PC port of Catherine used a Github tool

Bomblord

Member
Jan 11, 2018
3,006
And what's the problem with it? Lot of people are talking about it, but I don't understand what's all this fuss about.

And what exactly is this tool doing? Isn't just resource packer/extractor?
It's heavily implied by the existence of the folder that they used an open source fan made tool in a commercial product without the legal rights to do it and without crediting the creator.
 

Nappael

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,883
And what's the problem with it? Lot of people are talking about it, but I don't understand what's all this fuss about.

And what exactly is this tool doing? Isn't just resource packer/extractor?
It's not licensed. If it was licensed under some kind of open source/public license there would be absolutely no problem with this as long as they follow whatever license that is (assuming MIT or similar. If they decided to go with a non-commercial license, then that brings its own problems). Open source projects get used in commercial work all the time.

It not being licensed at all means it's under the default copyright license, which means it should not be redistributed, used in commercial work without consent of the original creator, or modified as per the standard copyright agreement. Atlus/SEGA literally do not have permission to use it and include it with their release.
 
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Faabulous

Member
Oct 27, 2017
95
It's heavily implied by the existence of the folder that they used an open source fan made tool in a commercial product without the legal rights to do it and without crediting the creator.
Bolded doesn't really matter. Even if they did credit the creators it would still be illegal.

You see, that's the thing: It's not 'bad' or 'morally incorrect' to use open source code like this, it's straight up illegal with a lot of precedents. But yeah, it's proabbly not goin anywhere in this case in particular.
 

Burai

Member
Oct 27, 2017
605
Before I get my pitchfork out, is there any evidence that the developer didn't licence the tool? Just because it's in there doesn't mean they stole it.
 
OP
OP
cucholix

cucholix

Member
Oct 30, 2017
825
The OP that is literally one tweet with one paragraph? Yes, I damn well read it. :D Exactly what part of the OP answers my question? What makes the developers of these tools "fans", and fans of what, specifically?
Fans in the sense they use these tools for game modding, assets extraction etc. they are inteded for people that doesn't have the means to use official CriWare tools.
Fan: like not a corporation making money out of it.
 
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johan

Member
Oct 29, 2017
713
As for why the port shop used the tool instead an official CriWare tool: the tool on github might have worked better. Maybe the official tool was obtuse and the documentation only in Japanese, who knows.

To everyone that pointed out to me that no license means pretty protective license: thanks! Learned something new today. I do suppose that by uploading it to github the author's intent was to share it with anybody, but that's an assumption.
 

asmith906

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,593
Bolded doesn't really matter. Even if they did credit the creators it would still be illegal.

You see, that's the thing: It's not 'bad' or 'morally incorrect' to use open source code like this, it's straight up illegal with a lot of precedents. But yeah, it's proabbly not goin anywhere in this case in particular.
Wouldn't Sega just write the creator a check.
 

Weltall Zero

Member
Oct 26, 2017
8,920
Madrid

Prophet Steve

Member
Oct 26, 2017
355
As for why the port shop used the tool instead an official CriWare tool: the tool on github might have worked better. Maybe the official tool was obtuse and the documentation only in Japanese, who knows.

To everyone that pointed out to me that no license means pretty protective license: thanks! Learned something new today. I do suppose that by uploading it to github the author's intent was to share it with anybody, but that's an assumption.
Yeah it often happens that the author intents to share and just puts no licensing info. However, by default it is pretty restrictive licensing like as when you would put a photo online you don't need to put licensing info to keep people from using your photos for other things.

But is definitely is sloppy to use unlicensed work, it is a big risk to do so.
 

Nappael

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,883
As for why the port shop used the tool instead an official CriWare tool: the tool on github might have worked better. Maybe the official tool was obtuse and the documentation only in Japanese, who knows.

To everyone that pointed out to me that no license means pretty protective license: thanks! Learned something new today. I do suppose that by uploading it to github the author's intent was to share it with anybody, but that's an assumption.
It often is the case. A lot of developers don't fully understand licensing, or just happen to forget. Particularly those who do it as a hobby.

It really wouldn't surprise me if this was just some community developed thing that was meant to be shared, but the developer didn't put a single thought into the license.
 

Bomblord

Member
Jan 11, 2018
3,006
No, they're not. They've made a tool that allows extracting of game assets from Criware audio / video. That doesn't make them modders themselves, or indeed "fans".



