Atlus Communicates about Emulation the Interest of PC Ports

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

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Atlus has recently published a message about the DMCA takedown notice involving the emulation developer group RPCS3 and their Patreon page. Atlus wants to provide a smooth experience for their games and thinks that emulation would deliver a disappointing result. The company claims to be aware of people who want the games to be ported on PC, but still considers that the best way to experience Persona 5 is to play the game on the PlayStation4 and PlayStation 3. While Atlus claims to be willing to listen to users feedback, it is currently impossible to leave a comment on the page, but you can still send a private message on the official Twitter account if you want to givethem your opinion on the matter. Over the last few years, the sales of Japanese games have been constantly increasing on PC, with Nier Automata selling above 620,000 units according to Steam Spy. Publishers like Koei Tecmo, Square Enix, and Capcom have shown interest for the PC market. Recently SEGA ported Bayonetta and Vanquished to PC with some favorable results as well. Which has some fans asking what Atlus is waiting for. After barring players from streaming Persona 5, Atlus expresses again its will to retain control on their products, but is it for the best? Opting for a world of law might not be the right move.

About Fabrice Stellaire

Fabrice Stellaire is a french gamer who started playing on an Amstrad CPC that ran tapes. He then got one with floppy disks and started playing on a gameboy pocket in 1998. Later, he discovered playstation and playstation 2 games, before moving to PC and 3ds. He likes most of games genres except sports and car games.Among his favourite games are Fallou ,Baldu'sgate, Final Fantasy 8, Vagrant Story or Shin Megami Tensei games.




  • Nin

    That’s a pretty half-backed excuse. No one would blame the game itself if the emulating program couldn’t play it properly.

    • Yukimura Sanada

      You underestimate the stupidity of the people and of the Internet.

    • Plus the stupidity of atlus.

    • No_Good_Names_Ever

      Anyone bothering with PS3 and PS4 emulation knows what they’re doing since everyone else would be too scared of getting caught.

    • Santa Claus

      Haha, Yeah…………What Yukimura said. You be surprise how little there are of discend people out there in both real life and internet life ^^; Its the generation of idiocy pardon my french.

  • Mr0303

    It’s in their rights to protect their IP. Emulation can be useful for older games, but for newer releases it’s likely used for piracy, which is the real reason they requested the takedown.

    • KagatoAsuka

      People showed it working with their own dumped non-pirated copy of the game as a proof of concept and to show how far emulation and work on the project had come they aren’t protecting their IP they are shutting down someones hard work that really has nothing to do with their product other than some people used it as a tool to run the PS3 version some that legally owned it and some otherwise.

    • Mr0303

      They used the game to advertise their product – the emulator – on Patreon and thus profit from it. If I create a machine that turns cola into water and set up a Patreon I can’t use a can of Pepsi with the branding to demonstrate that my product works. So they are protecting their IP.

      Also their iso may be a legal one, but it would be quite easy to copy it or obtain another one elsewhere, so Atlus possibly saw this as piracy and potential losses should they ever decide to make a PC port of the game.

    • But they use many games not just Persona 5 so do you feel that everyone should sue them?

    • DOUGHNUTS ARE AMAZING

      Atlus should be officially releasing their Japanese games on PC, that way they wouldn’t have to worry about emulation of their titles on there. Piracy is slightly different though, as while the rate would decrease (as many people would support a legit Steam release) but it wouldn’t be eliminated altogether due to other factors.

    • Mr0303

      That’s a business decision that Atlus has to make.

      I never said that this would eliminate piracy. In fact a PC port would likely increase its rate. Atlus are not losing money from piracy (nobody is), but this may be part of their reasoning for the takedown, which legally they have the right to do.

    • So they are stupid.

    • Miqubi

      No they don’t have the right to “legally”, atlus issued a DMCA for the patreon account not the emulator itself, and even if they DMCA’d the emulator this is like trying to sue microsoft because you can play pirated games on windows, apart from being a fruitless endevour anyway since the emulator is open source.
      They’d have the right if they were distributing illegal copies of their game or using assets from P5 for something.

