Another day, another DMCA takedown notice sent to a Grand Theft Auto muddy. This time around, it’s virtual reality mod Luke Ross who says Take-Two has brought him a DMCA claim over his VR mods, even though he claims his work contains no copyrighted code or material. It’s just the latest in a long line of modders to be legally attacked by Take-Two over several GTA modifications.
Earlier today, Ross shared on his Patreon page and Twitter that he had just received a message from Patreon informing him that Take-Two had filed a copyright claim against his page and its contents. Ross makes virtual reality conversion mods for popular games like Grand Theft Auto V, Red Dead Redemption II, and Mafia II: Definitive Edition† All of these games are published by companies owned by Take-Two Interactive. Rockstar creates GTA and 2K publishes mafia† Ross says he’s been making VR conversion mods since 2017 and that this is the first time a company has sent him a legal notice.
According to the message Ross shared… Kotaku, he is asked to remove all copyrighted content from his page, but he has still not been told what specific content is causing him these legal problems. In Patreon’s post, Ross is told that even if he fights the DMCA takedown notice, which he is allowed to do, he will still be forced to remove all copyrighted content from his page. Failure to do so may result in his Patreon page and account being suspended.
Kotaku has contacted Patreon, Rockstar Games and Take-Two about the situation.
“I never misrepresent the games as my creations, don’t reuse any of the original software, assets, or IP in general, and my mods always need the original games to work,” Ross said. Kotaku† “So it’s just extra sales for the developer/publisher and the opportunity for the gamers to enjoy a kind of experience that they wouldn’t otherwise have on a flat screen.”
Frustrated and confused that Take-Two is coming after him, Ross explains that he gets numerous messages from fans of his mods saying that his VR conversions have convinced them to buy other games from Take-Two so they can get them in. can play virtual reality too.
Making things more frustrating is that Take-Two has yet to respond to Ross or explain what content needs to be removed. Ross “wishes” he could find out specifically what Take-Two wants removed, because if he doesn’t find out, it’s likely he’ll be forced to remove all of his Mafia, GTA, and Red Dead VR mods from his Patreon page. He will also have to remove all tutorials and other information related to his mods and Take-Two’s games.
“Luckily I have other mods for other games,” said Ross, “So my supporters won’t be left stranded, but it would be such a shame since every day new RDR2 fans come to my Patreon to experience the game “from the inside”.
Sadly for modders and fans of mods, this isn’t the first time Take-Two has sent lawyers and legal warnings to fans. For over a year† Take-Two has been on a legal rampagesending DMCA notices to many different GTA muds and fan projects†
The situation has had a chilling effect on the community, with at least one major mod closed by the creators for fear of running into legal hot water with Take-Two Interactive. While some have tried to fight against Take-Two and his lawyers, many of these modders are small independent developers or fans who lack the legal knowledge or resources to fight against a massive company like Take-Two, leading some modders to renounce the company’s games.
Meanwhile, companies love Bethesda hires modderscreate tools for their communities or provide them with ways to share their creations with console players† There’s a better way to deal with a dedicated player base creating new content for your games, Take-Two.
Update 06/07/2022 7:14 PM ET: Patreon attached to Kotaku that it had received a DMCA takedown from Take-Two targeting LukeRoss and was currently “handling that request”.
“Patreon has provided relevant information to the creator,” a Patreon representative told Kotaku† “We have requested additional clarifying information from the plaintiff which we will pass along, and we have offered to put the parties in direct contact with each other. We will continue to try to facilitate this conversation.”