Important Announcement About Music and YouTube Videos

Last night, I recorded some announcement videos for both my music and gaming channel, but I guess I got too caught up in what was happening that I rambled on for half an hour each. I wasn't going to edit those videos but I'm going to have to get the point across better. While I'm working on that, I figured a blog would be the best thing for now.

Long story short, the drive where I store... well, pretty much everything has been erased. This includes music projects with the original project files, uncompressed finished tracks, multitracks (which I was planning on releasing soon), original compositions, gaming videos such as Let's Plays, Twitch stream archives, YouTube and other video files with the original Adobe Premiere project files, and a whole lot more.

How did this happen? Well, I'm still taking this all in and retracing my steps, but I've come to the conclusion that I messed up somewhere in transferring data to a new PC build. Honestly, it doesn't really matter how it happened. It's already been done.

Why didn't I back up everything? Well, funny enough, I knew this was something that was going to be an issue down the road so I recently got a new drive to make a backup with. This happened right before I plugged everything in and was ready to start securing my work.

Do I have any backups? Yes and no. The blunt of it was on that drive. All the important stuff that I need to reference. There's some archived duplicates of master tracks, as well as a majority of my original guitar recordings, but those are not as useful and necessary as the files I lost.

Is there any way to recover it all? I'm trying my best at this moment. I paid for a license for EaseUS to recover whatever I can but the files coming up so far are not the ones I need and I'm worried all those files that are the most important were ones that were written over and lost forever.

What does this mean for my YouTube channels? Well, let's start with gaming because it's the simplest answer. I had a lot of videos I was going to be editing and releasing. A lot of these were GTA V Let's Plays I made with friends that I was really looking forward to releasing. Some are old archived videos I never released that I was hoping to go through. Unfortunately, all those are gone and I have almost nothing to work with for my gaming channel anymore. I do have Game Glitches and Montage clips to use thanks to the Xbox One Game DVR, but that's about it. So going forward, the plan is to just return to streaming and hopefully just focus on new videos.

For my music it's a lot more complicated. I was planning on working on a new cover and use that as a final song to release the "Uncertain Sound Covers: Vol. 2" compilation. Without the original master tracks, I can't upload them for the compilation. And for any collaborations who will add vocals to the song, I don't have the original master files to mix the song properly for a new release. The sad part is that I have been in the middle of talks with people with collaborations on those songs.

So how do I resolve this? Well, I'm still trying to figure all that out but I think what I might plan to do is actually remake every single one of those songs and release it as it's own compilation album I'm thinking of titling "Recovered". So any songs I'm not able to restore that I'll have to remake will be remastered in a sense for that release. I know there's a lot of questions that will follow such as "will I have to repurchase the same song I already paid for" and if I will be making another video for a song I've already made a video for (or two, in the case of instrumentals). Honestly, I don't have solid answers at this time but I will be looking at what's fair for everyone and will be taking your suggestions to heart.

Lastly, this means a dramatic slowdown of content. Granted, I will now have to work twice as hard now, but this has been a huge setback for me and it will take me a long time to recover from this. Most importantly, the original album I was planning to release will have to be on hold as I will have to recreate everything I've been working on for years. For potential new Patreon supporters, I apologize that I no longer have any content to reward you with and no multitracks to offer at this time. So far, I have reached out to everyone I have been in contact with about collaborating and everyone has been incredibly understanding and supportive and I'm really grateful to have met these people through YouTube and around the web (and they're people from all over the world). And to the increase of viewers and subscribers lately, you are exactly the momentum and inspiration I need to keep going and move past this and not just give up. I cannot thank you guys enough!

Once again, I've learned my lesson and depending on what I can recover, I will have the proper backups in place in case this happens again. If anyone knows any good recovery tools beyond EaseUS, please let me know!

Let's Play GTA V #10

I'm back in GTA! Click the video above to watch!

I haven't posted a gaming-related video on this blog for quite some time. That's because on my old site I transitioned to leaving these posts on a separate site I made for gaming videos I make using a subdomain. Now that I'm putting everything on this site, it seems to make more sense to put them back here. One of the reasons I did this originally was to space the gaming content I produce from my other content, mainly music. I still want to do that, but I'm also putting everything under the "Uncertain Sound" branding, including games, so I would rather keep everything here. I'm considering making a separate blog on this site for it but I'm not sure how I want to implement it when I have the gaming stuff on one static page at the moment instead of it's own site. So for now, until I figure out how I want to do this, my gaming videos and updates will be posted to this main blog. You can also subscribe on YouTube for new videos. If you don't have a YouTube or Google+ account, you can also see new video posts on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and Instagram.

