Soul Hearts

It's true that video games often take inspiration from other games, leaving developers to occasionally answer tough questions over similar assets or design. Take for example the Flappy Bird fiasco that happened a few months back. The developer was attacked for having green pipes that bear a resemblance to those seen in the Super Mario Bros. series. Since the list of games that have taken inspiration from Mario is obscenely long, it's safe to say this is nothing new.

There are now reports that Soul Hearts, an upcoming Android game developed by Korean company NeoWiz Games, may have taken a bit too much inspiration from the 2009 Wii title Muramasa: The Demon Blade, which subsequently saw a follow-up download re-release on the PS Vita. People are once again pointing a finger at a developer's back for potentially copying another game. According to My Game News Flash, the Android title uses an art style and assets similar to Muramasa's.

Take a look at a screenshot comparison with Soul Hearts (top) and Muramasa (bottom):

Notice the similar building style

There is also this image, supplied by Twitter user Chungbi, who pointed out a few similarities in terms of foliage:

There can only be one fern

Amidst all of the accusations publisher NeoWiz has commented on the situation, and pointed out that although the title is inspired by Muramasa, the gameplay is different.

The company also told ThisIsGame the following:

Soul Hearts was trying to portray an old Asian world. It seems like it was inspired a lot by Murasama in the process. Regardless of whether it was actually plagiarized or not, I'm sorry about this. The game has just finished Closed Beta Testing so we will thoroughly go over any parts that may cause issues and change them before the release.

It's certainly up for debate the degree to which this title is directly lifting assets from Muramasa, though its publisher has at least addressed the situation. Do you see a problem with this? Let us know in the comments below.