Brutal Legend Legal Battle Escalates

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Brutal Legend Legal Battle Escalates

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The Battle for Brutal Legend, Chapter Three: In which Activision claims it still owns the rights to the game, and Electronic Arts compares them to a jealous ex-husband.

Despite all evidence to the contrary, Activision Blizzard doesn't seem to think that Electronic Arts owns the publishing rights for Double Fine's Jack Black-starring heavy metal odyssey, Brutal Legend. In a presumably angry-worded letter to EA, Activision claims that it was still in negotiation for the rights to the game when the EA deal was made, thus rendering the arrangement unofficial, according to sources close to Variety's Cut Scene blog.

The implication of the letter, obviously, is that Activision's going to sue the pants off EA and Double Fine if they don't cease their partnership. EA's calling their bluff, though. "We doubt that Activision would try to sue," an EA representative said. "That would be like a husband abandoning his family and then suing after his wife meets a better looking guy."

But wait, weren't Activision Blizzard the ones who didn't want Brutal Legend in the first place? Brutal Legend was originally with Vivendi, which then got swallowed up in the merger with Activision, which became Activision Blizzard and dropped a healthy number of games, like Ghostbusters, the new Riddick game, and of course, Brutal Legend. After that, Double Fine went looking for a publisher and found one, to everyone's surprise, in EA, though apparently Activision was trying to block any deals at that point in time as well.

So, why does Activision want Brutal Legend now after all that? According to Variety's sources, it doesn't. Brutal Legend isn't the kind of mega-franchise like Guitar Hero or World of Warcraft that they're looking for. All they want is a little bit of compensation for giving up the rights to begin with, which was what Atari gave them when they bought up Ghostbusters and Riddick. Double Fine, however, holds that they own the rights to Brutal Legend, and after their agreement with Activision expired, were free to shop their product around to whoever they wanted.

So, Double Fine's got its side of story, Activision has its own, and EA just compared Activision to a jealous ex-husband. What will happen next? Tune in next time to The Battle for Brutal Legend to find out!

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I hope Activision loses. They've been ***holes since forever. I like the metaphor EA used.

Can't believe that I'm siding with EA, but this is pretty ridiculous... It almost sounds like Activision doesn't want anyone to publish Brutal Legend. They're just being douche-bags now....

This is actually a huge thing for the game industry. This will determine between the third party developers which one is bigger and truly has more power. EA has changed and evolved to finally become respected after years of releasing the same games for years and are now taking chances in a recession(which is when you should take realistic chances, they still have the good old madden). Activision is like EA about 5 years ago, milking its franchises to death. The key difference here is that activision is getting 50% of its revenue from an MMO and where activision had original IP games but dropped them.

So now we get to see if this year will show if game companies can truly affect other game companies from publishing new and possibly interesting IP games. I really hope Activision does not sue and EA can publish Brutal Legend. It is like activision is the only group that wants to be successful as a company which does nothing but create laziness in business. EA is Activisions rival to look at each other and strive to make sure the games they publish are going to be good games an be profitable.

ACTIVISION MUST DIE!!!!!!

Also, I am genuinely impressed by how EA handled that.

I'd be more sympathetic with Activision if Activision hadn't been the ones to dump Brutal Legend in the first place. If they'd actually had ever made plans to publish it, maybe I could see their point... but they seem to be more interested in burying the title from the outset.

I can't see this as anything but yet another cash-grab, and I hope it blows up in Activision's face.

-- Steve

And EA is usually the evil ones.

Jark212:
And EA is usually the evil ones.

You realize that Activision was more evil all along.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/88858

EA has shown once again that it has turned a leaf for the good of gamers.

Activision are now the new money-grubbing overlords.

But we knew that for a while now, eh?

I think that's pretty funny...as well as petty.

]This sounds like the Fox/WB battle for the rights to Watchmen and who won that one?

Random argument man:
I hope Activision loses. They've been ***holes since forever. I like the metaphor EA used.

Seriously. First they explicitly state that they don't want anything that can't be exploited each year with sequels, now this? I can't believe it, but I'm siding with EA.

sheic99:
]This sounds like the Fox/WB battle for the rights to Watchmen and who won that one?

I was thinking the same thing....

yeah i think this battle is kinda stupid, would really suck if they ended up not being able to publish it

My life has become topsy turvy.

EA is... the good guy? First Dark Reign and now this!?

Yeah, I can't believe that I'm on EA's side as well. Geez, what as the world come to?

And as for the 'jealous ex-husband' comment: SNAP!

Random argument man:

Jark212:
And EA is usually the evil ones.

You realize that Activision was more evil all along.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/88858

Activision was attracted to Blizzard just so it could feed off the shattered lives that WOW creates.

Indigo_Dingo:

Random argument man:

Jark212:
And EA is usually the evil ones.

You realize that Activision was more evil all along.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/88858

Activision was attracted to Blizzard just so it could feed off the shattered lives that WOW creates.

And Blizzard accepted their deal so they're just as complicit

But anyway, EA's really just putting on this show so we forgive them for past atrocities

and then they annex Poland make a crappy sequel to System Shock when nobody's looking

Activision, if you screw this up... *drags finger across throat in menacing manner*

AceDiamond:

Indigo_Dingo:

Random argument man:

Jark212:
And EA is usually the evil ones.

