Wednesday, 20 February 2013

EA and Zynga Settle Out of Court

*Insert witty comment regarding evil vs. evil here*

This is actually something that occurred late last week, but kind of got lost in the shuffle what with some of the more distracting news that was making waves around the gaming community. Although it's unlikely that the two companies will be doing anything amiable towards each other anytime soon, it would appear that the EA and Zynga have at least set aside their vitriolic temperaments towards each other long enough to settle their lawsuit.

The suit was settled for undisclosed terms and with prejudice, which in this case means that neither party can sue for the same reason again. This means that the case for The Ville allegedly ripping off The Sims Social can no longer be pursued. It's extremely unlikely that the terms of the settlement will become public knowledge, so it's impossible to say which, if any, side walked away with the better end of any bargaining that took place behind closed doors.

As the article mentions, the fact that The Ville was one of the many casualties on Zynga's side during the increasingly larger downsizing that the company had been engaging in probably didn't hurt the odds of this settlement being reached.

It's actually somewhat strange that I find myself torn over the fact that this was closed in the way it was. Before you think I've gone completely off the deep end let me explain some of my reasoning.

The downside to this settlement is that it might seem that Zynga has gotten off the hook in regards to ahem borrowing certain aspects from games. This certainly wasn't the first time that the company had been accused of doing such a thing, but it was one of the first times that they pissed off someone large enough that would happily hold their feet to the fire over it. This settlement might free them up to keep repeating the awful practices that made them a lot of dirty money in the first place.

At the same time though, I couldn't imagine what would happen if either Zynga or EA would have come out as the clear victor from the courts. If Zynga would have won it probably would have gotten a lot of money and been even more emboldened to engage in these practices in the future. I'm not quite sure what would have happened if EA won, but let's face facts, given the company's track record it probably wouldn't have been anything great either.

Let's be perfectly honest for a moment: I was hoping for a double bankruptcy.

Since there's no clear winner, then I guess at least we, the gamers haven't lost ... as hard as we could have ... damn that's depressing.

Oh, also, you might have been expecting me to do a little talking about Sony, given that today is the day that they make their big announcement. You can expect something from me tomorrow, more than likely. On that same note though I'm not exactly clamouring to use this little piece of the Internet to cover something that pretty much every single major gaming rag is going to be doing as well. At least covering it tomorrow, Friday, or even next week will give me some time to ruminate on the topic and come up with something to say that isn't an utterly knee-jerk reaction.

That being said don't discount a lot of swearing. I'm certainly not.

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