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Legal System

Nintendo photo

Nintendo successfully fends off another patent case against Wii U and 3DS

Add it to the list
Nov 16
// Brett Makedonski
Nintendo's hardware seems to be a magnet for litigation. Everyone thinks the Wii U or the 3DS infringe on their patents, but Nintendo proves time and time again that they don't. The Japanese platform-holder has another succes...
Itagaki photo

Buy tickets to see Dead or Alive's Itagaki in court

Devil's Third trademark infringement
Nov 11
// Steven Hansen
I say "Dead or Alive's Itagaki" because perhaps you forgot about the brash Team Ninja head. You wouldn't be at fault. Since leaving Team Ninja in 2008 all he's managed to put out is Devil's Third, an incredibly poorly receive...
Carpenter told to sue photo
Carpenter told to sue

John Carpenter didn't sue Hideo Kojima because 'he's a nice guy'

Escape From New York director
Oct 27
// Steven Hansen
John Carpenter (Ghosts of Mars; Gorgon, the Space Monster) recently talked to Hollywood Reporter about his successful plagiarism suit against French director Luc Besson (Léon: The Professional) whose recent film Lockou...
UK Law photo
UK Law

The new UK Consumer Rights Act guarantees digital refunds

Up to 30 days after purchase
Oct 02
// Joe Parlock
The UK has some fairly decent consumer protection laws, compared to the nonsense I’ve heard happen in other countries. The only problem is that they could be fairly vague, and fighting for your rights often involved get...

Fair Use photo
Fair Use

American courts say companies must consider fair use when removing videos

Bad luck for some developers
Sep 15
// Joe Parlock
Since 2007, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has been in a legal battle with Universal. Lenz v. Universal was filed because of Universal throwing a DMCA takedown notice on a family video of a child dancing to Prince’s...
Pokemon Championships photo
Pokemon Championships

Pokemon World Championship attempted shooting suspects denied bail

Will stay in jail for four months
Sep 03
// Joe Parlock
Last month, two armed men were arrested for allegedly threatening a mass shooting at the Pokémon World Championship. Now, Kevin Norton (18) and James Stumbo (27) have been denied bail, meaning they will be required to ...
Shame, shame photo
Shame, shame

FTC comes down on Machinima for 'deceptive' Xbox One marketing

Microsoft absolved of any wrong-doing
Sep 02
// Brett Makedonski
In late 2013, around the time that the Xbox One launched, YouTube content creation group Machinima struck an advertising deal with Microsoft. The marketing campaign would feature videos from Machinima's network of influencers...
Get 200 amiibo photo
Get 200 amiibo

Unofficial 'amiiqo' can save amiibo data without buying the toys

Nintendo not pleased
Aug 18
// Steven Hansen
People are varying degrees of upset over Nintendo's not-unexpected decision to lock content -- even if it's mainly costumes and the like -- behind amiibo pairing. The "amiiqo" is an okay answer to these complaints. The compl...
Pixels photo

Legitimate videos DMCA'd off Vimeo by Pixels movie copyright enforcers

Adam Sandler ruins everything yet again
Aug 10
// Joe Parlock
Pixels was a bit of a train wreck, wasn’t it? It currently sits at a meager 18% on Rotten Tomatoes, and the general consensus on the film is people would rather pour salt into a papercut in their eyeball than have to wa...
Gameboy Advance Emulator photo
Gameboy Advance Emulator

Nintendo pulls browser-based GBA emulator

No Kuru-Kuru Kururin on Chrome for you
Jul 14
// Joe Parlock
Nintendo have put an end to a browser-based Gameboy Advance Emulator. The emulator didn’t actually have a name, but instead was a Github page that hosted many Javascript versions of popular GBA games such as Pokemon Eme...
Desura photo

Desura owner Bad JuJu files for bankruptcy

Bad times at Bad JuJu
Jun 05
// Joe Parlock
A couple of weeks ago, it came to light that digital distributor Desura, and its indie bundle site Indie Royale, has been failing to pay developers on its platforms. Well, it looks like they might not be getting that mon...
Don't get cocky photo
Don't get cocky

Expensive dick moderation helped kill the last LEGO MMO

Minecraft competitor? Don't get cocky
Jun 03
// Steven Hansen
Someone think about the children! Like my own personal brand, LEGO is a family-friendly, name-stealing company. And so the open-ended, Minecraft-like builder LEGO Worlds has some problem what with immature idiots' propensity ...
Oculus photo

Oculus founder Palmer Luckey accused of fraud

May 25
// Vikki Blake
Oculus VR founder, Palmer Luckey, is being sued for breach of contract. According to The Recorder, Hawaiian virtual reality company Total Recall Technologies “seeks compensatory and punitive damages” aga...
BBC Drama photo
BBC Drama

