Doujin fans are quaking at the wrath of Disney, which has just shut down a free doujin game for daring to include a likeness of Mickey Mouse, demanding ¥6,000,000 in compensation for good measure.
“Hanako” features a parody retro RPG-style segment in which Mickey Mouse makes an appearance as a monster.
Disney evidently did not see the funny side of this, and demanded they cease development of the title and pay ¥6,000,000 in damages.
The developers, “AmoRico,” promptly complied:
Thank you very much for playing Visual Novel “Hanako”
Due to a major and intricate reasons, we were unavoidably close our site and stop the development of our game.
From today, year 2012 January 26, We’re closing “Hanako Official Site” for indefinite period.
We appreciate the players whom supported us. Thank you very much.
In a series of Tweets, the creators of the game express their surprise at the level of Disney’s indignation and obsequiously pledge their full cooperation, doubtless in the hopes of wriggling out of the damages demanded of them.
Disney, unlike almost every Japanese company save Nintendo, is known to have an extremely aggressive attitude to doujin works and as a result there is not a great deal of surprise about their actions amongst Japanese:
“You got off lightly, ¥6,000,000 for knocking off Mickey’s head – lucky!”
“Disney are being quite nice about this.”
“You can’t have uncensored Mickeys in your games!”
“Disney is so scary…”
“Amateurs should not tangle with Ratland [2ch slang for Disney and Disneyland].”
“Disney and Nintendo are two companies you should avoid!”
“The people who made this are too stupid.”
“This was taking things a bit far, they should know about Disney…”
“Not annoying Disney is common knowledge in the doujin world. Even printers just refuse to print anything Disney related.”
“I thought Disney being harsh was an urban myth, but I guess it’s true…”
“Dirty American yakuza enterprise.”
“Our American masters are quick to demand vengeance.”
Update: The game’s developer now claims the email he received was a fake, and there have been some concerns raised that the whole affair was some kind of incipient scam.