Business Models

by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
competition, games, suing

capcom, twisted pixel

When A Company Choosing Not To Sue A Copycat Is News...

from the society-today... dept

azuravian points us to the story of how indie developer Twisted Pixel has announced that it has no intention of suing gaming giant Capcom for making what looks pretty clearly to be a blatant copy of its Xbox Live Arcade game 'Splosion Man with the iPhone game MaXplosion. Twisted Pixel's CEO notes that he'd rather just compete in the marketplace:
"We're definitely not going to pursue legal action. While I think the similarities are pretty nauseating, we're too small to take on a company like Capcom. That, and we owe them one for inventing Mega Man, so we'll let them slide. I just hope they're not counting on the fact that indies can't fight back.

"In general, anything that would take our focus off of making games would be a bad decision, I think. We just need to keep our heads down making the next thing so that Capcom has something to steal next year. But I have to say, the amount of support we've seen in the last 12 hours on Twitter and over email has been awesome, and I think that's better than wining [sic] a stupid lawsuit or anything like that.
What's also interesting is that Capcom seems to recognize that it's own reputation was seriously harmed by this copying, and has put out a statement saying that it hoped to "rebuild the trust of our fans and friends in the gaming community."

Once again it looks like social mores and social pressure can be a hell of a lot more effective (not to mention cheaper) than any lawsuit.

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  1. icon
    Marcus Carab (profile), 22 Jan 2011 @ 1:54pm


    Twisted Pixel is getting a bunch of support from the gaming community, which is likely to lead to increased sales of this and their other games. It has also opened a great channel for them to communicate with gamers, and the general buzz around Capcom's ripoff is no doubt generating attention for Twisted Pixel as well.

    Moreover, as the CEO says, they want to continue focusing on making more games. Suing would sap time and resources from their company which would be better spent working on their next project - especially at a time like this when the spotlight of the gaming press is on them and is bound to pay attention to their next release.

    Suing might, after several months or years, get them some cash. Or it might backfire and cost them a fortune in lawyer's bills. It's a gamble: shooting for a prize in the unfamiliar arena of law. Why do that when they could keep doing what they know they are good at - forget this battle and win the war on their true merits?

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