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 Confirmed: Bethesda v. Interplay Settlement Has Occurred View next topic
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King of Creation
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:03 am Reply with quoteBack to top

[ Company -> Update ] - News related to Top Story: Bethesda v. Interplay Settlement | More info on Company: Bethesda v. Interplay

UPDATE: Although it is not much to go on, I have more details concerning the case and the settlement. Bethesda has filed documents dismissing their lawsuit against Interplay:

Full docket text for document 167:
-SEALED-Joint MOTION to Seal to Temporarily Seal Joint Motion to Dismiss With Prejudice by Bethesda Softworks LLC Responses due by 1/23/2012 (Attachments: # (1) Joint Motion to Dismiss With Prejudice, # (2) Exhibit 1, # (3) Text of Proposed Order)(Stahl, Howard)

I am certainly not a lawyer, but it appears that by dismissing with prejudice, Bethesda has removed the option of ever suing Interplay over the same items ever again. From Wikipedia:

Within legal civil procedure, prejudice is a loss or injury, and refers specifically to a formal determination against a claimed legal right or cause of action.Thus, in a civil case, dismissal without prejudice is a dismissal that allows for re-filing of the case in the future. The present action is dismissed but the possibility remains open that the plaintiff may file another suit on the same claim. The inverse phrase is dismissal with prejudice, in which the plaintiff is barred from filing another case on the same claim. Dismissal with prejudice is a final judgment and the case becomes res judicata on the claims that were or could have been brought in it; dismissal without prejudice is not.

Unfortunately, seeing as how the motion was sealed, I don't have any more info. Hopefully it won't be too much longer before settlement details are released. Interplay was meant to release their earnings statement to the SEC today, but there is still nothing up. Stay tuned!

Original Post:

While I was away on vacation without internet for the last two weeks, I was sent transcripts and court documents from the latest Bethesda v. Interplay hearing. Other sites conjectured that a settlement was in the works between the two companies over Interplay's Fallout: Online MMO.

Today, DAC has confirmation that a settlement has, in fact, taken place. It actually took place the day of the trial - and had I been able to get online and sort through the documents I would have reported as much. We do not yet have the details of the settlement - they will be announced this month (January 2012) - but we can report that on the day of trial, the atmosphere in the court room was tense until the judge recessed. This recess was extended, and then they recessed for lunch. After the lunch recess, the court room was locked to everyone except attorneys and clients. When our source asked why this was the case, our source was told it was because they were working out a settlement. The following day, another source called the court reporter to ask what the next hearing schedule for the case was - this source was told there was no schedule as a settlement had been reached.

So there you have it. Bethesda v. Interplay settled and done after these long few years. Stay tuned to DAC in the near future for the settlement details. Will Interplay still be able to develop Fallout: Online? Did they give up the rights to do so for a truck load of money? Hopefully we'll have the answers soon.

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Cimmerian Nights
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 4:17 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Nice scoop KOC.

Seeing as how Interplay isn't exactly swimming in cash, their MMO is probably Bulgarian vaporware and they had a pretty decent case, I can only speculate that Bethesda is doing the settling here.

Waiting for the other shoe to drop though.

I guess the white elephant in the room is the rights to FO or the FO MMO.

I think FO means more to Herve as a bargaining chip than as some kind of artistic property.


Whatever.
Bethesda, Interplay, they both suck.

I still don't get the attachment some people have to a name on a box.
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King of Creation
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:52 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Cimmerian Nights wrote:
their MMO is probably Bulgarian vaporware


FOOL was definitely no vaporware...I can definitely confirm that. It was more like legal-limbo-ware. There was a playable game and vast world-lore created specifically for FOOL, but the whole thing was caught up in the lawsuit. If Bethesda hadn't sued, I reckon we'd be hearing a lot about FOOL.

Still doesn't mean I would think FOOL was ever a good idea, and I don't know why Bethesda got their knickers in such a twist over it. Fallout is still about life in a desolate post-apocalyptic world....populating it with thousands of 12 year old Bethesda fanboys simultaneously trying to set off hidden nukes would have been a terrible idea.
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The-Master
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 5:36 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Frankly King,

Bethesda did not want to pay the 50 million the Caen boys were asking and Bethesda thought (my guess), sure.. let them keep it and we will put some obstacles that a near bankrupt company surely cant overcome.

problem is they overcame them and were well on the way to getting the game made proper.

Enter the lawsuit which froze up the I2G funding and a german fund backed out.

After the lawsuit hit bethesda assumed a company with only 3,000 bucks would roll over but such was not the case (pun intended).

If i were Bethesda i would want the entire pie and not just a sliver.
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Cimmerian Nights
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 6:18 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

The-Master wrote:

Bethesda did not want to pay the 50 million the Caen boys were asking and Bethesda thought (my guess), sure.. let them keep it and we will put some obstacles that a near bankrupt company surely cant overcome.

problem is they overcame them and were well on the way to getting the game made proper.

