AusGamers took Far Cry 4 for a hands-on spin last week. Read on for our full thoughts...
Far Cry 4 Hands-On Preview
AusGamers had the chance to sit down and chat with lead programmer and local Australian Ian Hern on all things Kraden’s Crypt.
Interview with Ian Hern on Kraden's Crypt
We take a look at all the local talent Australia has to offer for the gaming scene
Indie Friday: A Look at Australian Gaming
Joaby Gilroy takes The Sims 4 for a spin on PC and finds out just what the life simulator has to offer.
The Sims 4 Reviewed
Post by Steve Farrelly @ 08:56am 19/04/12 | 44 Comments
A US novelist is suing Ubisoft for what he claims is a breach of copyright with the Assassin's Creed franchise. The Plaintiff's book has been available since 2003, while the first Assassin's Creed was released in 2007.

John Beiswenger is the author of "Link", a sci-fi novel that features "the conception and creation of a device and process whereby ancestral memories can be accessed, recalled, relived, and re-experienced by the user", something he obviously links to the Animus device in the Assassin's Creed games. He also claims the game's "assassins" component is also derived from his book, which has several plot points involving assassins, and the assassinations of high-ranking government officials.

The allegations are being made against a whole host of Assassin's Creed material, from all four of the major games released thus far, to expanded lore literature and beyond. He's even asking for an injunction to stop the release of Assassin's Creed 3 (due out this October) and is asking for USD$1.05 million in damages and a further USD$5.25 million if the judge finds in favour of copyright infringement.

You can read the full filed complaint right here (thanks Patent Arcade).



assassin's creedubisoftlink novelsuecopyright infringement





Latest Comments
d^
Posted 09:03am 19/4/12
Wow crazy.
gamer
Posted 09:12am 19/4/12
Copyright and more so patents are really getting out of control.

How can a computer game be infringing on a book for f*** sake? They are completely different mediums.

What an absolute joke.
mental
Posted 09:16am 19/4/12
Lol, on my phone the title reads "Novelist Sues Ubisoft Over Ass"

Wonder if the writers of Assassin's Creed had read the book/s or if it's just coincidence, seeing as such a device wouldn't be a huge leap from already established concepts. On the other hand, I don't see how the games can detract from the selling of the books in anyway.
Eds
Posted 09:18am 19/4/12
You realise that games employ writers dont you? that make designs and stories etc?
Raven
Posted 09:28am 19/4/12
Mothers should band together to form a class action against Hollywood.
Clearly they created children, and Hollywood's use, depiction and creation of them is patent infringement.

And yes, we realise game studios employ writers. Team Bondai realised this too for LA Noire at hideous budget, and look what happened to them :P

This just screams of being a patent troll. It costs well over $2m and 18 months of time to fight a patent infringement suit - and that's if you win. They've clearly picked a nice figure that says "hey, it way cheaper for you to just pay us than fight this".
Nerfy
Posted 09:37am 19/4/12
It sounds plausible, but I don't think that he was the first to use the idea.

In stargate, for example, the evil egyptian god dudes had genetic memory, though no machine was used to access it.
Rhys84au
Posted 10:58am 19/4/12
Yeah he has a case for sure.

its just a matter of how much he can say was ripped off. guessing the writers at ubisoft will be treading carefully around their bosses atm.
HurricaneJim
Posted 10:58am 19/4/12
OMG people learn the differences between Patent and Copyright.

Patent

the exclusive right granted by a government to an inventor to manufacture, use, or sell an invention for a certain number of years.

Copyright

the exclusive right to make copies, license, and otherwise exploit a literary, musical, or artistic work, whether printed, audio, video, etc.
Eds
Posted 11:20am 19/4/12
Mothers should band together to form a class action against Hollywood.
Clearly they created children, and Hollywood's use, depiction and creation of them is patent infringement.


Terrible terrible analogy.

And yes, we realise game studios employ writers. Team Bondai realised this too for LA Noire at hideous budget, and look what happened to them :P


Yeah, that's what the issue was. because it also didnt pay out for Blizzard, Activision, EA and majority of other major game developers.

