Crytek sues Star Citizen dev Cloud Imperium Games

14 December, 2017, 18:15 | Author: Grady King
  • Star Citizen Screenshots

It boils down to what was agreed upon in a General Licensing Agreement between the two parties in 2012, back before almost 2 million people pledged a combined $174m towards development of the game. The game license agreement signed between Crytek and the Star Citizen developers allegedly required the exclusive use of CryEngine for the game's development, and also for the developers to prominently display Crytek's trademarks and copyright notices in Star Citizen and marketing material created around the game.

This lawsuit, filed in US district court in California, has the potential to disrupt development of a game that is already more than five years in development and has yet to deliver on many promises to its backers.

UPDATE: A Cloud Imperium Games rep has responded with the following statement to Gamasutra: "We are aware of the Crytek complaint having been filed in the US District Court". CIG also goes on to say it will not only "defend vigorously" against the claims, but it will also attempt to recover any costs that are a result of the lawsuit.

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"We did an outright buyout of the engine past year and have the source code, so while we hope all the noise about Crytek blows over, as they are great partners and friends to the project, if the worse happened we would be ok, as we've already branched the engine and have a large team that is adding features and supporting it every day here at CIG".

As the complaint alleges: 'The GLA contained a critical promise from Defendants that they would not develop the Star Citizen video game using any other video game engines'. Problem is Crytek are claiming that they aren't telling the truth.

Between the lines in the complaint, you get the feeling that Crytek has their eyes on a piece of the $150 million+ crowdfunding pie that Star Citizen has amassed.

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In a blog post following that transition, RSI's Chris Roberts explained that Lumberyard was essentially a more promising fork of an earlier CryEngine build that fit better as a base for "StarEngine", his name for the "heavily modified" version of CryEngine the developers were then using. The filling specifically refers to Squadron 42 project.

In a statement, CIG and RSI called the lawsuit "meritless". Crytek says that since both use the same code, that constitutes using the engine twice and represents a further breach of contract.

Crytek is demanding direct damages, indirect damages and a permanent injunction to prevent CIG and RSI "from continuing to possess or use the Copyrighted Work".

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