Brandon Huffman

Attorney, Founder of Odin Law and Media

Brandon J. Huffman (@brandonjhuffman) is an attorney and founder of Odin Law and Media, which focuses on counseling video game and interactive media clients on issues related to content, licensing, publishing, intellectual property and corporate growth. Brandon also serves as general counsel to the International Game Developers Association. His clients include game developers and publishers, new and traditional media companies, animators and others at the intersection of technology and creativity. He is the engagement editor for Business Law Today and he sits on the Sports and Entertainment Council of the North Carolina Bar Association.

Talk Description:

Video Game Law 201

Every year, there is a Video Game Law 101 discussion – sometimes with a different name. Brandon has given some of those presentations in the past. In this Video Game Law 201 presentation, Brandon will discuss the next level. While a 101 presentation focuses on the basics of company formations, intellectual property and working with employees and contractors, this 201 presentation will assume a bit of the foundation has been set.

This presentation will focus on three important themes: working with publishers and distributors, positioning your company for investment or sale and correcting mistakes.

Working with a publisher can be exciting, but tieing a studio’s success to a publisher’s ability to finance, market and support the studio’s game can be daunting. Publishing agreements can be complex. Questions surround the financial contributions and commitments of both parties, the rights in and to the game and related works, service obligations and marketing requirements. This presentation will attempt to give some insight into these agreements and point out where a developer may have more leverage than it thinks.

Game studios are businesses. Many businesses require or could benefit from investment to grow. After a certain point, the original founders or the existing shareholders may want to sell off the company. But, in a creative company, often some of the planning and preparation for these types of transactions is put off or ignored. This presentation will provide a road map and best practices to prepare for these events.

Finally, this presentation will talk about a few common mistakes made in the beginning and how to correct them. This is for those that missed the Law 101 discussion when they were getting started. And, there will be plenty of time for Q&A.