      At best they can make a case for the screenshots and everything else mentioning persona 5 and try to spin and they were trying to use the playability of P5 as a selling point to donate money to patreon, but the screenshots usage and stuff should also fall under fair use, since they’re simply informing people that they can emulate that game (although every mention of the game has been purged just to be safe), you can bet Nintendo would have obliterated CEMU by now due to Zelda if they could.

      That said usually if you’re legally in the right or in the wrong doesn’t even matter when it comes of this stuff, you usually threaten to take legal action regardless because it’s expensive and the other party hopefully is scared to bleed money.

    • Mr0303

      “No they don’t have the right to “legally”” – to legally what? Full sentences, please.

      Yes, they issued the DMCA because the emulator guys used their IP to promote their own work and profit from it. I don’t see the issue here.

    • Miqubi

      No, they mentioned that the emulator can run said games, and provided information regarding the improvements made to run said games, this is no different than when Bleem! advertised with screenshots that their emulator could run games on the packaging itself, this falls under fair use and a judge has already ruled on this. (Sony back then has lost all cases against bleem)

      The usage of screenshots and information like they did is already acknowledged as fair use

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bleem!

      Atlus is not legally in the right, but as I told you previously this matters little in these situations.

      If as you said Atlus was in the right, every single emulator on the face of the earth would have been wiped out.

    • Mr0303

      It is not the same situation. Looking at Patreon’s Terms of Use, Atlus has every right to file the DMCA featuring the copyrighted content. I’m not exactly sure what screen shots they used and whether this included the P5 logo or anything else, but given that the DMCA was upheld I’d say they had a valid case. The RPCS3 guys accepted those terms when they created their Patreon, so legally Atus has the right to issue the DMCA.

    • Miqubi

      The DMCA wasn’t upheld. patreon didn’t go through with it and instead contacted the developer, then patreon and the developer decided that to accomodate the situation and to be extra safe the former would remove any mention of Persona 5 regardless of the validity of the DMCA or not, if the DMCA was upheld the patreon account would have been gone, because THAT was what Atlus wanted.

      Again , as long as the developers of the emulator don’t use Atlus assets or whatever, they are entitled to the use of screenshots as they fall under fair usage, they could potentially create a commercial emulator and sell it with screenshots of catherine, demon’s souls and p5 and it still would be fair usage (because that is what Bleem! was)

      To the point of sounding like a broken record, a judge has already ruled over this and again it matters not if you’re legally in the right or not with this stuff, the fear of an unsustainable legal battle is what matters, not something else.

    • Mr0303

      OK, so Patreon warned the developer and the dev decided to remove any related images in order to keep their Patreon account in case it was upheld. This still means that Atlus had a valid case.

      I’m not sure if the Bleem case is applicable here given that the IP owner is not in direct competition with the emulator and the latter can cause them to break any potential exclusivity deal they have with Sony. We can’t know unless this actually goes to court, but I doubt either party wants that to happen.

    • Miqubi

      Patreon refused to comply with atlus and said they wouldn’t remove the page because it doesn’t infringe on Atlus’ IP, knowing this they simply asked to remove the screenshots just to peacefully resolve the situation.

      Bleem! was compatible with sony 1st party games (and it was advertised on the list of games it could run), if anything it’s even a stronger case, sony was both competition and IP owners of various games.

    • Mr0303

      “Patreon refused to comply with atlus and said they wouldn’t remove the page because it doesn’t infringe on Atlus’ IP” – yeah, citation needed on that one. If they knew it didn’t infringe on Atlus’ IP why request the removal of the screenshots in the first place? They didn’t take down the page right away because it’s not in their interest to do so – they profit from every active Patreon account.

      Bleem was direct competition to Sony, which lead to the “David vs Goliath” decision of the judge. This is not the case for Atlus and I don’t think the case would be applicable. Again – they could be making Atlus break an exclusivity deal which is a different issue altogether.

