After the release of Pokemon Uranium just a few days ago, the development team removes the fan-made game due to multiple takedown notices from Nintendo.
Fan-made video game projects are usually made with the best of intentions. This was certainly the case with the recently-released Pokemon Uranium, which was developed over the past nine years by fans and released free of charge. But as it is with unofficial projects that are based on popular IPs, various legal and copyright issues will inevitably force fan-made games to be taken down, and unfortunately, this case is no exception.
Just days after Pokemon Uranium was released to massive fanfare, the fan-led development team behind the game have taken it down due to being notified of “multiple takedown notices” from lawyers who represent Nintendo of America. While no one has been “personally been contacted” and no one has received any cease and desist letters just yet, it was “clear what [Nintendo’s] wishes are”, and the Pokemon Uranium development team intended to “respect those wishes” while minimizing any potential risk of a lawsuit.
Despite the download links being taken down, the development team did stress that it does not have any “connection to fans who reupload the game files to their own hosts”, and advised players to be wary of downloading the game from unofficial sources. Finally, the team stated that while the game may no longer be available for download, there will be continued updates regarding Pokemon Uranium-related news.
While it is disappointing to see the demise of a fan project like Pokemon Uranium, it isn’t the first time that Nintendo have forced fan-made games to be closed down, something that the fans behind the recent Metroid 2 remake project are well aware of. Indeed, Nintendo issuing out takedown notices to Pokemon Uranium isn’t too surprising. The fan-game was downloaded over 1.5 million times in its few days of availability, and given that this could have the potential to affect the sales of future Pokemon titles, it makes sense why Nintendo would want to shut down Pokemon Uranium as soon as possible.
As much of a shame it was to see nine years worth of work being taken down in just a few days, Pokemon fans won’t be short of games to play. With many gamers worldwide still currently enamored by Niantic’s mega-successful Pokemon GO, as well as the upcoming November release of Pokemon Sun and Moon, there will be more than enough Pokemon-related titles to keep players busy for a while.
Pokemon Uranium was available for PC, but has since been taken down.