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WWE 2K24
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Attachment In early February 2024, one month prior to the game's release, multi-time WWE World Champion Brock Lesnar was removed from the cover of the "Forty Years of WrestleMania" showcase edition of the game in response to a sexual assault and sex trafficking lawsuit against Vince McMahon and WWE. Although Lesnar's name was not directly mentioned in the lawsuit, his reported connection to the case led to his removal as part of a wider effort by the WWE to disassociate from him. The cover was updated to feature a larger version of John Cena, where Lesnar used to be.

Content creators who got early access to the game on February 23 confirmed that both Lesnar and McMahon were no longer playable characters in WWE 2K24. While the extent of McMahon's removal is unknown, Brock Lesnar’s data remains locked away in the game due to his matches with The Undertaker at Wrestlemania 30 and Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania 31 being featured in the "Showcase of the Immortals" Showcase mode, and it being too far into development to remove them.
person ProtoSnake calendar_month February 20, 2024
Brock Lesnar Removed From WWE 2K24 Special Edition Cover:
https://www.ign.com/articles/brock-lesnar-removed-from-wwe-2k24-special-edition-cover

Brock Lesnar's replacement on WWE 2K24 cover revealed:
https://www.sportskeeda.com/wwe/news-brock-lesnar-s-replacement-wwe-2k24-cover-revealed

[Below source and additional info provided by SOGESNAKE.]

WWE 2K24 Final Roster Confirms Removal of Brock Lesnar and Vince McMahon:
https://www.ign.com/articles/wwe-2k24-final-roster-confirms-removal-of-brock-lesnar-and-vince-mcmahon
Ace Attorney Investigations 2
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Frank Sahwit, the culprit of "The First Turnabout" (the first episode of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney), plays a major role in the second episode of Ace Attorney Investigations 2, "Gokuchū no Gyakuten" (roughly translated to "Reversal in Prison"). This is notable in that it suggests that not everybody convicted of homicide is given either a life sentence or the death penalty in the Ace Attorney series, as it's implied that he would have been eligible for parole after the events of the case had he not Spoiler:served as Marie Miwa's accomplice in the murder of Manosuke Naitou. This is consistent with real life, as Frank had committed a second-degree murder (a murder which occurs in the spur of the moment) rather than a first-degree murder (which are premediated). Additionally, given the short amount of time he had served prior to his near-parole (around two years and nine months), it's possible that Sahwit had been convicted of a lesser crime such as manslaughter since the first game did not indicate that he had actively intended to murder Cindy Stone.
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month February 18, 2024
1
In August 2016, Scott Fulop, a former editor and writer for Archie's Sonic the Hedgehog comics (whose notable contributions include the characters Mammoth Mogul and the Fearsome Foursome), began pursuing legal action against Archie Comics for the unauthorized use of his characters and reprinted stories. He was inspired to do so by fellow former writer Ken Penders, who had also infamously sued Archie for similar reasons. However, on September 5, 2017, Fulop ultimately lost his lawsuit.
Postal
subdirectory_arrow_right Running with Scissors (Company)
1
Running with Scissors wanted to make "the most outrageous game they could", and began work on Postal after being inspired by Robotron: 2084. In 1997, they filed a trademark for the word "Postal" in the area of electronic gaming, but were soon counter-filed by the United States Postal Service, who claimed to be moving into video games: Marvin Travis Runyon, the United States Postmaster General at the time, even sent Running with Scissors a latter condemning the game's theme. The legal battle was ultimately dismissed with prejudice in June 2004.

