The return of The Sinking City on steam
see also: TEST of the sinking city: Defeated by the waves, it does not sink
Long post dtaill Frogwares accuses Nacon of stealing, hacking, and altering the source code of The Sinking City. Released in 2019, the cthulhuesque adventure game is at the heart of a legal dispute that broke out between the French publisher and the Ukrainian studio last August. This explains that the agreement between the two parties was disregarded through non-compliance with payments and theft of the license. He looks back on the droul of the last months of this violent and public opposition:
Since the release of The Sinking City on June 27, 2019, Frogwares has encountered ongoing problems with its licensee, Nacon. This post / video looks at one particular aspect of the game’s contract and the conclusions we, Frogwares, have drawn.
Steam is one of the marketing platforms listed in the contract between Frogwares and Nacon. But since the game was released, the illegal actions of Nacon Frogwares have forced Frogwares to defend their property and respond to the French judiciary for lack of payments, trying to steal our IP addresses, etc. which we will open a public in August 2020 Have made letter.
Since then, Nacon has tried to force Frogwares to deliver a new major version of the game with the help of their lawyers. The French judiciary denied Nacon’s requests twice, first in July 2020 and then in October 2020 during an appeal. The final decision on whether Frogwares is required to deliver the Steam version requested by Nacon is still to be judged by a court in the coming months or even years.
To our surprise, we found on February 26, 2021 that a new version of The Sinking City had been uploaded to Steam and launched. But Frogwares did not provide such a version. And this is not the first time something like this has happened. Alain Falc, owner and CEO of Nacon, informed us in writing on December 28th, 2020 that you have 48 hours to download a new Steam master. Otherwise, we will use all the solutions available in the law and in the contract. 48 hours later, Nacon bought a version of The Sinking City through the Gamesplanet website and put it on Steam as if it were a Steam version. Immediately after his ultimatum expired, Nacon broke the law and breached the contract. We informed Steam about this and prevented the game from being released as it was obviously a stolen version of the game.
Today we discovered another unknown version of our game and found that Nacon, a Paris-listed company valued at around 700 million dollars, is the new behind it. This is now Nacon’s third public attempt to release a pirated PC version of our game, with an earlier attempt made via Utomik in February 2020 and the upload attempt in December 2020.
Nacon, under the direction of its President Alain Falc, urged some of its employees, whom we have even identified, to crack and pirate our game, change the content to market it under their own name, and it is.
To prove the announced deception, Frogwares explains how The Sinking City’s exe and configuration files have been modified to hide the fact that it is the Gamesplanet version. After the initial release, a deluxe version with additional content will be offered for which Nacon would not have to pay anything.
The damage would be immense and the company would be run by Wal Amr
There is some long-term damage to deal with. Nacon unpacked our data, stole our source code and used it. Nacon can use our assets to create a new version of The Sinking City. You can resell, reuse, recycle etc. our content and tools etc.
We need to take stock of what has happened now and take the best legal action to prevent this from happening again.
Nacon’s owner Alain Falc faces the legal ramifications of his decision to hack and steal Frogwares’ property. Incidentally, the intellectual property laws in France are very severe and can lead to a prison sentence of up to 7 years and a fine of 750,000 dollars plus damages under Article 335-4 of the Intellectual Property Law.
When the subsidiary of BigBen Interactive saw the bombing on Steam after warning from Frogwares not to buy this version of The Sinking City, it responded on Monday March 1st:
For the release of The Sinking City on Steam, published by Nacon, Frogwares urged players on Twitter not to buy it. We regret that Frogwares continues to disrupt the release of Sinking City. It was Frogwares who came to Nacon to apply for funding to develop the game. To date, Nacon has paid more than 10 million dollars to Frogwares. It’s Frogwares who have relied on our marketing and promotion teams representing thousands of hours of work and millions of dollars in investments. After the game has been fully developed and published, thanks in large part to Nacon’s money and work, Frogwares would like to revise the terms of the contract for their sole benefit. Playing the victim is easy, but we just want Frogwares to honor its contractual and legal obligations.
The comments on the release of Sinking City on Steam are an official and complete version. Due to a lack of cooperation with Frogwares, however, we cannot integrate the specific Steam functions (save / success in the cloud). Therefore this version only contains the base game with no additional content. Even so, we organized the release for fans on Steam to enjoy the game.
We sincerely would have preferred our relationship with Frogwares to have remained cooperative and respectful, as is the case with all studios whose titles we release.
We hope that many of you continue to play The Sinking City and that your Oakmont adventures are great fun.
This promises us many months of movement in this game. We hope this doesn’t affect the work of the programmers and artists officiating for Sherlock Holmes: Chapter One, which is expected this year.