We’re big fans of Frogwares‘ games here. They’ve had a pretty terrible time over the past couple of years. The publisher they were working with tried to cut them out and continue making money from their IP, which went against all of their contracts. It resulted in most of their games being delisted from digital storefronts, though most of them are back up now. This week another one game back, but it’s not good news for Frogwares I’m afraid. This is all part of their legal battle with Nacon, who has benefitted from what must have been a quick action taken by Frogwares in the heat of the moment.
The game in question is The Sinking City. It’s been restored to the Xbox Store, and will also be appearing on the PlayStation Store and Steam over the course of the next few weeks. Frogwares removed the game and accused Nacon of withholding around €1 million in royalties, as well as a lot of other stuff. Unfortunately, removing the game has been deemed an unlawful action that broke their contract with Nacon, which is why the game is now back up and making money for the publisher once again.
The court that made this decision told both companies that the game needs to remain up on storefronts until a decision can be made regarding Nacon’s actions. Frogwares believe that Nacon broke the terms of their contract by trying to take advantage of The Sinking City IP and make products from it without their permission. However, until that has been explored, the game needs to be available as if nothing has happened. This avoids anyone being held in a hostage situation and losing money, but neither company is happy.
I’m inclined to agree with Frogwares on this one. It appears as though they’ve been nothing but honest throughout this entire process. They’re also the company that will go down if anything dodgy happens, so I don’t see why they would bother trying. Hopefully, the situation gets sorted out and Frogwares is paid the money that they’re owed. If not, it sets a dangerous precedent for the relationship between developers and publishers in the future.