NACON Responds to The Sinking City Takedown

A statement from NACON follows-up on allegations from Frogwares that the publisher pirated The Sinking City to the game on Steam, which led to Frogwares getting a DMCA takedown of its own game. NACON says it's the sole distributor of the game, that it has made all the appropriate royalty payments to Frogwares, and that the developer is acting in bad faith:
FROGWARES published an article on March 1st, 2021, accusing NACON of having “pirated” the game The Sinking City; NACON hereby wishes to set the record straight regarding these unjustified accusations.

NACON is contractually the sole exclusive distributor of The Sinking City game on STEAM.

NACON has contributed to the financing of development and the payment of royalties to FROGWARES to the tune of 8.9 million euros to date (including the full payment for a version of the game for STEAM), making the global investment far above 10 million euros when integrating the marketing costs. Contrary to FROGWARES’ allegations, NACON has paid all amounts due.

Today, unless FROGWARES is acting in bad faith, it has no reason not to make the game available to NACON on STEAM.

In the past, FROGWARES has improperly relied on accusations regarding a lack of payment to refuse delivery of the game on STEAM, at which point they tried to unsuccessfully terminate the contract. The Paris Court of Appeal deemed this action “manifestly unlawful”; ordering the continuation of the contract and encouraging FROGWARES to refrain “from any action which would impede such continuation”.

In line with the courts’ decision, NACON has repeatedly and unsuccessfully requested that FROGWARES make the game available on STEAM, failing which it would apply a clause in the contract wherein such a case, the game would be adapted by a third party. FROGWARES then attempted, without the knowledge of NACON and in violation of our rights, to make the game available on STEAM without mentioning NACON in its capacity as the publisher. This is, therefore clear proof that no technical impossibility prevents the game from being put back on STEAM.

Despite this blocking situation created exclusively by FROGWARES, NACON has allowed players to access the game on STEAM while still expressly indicating the ownership of FROGWARES’ rights to the game. FROGWARES will also receive the royalties generated by STEAM sales.

By encouraging the gaming community via Twitter not to buy the game on STEAM, FROGWARES is once again sabotaging our investments in the game.

NACON obviously regrets this conflict, for which it is not responsible, and for which it did everything possible to avoid.

NACON regrets all the more that FROGWARES has demanded the withdrawal of the game from STEAM, thus depriving the gaming community of the unique experience provided by The Sinking City.

NACON reserves the right to take legal action against FROGWARES for its aggressive and prejudicial comments. FROGWARES has been careful not to indicate that all court decisions in the dispute between NACON and FROGWARES have thus far been favorable to NACON.
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Re: NACON Responds to The Sinking City Takedown
Mar 4, 2021, 00:37
Re: NACON Responds to The Sinking City Takedown Mar 4, 2021, 00:37
Mar 4, 2021, 00:37
Cutter wrote on Mar 3, 2021, 23:33:
A DCMA claim doesn't mean anything. One of the biggest problems on the internet today are spurious DCMA claims that have no legal validity. Anyone can file a claim.

Both sides are claiming the courts have ruled in their favor for this, that, and the other thing yet in the grand scheme of things that doesn't mean anything. An injunction is a powerful legal remedy that's enacted immediately if the judge feels you actually have a case. If you want to stop anyone doing anything immediately an injunction is what's required. In this case that would mean Frogwares lawyers going to a judge, presenting the contract and explaining why NACON is in breach and they want an injunction to prevent them selling the game. Seeing as they haven't done that or were flat our rejected amounts to the same thing, their claims are just that, only claims.

While you're correct about the spurious misuse of DMCA, this is not one of those cases. Frogwares is within their rights to do this to stop Nacon from engaging in the unlawful profiting of pirated goods, which is uniformly illegal in most countries.

Besides, the point is irrelevant now. Frogwares succeeded in getting their game delisted. At this point, it behooves Nacon to wait for a court decision, which may prove challenging given their latest action is likely admissible evidence.
"Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times." - Those Who Remain by G. Michael Hopf
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