Is Nintendo Music Copyrighted [Updated 2023]

Nintendo music is a popular topic of discussion among gamers, streamers, and content creators. One question that often arises is whether Nintendo music is copyrighted. In short, the answer is yes, Nintendo music is copyrighted. Nintendo is the owner of the copyright in its music and takes active measures to protect its intellectual property.

This means that any unauthorized use or reproduction of Nintendo music without permission from Nintendo may result in legal consequences, such as a copyright infringement lawsuit. In this article, we will explore the copyright status of Nintendo music in more detail.

Many producers are concerned about how fans will get access to otherwise difficult-to-find soundtracks and music that they would typically need to turn on their consoles for due to a recent spike in copyright claims and takedown requests.

Can We Still Use Nintendo Music?

Generally speaking, using Nintendo music without the proper authorization or licensing from Nintendo is illegal. The usage of Nintendo music might, however, be permitted in some situations or qualify as fair use in others. It is advisable to acquire legal advice or permission from Nintendo before using any of their music.

How Do We Use The “Fair Use Policy”?

The use of Nintendo music under the Fair Use Policy is a complex legal issue, and there is no simple answer. It depends on several factors such as the purpose of the use, the amount of music used, and the potential impact on the market value of the original work. In general, using Nintendo music for educational or non-profit purposes, or in a transformative way, may be considered fair use.

Mired In Copyright

Nintendo music has been posted to YouTube for public listening by creators and fans for many years.

In its Game Content Guidelines for Online Video & Image Sharing Platforms, Nintendo expressly restricts users from posting the game\’s soundtracks there, regardless of whether the content is made available for purchase or not.


The creators of the videos can occasionally profit from YouTube\’s ad program because such videos are monetized, but this doesn\’t happen frequently. In order to make it easier to access, some producers upload single songs they like, while others compile playlists with Nintendo music or publish the complete soundtrack of a game.

When uploading these soundtracks, creators may also encounter legal problems, particularly if they re-upload them after already receiving a takedown notice or copyright strike.

The Hourly Animal Crossing Music Page is a website that plays music from Nintendo\’s life simulation series based on a user\’s system preferences. It was developed ten years ago by game developer Brian Lee.

Lee doesn\’t upload the soundtracks; instead, the music is sourced from embedded YouTube videos that other people have released. The fact that Animal Crossing is distinctive in having a different tune for each hour of the day is what motivated Lee to make the page.

According to him, the gameplay has a special quality that makes you busy and at ease at the same time. This makes it ideal for use as background music to help you get in the right frame of mind.

Shunning Streaming

It\’s getting harder and harder to listen to Nintendo music, especially for older or obscure games, as the company\’s soundtracks are being taken down from YouTube.

Spotify, YouTube, and other well-known music streaming platforms are not places where Nintendo posts its soundtracks. It occasionally releases physical soundtracks, but those are uncommon and frequently limited to Japan.

It\’s important to note that most consumers no longer download individual songs and tracks or search for specific websites when they want to listen to music. Over the past few years, music streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music have dominated the music business.

It is disheartening to see that Nintendo continues to seek to impose an absolute monopoly on how their music is accessed.

Grooves For The Future

Nintendo should make its soundtracks easier to understand for the typical listener, according to Brian Lee.

Although there is moral ambiguity, Lee believes it is good that individuals may save and share old content that would otherwise be \’legally\’ inaccessible.


Many of these songs may only be heard by starting the games from which they are taken; in certain cases, particular tracks are inaccessible once a game is finished, making it difficult to listen to old favorites.

Some people believe that posting Nintendo music on YouTube is a preservationist gesture because some of these classic games are also fading into history.

It\’s unfortunate that there isn\’t a simpler, more complete way to listen to the company\’s music because its fans all across the world have strong feelings about it. The scene for video game music is vibrant. It\’s a group that has inspired countless music uploaders.

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