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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Wonderkarpever wonder if there's an appeals process for AO?05/28/2015 - 6:55pm
Matthew WilsonDanny and Andy play the first couple of levels of the upcoming Hatred http://www.gamespot.com/videos/hatred-gamespot-plays/2300-6425016/ imho it does not look like it should be AO.05/28/2015 - 5:57pm
Andrew EisenHey, remember Kung Fury? That short film that was funded via Kickstarter a few years ago? You can watch it now. I suggest you do. It's fun! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bS5P_LAqiVg05/28/2015 - 5:14pm
Goth_SkunkOriginally, yes. Some content was cut out in order to reduce its ratign from AO down to M, but PC users could work around that an unlock the full content by means of a patch. Which is what I did. :D05/28/2015 - 3:56pm
Andrew EisenKarp - Yes, for strong sexual content. Although the recent remaster contains all that content and was rated M.05/28/2015 - 3:54pm
Andrew EisenDepends on if you consider Hatred misrated. I haven't played the game or seen the ESRB's rating summary so I'm undecided.05/28/2015 - 3:53pm
WonderkarpDidnt Fahrenheit have an AO?05/28/2015 - 3:52pm
Matthew Wilson@AE that is why I said it seems more moral panic to me.05/28/2015 - 3:51pm
Andrew EisenMatthew - From what I've seen (just the trailers) the game is nowhere near as gory as many, many other games. But again, I'm guessing the AO rating comes from theme and tone rather than outright gore.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
Andrew EisenKarp - It didn't show penetration or nudity.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
WonderkarpI'd say Mortal Kombat X has more Gore and Violence than Hatred.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
Matthew Wilsonwhat I mean by worse in this case its not more gory/violent than others.05/28/2015 - 3:48pm
WonderkarpI forget....did Hot Coffee actually show Penetration?05/28/2015 - 3:48pm
Andrew EisenKarp - The Skyrim mods are external mods. The Hot Coffee mod unlocked content on the disc. Big difference. Still, the content that was unlocked was still perfectly in line with an M rating in my opinion.05/28/2015 - 3:47pm
Andrew EisenThemes are factored into ratings, not just mechanics. Still waiting for ESRB's rating summary. Very curious to see what it has to say.05/28/2015 - 3:46pm
Matthew WilsonHatred is a top down shooter though, and isnt any worse than other top down shooters?05/28/2015 - 3:45pm
Wonderkarpyeah, San Andreases rerating was ridiculous. Why not rerate Skyrim with all its crazy sex mods out there? But yeah, ESRB is good as policing itself. 05/28/2015 - 3:45pm
Andrew EisenManhunt 2 and Hatred though? Eh, there's an argument to be made for the higher rating.05/28/2015 - 3:43pm
Andrew EisenRerating San Andreas was a mistake though. That seemed to be the result of kowtowing to public pressure.05/28/2015 - 3:42pm
Andrew EisenThere wasn't one. It's just a dumb rating.05/28/2015 - 3:42pm
 

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