My point was saying because it is completely different in a game is like saying the script for a movie and a book are completely different.

its not , in case you were wondering.
funky
Posted 11:40am 19/4/12
i had a post written out decrying gamer's logic (using that term loosely) but eds responded nice and succinctly, so i'll leave at a +1 to eds
deadlyf
Posted 12:05pm 19/4/12
Protheans in Mass Effect can pass on the memories of ancestors through devices. The game also has assasssaassins!

But yeah you'd think to make a successful copyright claim they should have to prove some kind of lost revenue as a result.
Raven
Posted 12:20pm 19/4/12
You seem to have overlooked the bit where I was taking the piss out of the MPAA and America's answer to everything being "quick, sue someone!".
gamer
Posted 01:47pm 19/4/12
Cheers HurricaneJim. I understand the difference between copyright and a patent but I think both of those forms of 'Int prop protection' are really abused.

Copyright because when I buy a xbox I should be able to load on whatever bios I want or solder a wire to the motherboard if I want to.

Patent because If I want to make something that some d******* patent spammer thought about 9 years ago and didn't even both building but got a patent made for it; I can't, Without his permission.

That's two correct examples yeah?
greazy
Posted 01:57pm 19/4/12
You can make a patented product, but can not sell it/use it for financial purposes.
reload!
Posted 02:24pm 19/4/12
Copyright and more so patents are really getting out of control.

How can a computer game be infringing on a book for f*** sake? They are completely different mediums.

What an absolute joke.


not sure if serious.

oh wait, it's gamer.

f*****g lol
TufNuT
Posted 02:41pm 19/4/12
How can a computer game be infringing on a book for f*** sake? They are completely different mediums.


if they took the story line for the game from the book then they have infringed on the authors copy right.
gamer
Posted 03:02pm 19/4/12
I really don't see how a storyline in a computer game mimicking a books storyline infringes on any copyright... they are two DIFFERENT mediums, as I've said previously.

gamer
Posted 03:14pm 19/4/12
The only analogy I can think of I know you'll hate but I'll try it on for size anyway...

It's like a painting that paints a picture of a woodlands archer stealing from a rich carriage and then later giving it to the poor.

Then the author of a robin hood book suing the painter because their painting infringes on robin hood?

quix0tic
Posted 03:15pm 19/4/12
So you're saying ... making a movie based on a book that someone else wrote .. and profiting from it, isn't copyright? You're an idiot.
quix0tic
Posted 03:16pm 19/4/12
*copyright infringement, I should have said.
funky
Posted 03:17pm 19/4/12
r u srs gamer?

so if i ripped off the story of half-life and wrote a book about it using key storyline elements, would i have committed copyright infringement? a video game has a storyline, much like a book does, and if one is a copy of another than it is copyright infringement

i'm not saying this guy has a case, nor that he is going to win (i haven't read his claim in depth) but if you honestly can't see how copyright infringement can transcend medium, you're stupid
Nerfy
Posted 03:21pm 19/4/12
While I can your point gamer, in a way, writing a decent and original fiction & setting would be a fair bit of work, and so if somebody just blatantly rips it off to sell a near-clone of, to me, it seems like stealing and profiting off of the author's work (i.e. the author is selling the plot and setting, which they worked to create). Though, the author might be better off if it drove people to his work.
gamer
Posted 04:13pm 19/4/12
If they wanted the money they should have made the movie version but they didn't.

Don't f*****g cry because someone does something before you do. That's what really pisses me off with copyright and patents. If you want money, get off your arse and go do it, otherwise shut the f*** up.
reload!
Posted 04:35pm 19/4/12
you are too stupid to live
Seven
Posted 04:40pm 19/4/12
Wow gamer. The whole point to copyright and patents is that you have already put the work in and are now protected. If someone else wants to profit from your work, they have to pay your for the privilege. If they don't, they can be taken to court.

Sounds to me like you should move to China if that's the way you think. How about you write a wicked massive essay for uni and then before you hand it in, I beat you up and write my name on it. Serves you right for being too slow and not 'getting off your ass and doing it first?'.
gamer
Posted 05:49pm 19/4/12
Well you see I don't consider that a really fair comparison because your involving criminal acts.

If you write a book (say it's a word document) and it's on a flash drive. You have invested time to create that fictional novel. That is worth something for your time and your creativity (skills).

You would then sell that book to a publisher for $$$ and they print the book.

