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Epic Games Wins Lawsuit With Silicon Knights [UPDATED]

Gears of War developer reportedly wins on all counts. Also, lunch costs?!

UPDATE: In addition to simply "winning" the lawsuit, Epic Games has been awarded damages totaling $4.45 million.

One has to wonder where that $4.45 million will actually come from, and if Silicon Knights ever envisioned a scenario where they would suddenly owe money.

"We are delighted with the jury's verdict," said Epic Games general counsel Jay Andrews in a statement.

I'm also able to share some BREAKING NEWS, courtesy of $2.30 that I just spent searching for court documents related to the case. Because the court charges you regardless of whether you find anything interesting, I'm sharing them with you now.

On May 29 and May 30, the court spent $251.24 in lunches for jurors--$99.23 on May 29 and $152.01 on May 30.

Scandalous.

--

Too Human, intended as a trilogy of games, never made it past the first game.

Silicon Knights filed a lawsuit against Epic Games in 2007 over a dispute with Unreal Engine 3 and the development of Too Human, and according to Epic Games CEO Mark Rein, Epic Games won.

"Case over,” said Rein on Twitter. “Jury finds for Epic on all counts.”

The Too Human developer was arguing breach of contract, which reportedly impacted the game’s development and Silicon Knights’ ability to properly deliver the game.

"Rather than provide support to Silicon Knights and Epic’s other many licensees of the Engine,” read the original lawsuit filing, “Epic intentionally and wrongfully has used the fees from those licenses to launch its own game to widespread commercial success while simultaneously sabotaging efforts by Silicon Knights and others to develop their own video games."

In essence, Silicon Knights was upset Epic Games was spending its time perfecting its own games (and thus, its own engine) rather than spending all its time helping out those who licensed its engine.

The problems prompted Silicon Knights to begin developing its own multi-platform engine.

“Epic’s actions and the consequent increasing delay and cost of development of Silicon Knights’ own game," argued the studio, "caused by the unworkable Engine forced Silicon Knights in May of 2006 to embark on the time and resource intensive task of writing its own game engine, the very task it had hoped to avoid be entering the Agreement with Epic."

The latest game released by Silicon Knights was the poorly received X-Men: Destiny.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
174 Comments
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Posted by benu302000

" In addition to simply "winning" the lawsuit, Epic Games has been awarded damages totaling $4.45 million."

Well, that's the end of Silicon Knights, then.

Posted by Lava

Hot scoops! But for real, interesting stuff...

Posted by JesterPC238

Wait a minute, quite the disparity in the lunch prices there... I think we have another E3 mystery! Why were they able to get lunch for a mere $99 one day, but the price increased to $150 only one day later?

I smell funny business!

Posted by Rirse

Hey Epic, can you steal the rights for Eternal Darkness away from Silcon Knights when they can't pay the money? A new game for that series by you guys would be nice.

Posted by Noisician

RIP Silicon Knights

Posted by Sergotron

Oh yeah, I completely forgot about this.

Posted by Zvarri

Considering all the provincial government funding Silicon Knights recently lost, this is just another big financial blow. I have to wonder how long the studio will last.

Posted by Foggen

Well, that's the end of Denis Dyack. For a brief period he looked like a video game luminary, and then he got exposed as a blowhard and a fantastic whiner.

Posted by mmgreenmms

Only tipped $10 on a $142 bill?!  What an asshole.

Posted by MattyFTM

Now THAT'S investigative journalism. Jury's lunches!!!

Moderator
Posted by Tylea002

Why the fuck was one meal $50 more than the other? How'd that happen all of a sudden?

These are the real questions.

Posted by Winternet

They got wasted on those meals

Posted by mazik765

Now I'll never see Too Human 2 T_T

Posted by zeekthegeek

Hot scoops

Posted by JRock3x8

having had to order food for large groups of people I can tell you that $100 goes nowhere near as far as you think it would.

Posted by Bartz

@mmgreenmms said:

Only tipped $10 on a $142 bill?! What an asshole.

That's like a normal tip for a takeout order. It's not like the jury went out to eat in the actual restaurant.

Posted by Delta_Ass
@Bartz said:

@mmgreenmms said:

Only tipped $10 on a $142 bill?! What an asshole.

That's like a normal tip for a takeout order. It's not like the jury went out to eat in the actual restaurant.

You're supposed to tip for takeout?
Posted by Robopengy

Epic should show a little compassion and not demand that they be payed

Posted by amardilo

Silicon Knights has to pay $4.45 million... Ouch! Do they even have that kind of money? If they don't what does this mean for the studio?

Posted by Godak

Thanks to and for the link!

Also, OUCH. That's a hefty sum SK has to pay out. Don't sue unless you know you're going to win, kids.

Edited by Bummey

@mmgreenmms said:

Only tipped $10 on a $142 bill?! What an asshole.

Why would you tip on take away? It's likely that was a mandatory gratuity charge and not the gopher's token tip.

Posted by EveretteScott

@Robopengy said:

Epic should show a little compassion and not demand that they be payed

World don't work like that.

Posted by forkboy

Man, that's some lunch.

