Cookies help us deliver our services. By using our services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn more


Serious Legal Issues with "Decompilers"

Posted on 5 January 2011

It's been brought to our attention recently that some individuals have created what they openly refer to as a "Decompiler" specifically for the games we've been publishing on iTunes.

There is no doubt that the people involved are potentially committing a criminal offense and I thought it would be useful to issue a public "friendly warning"  to stop doing this..  I have also reposted the content of this message on other sites to make sure that the message is clearly understood by the people involved in this "project".

The games we publish on iTunes are COPYRIGHT of  YOYO GAMES Limited.  That means the games (including our proprietary technology used in them) are protected by international copyright law.

You have no rights whatsoever to distribute any of our proprietary technology without our prior permission and it would be very foolish to do so as the punishments for copyright infringement can be very severe.

In case you were wondering and have a legally purchased copy of Game Maker (Windows or Mac), The Game Maker EULA does not apply to any technology that is not part of the standard distribution of GAme Maker and very definitely does not permit you to use any technology we've developed for Apple's IOS,  for example. A validly purchased  Game Maker license only allows you to distribute technology that comes as with the version of Game Maker and that is required by any game you create using Game Maker.  The Game Maker EULA  does NOT allow you to use or distribute any other technology developed for or on behalf of YoYo Games Ltd . THAT VERY DEFINITELY INCLUDES THE GAMES OR APPLICATIONS OR ANY PARTS OF THEM THAT WE SELL THOUGH iTUNES, EVEN IF WE CHOOSE TO DISTRIBUTE THEM FREE OF CHARGE.

YoYo Games is a BUSINESS and we will protect our assets.  We really don't want to take this any further, but we will protect our investment if you force us to.

If you're involved in the "IOS Decompiler" project or any similar operation, then this message is a formal "CEASE AND DESIST" notice to you.  If you are involved (we know who you are) and you do not abandon this work you should take legal advice before you take this any further.  You clearly don't understand the gravity of what you have done and your stated intentions to distribute YoYo Games' technology or to facilitate it.

Just because you may live outside of the UK, you are not out of the reach of UK courts.  The UK has bilateral extradition treaties with most countries, including, but certainly not limited to The USA, Australia and Canada.

The UK courts take a very dim view of copyright valuation and UK law is particularly clear in that area.  They are more than prepared to issue prison sentences in copyright cases.  Here's a recent games related case where a 12 month prison sentence was the result.

We REALLY don't want to be sending strong messages to you like this, however our lawyers have advised us that we will need to take action sooner rather than later.  To prevent this I expect to see a CLEAR message that this project and ALL support for it has been terminated.  Those involved can send notice of this in writing if they wish to YoYo Games Ltd, Kydd Building, Bell St DUNDEE, SCOTLAND DD1 1HG.

It might help to save a lot of legal hassle if anyone involved would read the iTunes EULA,   Here's a cut and paste of one section for you :-

a. Scope of License: This license granted to You for the Licensed Application by Application Provider is limited to a non-transferable license to use the Licensed Application on any iPhone or iPod touch that You own or control and as permitted by the Usage Rules set forth in Section 9.b. of the App Store Terms and Conditions (the “Usage Rules”). This license does not allow You to use the Licensed Application on any iPod touch or iPhone that You do not own or control, and You may not distribute or make the Licensed Application available over a network where it could be used by multiple devices at the same time. You may not rent, lease, lend, sell, redistribute or sublicense the Licensed Application. You may not copy (except as expressly permitted by this license and the Usage Rules), decompile, reverse engineer, disassemble, attempt to derive the source code of, modify, or create derivative works of the Licensed Application, any updates, or any part thereof (except as and only to the extent any foregoing restriction is prohibited by applicable law or to the extent as may be permitted by the licensing terms governing use of any open sourced components included with the Licensed Application). Any attempt to do so is a violation of the rights of the Application Provider and its licensors. If You breach this restriction, You may be subject to prosecution and damages. The terms of the license will govern any upgrades provided by Application Provider that replace and/or supplement the original Product, unless such upgrade is accompanied by a separate license in which case the terms of that license will govern.

We (and our lawyers) think this is VERY CLEAR.

Sorry to be posting such a stern message here.  We genuinely hope that this message will convey the seriousness of their potential error to those involved and we can all get back to the more interesting task of making great games :)

em.... Happy New Year,

Sandy Duncan, CEO, YoYo Games Ltd

Back to Top