I don't believe any 'information' should ever be allowed to be patented or copyrighted. If someone wants to goto the effort of buying a copy, re-typing the whole book and trying to sell copies themselves then so be it.

It's up the publishing company and the author to organise a financial system that works for them. The author needs to make sure they get what they deem is sensible payment for their time and skills invested there and then when they hand over the flash drive. The publisher needs to be good at advertising their copy of the book or keep prices down to encourage buyers. If they want to sell a book for $90 when a Chinese alternative is selling for $3 then they will lose.

"ideas" (essentially knowledge, information etc) in my opinion should not ever be allowed to be 'owned' by someone of something (corporation). You cannot physically 'own' an idea. Ideas are sporadic, unique ideas can exist independently of each other that are the same. That's just the fact of the matter. If I have a unique idea that you had at an earlier time, that doesn't take your earlier idea away from you.

All I see is copyright and patents holding back progression of the world, people and the future. People think they need to protect ideas and information because otherwise they won't have money but I don't believe that's true. I believe people would find other ways to monetise things in a way that isn't based off the idea or information. It would become service/production based.

For example, if drug companies needed to put a million dollars investment in to make ABC drug and as soon as they did released their product and others were able to quickly reverse engineer that product and make their own the argument might be - why would they?

Well they wouldn't. Instead they would most likely work together in a collaborative way to develop drugs with other companies as any information products would all be quickly shared on product launch anyway. The only real difference is who has a product on product launch.

Well that's my idealistic view on it anyway. Of course i'm aware of how the system we have at the moment is meant to work and you can see the pros and cons of both. All I know for sure is that we've tried the way we have now... and we haven't even given another way of open and free information and ideas a go.

If I wake up one day and have a unique idea of my own, uninspired, to make what is essentially a bicycle then I should be able to start a company that makes bikes without paying royalties to anyone. I shouldn't be hindered by the fact that some random f***wit 200 years previously had that idea, that I didn't even know about when I had my idea, and put a patent on it but never even made any bikes. The fact is I want to make bikes because it was my idea... so why the f*** cant I?



last edited by gamer at 17:49:53 19/Apr/12
ViscoS
Posted 05:51pm 19/4/12
Is there some reason this guy didn't come forth sooner, or has this been going on for years?
gamer
Posted 06:00pm 19/4/12
I can only imagine he wanted to wait until the franchise was huge so he could make the most money out of his copyright.

No surprises there. Like these guys that patent every little thing under the sun in the hope someone sometime will come along and try and make something involving their patent so they can cash in it. People like this sit down with URL campers.

I have a $20,000 EMC SAN right next to me at the moment. This EMC SAN has all the software and hardware that that the highest model EMC SAN worth $150,000 has. The only thing that differs is the licence file. It really pisses me off that my EMC SAN is limited to (lets say for argument sake) 300mB/s in RAID output... when the actual hardware is capable of a f*** tonne more if im willing to pay the $100,000 extra in licencing. If the hardware can do it, it shouldn't be restricted.
fade
Posted 06:07pm 19/4/12

ideas

Copyright doesn't, and never has, protected ideas. It protects literary, creative and artistic works.
reLapse
Posted 01:31pm 20/4/12
I am behind this man 100%, bring Ubi Soft down!
paveway
Posted 01:41pm 20/4/12
How can a computer game be infringing on a book for f*** sake? They are completely different mediums.


haha

he is that dense
Khel
Posted 01:53pm 20/4/12
Wow, I hadn't bothered reading this read until just now, wish I'd checked it sooner, theres some A+ crazyness going on up in here.

The guy doesn't sound like he has a case though, from reading the complaint, the things he claims are similarities don't sound very similar at all. His device is just a machine that lets you watch someone's memories on a video screen, not re-live them and learn from them like in Assassin's Creed. And the references to assassin's have absolutely NOTHING to do with the assassins of Assassin's Creed, they're just things like "Oh, we could go back and see John Wilkes booth assassinate lincoln" or "Some israelis tried to assassinate this guy, and we caught one and want to find out what he knows".
Zen Apathy
Posted 02:20pm 20/4/12
I have a $20,000 EMC SAN right next to me at the moment. This EMC SAN has all the software and hardware that that the highest model EMC SAN worth $150,000 has. The only thing that differs is the licence file. It really pisses me off that my EMC SAN is limited to (lets say for argument sake) 300mB/s in RAID output... when the actual hardware is capable of a f*** tonne more if im willing to pay the $100,000 extra in licencing. If the hardware can do it, it shouldn't be restricted.

