I noticed in Assassin's Creed : Odyssey that they implemented a feature very similar to Shadow of Mordor's nemesis with mercenaries . By that I mean automatically and randomly generated ennemies with weakness and complex features.
This IGN article seems to confirm this hypothesis :
Game Director at Ubisoft Quebec, Scott Phillips, says the team “Wanted to have a system where the world was constantly living and constantly challenging” players, so they created a dynamic system of mercenaries within the world of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, somewhat similar to that of Shadow of Mordor’s Nemesis system.Each mercenary has strengths and weaknesses and unique attributes ranging from animal companions and gear to high skill with a specific weapon, and while there are many hand-crafted mercenaries that can be found around Greece,they’re also randomly generated from a pool of modular fight moves and stories as a way to offer a more elite enemy for players to fight.
I was surprised to hear someone from Ubisoft admitting that the feature was similar to what someone else did in a previous game.
I found this American Bar Association article which explains that game rules are not copyrightable :
Section 102(b) of the Copyright Act states: “In no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work.”1 In using the word “or,” the statute lists these exclusions—ideas, procedures, processes, systems, methods of operation, concepts, principles, or discoveries—disjunctively. Thus, each has independent force and effect. This means that neither ideas nor functional elements—such as procedures, processes, systems, or methods of operation—are copyrightable.
I won't lie, it is not clear to me even after reading the whole article what is copyrightable and what is not. I decided to look up one of the very best rip-off in history with Instagram's story system and I learnt that since IG's and Snapchat's story system were visually different, it was legally OK for IG to use it.
Could someone shed some light on the differences between software and video game copyrights, or globally anything that could help me understand how copyright works in the video game industry? Specifically whether it is "features" or "code" or something else that is usually copyrighted?