    • Miqubi

      Atlus doesn’t have an exclusivity deal, and I doubt that would be broken by a third party, again the case was not valid,

      https://www.reddit.com/r/emulation/comments/72lo12/statement_atlus_usa_attempts_to_shut_down/

      “Patreon responded to this request by stating they do not believe that removing the Patreon page entirely to be reasonable, given that the page itself does not specifically infringe on Atlus’s IP, and that they believe the emulator itself falls under fair use. After Patreon declined to remove the Patreon page”

      they simply decided to ask to remove any mention to peacefully resolve the situation

      “In discussion with the very helpful people over at Patreon we have decided to proceed with caution. Per the request of Patreon, we removed every single reference to Persona 5 on the Patreon page itself and rpcs3.net. This seems to have resolved the situation.”

      Again with this stuff it doesn’t matter if you are right or wrong you seem to keep skipping what I write about it, the problem isn’t if atlus is right or wrong, the problem is if one of the parties is scared about a potentially unsustainable legal recourse.

    • Miqubi

      https://www.reddit.com/r/emulation/comments/72lo12/statement_atlus_usa_attempts_to_shut_down/

      “Patreon responded to this request by stating they do not believe that removing the Patreon page entirely to be reasonable, given that the page itself does not specifically infringe on Atlus’s IP, and that they believe the emulator itself falls under fair use. After Patreon declined to remove the Patreon page”

      they decided to ask to remove any mention to peacefully resolve the situation

      “In discussion with the very helpful people over at Patreon we have decided to proceed with caution. Per the request of Patreon, we removed every single reference to Persona 5 on the Patreon page itself and rpcs3.net. This seems to have resolved the situation.”

      Again with this stuff it doesn’t matter if you are right or wrong you seem to keep skipping what I write about it, the problem isn’t if atlus is right or wrong, the problem is if one of the parties is scared about a potentially unsustainable legal recourse.

      I don’t think atlus has an exclusivity deal, you don’t go around writing this when you have an exclusivity deal, even if they’ll never port it and it’s PR talk

      “We understand that many Persona fans would love to see a PC version. And while we don’t have anything to announce today, we are listening! For now, the best way to experience Persona 5 is on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3.”

      or saying you’d like to see the game ported (SEGA EU), and if they did a third party wouldn’t break the deal between sony and atlus, that’s a bit reaching.

      edit: previous message detected as spam

    • Mr0303

      Atlus’ position seems to be the following:

      “We kindly ask that you remove both for this reason – to make Persona 5
      work on the emulator, the user has to circumvent our DRM protections.
      The following blog post provides specific instructions for “dumping the
      disc or PSN download” and discusses how Patreon finding [sic]
      contributed to this breakthrough: [link since removed].”

      So they had an issue with the actual instructions RPCS3 team provided for copying the game. I’m not sure about the legalities of the situation, but Patreon did ask them to remove any references to P5. I suppose the screenshots were fair use, but Patreon was worried about the potential legal issues of those instructions.

      “the problem isn’t if atlus is right or wrong, the problem is if one of
      the parties is scared about a potentially unsustainable legal recourse.” – how is that a problem? If they are indeed infringing on copyright then they should expect legal issues.

      “I don’t think atlus has an exclusivity deal” – that’s your speculation and you can’t possibly know for certain. My point was that the circumstances are quite different from the case you mentioned.

    • Miqubi

      “that’s your speculation and you can’t possibly know for certain. My point was that the circumstances are quite different from the case you mentioned.”

      No that is YOUR speculation, you brought up imaginary exclusivity deals, your quote below:

      “Again – they could be making Atlus break an exclusivity deal which is a different issue altogether.”

      I replied to your speculation saying it was likely wrong and said why, but my rebuttal is based on what Atlus and sega eu said, wouldn’t even have touched the subject otherwise.

      “how is that a problem? If they are indeed infringing on copyright then they should expect legal issues”
      legal issues would come after a trial, an expensive trial, that the person/people in question would have to sustain in order to reach said conclusion, so unless you have money you can’t really cause those “legal issues”, that is why it is usually standard practice to threten to go to court or abuse DMCA the other party isn’t likely to enter an expensive trial.
      Not every has the money to properly defend themselves in court, so you usually comply or try to reach a middleground (like in this case) regardless if you’re right or wrong.

