ORIGINAL: Big Ivan
It is pretty darn cool! A very cool concept!
However, who actually owns the rights to Avalon Hill's Arab-Israelis Wars and in so doing are their copyright issues?
When I read of AH's demise long ago, I thought Hasbro got the bulk of AH.
If so, do they still own the rights and is it only for the board game and its images or for any images going forward too?
I guess the same is true for Panzer Blitz and Panzer Leader.
I don't know that is why I am asking.
Edit2: So what indeed is the latest on this venerable franchise! PanzerBlitz Hill Of Death Boardgame was released a few years ago, so it seems it is still going strong
Wiki informs us in their PanzerBlitz article that
The rights to PanzerBlitz are currently held by Multi-Man Publishing, which developed and released PanzerBlitz: Hill of Death on March 27, 2009. This title was an attempt to invigorate the franchise, and a plan to release other titles using the new rules, which utilize new game mechanics such as chit pull activation, has been announced.
In the meantime, new units and scenarios for the classic version continue to appear in such venues as The Boardgamer, VAIPA, and Old Soldiers magazine, primarily through the efforts of Alan Arvold. There are even new maps and counters, created by Ward McBurney.
My side note: "There are even new maps and counters by Ward McBurney" refers to Mr McBurney's Imaginative Strategist website. Have a look! Alan Arvold of course is still active, as for instance I am in the process of uploading his Ode to PB / PL / AIW scenarios to Blitz Wargaming Club's Scenario Database to have them available to public. The latter I am doing in co-operation with him.
Multi-Man Publishing then in their part keeps a number of boardgame classics alive, including Advanced Squad Leader, and PanzerBlitz 2 as the new titles are called. Great news! No mention of Arab-Israeli Wars or for Panzer Leader for that matter though.
And now that I looked PB HoD is out of print and not in their MMPs 2015 catalog at all, even quoting the price. Bummer
As for are there copyright issues to this Mod?
I don't believe so, no.
I am not using any parts of the original works, now that I removed the AIW Box Art text from the side bar.
The mod is created from scratch by me in a style reminiscent to AIW, but then again hexes and map symbols, and counters and NATO symbols have existed long before AIW came out and are public domain in nature. Also, I don't believe for one second that this mod would confuse some one to "buy this mod" instead of buying the AH AIW boardgame that may have been his original intentions. Besides this mod is not a commercial product and AHAIW in turn has not been available in the market either for some good twenty years at least I guess.
The AHAIW box art snippet in the Blankbox is a recognisable image of the board game. This is an area where Fan Art meets the commercial products and I guess can be problematic as such, especially if AH Arab-Israeli Wars boardgame would continue to be on sale they might be upset about it. Who knows?
However even then, "Arab-Israeli Wars" is a historic event, and as such it cannot be exlusively owned by any one gaming company, not any more than say "American Civil War" or "Second World War" could be owned by anyone. Nor could any geographic location be own, so we for instance cannot copyright or trademark "Middle East" as our copyright. Of course not.
So I'd assume it would have been OK to even keep the AH AIW box art in place as a tribute to original series (this is fan art).
But just to be on the right side I created a new CS: Middle East Blankbox to go with this mod.
I am not a Lawyer but a boardgame geek so these are my thoughts only of course.
< Message edited by Crossroads -- 12/12/2015 12:01:36 PM >