A few days ago, we covered GTA 5 Redux. It is an intense overhaul mod that rebuilds San Andreas with new textures and effects. It is the work of modder Josh Romito, but now the makers of another mod are claiming that it uses stolen files and code. A promotional shot from GTA Redux
The issue in question rests around the files for weather effects in Redux and another graphical overhaul mod called VisualV. While the credits for GTA 5 Redux mention VisualV as "inspiration" for weather effects in the mod, the creators of VisualV claim there's more than inspiration. They say that entire lines of code have been transplanted from their mod and into GTA 5 Redux. A list of alleged thefts has been outlined in an extensive thread on GTAForums.
An image from a post by VisualV creators highlighting allegedly stolen code.
"You all can take this how you want," GTA Redux creator Josh Romito began in a Reddit post replying to the allegations. "I did not come here to defend myself, because what he is providing as "proof" is evidence enough that the files, and values inside of them are different." Kotaku has reached out to Romito with no further comment at this time.
The value on certain variables are indeed different but that doesn't seem to be enough to dissuade VisualV creator Bartłomiej Paśnik. While he acknowledges alterations, the similarities between code are too damning in his eyes.
"I knew each edited line, so it's easy to check that's mine," Paśnik told Kotaku. He also says he sees certain key identifiers in the code. "There are a few more useless parameters, which do nothing in the game but was added to VisualV to protect it. Now I see that's clearly my mod."
It is hard to say if anything was definitively taken from VisualV. Both VisualV and Redux are mods seeking to overhaul game graphics, which might lend them to similar solutions and thus, similar code and functions. Furthermore, Romito does give credit to VisualV although it is unclear what he precisely means by "inspiration".
This is not the first time Romito has encountered issues with lifted assets. Romito's previous project, The Pinnacle of V, shut down after it became clear the project used code from other mods. Romito claimed that other modders working on the project lifted assets from outside projects. It appears to be what inspired him to work singlehandedly on Redux.
As it stands, Romito doesn't appear to have plans to change anything about his mod in light of these allegations. As he said on Reddit, "Redux is not going anywhere."