The theme was also highly controversial not just within the larger media, but also within the video game industry. This was a surprise to CEO Vince Desi, who felt Postal was more comical and over-the-top, and stated that the game was not meant to be taken seriously. After it was released, Postal was targeted by Senator Joe Lieberman, who called the game "one of the worst things in America". Additionally, retail chains such as CompUSA and Walmart refused to sell the game.
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month February 3, 2024
Platform: Nintendo Switch
subdirectory_arrow_right Nintendo (Company)
0
In 2020, hackers Gary Bowser and Max "MAXiMiLiEN" Louarn were arrested and extradited to the United States for money laundering and selling products meant to crack the Nintendo Switch's copy protection to run pirated copies of games. The two were members of Team Xecuter, a hacking group which specialized in similar measures for a large number of Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft consoles. In 2021, Bowser pled guilty on conspiracy and trafficking charges and was sentenced to 40 months in prison; Nintendo later filed a separate civil suit against him, which together with the prison sentence left him $14.5 million in debt. The company's legal department claimed during the court case that the unusually severe punishments were intended to send a chilling effect through the piracy world, intimidating would-be hackers by using Bowser's punishment as an example.

Following the case, multiple news outlets noted the irony of Gary Bowser's last name, which is shared with Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser and Mario series antagonist Bowser.
person ProtoSnake calendar_month February 2, 2024
Palworld
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Following the Steam Early Access release of Palworld on January 18, the developers faced accusations of copying Pokémon models for the designs of the game's Pals. The allegations were made by a Twitter user named byofrog, who claimed that some of Palworld's creature models were directly copied and edited from 3D models ripped from Pokémon games. These allegations were criticized for scaling the Pokémon and Palworld models to be comparable in size, leading to claims that edited models were not reliable or accurate evidence. byofrog claimed in response that because the models from each game loaded into modeling software at different sizes, scaling them appropriately were the only necessary edits made to compare them, and that the models' meshes, proportions, and other fundamental features were not edited.

Takuro Mizobe, the CEO of Palworld developer Pocketpair, denied the allegations, calling them "slanderous", and also stated that Pocketpair has "no intention of infringing upon the intellectual property of other companies". On January 25, The Pokémon Company released an official statement confirming they were aware of a flood of inquiries about "another company’s game released in January 2024", and that they were currently investigating them.
person ProtoSnake calendar_month January 25, 2024
The Getaway
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person ProtoSnake calendar_month January 24, 2024
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles
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Due to long-standing copyright issues regarding the character Sherlock Holmes brought about by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's estate (which had previously delayed the games' release), the international release of The Great Ace Attorney games changed his name to "Herlock Sholmes". According to series creator Shu Takumi, this was done as an allusion to "Arsène Lupin versus Herlock Sholmes", a story collection by Maurice Leblanc.

Following the announcement of the name "Herlock Sholmes", various memes came about surrounding the character and the circumstances for the renaming in regards to copyright law. This got to the point where major news outlets began covering it, with some noting that the goofy-sounding name "fit with the comedic and sometimes irreverent tone of the Ace Attorney series, even if it does leave a few things lost in translation."
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month January 24, 2024
Collection: Mario Kart
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Attachment In 2016, Nintendo entered a legal dispute with MariCar, an Osaka-based company offering tourists Mario Kart-themed tours of the city using modified go-karts. The service included costumes based on the Mario Kart roster and alluded to the games' items in its advertising, jokingly asking customers not to attack each other with "banana peels" or "red turtle shells." Nintendo filed a complaint with the Japan Patent Office in September, arguing that the company's trademark was deliberately over-evocative of that for Mario Kart. Four months later, however, the office denied Nintendo's request, noting that "MariCar" was not a common abbreviation for Mario Kart, and thus the two trademarks did not conflict.

As the Japanese legal system does not include fair use protections for parodies, Nintendo subsequently sued MariCar the following month for copyright infringement due to the unauthorized inclusion of Mario character costumes. The case was ultimately decided in Nintendo's favor in September 2018, with MariCar being forced to drop the Mario Kart iconography and pay Nintendo ¥10 million (roughly equivalent to $89,000 USD) in damages. The company attempted to appeal the case to the Japanese Supreme Court, who rejected the motion in December 2020 and increased the fine to ¥50 million (approximately $483,000 USD). MariCar has since rebranded as Street Kart in the wake of the lawsuit.
person VinchVolt calendar_month January 24, 2024
Diddy Kong Racing
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Attachment The racer Krunch wasn't originally designed as a Kremling. According to former Rare artist Kevin Bayliss (in a now defunct Facebook page for Rare alumni), the character predated the conversion from Pro-Am 64 to Diddy Kong Racing and was originally a generic crocodile character, brought in to introduce a "bad guy" into the game's roster.

