Bethesda is no stranger to legal controversy. Of course, they're usually the ones initiating the legal action against someone, and in this scenario Bethesda doesn't disappoint. So why are they going after an indie dev? Because of the name of the game... Fortress Fallout.
Gamespot found that Xreal's iOS title, Fortress Fallout was hit with a cease and desist letter from Bethesda.
For those wondering if the game is similar to Fallout 3 or Fallout: New Vegas, they couldn't be more different. Fortress Fallout is a tower-defense game for mobile devices where you craft and defend a fortress on a single screen. As mentioned in the article, there's literally no visual or gameplay resemblance between the iOS title and Bethesda's highly popular Fallout 3.
Nevertheless, the founder of Xreal, the studio behind the game, explained the situation in a near 10 minute video, expressing the disappointment on having to change the name of the game after being targeted by Bethesda. You can check out the video below.
The video garnered close to half a million views.
Most of the viewers and commenters actually side with him. He also asked the community if they would provide some alternative names for the game since they won't be fighting Bethesda in court about it. Amidst the vitriol aimed at Bethesda and plenty of expletives about a company controlling a word like “Fallout”, most of the commenters actually offer a few different names that the game can change to.
Bethesda is extremely protective of their properties. There were previously engaged in a stiff legal bout with Mojang, the creators of Minecraft, over the name Scrolls. Why? Because the name was very close to their own Elder Scrolls property.
It's understandable that some companies will fight to protect their trademarks to losing them, but some gamers and outsiders looking in might view it as corporate bullying.
Of course, this also comes at a time where there is a lot of talk circulating throughout the industry about Bethesda's plans for 2015. You see, for the first time ever, in the history of all things, Bethesda will host their very first E3 stage conference this year.
The swirl of conversation centers around Fallout 4; many hope that Bethesda will finally announce the game after dodging the question throughout most of 2014 and purposefully going out of the way to make it known that the game wouldn't be announced at certain events.
Whether Fallout 4 makes an appearance at E3 this year is anyone's guess, but we do know for sure that Bethesda has some huge plans to drop this June, and they obviously aren't going to let a small indie title with a similar name get in their way.
Fortress Fallout is still scheduled to release for mobile devices, it'll just do so with a different name. You can sign up for the game's beta by paying a visit to the official forums.