Viacom and Activision end Star Trek squabble

All suits and countersuits stemming from the 2003 license dispute are settled confidentially and "amicably."

This week, Activision and Viacom made like the Klingons and the Federation and ended their long-running conflict. The two companies had been waging a legal war against each other since the summer of 2003, when the game publisher terminated its license deal with Viacom and filed a breach of contract suit against the media giant. Activision contended that Viacom hadn't continued to produce and promote Star Trek film and television properties at the same rate it had when the two companies first signed a 10-year licensing agreement in 1998, thereby lessening the game rights value. Viacom claimed it had lived up to its end of the bargain.

In a brief statement issued yesterday, Activision said simply that it and Viacom had "jointly announced that they have reached an agreement that settles their legal disputes regarding their license agreement for 'Star Trek' video games. As a result of the settlement, all pending lawsuits filed by each party in the Superior Court in Los Angeles regarding this matter have been dismissed. All other terms of the settlement agreement will remain confidential."

While the above statement sounds more than a tad terse, Activision did try to sugarcoat the settlement somewhat. "Both companies said that they were very pleased to resolve the matter amicably and look forward to working together in the future on other projects," read the statement.

As for the next Star Trek games, only one has a publisher publicly attached to it. Yesterday, Perpetual Entertainment revealed the first details about its Star Trek Online massively multiplayer role-playing game. However, in January, a forum post attributed to a Viacom executive said several Trek games were bandied about to publishers, including a strategy game.

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