To mod or not to mod

Computer games and the modding community go together like journalists and alcohol, so it’s rather alarming to see that a games firm is suing “hackers” who modified their legally purchased games. The Reg report notes:

The lawsuit claims the users decompiled the code to several Tecmo titles, including Ninja Gaiden, Dead or Alive 3, and Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball, and figured out how to create their own “skins” that change the appearance of game characters. They swapped modding techniques and hundreds of custom skins over the website message board.

The defendants are not accused of pirating the games, and the modifications and methods at issue appear no different than those employed by hobbyists on other video games – from Halo to the Sims 2 –for years. But according to the lawsuit, Tecmo suffers in the practice anyway.

…the company is seeking $1,000 to $100,000 in damages for every custom skin swapped over the website.