Capcom Sues Koei Tecmo Over Patent Infringement

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

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Capcom vs. Koei Tecmo Lawsuit Capcom vs. Koei Tecmo Games Lawsuit

File this under “weird patents and lawsuits”: Capcom has sued Koei Tecmo for making expansions to video games. The company behind several games with bucket loads of expansions believes that Koei Tecmo has crossed the line in how they have expanded their games, particularly the Warriors franchise.

From the Sankei article (translated):

The lawsuit concerns Capcom’s patent of a system that, when operating a game that is a sequel in a series, makes it possible for those who can fetch save data from a previous game in the series to play as additional characters and in new scenarios. Koei Tecmo’s PlayStation 2 and 3 games in the “Samurai Warriors” and “Dynasty Warriors” series use a similar system, so Capcom claims their patent has been infringed.

Sankei also reports that Capcom is seeking up to 10% of the approximately ¥9.7 billion (roughly $93 million USD) in total sales. It was also reported that Capcom is looking to halt sales of the games in question.

While it didn’t appear in the original Sankei article, a second patent also appears to be causing concern. This other patent concerns a rumble feature that alerts you to nearby enemies. Koei Tecmo has rejected both claims, stating that “(trans.) There is truly no patent infringement.”

Dynasty Warriors 8 Xtreme Legends Complete Edition | Capcom vs. Koei Tecmo Games Lawsuit

Undoubtedly one of the games in question.

If Capcom wins, it’s unclear how this will effect DLC and expansions–past, present and future. The patent was filed back in 2002. It might only effect physical media, since digital wasn’t as big back then. It might also just relate to how the data combines with a save file in a specific way. As for the rumble feature, it’s tough to say either way.


Special thanks to Will Whitehurst for the translation.

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  • Giordan

    Expansions have been around since 1983, when the first gaming PC was made.

  • multibottler0cket

    There are so many games that do this. I still don’t understand how you can patent things like this.

  • Pedro Rosas

    Notice how this says “PS2” system?
    This means they are just searching for quick buck now, i hope they lose so they finally go bankrupt and someone just buys them already, I don’t care who at this point

  • Goose

    “how the mighty have fallen,” so they say.

  • Aleks Corbae

    Didn’t Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn used a same system, using the gamecube save on the wii to unlock new content? Crapcom is surely scrubbing the lowest part of the barrel in desperation… I hope they finally give up and sell te company to Nintendo or another developer that really deserve their forgotten franchises

  • Richard Blaziken

    Just die already, Capcom.