Facebook Face-Off: Kixeye Accuses Kabam of Stealing Game Idea

July 28, 2011 -

As is often the case with Facebook games, someone is accusing someone else of copying its game - and it doesn't involve Zynga.. Social game developer Kixeye is accusing fellow social game developer Kabam of copying its Backyard Monsters game.

Kixeye, best known for its popular Battle Pirates game, says that Kabam’s upcoming Edgeworld game is simply a "re-skinned" copy of Backyard Monsters. Will Harbin, chief executive of Kixeye in San Francisco, said in a recent interview that his studios "exploring all options," one of which we suspect will involve some type of litigation against Kabam.

The Redwood City, CA-based Kabam told VentureBeat that it has not even released Edgeworld officially because it is currently in the beta testing phase. Further the company denies the accusation that the game is a simply a re-skinned rip-off.

Harbin said that Kixeye became aware of the game when users asked Kixeye support questions about Edgeworld. He alleges that users somehow assumed his company made the game because it is so similar to Backyard Monsters.

Harbin acknowledged that accusations of copying are common in the social gaming space, but felt that this case was particularly egregious because Edgeworld appears to copy a number of game mechanics from Backyard Monsters.

"They crossed the line where it’s outright copying,” Harbin said. "It’s not only insulting to us. It’s very bad for this space. We are fighting an uphill battle to create hardcore games on Facebook. The more clones there are for these games, the more they could sour consumers on the whole market."

"Kabam’s focus is to develop engaging, deeply immersive games on social platforms that core gamers will enjoy playing," Kabam CEO Kevin Chou said in response. "Edgeworld, a new Kabam title still in beta, represents a new step in the continuum of massively multiplayer social games. As a strategy game, it builds and expands on our previous 4 successful strategy games, and features a host of new gameplay mechanics to further entertain and engage our core gamers."

"Our team draws ideas and inspiration from many sources, including movies, pop culture, science fiction, literature, history and, most importantly, from our players," added Chou. "We’re flattered by the fact that others in the industry are commenting on Edgeworld. It validates our belief that Edgeworld is a great game worthy of attention, and we’ll have more to share about the game soon."

We will follow this story and see where it ends, but my best guess is that it will involve a California court room.

Source: VentureBeat


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Re: Facebook Face-Off: Kixeye Accuses Kabam of Stealing Game ...

Anyone else feel like the Kabam guy sounded more like an ad than really addressing the issue?


 
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AvalongodAgain I think we're conflating the issue of whether Sarkeesian's claims are beyond critique (no they're not) and whether its ever appropriate to use sexist language, let alone physical threats on a woman to intimidate her (no it isn't)08/29/2014 - 5:04pm
prh99Trolling her or trying to assail her integrity just draws more attention (Streisand effect?). Which is really not what the trolls want, so the only way to win (if there is a win to be had) is not to play/troll.08/29/2014 - 5:02pm
prh99Who cares, just don't watch the damn videos if you don't like her. Personally, I don't care as far as she is concerned as long there are interesting games to be played.08/29/2014 - 4:34pm
Andrew EisenZip - And yet, you can't cite a single, solitary example. (And no one said you hated anyone. Along those lines, no one claimed Sarkeesian was perfect either.)08/29/2014 - 3:51pm
Andrew EisenSaint's Row: Gat Out of Hell was just announced for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One making it the 150th game For Everything But Wii U! Congratulations Deep Silver!08/29/2014 - 3:49pm
ZippyDSMleeI do not hate them jsut think its mostly hyperlobe.08/29/2014 - 3:40pm
Andrew EisenSleaker - I'd say that's likely. From my experience, most who have a problem with Sarkeesian's videos either want to hate them in the first place (for whatever reason) or honestly misunderstand what they're about and what they're saying.08/29/2014 - 3:16pm
james_fudgeWe appreciate your support :)08/29/2014 - 2:55pm
TechnogeekIt gives me hope that maybe, just maybe, the gaming community is not statistically indistinguishable from consisting entirely of people that your average Xbox Live caricature would look at and go "maybe you should tone it down a little bit".08/29/2014 - 2:49pm
TechnogeekI just want to say that while I've disagreed with the staff of this site on several occasions, it's still good to see that they're not automatically dismissing Anita's videos as a "misandrist scam" or whatever the preferred dismissive term is these days.08/29/2014 - 2:49pm
E. Zachary KnightZippy, So you can't find even one?08/29/2014 - 1:04pm
ZippyDSMleeAndrew Eisen:Right because shes prefect and never exaggerates... *rolls eyes*08/29/2014 - 12:53pm
SleakerAnd honestly, nearly all of the games she references, or images she depicts I've always cringed at and wondered why they were included in games to begin with, from pinups through explicit sexual depictions or direct abuse. I think it's cheap storytelling.08/29/2014 - 12:35pm
Sleaker@AE - aren't most people fundamentally misunderstanding her at this point? haha.. On a related note I think a lot of the backlash is coming from males that think she is telling them their 'Generic Male Fantasy' is bad and wrong.08/29/2014 - 12:33pm
Andrew EisenAnd no, I don't think the female community would be upset over the performance of a case study in and of itself. Possibly the mostivations behind such a study, the methodology or conclusions but not the mere idea of a case study.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
Andrew EisenAmusingly, these videos aren't saying you can't/shouldn't use tropes or that sexual representations are inherently problematic so those are very silly things to have a problem with and indicate a fundamental misunderstanding of the series.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
SleakerDo you think the female community would get extremely angry over a male doing a case study on the negative impact of sex-novels and their unrealistic depiction of males and how widespread they are in american culture?08/29/2014 - 12:25pm
SleakerThe other thing that people might find problematic is that they see no problem with sexual representations of females (or males) in games. And realistically, why is there anything wrong with sexual representations in fiction?08/29/2014 - 12:24pm
SleakerTo even discuss or bring up these issues at a cultural level to begin with. Going straight for games to many probably feels like a huge overstepping given that it's interactive story in many cases, and when you're telling a story why can't you use tropes.08/29/2014 - 12:21pm
SleakerI think a large part of the controversy stems from the idea that games aren't culture setters, but culture reactors, and simply depict what is already in culture. So people don't care that games use tropes or are blind to them because we've failed ...08/29/2014 - 12:20pm
 

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