An open-source remake of SimCity 2000, called OpenSC2K, has been taken offline at the behest of Electronic Arts.
EA filed a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) request to take the game down. It points out that OpenSC2K uses assets from SimCity 2000 which are copyrighted and, in an accompanying notice, EA pointed out: “Assets from the game are being infringed upon. An authorized and legitimate copy of the game can be found available for purchase here.”
In the OpenSC2K readme, extracted as part of a thread on Hacker News, OpenSC2K developer Nicholas Ochoa said: “These assets are NOT covered by the GNU General Public License used by this project and are copyright EA / Maxis. I’m including these assets in the hope that because the game has been made freely available at various points in time by EA, and because it’s 24 years old as of publishing this project that no action will be taken. Long story short, please don’t sue me!”
Alas, as described above, EA is still selling SimCity 2000, so the DMCA takedown notice was inevitable. Ochoa does have a plan to get Open SC2K back up and running: he told TorrentFreak: “I was never contacted by EA or GitHub prior to the takedown – I received notification after the fact from GitHub. Nobody from EA has reached out since and I’m still waiting for GitHub to review my request. My plan right now once the repo is restored is to remove the copyrighted content and provide instructions on how to extract the assets directly from the original game files.”
That, however, sounds a tad ill-conceived, since the DMCA request clearly states: “”The current audio visual output of the repository creates content that infringes on Electronic Arts copyright. As long as that continues to happen, no other changes other than removal is sufficient to address the infringement.”