YouTube Gaming Monetization List

Updated September 11, 2017 - Updated information under Bungie for the game Destiny by request.

Here is a list of developers, publishers, and games I have a personal experience in dealing with because of my YouTube channel in regards to getting AdSense approved for monetization using their games. This list will grow the more I add videos to my channel. Your experience may vary. If you really want to be covered for video game monetization for your channel, consider applying to a Multi-Channel Network that provides licenses to use video game footage for monetization. If the game or company you're looking for isn't in this list, you will have to do some additional research on your own.

Approved for Monetization

Developer: 505 Games

Details: 505 Games allows videos to be monetized but reserves the right to withdraw permission. I researched this specifically in regards to the game Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, which they have acquired all rights to from Starbreeze Studios.


Example Games: Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons

Developer: Bethesda

Details: Bethesda allows YouTube monetization for their games, with conditions.


Example Games: The Dishonored series, the DOOM series, the Elder Scrolls series, The Evil Within, the Fallout series, Rage, the Wolfenstein series.

Publisher: Blizzard

Details: Blizzard allows YouTube and Twitch monetization with certain limitations.


Example Games: Diablo III, Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm, Overwatch, Starcraft, World of Warcraft

Developer: Blue Isle Studios

Details: Blue Isle Studios allows YouTube monetization for their games.


Example Games: Slender: The Arrival

Developer: Bungie

Details: Bungie has clear guidelines for YouTube and Twitch monetization of their game, Destiny.

"Players may create videos using Destiny gameplay, which may be uploaded to third party sharing services like YouTube. If a chosen video-on-demand service enables players to monetize content, 20% of the content within the video must have been created by the player. Examples of what “player created content” may be defined as include custom commentary, animations, graphics, or gameplay. Content creators should use our stuff to make their own stuff, rather than uploading our content to their own channels."


Example Games: Destiny

Developer: Crytek

Details: I have emailed Crytek in the past in regards to YouTube monetization, specifically for the game series "TimeSplitters", which they have the rights to after acquiring the original developers, Free Radical (who then became "Crytek UK" before transitioning over to Deep Silver). I never received a response from Crytek, but they have since made a Video Policy page on their website confirming that they approve of advertisements on their games.


Example Games: Crysis, Ryse, Warface, TimeSplitters.

Developer: Deep Silver

Details: I can't guarantee you will get an approval like I did as Deep Silver doesn't have one blanket statement on their site detailing what their policy is, but I was able to email them regarding my Dead Island videos and they quickly emailed me back giving me permission for those specific videos.

Source: Email confirmation from Deep Silver

Example Games: Dead Island is what I asked about specifically. They may have different policies per game.

Developer: DoubleDutch Games
Publisher: TinyBuild Games

Details: TinyBuild Games specifically allow monetization for the game SpeedRunners. I have not researched other games from the publisher.

Source: official Steam thread.

Example Games: SpeedRunners

Developer: Double Fine

Details: Double Fine allows YouTube monetization for their games.

Source: FAQ Page

Example Games: Broken Age, Brutal Legend, The Cave, Grim Fandango, Massive Chalice, PsychoNaughts.

Publisher: EA

Details: From their help page, "EA does not object to fair uses of video footage or screenshots on video sharing sites, including YouTube channels that are commercialized, as long as the footage is a version of the game that we have released to the public." The exception being games with licensed content, such as music or brands (i.e., cars in racing games), much like Microsoft.


Example Games: Too many to list.

Developer: Epic Games

Details: Epic allows YouTube monetization for their games.


Example Games: Bulletstorm, the Gears of War series, Fortnite, the Infinity Blade series, Shadow Complex, the Unreal series.

Developer: Frozenbyte, Inc.

Details: Frozenbyte allows YouTube monetization for their games.


Example Games: Jack Claw, Shadowgrounds, Splot, Trine, Trine 2.

Developer: Galactic Cafe

Details: Davey Wreden allows YouTube monetization for all Galactic Cafe games.


Example Games: The Stanley Parable

Developer: Insomniac Games

Details: Insomniac allows YouTube monetization for  games they own the rights to. They suggest contacting the IP holder of games they developed but do not own (i.e., Activision for Spyro the Dragon and Sony for Resistance and Ratchet and Clank).


Example Games: Fuse, Outernauts, Sunset Overdrive.

