News Article

Abandoned Pixel Perfect Punch-Out!! Book Has a Knockout Ending With Mike Tyson

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Public release failed due to licensing issues

While we cover a fair share of Kickstarter development fundraisers, one that's worth a mention is the Pixel Perfect: Mike Tyson's Punch Out!! book project, which was to raise money to enable public distribution for a limited run of 200 copies. The book itself was finished, an unofficial encyclopedia for the NES title that's attractively presented in gorgeous colour, with the 240 pages bound in an attractive hardback cover. It looked like a special collector's item for fans of the series.

Unfortunately, despite hitting its funding target of $25,000 last October, it failed to make it out to its backers — all money was returned — as its authors couldn't obtain the necessary permissions to sell it to the public. Nintendo cited "complex rights and ownership issues", which were no doubt complicated further by the use of the Mike Tyson name that was subsequently dropped from the title. In any case, copies are restricted to the group that put the book together, with public sale out of the question.

Of course that doesn't stop the authors self-printing personal copies, and one of its contributors, Matt Turk, recently attended a Mike Tyson event and had the opportunity to present the former boxer with a copy. Here's his account of handing him the final product:

On the whole I think he was pleasantly surprised by the book and gladly accepted it. I didn’t see anyone else who had anything for him so it is probably pretty rare for someone to actually bring something for him when usually everyone is expecting something from him. After showing him the book he asked if he could maybe use the cover of the book on a slide in future shows when he is talking about his endorsements.

I included a note tucked into the book that explained the project in greater detail (why it was done and why we were unable to distribute it to the public) that also had a link to the book’s website and my email address.

As I was walking away he grabbed me by the arm and asked me my full name. I responded and he said sincerely “thank you”, and almost on cue he winked at me with his right eye, which was very reminiscent of the video game itself.

You can check out the video below to see what we've ultimately missed out on seeing, but at least all of the contributor's hard work has seen a reasonably happy ending.

[via pixelperfectbooks.wordpress.com, destructoid.com]

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User Comments (14)

Luigifan141

#3

Luigifan141 said:

@AtariRainbow The article says that they did, but there were still copyright issues regardless.

Anyway, it's pretty cool that one of the writers managed to give the man himself that book!

bezerker99

#4

bezerker99 said:

I got no respect for Tyson anymore. You don't treat women the way he treated them. He's a rapist, pure and simple.

Jock_Nerd

#5

Jock_Nerd said:

Very nice story. Guys, people can change, and I believe Mike Tyson is one of those. How about a little remorse?

softserve

#6

softserve said:

The book is beautiful. What a shame.

The guy's had his problems and I don't get the impression he expects people to forget them. On Sunday I was at the laundromat and yet another interview was happening with Tyson that referred to all of the horrible things he's done.

But he at least seems to really regret those things and it seems like he genuinely wants to turn his poopiedoodledingdongs around. Hopefully things are going well for him.

aaronsullivan

#9

aaronsullivan said:

Tracking rights like this is really difficult but I wish stuff like this didn't get the brunt of the problems. A passionate piece of work stuck in limbo.

Makes me think of all the money on the table for old video games whose licensing is too expensive to sift through and make deals on. Instead, people just steal them. It's a lose-lose.

Ron_DelVillanoAdmin

#14

Ron_DelVillano said:

Too bad they couldn't release it. This is the first I'm hearing about the book, but it's something I'd absolutely love on my shelf.

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