Hasbro’s popular cartoon My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic continued expanding its franchise with the release of the mobile match 3 game My Little Pony:Puzzle Party earlier this month. Now a Turkish developer, Peak Games, is suing the corporation over the game. Claiming the new game is a clone of their game Toy Blast, Peak Games has begun legal action against Hasbro for copyright infringement.
As reported by VentureBeat, Peak Games recently filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court in San Francisco. The Turkish developers submitted side by side screenshots of the two match 3 games showing their similarities. Toy Blast was released in August of 2015 and My Little Pony: Puzzle Party debuted on October 13, 2016.
“Peak Games has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Hasbro and Backflip Studios for taking Peak’s popular game, Toy Blast, cloning it, and cloaking it under the My Little Pony brand. When the game was released last week, it was immediately obvious to all of us that this was just a reskin of Toy Blast. This was only confirmed as we looked at the game more deeply in the subsequent days.
“Peak believes it is obligated to protect its teams’ creativity and hard work, and to discourage others from taking the shortcut of cloning a leading game in the genre. Under this circumstance, we felt it necessary to take the step of filing this action, which Peak has never done before, and did not do lightly.”, Stated Peak Games’ representative Jennifer Kelly of Fenwick & West.
Both games are mobile titles of the match 3 genre and have many similarities. While the similarities in gameplay may be coincidence given the concepts and mechanics used are found in many other puzzle games as well, the user-interface, level design and numerical scoring system have some remarkable similarities.
Toy Blast reached number one in the Google Play store and number three in the iTunes App Store after its release with an average score of 4.71. The game’s success would certainly make it an example match 3 developers would look to when making their own title. Hasbro or Backflip have yet to make a response to the claims against them.