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Doctor Strange Fight Scene Might Have Copied Indie Dev’s Game

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is a lot of fun and a delightful return of both Sam Raimi after nine years of avocado farming and Benedict Cumberbatch as the former Sorcerer Supreme. Part of that fun can be credited to a particular fight scene where Doctor Strange combats an alternate version of himself through music.

As magic-wielding sorcerers, the Stranges square off by summoning glowing bars of music and then firing them at their opponent. Music notes become tiny blades that slice through fabric, flesh, and detritus as their attacks are punctuated by a light sprinkling of pianos or a fiery crescendo from a full orchestra.

It's a whimsical scene that added a lot to the Multiverse of Madness, and it's an idea that might have originated from a particular indie game.

Sword of Symphony was announced last year as a music-based JRPG from solo developer Stephen Ddungu. The game is heavily inspired by Kingdom Hearts, with a little Final Fantasy and Nier thrown in, but the crux of the game is the protagonist's ability to attack enemies using music in much the same way as a certain Marvel sorcerer.

The idea of giving some sort of physical form to music in order to attack things isn't new, but the way both Sword of Symphony and Doctor Strange present this idea is strikingly similar. So similar that fans think that the Multiverse of Madness might have even been more than a little inspired by Sword of Symphony.

Stephen Ddungu thinks that might be the case. In an interview with Kotaku, Ddungu noted how his viral teaser trailer could have been the source of Doctor Strange's musical fight scene during the movie's reshoots.

"Based on a multitude of primary sources that support the notion they did, I’d say it’s ‘highly probable’ and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was true," Ddungu said. "Therefore, all the sources (which quote the people who made the film directly) strongly imply the scene wasn’t in the film’s original script and that it was a last-minute move executed at least three months after Sword of Symphony went viral and received praise for its concept. So when everyone’s telling me they ripped off my work, after scrutinizing the surrounding evidence, I can understand why people have that view."

While Ddungu admits that he didn't invent the idea of deadly musical notes, neither is it unusual for big production studios to grab ideas from other creators.

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