The courtroom tussle between Epic and Silicon Knights is threatening to engulf other developers who have licensed the popular Unreal Engine 3.
A Shacknews report says that multiple developers who have previously employed the engine have been subpoenaed in an attempt to obtain their confidential contracts with Epic, for use as evidence in the case. Numerous companies have licensed the engine for use on PC and console platforms, including Ubisoft, Eidos, NCsoft, Electronic Arts, Activision, Square Enix and others.
“I’m leaving the litigation to the lawyers but, if this is the case, I’d like to apologize to any of our licensees who Silicon Knights have inconvenienced,” Epic Vice President Mark Rein said. “We know that, like us, they just want to make great games.” Inconvenience notwithstanding, of greater concern to Epic and its licensees is the possibility that confidential terms contained in the contracts, including licensing fees and trade secrets, could become public record and would then be available to competing companies.
St. Catharines, Ontario-based Silicon Knights first sued Epic in July, claiming the company lied about the capabilities of the Unreal Engine 3 and were either unwilling or unable to adequately fix and support the engine, leading to numerous delays in its long-awaited Xbox 360 title Too Human. Epic filed a counter-claim in early August, saying Silicon Knights was simply looking for a way out of paying for the Unreal Engine license.