User-created content inside a game like Dreams is bound to be fraught with ownership issues. Media Molecule took the first step towards addressing those worries today with a beta evaluation of how Dreams could be used for business purposes—essentially, how one could profit from something made in Dreams.
In a blog update, Media Molecule's studio director Siobhan Reddy clarifies that players own the intellectual property for their original creations in Dreams. But when it comes to business use, where money can start to exchange hands, things get dicey.
"We've had lots of questions from creators about using Dreams for viable business opportunities off PlayStation, such as concept artwork," said Reddy. So in the interest of exploring these ideas, Media Molecule is launching a beta evaluation for qualified creators to try out.
If you want to qualify, you'll need to submit an application to Media Molecule. The application asks that creators have a project in mind, a time frame for their production, and a willingness to provide feedback to Media Molecule throughout the process. This will only be available to "Early Access Members in good standing," with the main focus being on "concept art, music videos, albums, and short films."
Fans seem reasonably happy with this approach so far. The top comment on Reddit praises the decision, "They are moving much faster on this than I thought they would. I think this bodes well for anyone who is interested in one day being able to use Dreams to product stand alone interactive applications/games."
The question of rights and ownership is ongoing in games like Dreams. Last year saw the massive boom of auto chess, which led to a genre being formed out of a simple Dota 2 mod. Blizzard Entertainment, long home to stellar custom game development, has taken controversial steps to ensure it owns the content made in its creation engine.
Dreams is impressively powerful and its limits are still being explored. But along the way, its creators might want to start turning a profit on their passion and labor. It seems like Media Molecule is getting ready for that eventuality.