So every open source developer is a "fan". Gotcha.
Honestly I don't care either way on whether or not this is something bad but why are you so hung up on the word "fan". Does it really have any bearing on the accusation?

Edit: Guess it does the title is now changed.
 

Nappael

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,883
Is that due to the tool used mentioned in the OP?
Almost definitely not, no.

However, you could argue that it's another thing to add to the list of things the porting house fucked up on (not checking the license before using it).

Cool that the dev is okay with it though. Pretty much confirms his original intent was for it to not be under a restrictive license.
 

Weltall Zero

Member
Oct 26, 2017
8,920
Madrid
Honestly I don't care either way on whether or not this is something bad but why are you so hung up on the word "fan". Does it really have any bearing on the accusation?
In an ideal, logical world? No. In the real world, where narrative often boils down to "corporations" vs "fans"? You bet your ass it colors the conversation. The title makes it seem as if the Catherine port uses something made specifically for Catherine, by Catherine fans, and taking advantage of their hard work. In truth it's a generic tool for Criware video extraction.
 

johan

Member
Oct 29, 2017
713
Yeah it often happens that the author intents to share and just puts no licensing info. However, by default it is pretty restrictive licensing like as when you would put a photo online you don't need to put licensing info to keep people from using your photos for other things.
It's a good thing

But is definitely is sloppy to use unlicensed work, it is a big risk to do so.
Certainly, and if the porter did not forget to remove the tool source nobody would've known, haha.

It often is the case. A lot of developers don't fully understand licensing, or just happen to forget. Particularly those who do it as a hobby.

It really wouldn't surprise me if this was just some community developed thing that was meant to be shared, but the developer didn't put a single thought into the license.
I've put stuff on github and always pick MIT, but I just like having a neat github page. If I were to omit a license my intent would most certainly be "do fuck all you want with it"
 

Cian

Member
Feb 17, 2018
202
Cross posting from the Neural Network upscaling thread, it appears that the team used Waifu2x, an art upscaling tool to bump up the resolution of 2d art assets in the game.
So uh, for everyone saying devs should use this for remasters, well, all evidence points to the team that ported Catherine to PC having used Waifu2x to upscale the 2d assets.


Comparison of new in-game assets vs Waifu2x rescales of the original resolution assets:
https://twitter.com/PastelChum/status/1083432382039031808 (Linked because NSFW)
This wouldn't case any legal issues because of Waifu2x's licencing agreement, but it does paint an interesting picture of the development of this port, that the original art assets were not available/they found it more convenient to upscale the art through an external program for whatever reason.
 

Zen Hero

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,981
Atlus not following proper licensing procedure is amateurish but whatever. The developer doesn't seem to mind so I don't see why anyone else should mind either.

As for why Atlus chose to use an open source tool rather than official criware tools, who knows. There could be any number of reasons. Maybe the open source tool is just better and more convenient. Maybe they don't know very much about the official tools. Maybe they have a hard time communicating with Atlus Japan. Software development is hard, and I have sympathy for them.
 

phanboy4

Member
Oct 27, 2017
189
Seriously, it is amateurish at best, they basically used a reverse engineering tool to get the Criware assets they should have total access in the first place, they are not some anonymous modders in the internetz. On the top of that they leave the tool in the game folder -___-

As a professional (non-game) developer, I think this is very much a mountain being made out of what is barely a molehill. Nothing about this genuinely reflects on their technical competence.

The licensing thing is maybe a potential issue in the theoretical sense (for the owner of the Github repo mostly, not really Atlus/Sega/the developer), that's about it, and it's certainly not wrong or immoral to use publicly-available code, unless the license explicitly places restrictions on how you use it.
 
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Sixfortyfive

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,563
In an ideal, logical world? No. In the real world, where narrative often boils down to "corporations" vs "fans"? You bet your ass it colors the conversation. The title makes it seem as if the Catherine port uses something made specifically for Catherine, by Catherine fans, and taking advantage of their hard work. In truth it's a generic tool for Criware video extraction.
I have no idea how you managed to read this much from that phrasing.
 

Echo

Member
Oct 29, 2017
5,206
Mt. Whatever
If you think that Atlus made this decision, you couldn't be more wrong. It was clearly made by Sega using their power as parent company. lol
Good. Hopefully SEGA keeps forcing the issue, until the stupid old men at Atlus are blue in the face and give up on whatever asinine ideals compel them to make 3rd party exclusives without funding from the system holder.
 

