Credits in video games are a way to attribute the team members who helped create the final product.
Is any game studio required to give credit to any specific individuals or support teams in a video game?
The short answer: only if it’s established in a contract.
The longer answer: well, credits in video games have a long, complicated history.
Within entertainment as a whole, standards for credits have been established in the film industry and are overseen by the Screen Actors Guild, Writers Guild of America and the Producers Guild of America. Since the games industry is mostly non-unionized (currently), there are no requirements to even include a credits section, let alone how to manage the systems for attribution.
Some studios have policies in place for establishing credit for developers and contributors. But they are typically applied inconsistently, as pointed out by Kotaku in 2009 and again in 2020. Some games even choose not to include any credits.
The primary takeaway, however, is a business is not required to credit someone in a video game unless it is specifically stated in their contract.
In 2014, the International Game Developers Association created a crediting standards guide to assist in the crediting process before disputes arise. The mission of the IGDA is to advance the careers of game developers and has put forward the guide to assist employers in effectively and accurately assigning credits in support of that process.
Please note, however, that moral rights may exist in international situations regarding credits within video games.View all posts by this author