Developer: Jackbox Games

Details: So far the only "official" statement I've seen from Jackbox Games on this is a response to a Steam Community question (sourced below). Keep in mind that with my experience with YouTube support, they do not consider social media, blogs, or message board statements as credible documentation for proving rights to monetize your videos. That said, I'm sure the developers will respond to you if you send them a message requesting permission. As of writing this, all my videos with Jackbox Games titles have been monetized with no issues.


Example Games: Clone Booth, Fibbage, The Jackbox Party Pack series, Quiplash, Word Puttz, The You Don't Know Jack series.

Publisher: Microsoft Studios

Details: Microsoft now enables monetization for their games following certain guidelines. The exception to this is Minecraft, which has it's own set of rules for Monetization (see below under "Mojang / 4J Studios").


Example games: The Halo series, the Fable series, Kinectimals, Kinect Adventures, Kinect Joy Ride, the Age of Empires series, the Flight Simulator series, Kameo, Perfect Dark Zero, Shadowrun, Viva Piñata.

Exceptions: Racing series like Forza Motorsport and Project Gotham Racing use brand cars that have their own trademark usage. The game Ori and the Blind Forest also seems to use copyright music that cannot be used for YouTube monetization. I have discovered this when uploading video gameplay of the game. I will be researching this more and will change this post if I find out anything new.

Developer: Mojang / 4J Studios (Specifically for Minecraft)

Details: You are allowed to monetize from Minecraft videos, but you have to follow certain criteria, such as not having "Minecraft" be the first and dominant subject title of your video.


Games: Minecraft (all versions)

Publisher: Nintendo

Details: Previously, Nintendo has made conflicting statements in regards to their policy on YouTube videos, but it usually meant that you could not earn ad revenue with a YouTube partnership. Recently, Nintendo has opened a beta program for YouTubers to sign up and submit videos as part of a partnership program. You can sign up now for the program.


Example games: Current supported games list in the beta program

Developer: Psyonix

Details: Several posts from the developers on the Rocket League forums indicate they are fine with this, but you might want to contact them for official documentation if needed. So far, all my Rocket League videos are monetized without issue.

Source: None (search their forums).

Example Games: Rocket League

Developer: Riot Games

Details: Riot Games allows monetization without approval.


Example Games: League of Legends

Developer: Square Enix

Details: From their usage policy page, "we don’t mind if you monetize via advertising through partner programs like,,, or similar video sharing services."


Example Games: The Final Fantasy series, the Tomb Raider series, the Kingdom Hearts series*, The Hitman series, Thief, Sleeping Dogs, Just Cause 2, and more.

*Be aware that this game might not have the same usage policy due to the fact that it is using licensed Disney characters.

Developer: SuperGiant Games

Details: SuperGiant allows monetization. They ask that you post links to purchase the game you're showcasing.


Example Games: Bastion, Transistor

Developer: Team17

Details: Team17 allows monetization. They ask that you post links to purchase the game you're showcasing.


Example Games: The Worms series, Superfrog HD, Alien Breed

Developer: Team Meat

Details: Edmund McMillen has stated publicly that he approves YouTube monetization for any game he works on it seems without any sort of requirements or restrictions, however it is not declared as an official statement anywhere on Team Meat's site or his personal blog. He has mentioned it at least a couple of times on his account (which no longer exists) and I've seen him Tweet about it once or twice. The issue is that if YouTube requires more documentation, these statements are useless. It took many back-and-forths with YouTube support after they kept denying my video for them to finally say that they do not take statements on social networks into consideration and that you need a more official form of documentation. If that's the case for you, you might want to try contacting them directly for this but I'm guessing that if anything, they'll just send a link to Edmund's post. In case you're wondering; I do not have my Super Meat Boy video monetized as a result of this.

Source: Edmund's Twitter

Example Games: Super Meat Boy

Developer: Tripwire Interactive

Details: Tripwire allows YouTube monetization.


Example Games: The Ball, Dwarfs?!, Killing Floor, the Red Orchestra series, Rising Storm, Zeno Clash

Publisher/Developer: Ubisoft

Details: Ubisoft, surprisingly, allows YouTube monetization for their games following some simple guidelines. Just be aware, I've sometimes had issues with YouTube support over this. From my experience if they give you any trouble, just follow and fill out anything they're asking of you in their inconsistent ever changing format with the same information from the source below and reiterating that you have the proper documentation provided. You can even provide a copy of the PDF as an additional attachment for further reiteration as proof just to get the point across. As of writing this, there still is one old Assassin's Creed video from my personal channel that has yet to be approved but is not a priority for me.