Faabulous

Member
Oct 27, 2017
95
As a professional (non-game) developer, I think this is very much a mountain being made out of what is barely a molehill. Nothing about this genuinely reflects on their technical competence.

The licensing thing is maybe a potential issue in the theoretical sense (for the owner of the Github repo mostly, not really Atlus/Sega/the developer), that's about it, and it's certainly not wrong or immoral to use publicly-available code, unless the license explicitly places restrictions on how you use it.
Actually it's just the opposite. I'am also a professional programmer (non-gaming) and unless you really love lawsuits you shouldn't use any code that's isn't explicitly licensed in a way that can cover your ass.

This is sloppy and unprofessional. Doesn't really matter and this specific case, but in many other settings (this is really prevalent in big-tech corporations) this would be a very expensive lawsuit. The company I've has been sued before because of sloppy use of open source code as if it's 'free to use in every case' when it very much isn't.
 

mute

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,288
Atlus not following proper licensing procedure is amateurish but whatever. The developer doesn't seem to mind so I don't see why anyone else should mind either.

As for why Atlus chose to use an open source tool rather than official criware tools, who knows. There could be any number of reasons. Maybe the open source tool is just better and more convenient. Maybe they don't know very much about the official tools. Maybe they have a hard time communicating with Atlus Japan. Software development is hard, and I have sympathy for them.
Doesn't seem like Atlus had much of a part in this.
 

Sixfortyfive

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,563
I seem to recall the PC port of Puyo Puyo Tetris also having a lot of sloppy asset conversions in it.

I wonder why the original files and tools aren't being used for these Sega PC ports.
 

Prophet Steve

Member
Oct 26, 2017
355
It's a good thing



Certainly, and if the porter did not forget to remove the tool source nobody would've known, haha.



I've put stuff on github and always pick MIT, but I just like having a neat github page. If I were to omit a license my intent would most certainly be "do fuck all you want with it"
Oh yeah, I do agree it is a good thing. Just so happens that it usually is not the intent of people when they put things on Github.
 

test_account

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,496
Almost definitely not, no.

However, you could argue that it's another thing to add to the list of things the porting house fucked up on (not checking the license before using it).

Cool that the dev is okay with it though. Pretty much confirms his original intent was for it to not be under a restrictive license.
Understood. I guess the guy was wondering about the specific case in question (using this tool) and if that was any problem in it self.
 

chrominance

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,104
There seem to be two separate issues here: the legality of including the source code of a tool Sega/Atlus/TEA doesn't own the rights or license to, which is a technical/procedural concern; and the implications of the porting team using off-the-shelf third-party software to unpack and uprez game assets, which points to a quick and dirty port where quality doesn't seem to have been as high a priority as we'd like.

I feel like the legal issue is important to SEGA/Atlus/TEA and the creators of the third-party tool, but I don't know that it really affects anyone here. The latter concern, that this points to the porting process being done on the cheap with very little support from the original developers/publishers, concerns me more. Especially given that other Sega PC ports have been decent to great, it does raise questions about why Catherine is the way it is.
 

Castor

Member
Oct 29, 2017
235
New York City
It seems pretty telling to me that for many people the response is either pitchforks or feeling indignant that this is even being spoken about. As for the news itself even if the developer be is cool with it I think this is pretty side eye worthy that a shortcut like this was even necessary in the first place and it's a little annoying that people are going all Bethesda as if their experience matters in the greater context of how the game generally performs .
 

Nappael

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,883
I definitely didn't read the original title as "Catherine fans". That said, this weird description of "fans" as anyone who contributes something not for profit definitely doesn't sit well with me and I'm happy the title was changed.

It seems pretty telling to me that for many people the response is either pitchforks or feeling indignant that this is even being spoken about. As for the news itself even if the developer be is cool with it I think this is pretty side eye worthy that a shortcut like this was even necessary in the first place and it's a little annoying that people are going all Bethesda as if their experience matters in the greater context of how the game generally performs .
The thing is, there's so many potential reasons why this could have been used that I don't think we can really get much from it. The original tool might have had awful/nonexistent English documentation for all we know.

However, given they have also used Waifu2x to upscale their art assets, I am led to believe that maybe the porting house didn't have high resolution assets and only were given whatever were in the original release. Atlus Japan almost definitely would've had high res assets at some point I would've imagined, so maybe there was a breakdown in communication there but whatever.