SEGA launches copyright complaints against Hi Score Girl manga

It seems that Square Enix’s manga branch is in a bit of trouble with companies for using copyright characters in their video game themed manga ‘Hi Score Girls‘. It seems that they used Virtua Fighter characters in the manga before SEGA actually granted them permission to use them and even though SEGA didn’t take legal action they did use them for a couple of years and that they ‘strongly objected’ the use. The weird thing is now they are OK with the usage of their characters in game if they are allowed to OK it before publishing and if it works for their PR for a game. The revelation comes in that ‘Hi Score Girl‘ manga was using copyright characters for years before getting permission.

This isn’t the only company to come out of the wood work years after the manga used their characters, SNK Playmore stated they where never asked if they could use their characters and showed 100 instances that characters from The King of Fighters, Samurai Showdown and other franchises where used in the manga.

The editor-in-chief of Squar-Enix’s Monthly Big Gangan has posted a message stating that the magazine will be put on temporarily halt due to alleged copyright violations.  The manga launched in 2010 and the complaints are barely coming in, what are your thoughts on the issue?


6 responses to “SEGA launches copyright complaints against Hi Score Girl manga

  1. Centrale says:

    It’s up to the manga publisher to secure permissions. Even if they got away with it for a few years, it’s not the game companies’ responsibility to somehow be aware of all publications and other forms of media that infringe on their copyrights.

  2. JUrameshi says:

    Wait, they’re lauching copyright complaints against Square-Enix? The same Square-Enix that doesn’t even let their FANS use their own characters???


  3. rojm says:

    Its because its Square Enix that this is happening. Manga publications have flaunted copyrights in japan multimedia properties for decades..its usually seen as a honor if one of your copyright or ip is in a manga because its usually seen as a homage and a tribute to that propertie and a sign of respect. But now in the day and age where copyrights and ips mean a lot more money and that other big companies as well as game companies in this case own manga publications (including Sega)that practice is being slowly stamped out. Why include a character of your IP in a manga when your own manga company can do the same? Its essentially about rivalry and not wanting rival companies to use certain characters outside of that properties among other things…

  4. sonictopfan says:


  5. Gerardo says:

    Nah, It happens from time to time, the publisher sends some permission to use some character but prints the work before getting an answer (assuming that the answers will be positive).

    Anyway, the manga division of Square is not like the videogame division. You can use their manga characters, Its their video game characters the ones that are forbiden

    As someone said, this is only happening because is Square, if the manga was published by another magazine there wont be any issue. Probably some apologies and blah, blah, blah. But Square doesnt want to appear weak to the competition. If this was something between a publisher and a designer and not between to designers It would be less complicated

    From what we know all the companies except for SNK gave their permission. I dont know why Sega changed their version of the story.

  6. Gerardo says:

    After all Manga uses cameod and references to Video Games all the time, Its not a big deal. Some might even see It as product placement.

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