The Banner Saga Sequel Proceeding Despite Trademark Dispute

The Banner Saga Sequel Proceeding Despite Trademark Dispute

The Banner Saga

The Banner Saga developer Stoic also had a few things to say about what exactly constitutes a "saga."

Indie strategy game The Banner Saga was a hit with consumers and critics alike, but it also ran into some trouble from King, the maker of Candy Crush Saga, which filed a trademark complaint against Stoic over the use of the word "saga" in the game's title. King hasn't sought damages in the matter but it has attempted to block Stoic's trademark application, putting the future of the game, or at least the title, potentially in doubt.

But in a Facebook post that went up yesterday, the Stoic team said that work on the sequel will begin soon regardless of possible legal complications, and also made a rather pointed comment about sagas.

"Aside from the relief that comes with knowing that we'll be able to keep working at Stoic for a long time to come, what has been really rewarding is the individuals who write to us saying things like 'No game has ever been more worthy of the title Saga. A saga is something epic, something that will linger in the minds and memories of people for years to come. For that is what The Banner Saga is, a little slice of perfection that nobody else can spoil'," the team wrote. "I can't tell you how validating and important that has been to us."

Stoic said that after a "short hiatus," it will get to work on the second game in the trilogy, adding, "If there's one complaint we've heard over and over, it's that the story isn't done."

Despite claiming in its complaint against The Banner Saga that the title is "confusingly and deceptively similar" to its trademarks and likely to cause "confusion in the marketplace," King later acknowledged that it doesn't actually believe Stoic is trying to take advantage of its brand but said the complaint is necessary to preserve its ability to pursue other cases of actual infringement.

Source: Facebook

Permalink

I was very disappointed by The Banner Saga. Hopefully they will change a lot in the sequel.

Thank God, the current game is amazing, if done right (and if they improve the mechanics and the animation + voice acting) this game series could easily end up on my top 10.

As it stands, it is the best game I have played this year.

Hate to be the guy who posts a John Green video just for the sake of it, but I think this is necessary to explain why King pretty much have to file a complaint against Stoic, even if they don't really think The Banner Saga is 'confusingly similar'.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaVy_QCa1RQ

Of course, this doesn't excuse King for having the gall to try and trademark 'Saga' but whatever.

o_d:

snip

From what I have heard from lawyers, it's completely untrue that they need to sue everybody.

Well if that's the case then fair enough.

The thing that disgusts me about this is not that King is defending a trademark, that's their right. I'm disgusted that they think that the word "saga" makes an appropriate trademark. It's such a generic term, I can't see it being eligible for actual trademark protection. "Candy Crush Saga" is certainly a trademark, but just saga on its own? Even the term "windows" without the "Microsoft" failed to pass muster as an actual, protected trademark, I can't see this going very far either.

Royas:
The thing that disgusts me about this is not that King is defending a trademark, that's their right. I'm disgusted that they think that the word "saga" makes an appropriate trademark. It's such a generic term, I can't see it being eligible for actual trademark protection. "Candy Crush Saga" is certainly a trademark, but just saga on its own? Even the term "windows" without the "Microsoft" failed to pass muster as an actual, protected trademark, I can't see this going very far either.

They might as well be trying to trademark "2" as "Candy Crush" is known for being "Candy Crush" and "Candy Crush Saga" is essentially "Candy Crush Adventure" according to the marketplace. There is zero confusion between "The Banner" and "Candy Crush".

If there is confusion between those two titles then EA and Ubisoft better start their trademark war over Assassin's Creed II and Mass Effect II.

o_d:
Hate to be the guy who posts a John Green video just for the sake of it, but I think this is necessary to explain why King pretty much have to file a complaint against Stoic, even if they don't really think The Banner Saga is 'confusingly similar'.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaVy_QCa1RQ

Of course, this doesn't excuse King for having the gall to try and trademark 'Saga' but whatever.

Green does a good job with the video, but it misses a lot of things that aren't relevant to his decision but are relevant here. When filing a trademark it's normal to specify things such as the following from the trademark for 'Microsoft Office':

Microsoft:
NO CLAIM IS MADE TO THE EXCLUSIVE RIGHT TO USE "OFFICE" APART FROM THE MARK AS SHOWN

King didn't do this, and may have its applications (USPTO moves roughly as fast as tar pitch, the application is just under 2 years old) rejected outright on that basis, there are 314 trademark applications that include 'saga' already.

Not the only problem with the trademark applications, neither have a 'first use in commerce' or 'first use' listed. That 'The Banner Saga' can be claimed to be the older mark since they have first use listed as Jan 01 2012, the first filing for 'candy crush saga' is mar 12 2012.

They also seem to have attempted to trademark it for every single application the USPTO lists in one of the two applications (multiple applications are the only thing standard about what King is doing), I'm pretty sure the claims that they make fire protection clothing, rent out tennis courts, and are a videotape rental outlet are fraudulent.

TLDR: King has no idea what they are doing and everything they've done wrt to trademark is as laughable as this.

ccdohl:
I was very disappointed by The Banner Saga. Hopefully they will change a lot in the sequel.

We disagree sir I hope they change nothing myself. I felt very connected to the experience.

rbstewart7263:

ccdohl:
I was very disappointed by The Banner Saga. Hopefully they will change a lot in the sequel.

We disagree sir I hope they change nothing myself. I felt very connected to the experience.

Okay. Can we maybe agree to hope they make battlefields multi leveled and make the consequences of decisions in the story sections seem less random?

Go Stoic! These guys made a fantastic game and i cannot wait for the next installment in the series. Also fuck King for thinking they can trade mark "Saga", They're worse than GamesWorkshop for trying to trade mark "Space Marine"

spartandude:
Also fuck King for thinking they can trade mark "Saga", They're worse than GamesWorkshop for trying to trade mark "Space Marine"

Yeah, at least Games Workshop wanted 'Space Marine' trademarked for things that can legitimately be considered 'space marines'. I'm not seeing how a bejeweled rip-off could be ever be considered a 'saga'.

o_d:
Hate to be the guy who posts a John Green video just for the sake of it, but I think this is necessary to explain why King pretty much have to file a complaint against Stoic, even if they don't really think The Banner Saga is 'confusingly similar'.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaVy_QCa1RQ

The problem with that, is that it is incorrect. The "trademarks must be absolutely enforced" myth is legal nonsense.

Genericide is a very narrowly defined and specific way to tose a trademark. Aspirin lost it's trademark, because it was no longer seen asindicative of their product Aspirin, but a generic word for painkillers. Not because they somehow forgot to sue a rival selling infringing aspirin, but because regardless of brands, people called them that.

It's a matter of public perception, not a formality of legal approval. If Google would allow all other browsers to call themselves "googles", that would lead to their genericide on the long term, so they enforce it instead. But if I sell T-shirts with a clearly infringing Google logo on them, Google may or may not go after me, it has nothing to do with genericide if it's clearly referencing the company and it's specific browser.

ccdohl:

rbstewart7263:

ccdohl:
I was very disappointed by The Banner Saga. Hopefully they will change a lot in the sequel.

We disagree sir I hope they change nothing myself. I felt very connected to the experience.

Okay. Can we maybe agree to hope they make battlefields multi leveled and make the consequences of decisions in the story sections seem less random?

Yes we can! also more cutscenes and animations. mostly cutscenes I want something interesting to watch when I beat a tough battle.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here