Rockstar Games is suing the BBC

Sure does add more drama to this project
May 21
// Joe Parlock
Rockstar Games has filed a lawsuit against the BBC. This is because of the Beeb’s upcoming drama Game Changer, which details the early days of the studio and its hit Grand Theft Auto as well as the much-publicised confl...
ImageePoch photo

Imageepoch has filed for bankruptcy

And yeah, the CEO is still missing
May 13
// Joe Parlock
Keeping track of what’s going on at Japanese developer Imageepoch has been one hell of a ride. Imageepoch was well known for games such as Luminous Arc, 7th Dragon, and Arc Rise Fantasia. Last month the CEO, Ryoei ...
Emulation photo

The first commercial 3DS game's been successfully emulated

Don't get your hopes up just yet
May 12
// Joe Parlock
Emulation’s in a weird legal grey area that’s all kinds of fascinating to me. The actual bit of software designed to play ROMs is legal, but the BIOS file that makes it run? You usually have to acquire them throug...
Australia photo

Australian Origin's going to have to offer better refunds

Bet they regret Battlefield 4 now
Apr 28
// Joe Parlock
Refunds, remember those? Those glorious days where if you decided you didn’t like something, or if it caught fire, ate your family, contributed to global warming or pissed on the carpet, you could just take it back and ...

Atari bullying indie developer behind Tempest 2000

Mar 19 // Kyle MacGregor
Shortly after TxK's launch last year, Atari began to browbeat Minter and Llamasoft over the game. In a letter dated June 9, 2014, the company's legal representation argued TxK infringed on Atari's intellectual property, calling the game a "blatant copy of the Tempest games" utterly devoid of any semblance of originality. Atari demanded TxK be removed from the market, and requested any copies be destroyed, deleted, or delivered to Atari along with the title's source code. Nearly a year later, Minter decided to let the world know, allowing months upon months of frustrations boil over via Twitter. "I am beyond disgusted," he wrote. " I could never have imagined one day being savaged by [Atari's] undead corpse, my own seminal work turned against me." Minter was also taken aback by the tone of the letter, which asserts Minter merely updated the original game, downplaying his involvement with the revival. "No amount of legal mumbo jumbo can erase the fact that I designed and coded Tempest 2000," he retorted. "The fact that they are willing to pay someone to wilfully [sic] distort the truth in that fashion says it all about them really." It isn't the first time Minter's former employer distorted something to his detriment. Over on his website, Minter rebuffed Atari's arguments regarding TxK's originality, or lack thereof. He recalled there is actually precedent regarding how distinct games must be to be considered different under the law, which, funnily enough, involves both Tempest 2000 and Atari. Do you remember there was a PlayStation port of Tempest 2000 called "Tempest X"? I always wondered why the name was changed, and other little aspects of the gameplay were altered. years later I managed to chat online with the guy who did the port, and he told me that the changes were made "to reduce the royalty burden." How so? Well, my original arrangement with Atari was that I was to receive a royalty on any ports of Tempest 2000. "Tempest X" was made exactly enough different that it would be legally considered a different game, cutting me out of any royalties. Minter notes Tempest 2000 and Tempest X share the same source code, soundtrack, and power-up progression. Tempest 2000 was even included in X as a hidden unlockable. "Yet now," Minter writes, "Atari claim that TxK is in fact *closer* legally to Tempest 2000 than Tempest X was." Destructoid reached out to Atari for comment and received the following in response: Atari values and protects its intellectual property and expects others to respect its copyrights and trademarks. When Llamasoft launched TxK in early 2014, Atari was surprised and dismayed by the very close similarities between TxK and the Tempest franchise. Atari was not alone in noticing the incredible likeness between the titles. Several major gaming outlets also remarked at the similarity of features and overall appearance of TxK to Tempest; one stated of TxK, “This is essentially Tempest.” There is no lawsuit. Atari has been in continuous contact with the developer since the game launched in hopes that the matter would be resolved. Atari also quoted a trio of reviews from IGN, GameSpot, and Gaming Nexus to support its point. However, while the company claims says its doing this to protect its marks, Minter points out there are many Tempest clones floating around the mobile space "unmolested." The man now seems to want the company to just leave him alone. Minter says he is working on a new project that is "literally another world away from anything 'Atari.'" [embed]289241:57853:0[/embed] Perhaps Atari will spawn a Tempest MMO, like the recently announced Asteroids: Outpost.
TxK photo
New ports of spiritual successor TxK 'will now never see the light of day'
Atari thought it was "absolutely rubbish," the Jaguar designer told developer Jeff Minter in 1993. The man felt compelled to pull Minter aside at the console's launch party and let him know how little Atari thought of Minter'...