You realize that Activision was more evil all along.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/88858

Activision was attracted to Blizzard just so it could feed off the shattered lives that WOW creates.

And Blizzard accepted their deal so they're just as complicit

No, I think Blizzard are trying to get inside Activision so they can work against the machine from its weak point.

ThaBenMan:
Activision, if you screw this up... *drags finger across throat in menacing manner*

Yeah, that's real threatening.

It's been said, but I'll say it again. I honestly can't believe that EA is the good guy here. Maybe they actually have changed. Still...let's give it a bit more time to see.

Indigo_Dingo:

AceDiamond:

Indigo_Dingo:

Random argument man:

Jark212:
And EA is usually the evil ones.

You realize that Activision was more evil all along.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/88858

Activision was attracted to Blizzard just so it could feed off the shattered lives that WOW creates.

And Blizzard accepted their deal so they're just as complicit

No, I think Blizzard are trying to get inside Activision so they can work against the machine from its weak point.

The reckless fools, couldn't they have just aimed for the thermal exhaust port at the top?

AceDiamond:

And Blizzard accepted their deal so they're just as complicit

However Blizzard makes their huge piles money by releasing games of extremely high quality and replay value - not just re-releasing the same game every 8-10 months. Although can't say that their idea of splitting SC2 into 3 is anything else but a way to squeeze more money out of a sequel that was already a guaranteed huge hit, which is just wrong imo.

Ugh...I hate Activision more and more with each passing month. They used to be okay, but ever since the merger they have become grade-A mega-douches. EA, for all their anti-piracy controversy, is actually starting to become one of the better mega-companies in the game industry now, simply because Activision has got batshit crazy after merging with Blizzard.

My opinion on this thing? Go back to wanking off Call of Duty and Guitar Hero like you normally do and leave EA alone. Activision dropped Brutal Legend because they couldn't "exploit it every year." Having second thoughts? Tough luck. You dropped the game. It isn't your's anymore. EA is absolutely right; this IS like a jealous ex-husband trying to sue a wife after she found a new guy.

Besides, as I read the situation, Activision is scraping the very bottom of the barrel here. They really don't have much of a case. They dropped the game. They don't have any actual right to it anymore.

It sounds to me that double fine(god bless'em) has the rights...so they would win the trial...why is this even a thread???

TsunamiWombat:

Indigo_Dingo:

AceDiamond:

Indigo_Dingo:

Random argument man:

Jark212:
And EA is usually the evil ones.

You realize that Activision was more evil all along.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/88858

Activision was attracted to Blizzard just so it could feed off the shattered lives that WOW creates.

And Blizzard accepted their deal so they're just as complicit

No, I think Blizzard are trying to get inside Activision so they can work against the machine from its weak point.

The reckless fools, couldn't they have just aimed for the thermal exhaust port at the top?

That's impossible! Even for a computer.

The sad thing is that if you just throw money at that giant Charybdis it'll hush up. They just want more money. Nom nom nom nom.

Wow, I never thought I'd say this, but way to go EA. Activision are being assholes about a game they never wanted just for the sake of being assholes.

Oh god...Its Watchmen all over again.

This had better not mess up the release date, because if so, I think I can join everyone in saying Activision, Eat dick.

EDIT: oh god, I'm siding with EA...

Jark212:
And EA is usually the evil ones.

A few years ago, yeah, but I've been geniunley impressed with EA for the past year. Think about, nearly every game released by EA last year was a new IP. Thats pretty ballsey to me.

Why is everybody saying EA has become the good guy? No they haven't, they are more like turning into a normal company (as they should have been).

Ever since they got WOW's income to leech off, Activision turned into the most mechanical corporation of all. Publicly stating that they ONLY want sequels and now holding other people's projects hostage. I want to see their faces when Blizzard says "you are bad for our PR, fuck off" But then Infinity Ward would need a new home, hopefully somewhere with Valve, Stardock or Blizzard.

EA is on the good track, now they just need to let go of the sequels that are leftovers from their "re-release everything(including competitor's games) atleast twice a year" time. RA3: Uprising, i'm looking at you.

Let the legal d### waving competition begin, neither of them are particularly great companies in terms of ethics and business practices, but the game will likely be terrible and unsucessful whatever happens, so it's a moot point anyway really.

I could also be described as a person buying something, losing interest in it and putting it aside, another person then breaks in to your house and takes the thing, you're not losing anything important to you but you've still been robbed.

I don't compare Activision to a jealous ex-husband. I compare it to an infant who rejected a toy. You know how when a toddler rejects a toy, if someone else starts to play with it they all of a sudden say they liked the toy? This is the same situation, only with high-income games producers.

Social Pariah:
Let the legal d### waving competition begin, neither of them are particularly great companies in terms of ethics and business practices, but the game will likely be terrible and unsucessful whatever happens, so it's a moot point anyway really.

*puts his face in hands*

Oh god! Please tell me you havn't played a Tim freaking Shafter game and this is just ignorant talk.

NoMoreSanity:
EA has shown once again that it has turned a leaf for the good of gamers.

Activision are now the new money-grubbing overlords.

But we knew that for a while now, eh?

No EA are still the same evil money-hungry buggers we all know and hate. It's just in this instance, they've been outdouched by Activision. At the end of the day, they're both pretty high on the shitty scale.

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