Unclear Description (titles crowner 4/15/14): Spiritual Licensee

Deadlock Clock: 13th Oct 2013 11:59:00 PM
Total posts: [50]
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1 Larkmarn2nd Jun 2013 07:05:40 AM , Relationship Status: Hello, I love you
The trope is about works that have a Captain Ersatz of a story, rather than a character. However, a lot of the examples are just "one very broad element shows up in one thing, as well as another!"

There are just a lot of examples that seem like blatant overuse. There are serious reaches, like games that are considers S Ls for sharing a single element. It gets particularly bad when it comes to video games. I know it's YMMV, but things like Sleeping Dogs (GTA clone set in Hong Kong) being a SL for River City Ransom (beat 'em up with RPG elements set in a high school) merely because there's a "focus on close combat"?

Additionally, there's an issue of games set in the same genre but with different settings that get shoehorned in as well. Okami and Beyond Good & Evil get called this for Zelda, despite the fact that based on the description they're actually the exact opposite of this trope, since they have the same gameplay but different stories.

It needs some sort of clear description or criteria. Even for a YMMV it's very ill-defined.
2 Spark92nd Jun 2013 07:11:56 AM from Castle Wulfenbach , Relationship Status: Too sexy for my shirt
Gentleman Troper!
I think we already have this by another name, too. Is it Serial Numbers Filed Off? All Except In Name? Something Like That?
Special trousers. Very heroic.
3 SeptimusHeap2nd Jun 2013 07:54:02 AM from Laniakea , Relationship Status: Mu
Serial Numbers Filed Off needs to be almost exactly like the predecessor. It's also a negative attribute.

This item is part of the expy superfamily of tropes. These always get wild misuse.
4 Larkmarn6th Jun 2013 08:37:12 AM , Relationship Status: Hello, I love you
Can I just pull the same-genre examples? That's just plain misuse, right?

And is it specifically about story reuse? The description is pretty plainly about that, but... yeah. The examples obviously aren't.

edited 6th Jun '13 8:39:45 AM by Larkmarn

Seems like there are at least three tropes here: Serial Numbers Filed Off ("this is basically an adaptation/remake of an earlier work, but without having the license for it"), Done In The Style Of ("this is a lot like [Creator]'s work, but not done by them"), and Unofficial Shared Universe ("this comes off as a prequel/sequel to another work").
6 DonaldthePotholer11th Jun 2013 11:01:39 PM from Somewhere in (not)Miami
The way I read the Trope is: This work was [(originally/supposed to be part of)/inspired by] a (then-)extant franchise but we (lost/couldn't get) the license and turned it into an Original work.

Serial Numbers Filed Off seems to be more: We're not even bothering to hide the copy/paste lines.

EDIT: Perhaps the best way to fix this is to violate our Golden Standard, at least with respect to opinions. If an opinion can be cited, (even down to the level of "Several YouTube Users",) then it can be kept. Claims that are completely ambiguous should burn.

edited 11th Jun '13 11:17:01 PM by DonaldthePotholer

7 SeptimusHeap11th Jun 2013 11:51:27 PM from Laniakea , Relationship Status: Mu
I strongly oppose any splitting attempts here - part of the reason why such expyoid tropes are so troublesome is (hair-)splitting gone mad.

Btw, I do not think that citations are the way to go. We don't want a consensus opinion; we want examples that mostly fit the bill.
8 DonaldthePotholer12th Jun 2013 08:08:41 PM from Somewhere in (not)Miami
The problem is that we, as a population, just don't know what Mr. Entry Pimp "knows," and often don't have the time to verify it. Troper B could come up with a completely different comparison from what Troper A posted. What is to say that either opinion is invalid? Conversely, what's to say that either opinion is valid?

This is why I say we need to limit examples to Word of God/St. Paul, BigNameFans, and expressed Vocal Minorities (The latter two form Word of Dante). Otherwise, we invite the type of misuse that the OP is referencing.
9 SeptimusHeap13th Jun 2013 12:21:56 AM from Laniakea , Relationship Status: Mu
With only 188 wicks, that may actually be worth making.
10 nrjxll30th Jun 2013 01:27:06 AM , Relationship Status: Not war
It seems like most of the problems are from the video game section.
I suspect that the Trope Decay is being caused by examples like this:

12 Noaqiyeum2nd Jul 2013 05:17:13 PM from the October Country , Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
The it-thingy
[up] I agree. And then you have shoehorning natter sections like this, too:

Histeria and Horrible Histories may be long gone, but really they live as a series called Axis Powers Hetalia.