When it was decided to incorporate Diddy Kong into the game and change the title to Diddy Kong Racing, it was also decided to turn the crocodile character into a Kremling named Krunch, perhaps to better tie it into the new Donkey Kong-infused lore. The decision to turn Krunch into a Kremling, a Nintendo-owned species, also automatically gave Nintendo the rights to the character as well, even retaining said rights after the Microsoft buyout in 2002, whereas all the other Diddy Kong Racing racers outside of obviously Diddy are now owned by Microsoft.
person Dinoman96 calendar_month January 19, 2024
Source Gaming article on Krunch's history:
https://sourcegaming.info/2017/11/15/new-content-approaching-krunch/

DKVine article on Diddy Kong Racing's copyrights:
https://dkvine.com/?p=news_body&post=6391

Rare scribes confirming that Krunch is still owned by Nintendo:
http://web.archive.org/web/20070628215552/http://rareware.com/extras/scribes/25jun07/index.html
Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney
subdirectory_arrow_right Ace Attorney (Franchise)
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According to series creator Shu Takumi in a 2017 interview, Capcom executives issued two mandates affecting the writing of Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney. The first mandate was that the game had to include Phoenix Wright in the story, which went against Takumi's original idea for a "reset" of the series. The second mandate was to incorporate the Lay Judge system, a real-life judicial system, into the story, resulting in the creation of Spoiler:the MASON System game program and the trial run of a new Jurist System in the game's last case "Turnabout Succession". The Ace Attorney series began as a critique of how Japan's legal system handles criminal offenses, but around this time, that legal system was changing. While Japan previously suspended an older jurist system in 1943, the country's legislative body, the National Diet, gradually implemented a new lay judge system (裁判員, or "Saiban-in") from 2004 to 2009. This system, resembling more democratic systems in North American and European countries, calls upon six random common citizens to serve in serious criminal trials as inquisitorial judges sitting alongside three professional judges. Together they make up the judicial panel and actively analyze and investigate evidence presented to them throughout the trial before ruling on guilt and sentencing. Reflecting this, Spoiler:the Jurist System featured at the very end of Turnabout Succession is made up of six random jurors guided by Phoenix Wright, where the player from the perspective of the sixth juror has to rule the defendant Guilty or Not Guilty.

Takumi revealed that as part of the game’s promotion, Capcom collaborated with the Japanese Ministry of Justice and even gave a presentation of Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney at the ministry's head office, implying that the system's mandated inclusion in the game was political propaganda. Despite Capcom cooperating in the Japanese government's push for this new judicial system, and despite participation experiences being reported as positive and easy to understand, the reception to other aspects of the system were largely negative. Complaints with the system include increasingly more severe sentencing since its implementation, the risk of criminal penalties for lay judges publicly discussing confidential deliberation room details after trials come to an end, and most starkly, calling upon Japanese citizens to put aside time to participate in the system, who have been increasingly unwilling to do so. This has been largely attributed to the length of lay judge trials and even the length of pre-trial proceedings increasing significantly over the next decade, and due to subsequent declining interest, aging populations and people simply not being able to make these time commitments, more and more citizens refused to serve or even show up to be vetted for serving in the first place, making it harder to fill out the jury.

