Orders in the Courts, Part 1: Novelist Drops Lawsuit over Assassin’s Creed
A post on Eurogamer today revealed that John L. Beiswenger, author of the self-published novel Link, has dropped his lawsuit against Ubisoft over allegations that the video game publisher swiped his novel’s ideas for their Assassin’s Creed franchise. Apparently Gametrailers, who was named in the suit as well for helping to promote the AC games, settled out of court with the author for an undisclosed amount.
“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,” said Beiswenger’s attorney, Kelley Clements Keller. She elaborated:
“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.”
“I filed the Complaint and Motion for Preliminary Injunction in federal court because I believe authors should vigorously defend their rights in their creative works. Otherwise, the laws protecting them simply have no purpose. Regrettably, the resources required to defend those rights are unavailable to many individual creators. As a result, rampant infringement is occurring with impunity.”
The case first appeared back in April, when Beiswenger alleged that Assassin’s Creed’s “Animus” device, which lets the users relive memories from their ancestors’ lives, was stolen from his novel. In response, gamers review-bombed the novel on Amazon to protest their anger over the suit.
Because the lawsuit’s been dropped, that means that any chance the author had at winning an injunction against Ubisoft—which would have stopped the sale and distribution of Assassin’s Creed games—has disappeared. Phew!