Digital Jesters ordered liquidated by UK court

British publisher could face dissolution after losing legal spat with developer.

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Yokohama, Japan-based developer KaosKontrol is declaring victory today in its ongoing dispute with British publisher Digital Jesters, as it reports the UK High Court ordered its former publishing partner "wound up"--English legal parlance for "liquidated"--in order to pay off creditors.

"Following up on this order the creditors now intend to pursue further legal action against the directors of Digital Jesters, [financial director] Mr. Terry Malham and [marketing manager] Mr. Leonardo Zullo," the KaosKontrol release states, adding that "administrators will shortly be appointed to investigate the transactions of Digital Jesters, their investors and associated ventures such as 'Myriad Interactive' of Mr. Marco Landi, with the aim of recovering outstanding debts."

In late November, Myriad Interactive (with Landi named as president) was cited as a major investor in the formation of The DJ Group, a new publishing outfit that would produce games under a number of different brands, including Digital Jesters and Monte Cristo. That announcement was quickly followed by an angry rebuttal from Monte Cristo insisting it was not part of the DJ Group.

KaosKontrol wasn't the only one fed up with the publisher by this point. Seattle-based Super X Studios pulled its Wild Earth game from Digital Jesters, and French developer Kylotonn accused the company of a "series of breaches of contract" as it cut all ties and started looking for a new partner to redistribute its first-person shooter Bet on Soldier.

The Digital Jesters Web site is all but gone today, with nothing more than a placeholder logo of the company and an e-mail address for inquiries. GameSpot's request for comment sent to that address bounced back with a short e-mail saying the account was no longer in use, though it gave contact information for product support and online order questions. A spokesperson for The DJ Group did not immediately return requests for comment.

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