Example Games: The Assassin's Creed series, Watch Dogs, the Splinter Cell series, the Rayman series, and a lot more.

Developer: Valve Corporation

Details: Valve allows YouTube monetization for their games.


Example Games: Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Counter-Strike: Source, Day of Defeat: Source, Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Left 4 Dead, Left 4 Dead 2, Portal, Portal 2, Team Fortress 2. 

Denied Monetization

All developers that were in this list are now allowing YouTube monetization. If I run into any developers who are not, I will update this list.


Publisher: 2K Games, Inc.

Details: Being a subsidiary of Take-Two Interactive, 2K has the same video policy. Scroll down to "Rockstar Games / Take-Two Interactive" for more details.

Developer: The Fullbright Company

Details: The only source I've found regarding this is a Tweet in regards to the game Gone Home allowing use of the game for YouTube monetization. However, I have found that YouTube still claims copyright on music used in the game, so it is not usable for monetization unless you turn the music off. There is no clarification on this that I've found and I have no personal intention to clear this up with the developer at this time.


Example Games: Gone Home

Developer: High Moon Studios

Details: I honestly have not attempted to contact High Moon at all for the simple fact that the only game I've recorded gameplay of from them is Transformers: War for Cybertron and I am almost certain since it's a Hasbro property that they will probably say no. But feel free to contact them and let me know if you actually got any luck from them.

Publisher: LucasArts

Details: By request, I've looked into this developer but have not found a definitive statement. You may have to contact the publisher for each individual case. I have no intention of researching further due to the fact that games are based around the Star Wars franchise which is owned by Disney, who also does not have a definitive statement on the subject but am almost certain that they will not approve of YouTube monetization (such as other Marvel and Disney games like Deadpool for High Moon Studios or Kingdom Hearts for Square Enix).

Developer/Publisher: Rockstar Games / Take-Two Interactive

Details: From their official statement on their site, it explicitly states "non-commercial" use is allowed. However, "non-commercial" in that context means "you don't sell site membership, or use the material to promote a product you sell on the site like a shirt or wallpaper". It does not give clear mention to monetization on YouTube's Partner program or information about ad placement. I have read conflicting information when researching this. Chances are, as long as you follow their guidelines for "non-commercial" use (which also forbids pre-release footage, ending game spoilers, cut-scenes that are not part of a larger commentary, and "in-game entertainment"), you should be fine but I have no solid confirmation on that. You can try contacting them for further clarification, as I may be doing so if YouTube asks me for more information once I have my GTA V videos uploaded.

UPDATE: I have since contacted Take-Two twice through the email address provided in the link below. I have yet to get a response.

UPDATE: I did try to email their support for a third time recently and still have not received a response. As of July 18th, 2015, I sent out a Tweet which received a response from Rockstar's Twitter support who reached out and offered to monitor the issue for me. With the link they provided me, I sent another email through a different form submission than is suggested on the support page listed below. I will update this section when I hear a response.

UPDATE: The response was to email their copyright support team (the same email in the following link), which I've tried to do three times in the past. This fourth time was no different, although I did receive an automated response telling me to await a follow-up email (which did not happen). I have read over their policy many times and have determined to interpret their stance on "non-commercial" use as anything that has a pay-wall to access content. As such, I don't believe pre-roll and banner ads are what they consider "commercial use", but have not been able to receive a response telling me otherwise. I have now enabled advertisements on all my GTA videos with a disclaimer in the description of each. If you have better luck reaching Rockstar or Take-Two Interactive about this, PLEASE LET ME KNOW!


Example Games: The Grand Theft Auto series, Red Dead Redemption.

Developer/Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment

Details: I have not yet found a definitive answer on this, however it does seem to be complicated. There are a vast number of development studios under SIE which may all follow their own individual policies which I may have to research further (such as Naughty Dog and Guerrilla Games). I've also seen instances of several notable Sony games getting copyright strikes from content creators through forum posts. Best to say for now that, if it is a Sony property, it is likely not allowed. But I would encourage contacting their support team in your case or letting me know if you have further information.

Developer: Undead Labs

Details: I have not found an official statement on the matter, but I have seen that others have contacted them about their game State of Decay in which they offered approval. The game is also published by Microsoft Studios so it should also fall in line with their YouTube policies. However, for my State of Decay video, I have been hit with a copyright ID notice because of the music used in the game. I have not attempted to contact the developer in regards to removing the copyright claim or in regards to monetization. If you have any results, let me know in the comments below!

Example Games: State of Decay