About | HeinOnline Law Journal Library | HeinOnline Law Journal Library | HeinOnline

7 U. Balt. Intell. Prop. L.J. 23 (1998-1999)
The Devil and the Genie: Revisiting Lewis Galoob Toys, Inc. v. Nintendo of America, Inc.

handle is hein.journals/ubip7 and id is 27 raw text is: THE DEVIL AND THE GENIE:
Thu M. Nguyent
As the phenomenon of playing CD-ROM games with other
people over the Internet has increased, so has the emergence of software
programs that allow the game's players to construct a nearly invincible
hero. These so-called cheat programs create an experience of the game
very different from that expected by the legitimate players of the game
and unintended by the game's creators. As a result, the creators race to
update their programs in order to render them immune from these cheats.
Hackers, however, quickly and easily counteract these programs by
releasing updated cheat software in a matter of days.
Finding a technical solution to the cheating problem may take
time. In fact, a satisfactory solution via software may not even be
feasible -- at least not for a very long time. For these creators, bringing
legal action for copyright infringement against hackers who promulgate
the cheats is a more effective answer to the cheating problem. In section
I of my paper, I investigate the cheating phenomenon as applied to
Diablo, a CD-ROM role-playing game. In section II, I provide an
overview of the copyright law on derivative works, with an emphasis on
case law dealing with video game enhancing devices. In section III, I
argue that the legal standard that would likely be used in the derivative
work analysis is incorrect and thus conclude that a more reasonable
standard is appropriate, given the nature of the creative work that I
discuss. In section IV, I consider the policy reasons as to why cheat
programs should be deemed infringing, and thus enjoined.
A.     A Short History of Diablo, a Role-Playing Game
One can trace Diablo's roots to the early pencil-paper role-
playing game, or RPG, of the 1980's. In that era, Dungeons and
Dragons was the game of choice, and youths gathered around dining room
tables or grammar school yards during recess to engage in a fantasy game,
where a role of a twenty-sided die dictated the player's future. The player
t   Thu M. Nguyen is an attorney with the law firm of Loeb & Loeb in Los Angeles,
where she specializes in both entertainment law and intellectual property litigation.
She earned her J.D. from the U.C.L.A. School of Law in May 1998, and her B.A. in
English at U.C. Berkeley in December 1994.

What Is HeinOnline?

HeinOnline is a subscription-based resource containing nearly 3,000 academic and legal journals from inception; complete coverage of government documents such as U.S. Statutes at Large, U.S. Code, Federal Register, Code of Federal Regulations, U.S. Reports, and much more. Documents are image-based, fully searchable PDFs with the authority of print combined with the accessibility of a user-friendly and powerful database. For more information, request a quote or trial for your organization below.

Short-term subscription options include 24 hours, 48 hours, or 1 week to HeinOnline with pricing starting as low as $29.95

Contact us for annual subscription options:

Already a HeinOnline Subscriber?

profiles profiles most