SEGA has started to target “Let’s Play”-ers and fan videos on YouTube of the SEGA Saturn game Shining Force III, 15 years after the game’s original release. Many people may not have heard of the title considering that only one of the four game discs was ever translated and released outside of Japan, but it has gained a rather active fan base.
The story was first brought to our attention on Reddit, and as the story spread it became clear that both videos and entire user channels were being removed if there was any mention of Shining Force III. Users such as TotalBiscuit and MarauderEX, as well as others, have been targeted, with MarauderEX’s Youtube Channel being deleted.
The question that is being asked is why? Why, after years of videos about Shining Force III being uploaded, have SEGA suddenly decided to have these removed without warning? MarauderEX contacted SEGA who issued the following reply.
“Hello. We never give explicit permission to use our intellectual property. However, in cases like this we tend not to take action unless we or our products are slandered in the derivative works.
Best Regards, SEGA Customer Support.”
So, is the issue that many of these videos slandered the game and were removed due to potential negative PR? Well, according to various users on Reddit, many of these videos were praising the title, which puts into doubt the slander claims.
The other possibility is that SEGA is having these videos pulled because there is going to be a re-release of Shining Force III, much like NiGHTS into Dreams which was another Saturn title, and recently received a HD re-release. However, if that’s the case why didn’t SEGA do similar with NiGHTS videos prior to releasing the HD remake?
A third possible option is that someone is posing as SEGA and having these videos removed using the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), a copyright law in the USA, which includes the aim of targeting copyright infringement on the Internet. Why this person or people would bother to target a relatively unknown Saturn title remains a mystery. Until we receive an answer from SEGA about the situation and if they are actually the ones responsible, we’ll just have to wait