Oculus responds to claims that it stole VR tech from Fallout parent company

"We are disappointed but not surprised by ZeniMax's actions and we will prove that all of its claims are false," company says.

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The Facebook-owned Oculus VR--maker of the popular Oculus Rift virtual reality headset--today responded to last week's claims that it stole VR technology from Fallout and Elder Scrolls parent company ZeniMax.

In a statement, Oculus VR said: "We are disappointed but not surprised by ZeniMax’s actions and we will prove that all of its claims are false." The company also provided a list of key points they say are relevant to the situation.

  • There is not a line of Zenimax code or any of its technology in any Oculus products.
  • John Carmack did not take any intellectual property from ZeniMax.
  • ZeniMax has misstated the purposes and language of the ZeniMax non-disclosure agreement that Palmer Luckey signed.
  • A key reason that John permanently left ZeniMax in August of 2013 was that ZeniMax prevented John from working on VR, and stopped investing in VR games across the company.
  • ZeniMax canceled VR support for Doom 3 BFG when Oculus refused ZeniMax’s demands for a non-dilutable equity stake in Oculus.
  • ZeniMax did not pursue claims against Oculus for IP or technology, ZeniMax has never contributed any IP or technology to Oculus, and only after the Facebook deal was announced has ZeniMax now made these claims through its lawyers.
  • Despite the fact that the full source code for the Oculus SDK is available online (developer.oculusvr.com), ZeniMax has never identified any ‘stolen’ code or technology."

Last week, ZeniMax accused legendary game designer John Carmack of improperly taking intellectual property for what would become the Oculus Rift headset with him to Oculus VR when he joined the company last summer.

Oculus initially called the claims "absurd," and Carmack went on Twitter to say that, "No work I have ever done has been patented. ZeniMax owns the code that I wrote, but they don't own VR. Oculus uses zero lines of code that I wrote while under contract to ZeniMax."

We will of course continue to cover this story as it develops.

Leslie Moonves, CEO of GameSpot parent company CBS Corp., is a member of the ZeniMax board of directors.

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