    • Mr0303

      “No that is YOUR speculation, you brought up imaginary exclusivity deals” – it’s almost like an exclusive could have and exclusivity deal! How novel! My overall point was that if such deal existed this could be a contributing factor in the potential lawsuit and your response was “I don’t think atlus has an exclusivity deal”. That’s simply avoiding the issue and the speculation was on your part as you addressed the game specifically, while I talked in general terms (notice the word “could”).

      “Not every has the money to properly defend themselves in court, so you
      usually comply or try to reach a middleground (like in this case)
      regardless if you’re right or wrong.” – so one side had more money than the other. This is still not a problem in my eyes – all I care about is who is in the right. I cannot automatically assume Atlus is in the wrong because they are the big guy here.

    • Miqubi

      I didn’t avoid the issue, I underlined the reasons why I don’t thinkk your speculation is right, which non-standard behaviour, you don’t talk about ports if you have an exclusivity deal, no company does that.

      I didn’t say Atlus are the bad guys because they have more money, I answered your question as to why generally it isn’t a matter of simply being “right or wrong”, if you’re right but you don’t have the money you won’t go to court and you’ll take measure to avoid it.

      I don’t know if you are being intentially obtuse on both of those cases.

    • Mr0303

      They can talk about ports all they want as long as they don’t do them the deal is upheld. And again I didn’t specifically mentioned that I think Atlus has or hasn’t an exclusivity deal – I said that if they did it would contribute to the legal case. If you want me to make it even more abstract here goes – if a publisher has an exclusivity deal that the emulator company makes them break it could be used as a legal argument in court. No speculation here.

      “I didn’t say Atlus are the bad guys because they have more money, I
      answered your question as to why generally it isn’t a matter of simply
      being “right or wrong”, if you’re right but you don’t have the money you
      won’t go to court and you’ll take measure to avoid it.” – OK, and I explicitly told you that I don’t care about that aspect of the discussion (and you have the nerve to accuse me of being intentionally obtuse). I care who is in the right here.

    • Miqubi

      yes I have the nerve because you cannot defend yourself if you don’t have money is not a hard concept to grasp 🙂 so yes I accuse you of being intentionally obtuse

      you also say that your imaginary speculation more valid than a rebuttal to your imaginary speculation, somehow 🙂

    • Mr0303

      Hi pot, my name is kettle.

    • Miqubi

      good, I needed some tea, now go and boil that water

    • Emulation=/=piracy.

    • Nin

      It’s Sony’s job to protect their IP you mean. Atlus’s IP is in no way shape or form directly attacked by an existance of an emulator. It’s only a tool by which pirated games may be played.

      This is like Hollywood trying to DMCA Microsoft Media Player because it can play pirated videos.

    • Mr0303

      Huh? Why involve Sony here at all? It’s not them who are issuing the DMCA and as far as I’m aware P5 is not their IP.

      “Atlus’s IP is in no way shape or form directly attacked by an existance
      of an emulator. It’s only a tool by which pirated games may be played.” – do you honestly don’t see the contradiction in these two statements? The emulator is a tool by which a pirated version of their game can be played and their IP is not attacked? How do you make that leap of logic? They even demonstrated its workability by showcasing P5.

      “This is like Hollywood trying to DMCA Microsoft Media Player because it can play pirated videos.” – no it’s not. The difference is the platform compatibility. Consoles are closed systems while DVDs are universal. A better adjusted example would be somebody developing a media player and demonstrating its workability using a Neflix exclusive show. Do you start to see the problem?

  • Just bring it to PC and shut up atlus.

  • Miguel Angel Opazo Arancibia

    Bullshit. Didn’t we get a couple of days ago the release of the secret research that shows that piracy doesn’t hurt sales and might increase them by spreading awareness of their product ?

    I pirate things sometimes but if I really like something I still buy it in order to support the franchise.

  • mew

    Atlus is truly a garbage company.