Hot potato: Relationships between game developers and mod makers often depend on the studio. While some, like Bethesda, are more supportive and encouraging of the practice, others are less appreciative of the craftsmen. It looks like Crytek falls into this latter category, having just threatened the creator with legal action over a powerful photo modification tool for Crysis 2 Remastered and Crysis 3 Remastered.
Crysis photomodes are the work of Frans “Otis_Inf” Bauma, who also created the Universal Unreal Unlocker mod that adds photomode to many Unreal Engine 4 games. Crysis mods are very popular, but not with developer Crytek, whose PR manager Adam Grinsell sent Bouma a pull request .
A letter posted by Bouma on Twitter states that Crysis does not allow the use of mods under the terms of the End User License Agreement (EULA). Greensell makes a polite, formal request to remove mods from Bouma’s Patreon page and wherever they appear, before adding a less polite warning that the case will be taken to Crytek’s legal department if it doesn’t do so within the next seven days.
Obviously, Crytek doesn’t want thousands of people posting screenshots of their game on social media and other sites. FTR I do not distribute any game assets; my camera tools only contains binaries compiled from my own code and not linked to any game asset. pic.twitter.com/b2Pakbe9ze
— Frans Bouma (@FransBouma) January 13, 2022
Bauma noted that he only uses his own code in his mods, not Crytek game assets. Greensell responded, “The main problem with the software is that it monetizes, so we’re asking you to remove the paywall,” which is slightly different from what was said in the original post. Bouma is making Crysis Remastered Photo Mode available only to Patreon subscribers who pay between $6.50 and $63.50 per month.
When the situation began to attract attention Reddit, Crytek public relations manager Utku Chakir apologized for the way it was done. “The initial message led to a misunderstanding and we have apologized to the modder for that.”
“We really appreciate all the support we get from the community, but we also have to balance that with our copyright protection. It can be tricky to strike a balance and looking back, we should have approached the situation differently.”
This apology does not mean that Crytek is dropping the case. Baume was told to make the mods free for everyone or remove them entirely. “Since I don’t have the time or energy to fight them over this, plus having the tools would only benefit them as people will be posting snapshots of their game on social media and other sites, I decided to pull out the tools. and not publish them again,” the modder wrote on his Patreon website. He also assured people that he would never create his own photo mode for a Crytek game again.