As a result of this reception, the Ace Attorney series has not used Spoiler:the MASON System and the Jurist System since, sticking with the series' traditional Initial Trial system in future entries.
person MehDeletingLater calendar_month January 9, 2024
Metal Gear Solid
subdirectory_arrow_right Gran Turismo 2 (Game), One (Game), Tekken 3 (Game), PC (Microsoft Windows) (Platform), PlayStation (Platform), Xbox (Platform), Dreamcast (Platform), Sony Interactive Entertainment (Company)
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Attachment Bleem! was a PlayStation emulator released for Microsoft Windows 98 and the Sega Dreamcast. Unlike the vast majority of emulators before and since, it was released as a paid product on store shelves. Bleem!, although very impressive for the time and capable of running on low-end PCs, had many compatability issues, with the only game that ran perfectly on Windows Bleem! being the US version of One, while the only games that could be run at all on Dreamcast were Tekken 3, Metal Gear Solid, and Gran Turismo 2, all with specialised emulators released on their own "Bleemcast" discs.

Sony would sue Bleem! twice over alleged copyright infringement, and despite all odds, Sony lost due to Bleem!'s use of screenshots in promo material and the PS1 BIOS being protected by fair use. However, a mix of legal fees and Sony threatening retailers stocking Bleem! products with subpoenas would force Bleem! off of shelves anyway, and its website would be replaced with an image of Sonic the Hedgehog mourning at a grave with the Bleem! logo carved on it. Bleem! would countersue Sony for anti-competitive activity.

The popularity of Bleem! would lead both Sega and Microsoft to attempt to work with Bleem! officially to make PS1 games run on Dreamcast and Xbox, though these plans fell through due to Sega being afraid of Sony's litigation, while the developers of Bleem! simply felt Microsoft wasn't paying high enough for the license for Bleem! (something they had come to regret in the years since).
person Rocko & Heffer calendar_month December 28, 2023
Dying Light 2: Stay Human
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In June 2020, the game's writer Chris Avellone was publicly accused of sexual assault and harassment by two women in the video game industry on Twitter claiming to have been victims of his behavior. Avellone denied the allegations, stating that he has never sexually assaulted or harassed anyone. Techland, the developer of Dying Light 2: Stay Human, later announced that the two had agreed to let him go from his work on the game, with Avellone also losing work on other games. However, in March 2023, after Avellone brought on a libel lawsuit, the women retracted their statements claiming that they were misinterpreted, and paid Avellone a seven figure payment as part of the settlement. In a joint statement, the women said that Avellone "never sexually abused either of us. We have no knowledge that he has ever sexually abused any women", and they "believe that he deserves a full return to the industry and support him in those endeavors."
person ProtoSnake calendar_month December 25, 2023
Dying Light 2 writer Chris Avellone accused of sexual assault and harassment:
https://web.archive.org/web/20200622211330/https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/365244/Dying_Light_2_writer_Chris_Avellone_accused_of_sexual_assault_and_harassment.php

The game and comics industries are grappling with widespread allegations of harassment and abuse:
https://www.polygon.com/2020/6/25/21302341/video-game-tabletop-game-comics-allegations-harassment-abuse-racism-metoo

Fallout Writer Chris Avellone’s Accusers Settle Libel Case For Seven Figures:
https://kotaku.com/fallout-new-vegas-avellone-sexual-misconduct-libel-1850270184

