Interplay vs. Bethesda: Who Owns Fallout

January 21, 2011 -

The battle in the court of public opinion continues between Bethesda and Interplay concerning who actually owns the rights to Fallout. Bethesda's Peter Hines claims they own it outright, while Interplay president Eric Caen claims that the rights will revert to them if Bethesda fights them on its MMO project.

It's a battle of he said he said on two different news outlets. On Eurogamer Caen says that if Bethesda doesn't allow them to make a Fallout MMO the rights to the franchise revert back to them after one more game. Meanwhile on VG247 Bethesda VP of PR Pete Hines states rather emphatically that his company owns Fallout:

"We own the rights to everything Fallout. The licence is ours. Fallout belongs to us. That’s what I’ll clarify," he told the outlet during a phone conversation yesterday.

Caen claims that it's bad news for Bethesda if Interplay doesn't get to make its MMO:

"We sold the Fallout IP to Bethesda in exchange for a certain amount of cash and the right to do the Fallout MMO," he said. "If they refuse to let us do the game, then the sale of the IP is terminated, and they will be allowed to do only one more Fallout, 5. But in that case, the IP will come back to us, and of course, we will complete our work and release Fallout MMO."

According to a GI.biz report, part of Interplay's agreement with Bethesda stated that it had to "commence development and secure adequate funding by April 2009." Bethesda sued the troubled firm for trademark infringement and breach of agreement in September 2009.

The agreement sounds like it's very murky and will have to be sorted out . Both Hines and Caen admit that the matter will end up being decided by a court.


Comments

Re: Interplay vs. Bethesda: Who Owns Fallout

I did some digging on the selling of the Fallout IP. Interplay has been pretty scummy already on their deal. So far they have broken many of the agreements as it is. I am hoping the courts punish Interplay hard :(

---------

James Fletcher, member of ECA Canada

Re: Interplay vs. Bethesda: Who Owns Fallout

If you go and read the history of Interplay and Titus Software which is the other company the Caen brothers owned, it's pretty clear that these guys are scumbags who led their companies into death spirals, left all the employees high and dry and are trying their best to keep Interplay on life support so they can keep drawing paycheques. I've no doubt it was their intention to sell Fallout and after it succeeded, launch this stupid stunt to try to steal it back from Bethesda. The Caen brothers are scam artists who should frankly be in jail (or at the very least broke) for what they did to those companies and their employees. I hope (and expect) they get crushed in court and lose their shirts as they deserve to.

Parallax Abstraction
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
www.digital-lifeline.ca

Parallax Abstraction
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Re: Interplay vs. Bethesda: Who Owns Fallout

They were licensed back the rights to do an MMO but there were certain conditions they had to meet to retain those rights. That's what this whole legal battle is over - whether those conditions were met.  If Interplay loses this legal battle it'll be because in the judgement of the court, they didn't meet those conditions, in which case it's been some time since I read the agreement but I don't remember reading anything about the rights to Fallout reverting back to Interplay if they weren't able to meet those conditions.

The agreement granting them the MMO license is a separate agreement from the purchasing agreement so it's not even a case of "part of the purchasing agreement wasn't met so the whole thing is invalid." That just seems like a bizarre assertion to make.
---
I'm not under the affluence of incohol as some thinkle peep I am. I'm not half as thunk as you might drink. I fool so feelish I don't know who is me, and the drunker I stand here, the longer I get.


---
I'm not under the affluence of incohol as some thinkle peep I am. I'm not half as thunk as you might drink. I fool so feelish I don't know who is me, and the drunker I stand here, the longer I get.
 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Poll

Will the New Nintendo 3DS be region free?:

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
Andrew EisenThat doesn't mean there has to be a movie though. Having said that, I've no doubt that we will eventually get a Black Panther movie. But Stan Lee will probably learn about it around the same time you and I do.09/02/2014 - 2:34pm
MaskedPixelanteWell they have to get to him eventually. Captain America's shield didn't grow on a tree, the minerals to make it had to come from somewhere, and that somewhere is Wakanda.09/02/2014 - 2:31pm
E. Zachary KnightYes, but it has never been confirmed as in development, or even pre-production.09/02/2014 - 2:21pm
MaskedPixelanteBlack Panther's been on the short list for a while.09/02/2014 - 2:18pm
E. Zachary KnightIt is possible that Stan Lee mispoke. I don't think he knows everything Marvel movies. But it is a sweet idea if true.09/02/2014 - 2:04pm
Andrew EisenSo says Stan Lee who almost certainly wouldn't know.09/02/2014 - 2:04pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.cinemablend.com/new/Marvel-Black-Panther-Movie-Confirmed-By-Stan-Lee-66993.html Black Panther is apparently getting a movie. And maybe one for Black Widow, even though I think it's too late for her.09/02/2014 - 1:53pm
Cheater87Look what FINALLY came to Australia uncut! http://www.gamespot.com/articles/left-4-dead-2-gets-reclassified-in-australia/1100-6422038/09/02/2014 - 6:49am
Andrew EisenHence the "Uh, yeah. Obviously."09/02/2014 - 12:53am
SleakerI think Nintendo has proven over the last 2 years that it doesn't.09/02/2014 - 12:31am
Andrew EisenSleaker - Uh, yeah. Obviously.09/01/2014 - 8:20pm
Sleaker@AE - exclusives do not a console business make.09/01/2014 - 8:03pm
Papa MidnightI find it disappointing that, despite the presence of a snopes article and multiple articles countering it, people are still spreading a fake news story about a "SWATter" being sentenced to X (because the number seems to keep changing) years in prison.09/01/2014 - 5:08pm
Papa MidnightAnd resulting in PC gaming continuing to be held back by developer habits09/01/2014 - 5:07pm
Papa MidnightI find it disappointing that the current gen of consoles is representative of 2009-2010 in PC gaming, and will be the bar by which games are released over the next 8 years - resulting in more years of poor PC ports (if they're ever ported)09/01/2014 - 5:06pm
Andrew EisenMeanwhile, 6 of Wii U's top 12 are exclusive: Mario 3D World, Nintendo Land, Pikmin 3, Mario Kart 8, Wonderful 101, and ZombiU. (Wind Waker HD is on the list too but I didn't count it.)09/01/2014 - 4:36pm
Andrew EisenLikewise, only two of Xbox One's top 12 are exclusive: Dead Rising 3 and Ryse: Son of Rome (if you ignore a PC release later this year).09/01/2014 - 4:34pm
Andrew EisenNot to disrespect the current gen of consoles but I find it telling that of the "12 Best Games For The PS4" (per Kotaku), only two are exclusive to the system: Infamous: Second Son and Resogun.09/01/2014 - 4:30pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.joystiq.com/2014/09/01/beyond-two-souls-ps4-trophies-emerge-directors-cut-reported/ MMM MMM, nothing quire like reheated last gen games to make you appreciate the 400 bucks you spent on a new console.09/01/2014 - 4:24pm
Andrew EisenThat's actually a super depressing thought, that a bunch of retweeters are taking that pic as an illustration of the actual issue instead of an example of a complete misunderstanding of it.09/01/2014 - 4:20pm
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician