Big trouble for a crowdfunding success. Star Citizen, a highly anticipated video game that has surpassed more than $170 million in funding, is facing some legal issues. Cloud Imperium Games (CIG) and Roberts Space Industries (RSI), the creators of the game, have been slapped with a lawsuit by Crytek for breach of contract.
According to TechSpot, Crytek helped CIG and RSI with the Star Citizen Kickstarter campaign in 2012 before they signed a Game License agreement to use Crytek’s CryEngine technology. The lawsuit’s complaint reads:
“To make that game a reality, Defendants sought to use the CryEngine video game development platform as its foundation. Crytek and Defendants agreed to preliminary license terms, and Crytek invested significant time and expense in creating impressive demonstrations and proofs-of-concept that were used to persuade the public to contribute financially to a ‘crowdfunding’ campaign to support development of the video game.”
The media outlet also noted that Crytek revealed it charged a “below-market license rate” for the game to use its engine. In return for the low rate, the Star Citizen team agreed to display Crytek trademarks and copyright notices in the video game and related marketing materials. While responding to the lawsuits, CIG and RSI reportedly stated:
“We are aware of the Crytek complaint having been filed in the US District Court. CIG hasn’t used the CryEngine for quite some time since we switched to Amazon’s Lumberyard. This is a meritless lawsuit that we will defend vigorously against, including recovering from Crytek any costs incurred in this matter.”
As previously reported, Star Citizen successfully raised $2.1 million on Kickstarter in November 2012. Chris Roberts, the campaign organizer, has kept the project going on the company’s website and the funds have kept rolling in ever since and even set the Guinness World Record for “Insane Crowdfunding Haul.”
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