Blizzard Sues Chinese Hearthstone Clone

Blizzard Sues Chinese Hearthstone Clone

Legend of Crouching Dragon cards

Blizzard has filed a lawsuit against the maker of Legend of Crouching Dragon, a clone of Hearthstone that first came to light last fall.

Legend of Crouching Dragon, a collectible card game available exclusively in China, is facing legal action from Blizzard over complaints that it is a clone of Hearthstone. MMO Culture, citing a Chinese-language source, said Blizzard and its partner NetEase are seeking roughly $1.65 million in the lawsuit, and quite likely a permanent injunction against the game.

Legend of Crouching Dragon has actually been around and recognized as a Hearthstone clone since October of last year. While it's strictly a mobile title, the gameplay and many of the assets are identical to Blizzard's CCG. Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime said at Blizzcon last November, "I am aware of another game that is infringing on our Hearthstone intellectual property, and so our legal department is taking legal action against that to protect our intellectual property."

The free-to-play Hearthstone CCG went into open beta yesterday.

Source: MMO Culture

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Oh boy, just imagine how many folks Wizards of the Coast could sue. They've pretty much invented TCG's. :D

I'm always really intrigued as to what the reaction of Chinese gamers is to this kind of thing.

Chaosritter:
Oh boy, just imagine how many folks Wizards of the Coast could sue. They've pretty much invented TGC's. :D

Used to be no one could create a CCG of any time without first licensing through WoTC. Steve Jackson games had the problem when they tried to release Illuminati: New World Order.

I'm not sure if or when the WoTC exclusive on CCGs was changed though.

Addendum: Searched a bit. Seems WoTC still owns the patent on CCGs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collectible_card_game#Patent

Weaver:
I'm always really intrigued as to what the reaction of Chinese gamers is to this kind of thing.

They probably dont even know about it.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Hearthstone one among a sea of Rage of Bahamut clones?

Scrythe:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Hearthstone one among a sea of Rage of Bahamut clones?

It is nothing like RoB. It is closer to Magic: The Gathering, a proper TCG. And this isn't just 'a game in the veing od Hearthstone', it is actually using their assets and work. Good luck to Blizzard, IMHO, this shit is out of hand.

MinionJoe:

Chaosritter:
Oh boy, just imagine how many folks Wizards of the Coast could sue. They've pretty much invented TGC's. :D

Used to be no one could create a CCG of any time without first licensing through WoTC. Steve Jackson games had the problem when they tried to release Illuminati: New World Order.

I'm not sure if or when the WoTC exclusive on CCGs was changed though.

Addendum: Searched a bit. Seems WoTC still owns the patent on CCGs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collectible_card_game#Patent

I'd never heard of that patent before. That's completely insane. Could you imagine if patents like that ever became part of the video game business? The patent "includes claims covering games whose rules include many of Magic's elements in combination, including concepts such as changing orientation of a game component to indicate use", ie, "tapping". They patented "tapping"?!? That would be like someone patenting "leveling up" in a video game.

Does anyone know of any precedent for a company outside of China actually winning an IP-related suit against a company inside China? I thought they basically just laughed at attempts to do so.

 

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