Chris Avellone resolves sexual misconduct allegations, claiming a "seven-figure payment"
"There are still many very real challenges that we face but am confident we can face them together.":
https://www.eurogamer.net/chris-avellone-resolves-sexual-misconduct-allegations-claiming-a-seven-figure-payment
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Dan Slott, a comic book writer best known for his work on Marvel Comics such as "The Amazing Spider-Man", "Fantastic Four", and "Silver Surfer", wrote for two issues of Archie's "Sonic Super Special" series as part of its "Zone Wars" storyline. Despite these being his only works for the comic, he did make one notable contribution: Zonic the Zone Cop, an alternate reality version of Sonic who monitored all realities in order to maintain balance across the various Zones, though allowing other people to appear in other Zones when they are needed. In November 2022, in response to various fan questions about Zonic, Slott noted that he was willing to collaborate with Sega to bring him back, and had no protective hang-ups over the character unlike an unspecified Sonic creator who was "super protective of all the characters he's created over the years to the point where SEGA doesn't want to use ANY of them in other media" (likely referring to legal issues surrounding former writer Ken Penders).
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month December 22, 2023
1
In October 2005, a newspaper report was released in Sweden linking multiple high ranking staff at Tiger Telematics, the company that made the Gizmondo game console, to the Uppsalamaffian, a Swedish mafia. The report singled out Stefan Eriksson, a prominent figure in the console's development, as the leader of the mafia until he became involved with the Gizmondo, and having received at least 2 prison sentences beforehand. On the same month that the Gizmondo was discontinued in Feburary 2006, Eriksson crashed a Ferrari in California so hard that it tore in half, with the investigation into the crash landing Eriksson behind bars again, and eventually deporting him back to Sweden to face repercussions for additional crimes committed there.
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In 2023, Activision Blizzard was ordered to pay $35 million by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over its failures to maintain proper workplace disclosure controls and violations of whistleblower protections. The fine was imposed due to the company’s failure to ensure proper employee protections against workplace harassment and gender discrimination, which led to many women leaving the company. The SEC used a 2021 lawsuit by the state of California’s Civil Rights Department against Activision Blizzard to launch its own investigation meant to determine whether the firm’s handling of the situation constituted a breach of its fiduciary duty to investors. The proceedings were started after the company’s home state charged it with violations of the California Fair Employment and Housing Act in summer 2021.
Sea of Stars
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Originally, YouTuber Jirard Khalil (most famous for his webseries "The Completionist") made a cameo in Sea of Stars as an NPC named "Jirard the Constructionist", who you could donate building plans to to help construct new buildings in the town of Mirth as part of the "Home Neat Home" achievement. This cameo came after Khalil had previously featured unique builds of Sea of Stars, including one featuring Jirard the Constructionist, during his annual indie game spotlight charity event "IndieLand", which was run by his official charity organization, the Open Hand Foundation. In November 2023, a few months after the game's release, Khalil was accused of committing charity fraud through the organization, spawning a controversy that prompted the game's developers to release a patch for the game that removed his cameo, and replacing him with a generic NPC named Bob. Considering Bob is a builder, this new character may be a reference to the children's animated series "Bob the Builder".
person chocolatejr9 calendar_month December 16, 2023
War Thunder
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Starting in 2021, War Thunder's official forums became notorious for being the center point of multiple leaks of export-restricted or regionally classified military documents from around the world detailing how various weapons and transportation equipment like tanks and fighter jets are built. The leaks are attributed to the fact that the game strives to depict the minutiae of warfare as realistically as possible, leading to players with military connections, or access to resources that are publicly available in other regions, sharing the documents on the forums in order to prove points regarding what would or would not be accurate in-game. Despite the forum moderators quickly removing these posts and issuing multiple warnings about them breaching international law, the issue became so prominent and recurring that laypeople began spreading rumors that the United States military had to start filtering out War Thunder players during the recruitment process, which American weapons contractor RTX Corporation denied.
person VinchVolt calendar_month December 13, 2023
Company: Atari
2
Founders Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney originally wanted to name Atari "Syzygy," only to learn that the name was already taken by a roofing company. Consequently, the pair decided to brainstorm new ideas while playing a round of Go, which Bushnell was experienced in; an issue of Atari's home computer magazine I/O stated that "Their best brainstorming always occurred over a good game and a bottle of beer."

Following this, Bushnell and Dabney decided to name the company after a piece of Go jargon, settling on "Atari," a term used to describe a playing piece that is surrounded on all but one side. "Sente" and "Hane" were also considered as possible names.
person VinchVolt calendar_month December 13, 2023
Donkey Kong
subdirectory_arrow_right Crazy Kong (Game)
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Crazy Kong was an officially licensed clone of Donkey Kong released by Falcon Inc. to compensate for Nintendo's inability to make enough Donkey Kong machines as there was demand for. However, Crazy Kong was only allowed to be distributed in Japan, but Falcon released the game abroad anyway with Elcron Industries, leading to a lawsuit where Nintendo won.
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