Dictatorsuit photo

Judge tosses former Panamanian dictator's Call of Duty lawsuit

Manuel Noriega will need to find a new outlet for his time in prison
Oct 29
// Steven Hansen
Earlier this year, Panama's former dictator and friend to the CIA Manuel Noriega sued Activision for the use of his likeness in Call of Duty: Black Ops II. Not for defamation of character for portraying him a murderous badman...
Revolution 60 photo
Revolution 60

Game developer threatened, hacked, doxxed after posting meme

Developer of game about 'badass women' targeted
Oct 11
// Jonathan Holmes
Giant Spacekat (Revolution 60) development head Brianna Wu was forced to leave her home last night after her personal information, including home address, was posted online and she received multiple violent, sexual ...
Square Enix photo
Square Enix

Square Enix is suing SNK Playmore over manga copyright

High Score Girl
Oct 08
// Brett Makedonski
SNK Playmore recently filed criminal charges against Square Enix, citing copyright infringement. The alleged violation stems from Square Enix's use of SNK characters in the manga High Score Girl. In retaliation, Square E...
Aliens: Colonial Marines photo
Aliens: Colonial Marines

Sega agrees to settle in Aliens: Colonial Marines lawsuit

Gearbox found crying by the toilet talking about how 'no one understands art'
Aug 13
// Brittany Vincent
Sega of America has tentatively agreed to pay out $1.25 million to settle a class-action suit brought against it and Gearbox Software that claimed the two companies falsely advertised Aliens: Colonial Marines by using fake ga...
Square suit photo
Square suit

Cops raided Square Enix after criminal lawsuit from SNK

For use of SNK characters and games without consent
Aug 06
// Steven Hansen
Osaka police raided a Shinjuku, Tokyo Square Enix office yesterday, the result of a May criminal filing against Square Enix by SNK.  SNK alleges that Square Enix infringed (a lot) on SNK intellectual properties, cit...
GameStop photo

GameStop fingerprinting customers in Philadelphia

Retailer is being proactive about stolen goods, police say
Aug 01
// Kyle MacGregor
GameStop now requires customers to provide fingerprint scans when trading in merchandise at the retailer's Philadelphia locations, CBS Philly reports. The chain is collecting thumbprints, which are sent to a national dat...
38 Studios lawsuit photo
38 Studios lawsuit

Judge okays first settlement in 38 Studios lawsuit

$4.4 million agreement between Rhode Island EDC and bond attorney approved
Jul 27
// Kyle MacGregor
A judge has approved the first settlement in Rhode Island's lawsuit over the ill-fated $75 million deal that brought Kingdoms of Amalur developer 38 Studios to the state in 2010. The ruling from Superior Court Judge Mich...
Not 'free' photo
Not 'free'

Google will stop calling games with in-app purchases 'free' in Europe

Healthcare communist socialist PC police
Jul 18
// Steven Hansen
As part of its investigation into unwanted in-app purchases, often by children, the European Commission has laid out guidelines for developers and the app stores themselves to follow. By the end of September, Google will...
Active-fission photo

Vivendi considered firing Activision's Bobby Kotick over last year's buyout

Kotick and Activision chairman Brian Kelly being sued, too
Jul 16
// Steven Hansen
Last year, Activision Blizzard orchestrated a buyout of then-parent company Vivendi to separate from Vivendi and become an independent company. I wrote this great headline about the split --Active-fission -- and stared w...
38 Studios photo
38 Studios

Rhode Island agrees to $4.4 million settlement in 38 Studios lawsuit

Bond attorney denies liability, but doesn't want to risk trial
Jun 30
// Kyle MacGregor
Rhode Island has reached a $4.4 million settlement agreement with one of the defendants named in the state's lawsuit over the failed deal, according to court filings released Friday. The suit alleges defendant Moses Afonso Ry...
Thanks, laws photo
Thanks, laws

Oakland formally lifts 80-year pinball ban

Oakland more like Jokeland (Raiders suck)
Jun 24
// Steven Hansen
There's a thing anyone who took a US government class in high school from an angry bald man should know: technology outpaces law. Not just technology. Advancement in general. Are Let's Plays illegal? We can only hope.  S...
Nintendo photo

Philips comes out victorious in Nintendo legal patent battle

A UK court rules that Nintendo did indeed infringe on Philips' patent
Jun 20
// Brittany Vincent
For some time now, Nintendo has been locked in a legal battle with Philips over patents registered back in 2011 regarding gesture recognition and motion control. Philips claimed to have patented these ideas long before Ninten...

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