If you don't like it, don't buy EMC SANs. By buying from them you enable this behaviour. This sort of practice has been around since the early days of computing and if people really had a problem with it they should do something by not supporting companies that do it.
ara
Posted 02:30pm 20/4/12
I have a $20,000 EMC SAN right next to me at the moment. This EMC SAN has all the software and hardware that that the highest model EMC SAN worth $150,000 has. The only thing that differs is the licence file. It really pisses me off that my EMC SAN is limited to (lets say for argument sake) 300mB/s in RAID output... when the actual hardware is capable of a f*** tonne more if im willing to pay the $100,000 extra in licencing. If the hardware can do it, it shouldn't be restricted.


so, if instead they crippled the hardware physically by putting in lower spec CPUs and memory and then when you wanted more performance you had to pay $200k for new controllers that would be better for you?
teq
Posted 02:46pm 20/4/12
Copyright and more so patents are really getting out of control.

How can a computer game be infringing on a book for f*** sake? They are completely different mediums.

What an absolute joke.


holy ignorance batman
paveway
Posted 09:37pm 20/4/12
it's really just stupidity rather than ignorance
fpot
Posted 09:46pm 20/4/12
More quality stuff from gamer, the guy who brought you this thread!
paveway
Posted 10:06pm 20/4/12
don't forget the pinnacle of his posting career, his rant about sex dolls how we all should have one because all women are b****** that don't put out (or there abouts)

last edited by paveway at 22:06:52 20/Apr/12
HerbalLizard
Posted 10:31pm 20/4/12
If you don't like it, don't buy EMC SANs. By buying from them you enable this behaviour. This sort of practice has been around since the early days of computing and if people really had a problem with it they should do something by not supporting companies that do it.
This +1 oh f*** yes

Also could be worse could be netapp then you would really have something to piss and moan about
koopz
Posted 12:06am 21/4/12
I have a $20,000 EMC SAN right next to me at the moment. This EMC SAN has all the software and hardware that that the highest model EMC SAN worth $150,000 has. The only thing that differs is the licence file. It really pisses me off that my EMC SAN is limited to (lets say for argument sake) 300mB/s in RAID output... when the actual hardware is capable of a f*** tonne more if im willing to pay the $100,000 extra in licencing. If the hardware can do it, it shouldn't be restricted.


it sounds like you don't know how you build one.

just how much are these people paying you annually?

no offense matey, but you sound like another Lib who scored himself a sweet IT job and now has to prove himself.
mental
Posted 07:04am 30/5/12
Update:

On April 17, 2012, American author and research engineer, John L. Beiswenger, filed a lawsuit against Ubisoft Entertainment S.A. and its subsidiary companies, and Gametrailers, Inc., alleging that the storyline behind the popular Assassin's Creed franchise features many similarities to one of his novels, LINK. On May 18, 2012, Gametrailers reached a confidential settlement with Beiswenger under undisclosed terms. On May 29, 2012, Beiswenger exercised his right as a federal litigant to voluntarily dismiss the action against the Ubisoft defendants, without prejudice. There has not been any adjudication on the merits of Beiswenger’s infringement claims.

Kelley Clements Keller, Esq., legal representative for Beiswenger, said, "My client’s decision to exercise his right to voluntarily dismiss the action, without prejudice, in no way diminishes his stalwart conviction in the merit of his claims against Ubisoft. He is unwavering in his belief that many key components of the Assassin’s Creed video game franchise infringe on many key components of his novel, LINK. We believe Ubisoft has engaged in egregious acts of copyright infringement and, should he choose to seek redress through the courts in the future, we remain confident that a trier of fact would agree."


quote from hardocp
PornoPete
Posted 04:28pm 31/5/12
we remain confident that a trier of fact would agree


Yeah so confident we won't take it to court and find out.

Pussy,
step
Posted 06:09pm 31/5/12
That's so settlement talk.
Trauma
Posted 07:38pm 31/5/12
Yeah so confident we won't take it to court and find out.

Pussy,

I'd imagine Ubisoft could and would just out spend him in court.
Commenting has been locked for this item.
44 Comments
Show
Close