniform is really doing it for me.

The game itself uses what is either fan-made or stolen anime game sprites. The Naruto one on the sample screenshot is clearly a rip from Naruto Shippuden on the GBA.

Contra Costa

Nuff sayd.

Tune in next time where we'll talk about game titles, sound-alikes and word salad!

Just a random thing I'd like to point out:

There's quite a bunch of these RPGs that put a frame around their icon just so that the girl's boobs will pop out of it, giving it a sort of 3D effect. Xich Bich. Heh.

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About Luna Syone of us since 9:33 AM on 07.06.2013

This is the part where I say something about myself. You can read it if you want to.

I still remember the first time I went to Destructoid. When one of the very first articles that greeted me was something about an erotic Minecraft tribute to a certain someone, I knew right away that this was the kind of gaming community that I would proudly associate myself with.

After about a year of lurking, I finally joined the community a few weeks before E3 2013 because I thought it would be cool to make cheeky jokes about the Xbox One. Now, I'm still here, making dumb comments and posting fan art whenever I feel like it.

I enjoy weird-ass Japanese games like Ace Attorney, Bayonetta and Yakuza. My favourite genre in the videoed games are the games where you're playing a role in the game you're playing and numbers come out when you hit the guy on the screen. I also like those games where you have a guy with a sword and you run around and it's super hard and you feel bad about yourself because you die all the time.

I dislike military first-person shooters and shooters in general mostly because I suck at them. I hardly play online multiplayer games because I'm shy. My favourite Pokémon is Minccino because look at this animated sprite:
But I think I like Emolga more now because:

My other interests include traditional art, graphic design, 2D animation, wrestling, Harry Potter and giant robots. I like pizza, noodles, ice cream and you.

Some stuff I wrote

10 Things about me
My favourite game
The things you see on the internet...


01: Knockoff King of Fighters
02: It's not tracing, it's referencing!
03: Totally Not Street Fighter IV [三国演武]

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