Leave a Comment
We live in strange times where even seemingly harmless mobile games aren't free from the litigious hammer of corporate overseers. In this case, the lawsuit between Bethesda Softworks and Behaviour Interactive surrounding the mobile version of Westworld has finally come to an end.
According to a press statement issued from Bethesda, the lawsuit involving Westworld has been "amicably resolved" between both parties. That's actually a rather benign outcome from the lawsuit given that we know just how litigious Bethesda can be and just how aggressive the company can become concerning legal matters, as the parent company of Bethesda, ZeniMax, also sued Mojang at one point over the use of the name Scrolls for a game that the indie outlet was working on, all because it was similar to The Elder Scrolls.
In the case of Westworld, it actually all started six months ago back during the summer of 2018. The lawsuit kicked off after Bethesda alleged that Warner Bros. and Behaviour Interactive lifted code from Fallout Shelter for the mobile version of Westworld.
Bethesda's proof of the code being stolen? A glitch.
According to Bethesda, both Westworld and Fallout Shelter contained a very similar glitch, which the company alleged would only be possible had the code been copied. This led into a back and forth between Behaviour Interactive and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment over the code used in Westworld, to which the former assured the latter that none of the code from Bethesda's mobile game was used to make a game based on the popular HBO series.
In the original rebuttal to the claims, Warner Bros. insisted that the company did not "induce" Behaviour Interactive to use any of the code from Bethesda's game. Behaviour also denied stealing anything from other games.
It's an interesting choice of words, but also it seems like something that shouldn't have to be said. Stealing someone's code without credit or permission is a dangerous path to go down, and no developer worth their salt would ever attempt to steal code from a high-profile game to use it in another high-profile game, especially a developer who knows the ropes like Behaviour Interactive, a company responsible for the highly popular multiplayer horror game, Dead By Daylight.
In this case, both Behaviour Interactive and Warner Bros., managed to escape any major backlash from the legal battle that Bethesda nearly dragged the duo through over Fallout: Shelter. It could have ended up much worse, like what happened with Oculus when the court originally ordered Facebook to pay $500 million to ZeniMax in damages, but then cut it in half to $250 million. It's been a slow climb back up for Oculus, but as reported by UploadVR, there is still ample demand for the VR headset.
It's probably one of those moments where Behaviour wiped the sweat from their brow and are now focused on getting back to work on games without worrying about losing everything over a mobile game based on a TV show.