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Bethesda Softworks files lawsuit against Interplay over Fallout IP


Things have apparently come to a head between Interplay and Bethesda Softworks over the Fallout game license. Bethesda's parent company Zenimax Media bought the full Fallout rights several years ago but allowed Interplay to proceed, with certain conditions, with their plans for a Fallout-based MMO. Last April Interplay warned that Bethesda was planning to " . . . to terminate the trademark license agreement . . . for the development of FALLOUT MMOG" because those conditions were not met.

Now Gamasutra reports that Bethesda Softworks has filed a lawsuit against Interplay this week, alledging that Interplay violated Bethesda's Fallout IP rights when Interplay released Fallout Trilogy, a collection of the first two Interplay made Fallout RPGs along with their spin-off title Fallout Tactics. Bethesda claims that while Interplay has the rights to sell those games, it must send over all promotional and packaging artwork to Bethesda for pre-apporval. Bethesda says Interplay did not fullfill this requirement and also made agreements to sell the games via digital download sites without Bethesda's approval.

Bethesda claims Interplay's actions have caused Bethesda "immediate, substantial, and irreparable harm" since they claim consumers would confuse Fallout Trilogy with Bethesda's own Fallout 3. Bethesda is seeking the termination of their previous MMO agreement with Interplay and that Interplay pay for damages and fees. They are also seeking an injunction against the sale of Fallout Trilogy and all of Interplay's back catalog of Fallout games.

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