A “disturbingly similar” clone copies the game’s historical errors as well as everything else.
Imitation might be the most sincere form of flattery, but it can still get you sued. China’s infamously lax copyright and trademark laws have created modern wonders like the League of Legends restaurant and the World of Warcraft theme park. Most of the time, there’s little that a company can do besides watch its brand be devalued. When Wargaming.net saw their popular World of Tanks pop up on Facebook, it took action and sued its creators in court. Described as “disturbingly similar”, Changyou and Gamease’s Project Tanks alegendly ripped off most of the game, from the art assets to the fictional and historically incorrect elements as well.
Project Tanks, alternately known as both Tank Ground War and Ground War Tanks, looks and feels just like Wargaming.net’s hit title, but runs in a browser thanks to the Unity Engine. Developed by two Chinese companies, Gamease and Changyou, it’s a f2p game that (until recently) ran right from Facebook. Changyou is behind many big eastern F2P games, including the not-so-adult Wartune.
From the opening garage, to the tech trees, and even to the camera angles, it’s pretty clear that Project Tanks is more than a little similar to World of Tanks. In fact, Wargaming claims that it uses some of the exact same art assets as well. But Wargaming has even better evidence than that. As stated in its court case: “Copying is further evidenced by the fact that the designers of Project Tank copied tanks from WoT that never existed in real life, and which included features original to WoT.” Busted.
Changyou fired back with their own statement, saying that “we feel truly shocked and bullied by Wargaming,” and that it “never intended to pose a threat or compete at any platform with World of Tanks.” They go on to claim that getting the Facebook game pulled was part of “a series of underhand [sic] actions” on the part of Wargaming.net.