Activision Blizzard has reportedly become the subject of yet another lawsuit. According to a GamesIndustry.biz report, a company called Worlds Inc has filed a lawsuit against the publisher, claiming that its World of Warcraft and Call of Duty franchises have violated a patent related to virtual worlds.
Worlds Inc is claiming that it is owed compensation from Activision Blizzard for a patent that specifically relates to “systems and method for enabling users to interact in a virtual space”.
“Technologies created by Worlds have helped the businesses of virtual worlds gaming and the sale of virtual goods to grow into a multibillion-dollar industry,” Worlds Inc CEO Thomas Kidrin said in the GamesIndustry.biz report. “While we are pleased to see that the gaming industry and its rapidly growing customer base have enthusiastically embraced our patented technologies, we deserve fair compensation for their use.”
In 2008, Worlds Inc filed a lawsuit against NCsoft over its MMO franchises over the same patent infringement. At the time, it was reported that if Worlds Inc succeeded in the lawsuit, it could use the same patent to demand royalties from every publisher with an MMO franchise.
The case eventually settled in 2010, with an undisclosed amount agreed to between Worlds Inc and NCsoft, but it was reported that the former requested for the case be reopened a short time later.
To find out more about patents in the game industry, check out this feature about patented game mechanics.