The five-year long courtroom battle between Silicon Knights, who brought you Too Human and Epic Games, who brought you the engine that runs Mass Effect, Gears of War, Bioshock, Arkham City, borderlands and just about everything else is finally coming to a close. The whole thing headed off to trial earlier this month.
Silicon Knights claims that Epic sold them a broken engine – which has resulted in the Canadian developer losing around $58 Million.
If they do win the case, they’d end up with a slightest sliver of that payout.
According to Polygon, in December last year, Judge Dever III granted Epic’s motion to exclude testimony Terry Lloyd, Silicon Knight’s key expert who was tasked with demonstrating how the losses totalled $58 million, citing things like like potential royalties and decreased sales. In another blow, Judge Dever III (who I can only assume is a huge Gears of War fan) has ruled that because Silicon Knights did not provide a full breakdown of damages, he’s assigned an arbitrary number to each of the company’s claims against Epic.
Silicon Knights hasn’t quite lost their case against Epic – but with any monetary compensation should they win not exceed a handful of dollars, I don;t see them progressing too aggressively. Silicon Knights’ biggest claim is that Unreal Engine 3 couldn’t deliver what was promised – forcing the team to build their own engine to complete Too Human, a game that was in development hell way before Unreal Engine even existed. Too human was originally supposed to release on the original Playstation, the later the Gamecube, and then finally saw release on Microsoft’s Xbox 360 – where it was promptly forgotten.
The case concludes next week, and includes testimony of famous gaming veterans like Epic Games Mike Capps, Silicon Knights Denis Dyack, Epic VP Mark Rein and Epic game developer Tim Sweeney.
Last Updated: May 22, 2012