Though one couldn't help but wonder whether the overblown National Stereotypes in G Gundam might have been foreshadowing. Then again, considering just how absurd and insane said stereotypes were presented (such as Neo-Mexico's "Sombrero Gundam"), that anime makes even Hetalia at its most over the top look subtle.
Which one of these is about Humongous Mecha rather than historical comedy?

As this mashup proves, calling Inception a Darker and Edgier Psychonauts reboot is surprisingly fitting.
...about the only thing these two have in common is a plot device.

Another one of David Lynch's works, Eraserhead, has its own Spiritual Licensee in the form of Yume Nikki. The similarities between the two are uncanny.
...you mean, they are both bizarre Mind Screws that feature Surreal Symbolic Heads?

([PROTOTYPE]) is also often compared to The Thing (1982).
I'm only familiar with the latter, but I'm lead to understand that they share a display of the same kinds of Paranoia Fuel and Body Horror and little else.

edited 2nd Jul '13 5:17:32 PM by Noaqiyeum

Anyone who looks dangerous is dangerous.

Anyone who doesn't look dangerous is dangerous and sneaky.
13 Willbyr3rd Aug 2013 07:15:26 AM from North Little Rock, AR , Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Clock is set.
Looking over the various related tropes (Spiritual Licensee, Spiritual Successor, Serial Numbers Filed Off, etc), I think the main difference here is that Spiritual Successor is about the same type of media, while Spiritual Licensee is a different type of media. In other words, a better name for Spiritual Licensee might be Spiritual Adaptation.

For example, say the original work is a video game. If, years later, a new video game very similar to the original was made, but not actually part of the same franchise, then that would be a Spiritual Successor. However, if a movie was made that had very similar premise/plot/setting/characters/etc, then that would be a Spiritual Licensee instead.
15 Larkmarn3rd Aug 2013 10:29:52 AM , Relationship Status: Hello, I love you
Also, Spiritual Successor has to be by the same people.

But renaming to Spiritual Adaptation seems like a good idea, it'll help curb people going "AHA! THESE TWO GAMES SHARE ONE ELEMENT! I must add it!"

edited 3rd Aug '13 10:30:36 AM by Larkmarn

A Spiritual Successor doesn't have to have the same creators, though it often is.

edited 3rd Aug '13 11:24:44 AM by NativeJovian

17 Larkmarn3rd Aug 2013 11:06:44 AM , Relationship Status: Hello, I love you
The description of it makes it pretty clear that it's by at least some of the same people.
A Spiritual Successor is not part of the original franchise, but "is nonetheless considered to be a successor because it's made by the same creators, shares common themes, styles, or elements; or, most likely, both".

So you've got two different things there: "made by the same creators" and "shares common themes, styles, or elements". By the definition on the page, if either of those criteria are met, then it's a Spiritual Successor, but one usually includes the other. (Personally, I'd just take the second criteria — the page is full of examples of sharing themes/styles/elements but having different creators — but that's not what's actually written on the page.)
Since the clock is running, let's try to actually keep this ball rolling. We've got a proposal to set Spiritual Successor as "work that has the same feel of an earlier work from a different franchise but the same media" and Spiritual Licensee as "work that has the same feel from and earlier work in a different media (actual, official licensed products excluded, obviously)". We have a separate, but related, proposal to rename Spiritual Licensee to Spiritual Adaptation.

Thoughts? Comments? Should I just make a crowner?

edited 4th Aug '13 2:55:23 PM by NativeJovian

20 Larkmarn4th Aug 2013 03:05:13 PM , Relationship Status: Hello, I love you
"Same feel" is just too vague... I don't think it'll curb those people that see connections where none exist.

Honestly, I don't know how we'd curb those people.
Could we just... not have Death anymore?
^ that's what post #8 was suggesting: a way to stop that type of person.
[up][up]I was using that as shorthand for the actual definition already on the page, not proposing a new definition.
23 Willbyr6th Sep 2013 06:41:45 PM from North Little Rock, AR , Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Clock is set.

edited 6th Sep '13 6:41:56 PM by Willbyr

I'm not seeing a difference between this and Spiritual Successor.
25 SeptimusHeap7th Sep 2013 12:46:14 AM from Laniakea , Relationship Status: Mu


Alternative Titles: Spiritual Licensee
15th Apr '14 5:33:58 AM
Vote up names you like, vote down names you don't. Whether or not the title will actually be changed is determined with a different kind of crowner (the Single Proposition crowner). This one just collects and ranks alternative titles.
At issue:
Previous crowner decided to rename this trope.

Total posts: 50
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