I think that's a good take on things, although I never heard of that $50M figure until recently (well after Bethesda commercially reinvigorated Fallout, making it a much more valuable property).

But I agree that from the very beginning, it looked like Bethesda was setting up Interplay (who, let's be honest, was in pretty dire straits financially at that time) to fail so they could walk away with all the marbles. Given the way Interplay collapsed, it was hard to foresee them fulfilling those obstacles at all.

But you're right, Bethesda got greedy. They were shortsighted.

I'm shocked at how inept Bethesda has been when dealing with an Interplay that was really on the ropes and in a weak position to negotioate.

My guess is they are going to have to pay the price for that now.
And if Interplay was truly fulfilling all these stipulations, and Bethesda was hindering them, and with inept legal maneuvers at that, they should.

What a kick in the nuts for Bethesda. icon_joy

King of Creation wrote:
and I don't know why Bethesda got their knickers in such a twist over it.

It's "our baby" now - can't have another company with creative control over it (especially given FOBOS), and profiting from it. Haven't they there been rumors of a TES MMO? No doubt they'd re-use the cookie cutter mold for a FO MMO as well if they could.

I think they really assumed, as did we all at the time, that there was no way Interplay would ever come through.
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The-Master
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 7:09 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

The 50 million figure came from here.
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/104632-Interplay-Wanted-50-Million-for-Fallout-MMO-Rights

And i think if i were Bethesda no way in hell i would pay 50 million for MMO rights when i can (and they did) just buy the game for 6 million give or take. i cant remember the exact figure but this is kinda close.

Yes, Looking back how the hell could a company that was in bankruptcy court with just a couple of employees and no cash ever come up w/ 30 million with in a 2 year period? Impossible i would venture.

Yet they did via the I2G agreement for 15 million and Masthead for 20 million.

Interesting things to note is both sides were trying to 'hide' witnesses. Interplay didnt want masthead on the stand and bethesda didnt want the executives on the stand. The judge ruled that no one from masthead can testify and interplay cant show any masthead work.

In turn interplay was arguing that the contract was void due to bad faith contracting (aka your screwing me over) and the copyright issue that bethesda pushed in a round about way was proving it for interplay (my idle speculation)

now we get to the interesting part. What will a settlement be?

we have to assume interplay valued it at 50 million but will you honestly get that?

well...... maybe? (shrugs)

Fallout 3 did 300 million in its 1st week in sales.
http://www.wired.com/gamelife/2008/11/fallout-3-launc/

Fallout vegas (aka fallout 4) were similar.

overall the modern franchise is estimated at
12.32 million in units sold.

so given

A) sales of over 600 million and we know fallout 5 will most likely be built on the skyrim engine.

cool The franchise is worth 1 billion in sales easy.

C) Interplay has a small chance to win the franchise , 12% of royalties and payments , 84 million from f3 and f4, damages, legal fees

D) Bethesda just made 600 million from skyrim and are flush w/ cash.

What would you do given the above as a bethesda ceo.
I know what id do.. id pay off those French dudes, get fallout and then publically announce what my zenimax mmo studio has been working on in secret
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Ed of Vault 13
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 11:04 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I'm leaning more towards Bethesda paying them out as the result. I see no other viable option for them in this case.
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tykjen
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:58 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Fuckin a.
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King of Creation
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 6:58 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Updated news post with new info that Bethesda dismissed the lawsuit "with prejudice" - meaning they can never sue Interplay about this again.
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St. Toxic
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:30 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Fuck yeah. icon_dance
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TheBearPaw
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 3:32 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Holy motherfucker!
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gobbleykins
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 5:55 am Reply with quoteBack to top

King of Creation wrote:
populating fallout with thousands of 12 year old Bethesda fanboys simultaneously trying to set off hidden nukes would have been a terrible idea.

yeah this should be one of the dac opening title quotes you see randomly when you come to the home page (without the html quote codes), you know the ones I mean? exampli gratia my current one is "Quest radar is for wussies".
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Ed of Vault 13
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:31 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Bethesda to pay Interplay a peddling 2 million while Bethesda retains all rights to the Fallout brand (including MMO).

Interplay has the right to continue the retail of the original PC Fallout titles (FO1, FO2, FO:T) until December 31st, 2013 in which it falls under Bethesda's entitlement.

It's all here. Not a surprising outcome, at least it's finally over.
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Tofu Man
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:04 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Indeed, Eurogamer are saying the same thing, Iplay gets 2mil and the rights to the originals til the end of 2013, Beth gets the MMO rights.

What happened? Not that I've been paying lots of attention to this but the master's info seemed to indicate that the case was generally pending favorably towards Herv rather than Beth.
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King of Creation
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:57 am Reply with quoteBack to top

The case always was favoring Interplay in general terms, but maybe something spooked them? I was expecting the settlement to be a lot more.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 12:59 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I don't get it. Wasn't the case dismissed for all eternity? What could have spooked them?
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