Crytek Suing Star Citizen's Developer Over Contract And Copyright Issues


FarCry and Crysis developer Crytek filed paperwork with the California Central District Court today to bring a lawsuit against Roberts Space Industries and Cloud Imperium Games, the developers of Star Citizen. That's no longer happening because the game is now running on Amazon's Lumberyard engine, but the problems actually started well before that.

Furthermore, we don't know whether their contract allowed Cloud Imperium to re-use all assets that were created in CRYENGINE in other engines, like the Lumberyard.

The complaint stems from a number of incidents surrounding the development of Star Citizen, the developers' in-development online space exploration game. Specifically, Crytek is suing Cloud Imperium Games on the claim that the the Star Citizen studio did not live up to the promises it made for using Crytek's CryEngine. CIG also failed to provide Crytek with promised "bug fixes and optimizations" to the engine that emerged from its use in Star Citizen.

Making matters even more complicated is the fact that Amazon's Lumberyard is, in fact, a fork of the CryEngine itself purchased by Amazon. Crytek says its agreement with Cloud Imperium for the CryEngine only covered Star Citizen, not Squadron 42, which it reportedly considers a separate game.

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Between the jump to Lumberyard, the announcement of the now-delayed standalone game Squadron 42, and creation of the "Bugsmashers" video series involving Star Citizen's development, Crytek alleges CIG and RSI violated all of those previously mentioned terms.

In the lawsuit, Crytek is looking to reclaim direct damages of around $75,000, along with "indirect damages, consequential damages (including lost profits), special damages, costs, fees, and expenses incurred by reason of Defendants' breach of contract and copyright infringement". But it also opens the door to some interesting and potentially awkward questions.

Moreover, and according to the contract, Cloud Imperium was meant to use all of Crytek's logos everywhere.

Why Crytek wouldn't request his recusal isn't clear, but that's not the only implication it makes about getting hosed in the agreement: Its side of the negotiations were handled by Carl Jones-who later left Crytek to join Cloud Imperium. Now we don't know whether Crytek and Cloud Imperium settled things when the latter made a decision to move to the Lumberyard. The studio said it is prepared to fight "vigorously" in court over this matter.