zeVlad wrote:If I can give help, as European lawyer I can say the situation about EU copyright law.
Thank you, zeVlad. It is good to have authoritative legal advice about the EU.
I am not a lawyer, but I am a retired professional musician, and have dealt with the use of recorded music in theatrical settings. Believe me, it is very difficult to stay within legal bounds, even of the US "fair use" law. My view of sampled music use in the context of a game which is distributed internationally is that you will probably be in violation of some copyright law somewhere in the world. Now, you may never be hunted down and prosecuted for it, because it is not worth the time of the copyright owners. However, according to an article I was recently reading, there is heightened interest by law firms in policing all aspects of video games.
The SG dev team took great pains to remove and replace even small bits of recordings from films for this reason.
Another way to look at this is, the more original elements you have in your game, map or whatever, the greater your accomplishment. For instance, if you record your own guitar track and put it in your game, you are showing more creativity than if you stick in off-the-rack music. Maybe you aren't Ennio Morricone, but you don't have to be for these purposes. Maybe you'll even find that you are the next