The developer of The Sinking City forced their own game to quit Steam with a DMCA takedown.
Frogwares issued the DMCA takedown to Steam owner Valve after publisher Nacon downloaded a version of the game for sale. The Sinking City Steam page is now offline.
Frogwares and Nacon are embroiled in a bitter legal battle for control of horror adventure The Sinking City, which has been released and removed from Steam several times in recent years.
This week, Frogwares accused Nacon of hacking The Sinking City and get Steam to download it for sale.
The Ukrainian studio accused Nacon of cracking, hacking and modifying the code and content of the game, and “illegally” downloading the game on Steam. Frogwares also threatened further legal action against Nacon. Nacon has denied any wrongdoing.
“That last action was the straw that broke our backs,” Frogwares said. “This is corporate harassment and incompetent hacking, at its best.”
The dispute between Frogwares and Nacon dates back to 2019, when it filed a complaint alleging that the company attempted to claim copyright in The Sinking City after its release, withheld milestone payments, and owed the developer around $ 1. million euros in unpaid royalties.
Then, in August 2020, Frogwares pulled The Sinking City from sale. In October 2020, the Paris Court of Appeal ruled that Frogwares had acted illegally in doing so and ordered the developer to refrain from any other action that would affect its contract with Nacon until the dispute between the two. parts be resolved.
The move opened the door for The Sinking City to return to Steam, and last week Nacon released the game. The move prompted a tweet from Frogwares, recommended players do not download their own game from Valve’s platform.
Frogwares posted a comment to Eurogamer explaining its decision to opt out of the DMCA, saying it revolved around Nacon’s alleged use of content to which it was not entitled:
“We believe that in a very short time we were able to collect extremely strong evidence to indicate that this version of the game has been pirated and contains content over which Nacon has absolutely no rights – namely The Merciful Madness DLC. “said Frogwares.
“A DMCA Notice has proven to be our most effective tool in giving us time to obtain further potential evidence and also initiate the additional long and necessary legal processes to prevent this from happening again.
“We are aware that a final decision on the obligation to provide a Steam version of Frogwares has not yet been made and could take years. As it stands, we have an appeals court ruling that until further notice Frogwares does not need to ship a Steam Version of Nacon. In the meantime, Nacon has decided to do so. justice and release a pirated version.
“We’re also aware that the DMCA claim on this version of Steam can only be a temporary fix and the game can come back – in that form or another. Provide partners like Valve with finalized decisions and verified evidence by third parties so that they can make their final decision takes time and resources. If in the meantime they decide to continue selling the game, we can only respect that while continuing to talk to them and provide them with more information. “
Eurogamer has asked Nacon for an updated comment. Responding to Frogwares’ tweet last week, Nacon accused the developer of “playing the victim”, claiming to have paid the studio more than 10 million euros to date.
Currently, The Sinking City remains for sale on other PC distribution platforms where it is self-published by Frogwares, such as Gamesplanet. The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One version of The Sinking City, released by Nacon, remains for sale on the PlayStation Store and the Xbox Games Store. The Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 5 versions, which are released by Frogwares, are also currently on sale.
Article source https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2021-03-03-the-sinking-city-dev-dmcas-its-own-game-to-force-it-off-steam