Legal battle between megapublisher and social gaming juggernaut not going forward; terms of the settlement not announced.
The legal battle between Electronic Arts and Zynga has been dismissed, Gamasutra reports today. EA originally brought suit against Zynga in August, claiming The Ville was a Sims Social clone. Zynga countersued a month later, calling the lawsuit "baseless."
An official statement from Zynga to the site states, "EA and Zynga have resolved their respective claims and have reached a settlement of their litigation in the Northern District of California."
Terms of the settlement were not disclosed, though Gamasutra notes that legal documents showed both claims were "dismissed with prejudice," meaning they can never be revisited.
No further information is available, though a source told the site that Zynga is "pleased" with the settlement terms.
two moronic companies fight each other whilst the paying public are of no importance. If only the third daemon, Apple, could have been involved. The love their own idiotic litigation and 'product life cycles' over making decent up to date technology..
I fail to see how this even makes media. If we are not going to be told what the facts of the case where or the terms and conditions of settlement whats the actual point of this story ?
@GetafixOz that its over? we actually do know the facts of the case... facts as each side represents them however. but its finally over and hopefully EA doesnt go and sue every single look alike competitor.
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Zynga is heorrmoraging money at the moment as their microtransaction bubble is bursting.
EA probably realised even a successful lawsuit would cost them more than Zynga would be able to pay back.
@Pastachip Freddy vs. Jason.
Alien vs. Predator
Casual Crap Factory vs. the Destroyer of Brilliant Developers
@Pastachip LOL, kinda like Iran Vs North Korea
I am not sure who i like less, but;east this case can't be opened again, so that's a plus, if you ask me
Zynga make average game not so good that we will miss their games if they are out of the gaming industry
There aught to be laws that companies have to disclose settlements if they waste state/federal tax money on court battles where the parties have no intention of going to trial.
@wafflekings A company that makes Facebook games (farmville) that steals other peoples work and claims its theirs.
I hope to never see a case like this make it to a courtroom or in front of a jury. Best case scenario is that things go on as they are currently. It's the worst case that scares me.
If 'copying' (read 'games with similar design and features') is disallowed, you're going to end up with only a handful of games per genre, and if not a few, only one. Only one FPS, Doom. No Halo, Battlefield, or Call of Duty Only one RTS, Command & Conquer. Goodbye StarCraft, Age of Empires, and Total Annihilation. Only one Action game, Pitfall. Kratos, Mario, and Nathan Drake where never even conceived.
While the specifics of idea I'm presenting are roughly defined at best, the potential for legal action by originators of genres would be such a large concern that developers would be unlikely to pursue making their own vision of a popular title on account of the fact that all profits would likely be lost to lawyers.
Beyond the precendent that would be set for video games, such a decision could also be extended to other creative media. Imagine only one hopital drama. Don't like ER? Too bad. No Grey's Anatomy, House, Private Practice, or Doogie Howser, MD for you. Imagine only one action movie. I hope you like James Bond because Jason Bourne and The Transporter were sued into the poor house. And rock 'n roll stopped with Elvis. The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Metallica, and Nirvana didn't even bother.
@StickyJr1 one rts command annd conquer? come on, Dune 2! :)
@StickyJr1 Hate to burst your bubble, but it's already happened with the Apple Samsung case, and the outcome was not good for future software development.
Just because it wasn't a game doesn't matter. Samsung's software copied features from the iphone, and they lost. Didn't matter that Samsung wrote all of the code from scratch. 'Features' are now a copyright protected asset.
@StickyJr1 But those games at least innovate in some way, Zynga just stole games, and mimicked the art and sometimes the titled very closely.
@Komania And there are no similarities between the mountain of FPS games out there? Doom and Quake? CoD and BF? Original ideas that are good should be rewarded, but often times it's not until one or many clones have been released that the masses hear about the original game.
Zynga copied the formula of Sims Social, but it's not the same game. As for mimicing art, there's only so many ways you can design a house and furnature before it becomes so outlandish that people stop recognizing it for what it is.
If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, EA should take the compliment and then invest their time and money into making their product better than any competitor's.
@StickyJr1 Doom and Quake were made by the same company... ID Software. CoD and BF games actually play completely differently, and can't be seen as a copy of each other. Zynga games copy elements of another game so closely that even the artwork is identical.
Good. I don't want publishers getting the idea it's okay to sue anything that remotely resembles a clone. Nearly every game out there is a clone of something else anyway and some of the clones can end up being better (by taking a formula that works but needs tweeking and polishing it up).
@TrueGB not here to defend EA, but have you seen Zynga games? they are all copies and I mean carbon copies of games from other companies...I would be hard pressed to find one Zynga game which was not clearly copied from some other company...the problem is most of these companies are small and could not afford a lawsuit with Zynga was hoping that this time Zynga made a mistake copying somebody would could take them on, alas not happening, too bad...
@TrueGB You're confusing the idea of genres with blatent copyright infringement.
@TrueGB Apple v Samsung. It's probably why Zynga decided to settle. Precedence has already been set.
@J_Dangerously No, Apple v Samsung was about patents. This is about copyright infringement of gameplay. There is no precedent.
Settlement? No!!! I want a court case and an opinion that clearly states what you can and can't copy in a game. So much for that. We're stuck with ambiguity in the law until another developer files a suit for copyright infringement
@blutosan Unfortunately, it seems the courts are afraid of making a definitive decision on such things. They would rather the two plaintiffs work it out between themselves, saving the judges from making any kind of decision.
@cogadh The courts are overworked and always encourage out-of-court settlement. However, the market hates uncertainty and I think that it would have been well worth the cost of a court case to get a little clarity in the law for the game industry.
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