Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Speaking of Plagiarizing Slimeballs...

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you ... 6waves. Remember that name, and don't ever buy anything from them again. Ever.

Here's why:

This is Triple Town, by Spry Fox:

And this is Yeti Town, by the aforementioned Slimeballs Inc.

See! They added snow!

And 6waves developed the game under the pretense of negotiating with Spry Fox to publish Triple Town:
6waves was in confidential (under NDA) negotiations with us to publish Triple Town at the exact same time that they were actively copying Triple Town. We gave 6waves private access to Triple Town when it was still in closed beta, months before the public was exposed to the game. We believed those negotiations were ongoing, and we continued to give private information to 6waves, until 6waves’ Executive Director of Business Development sent us a message via Facebook on the day Yeti Town was published in which he suddenly broke off negotiations and apologized for the nasty situation. His message can be found in its entirety in the body of our legal complaint.
It’s bad enough to rip off another company. To do so while you are pumping them for private information (first, our game design ideas, and later, after the game was launched on Facebook, our private revenue and retention numbers) is profoundly unethical by any measure.
So tell me: did Generation Napster have every last trace of scruples removed in between watching  Digimon and playing Syphon Filter?

Previous story: Zynga Chief: Stealing is Okay Cause Everybody Does It 

Zynga Chief: Stealing Is Okay Cause Everybody Does It

Naw, Mark Pincus really didn't say that. He said this:
We don’t need to be first to market. We need to be the best in market. There are genres that we’re going to enter because we know our players are interested in them and because we want and need to be where players are. We evolve genres by making games free, social, accessible and highest quality.
That's from a leaked memo in response to "criticism" (read: blindingly obvious observations) that the Zynga game Dream Heights in a bald-faced piece of plagiarism of indie hit Tiny Tower.

Pincus went on to say that it's different when people do it to him, as happened when Vostu's Pet Mania ripped off Zynga's Petville, which had already ripped off Nintendogs and every other pet game on the market.
A few of you have asked how our approach to genres relates to the situation we faced with Vostu. There are rules of engagement in our industry. Companies have to respect each other’s legal and IP ownership rights in the form of copyrights and trademarks. In the case of Vostu, you can see for yourself that Vostu crossed the line and chose to use our copyrighted IP and artwork. That’s different than competing to build the best product or out-innovate us in the City category.
 That's a lot of words for a guy most famous for telling his design team, “I don’t want ****ing innovation."

h/t: Forbes

Monday, January 30, 2012

Minecraft Legos

From the Department of Redundancy Department. Lego is producing an official Minescape Lego product, which will be completely different from regular Lego because it will say "Minecraft" on the box. And maybe come with a Creeper face decal.

Lego CUUSOO is a site that allows people to post ideas for Lego projects, and if they get enough votes (and pass review), Lego will produce that product. Minecraft passed the 10,000 vote mark and the review process, and "we are now developing a concept that celebrates the best aspects of building with the LEGO system and in Minecraft and we can’t wait to show it to you—but we aren’t ready just yet. These things take time, so we appreciate your patience. More details are to come."

h/t Penny Arcade