Posted by GalacticPunt

I'm glad I was sitting down when I was hit with these Hot Scoopz about lunch.

With Silicon Knights pretty much done for, maybe they will sell the Too Human IP to Microsoft for cheap? Or EA? Or the Canadian government? Anyone? Bueller?

I'd honestly like to see the "Trilogy" finished by some other guys whose leader hasn't crawled up his own ass. I say that as someone who loved Eternal Darkness and got enjoyment out of the first Too Human when it finally came out. But Dyack, great as he once was, seems to be turning into the Axl Rose of game design. Paranoid, combative, inflexible, out-of-touch. It's a bummer, he was once awesome.

Posted by Patman99

@Delta_Ass said:

@Bartz said:

@mmgreenmms said:

Only tipped $10 on a $142 bill?! What an asshole.

That's like a normal tip for a takeout order. It's not like the jury went out to eat in the actual restaurant.

You're supposed to tip for takeout?

I always do but mostly because I dont want change so I just round it up to the nearest five or ten dollar bill.

Online
Posted by MooseyMcMan

Two Human is never going to be made, is it?

Posted by Benny

LUNCH MONEY SCOOPS, SAY WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT?!

Posted by SharpShotApollo

So Silicon Knights was mad because they needed to have Epic hold their hand through development?

*Clears throat*

U MAD BRO!?

You sad, SK.

Posted by Cold_Wolven

This lawsuit should have ended years ago as SK argument against Epic wasn't anything worthy enough to see a court case let alone win one. Did SK even ask for technical support from Epic when they were experiencing problems with the engine as I would be on Epic's back constantly about it like any sensible consumer who buys a faulty electronic and calls the manufacturers support line.

Posted by OllyOxenFree
@MooseyMcMan said:

Two Human is never going to be made, is it?

Right you are.
Posted by Mumrik

Silicon Knights MUST be dead now, right?

Posted by Siphillis

Lunch Watch with Patrick Klepek.

Posted by AlexW00d

So he SK dudes sued Epic for their shitty engine? Amazing.

Posted by Robopengy

@EveretteScott: I know I know, but that's got to be like pocket change to them. It's like taking a homeless person's coin cup.

Posted by PenguinDust

$251.24 on lunch? That's crazy talk. This is the problem with the American judicial system. As a taxpayer (in another state) I am outraged.

Posted by AngeTheDude

@Robopengy said:

Epic should show a little compassion and not demand that they be payed

^jes

Also, the lunch is way more interesting than the actual case.

Posted by djaoni

Too bad.

Posted by Demoskinos

We all know what really happened here Mark Rein bought off the judge with a golden Retro Lancer skin for gears 3 and a perma x2 XP bonus. Scandalous I say!

Posted by virtorio

This article has answered all my burning questions about juror lunches.

Edited by Rasgueado

I dunno... I haven't been a party to all th evidence presented, so I can't say for sure one way or the other. They probably went off the rails a bit by saying Epic did it intentionally as opposed to just not having the available resources to back up their licensing deals.

id famously had the same problem when it licensed out the Doom 3 engine. It's probably a valid concern from SIlicon Knights, just likely not intentional. Though again... That's based entirely on conjecture as I'd need to actually read the cases both sides presented.

(the amount of winnings will likely be appealed at a later date though...)

Posted by hughesman

But what did they eat???? That's the real question here.

Posted by YapaPanda

@PenguinDust: Depends on how many jurors there were, which is the call of the judge. Civil cases usually have 6. At $142.01 for 6 jurors, its about $23 per juror. Not sure how much the average lunch costs in North Carolina, but that sounds pretty average considering food+drink+tax+delivery.

Also a $10 tip for a delivery for at least six lunches is way too low.

Posted by Zombie_Shakespeare

The way Silicon Knights' luck (or maybe just their decision-making quality) is going over the last half-decade or so makes it more and more likely that I'll never get to find out about that fifth ancient. I have held out hope for so long. Maybe it's finally time to let it go.

Posted by MC_Hify

Where I live, in California, the plantiff is responsible for jury costs in a civil case. So Silicon Knights might be on the hook for those lunches.

Posted by Cybexx

Silicon Knights apparently lost this case mostly because before embarking on their own engine they modified the Unreal Engine code to try and get that working for themselves but they had no legal right to modify the source code, so in revealing their evidence they shot themselves in the foot.

Posted by Mendelson9

THIS IS ONE HOT SCOOP

Posted by SomeDeliCook

Now that this shit is all over, release the 4 player patch for Too Human and the DLC before you go bankrupt and lay everyone off Silicon Knights

Posted by Athadam

@PenguinDust said:

$251.24 on lunch? That's crazy talk. This is the problem with the American judicial system. As a taxpayer (in another state) I am outraged.

You're taking it out of context. 251.24 for two days worth of lunches and for the whole jury (I don't know the size).

Online
Posted by Shaunage

Too Human is the worst game I have completed this generation.

Posted by pekoe212

2 days of lunch for a large group of people? That's a reasonable amount if they got them anything better than dollar menu fast food. I don't see how this is news at all.

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