Dark and Darker Developer Ironmace Releases New Documents to Bolster its Case Against Nexon

The embattled developer of Dark and Darker Ironmace has released more massive documents and logs to bolster its case against Nexon. 👀

Published: March 29, 2023 1:17 PM /


Dark and Darker Art

Today the embattled developers of the hardcore fantasy extraction FPS game Dark and Darker at Ironmace have released some rather beefy documents to bolster their case against Nexon.

As promised a few days ago the studio dropped the documents on its Discord server and there is a lot of new information available. 

To be precise, we get the full GIT logs for the first year of development. That's a nearly 20 megabytes plain text file, which is extremely sizable. The developer claims that the only modifications made are the obscuring of personal names, login IDs, domains, and IP addresses for security reasons. All other information has been left untouched. 

They also explained that the log starts in September 2021 even if the studio was founded officially in October, explained as follows (SIC). 

Several of our founding members started work as a development team starting in September 2021. The members worked for more than a month in a shabby jiujitsu gym without pay using our own personal PCs as a test of our resolve and teamwork, and also because we had no investors. Once we realized that our members could form the foundations of a viable company, the company was formally founded in late October 2021. The original funds were quickly exhausted and IRONMACE almost went bankrupt as we were unable to acquire investors. Luckily members rallied together and collected funds from over twenty friends and families to bankroll the company for another couple months. This was also quickly exhausted and IRONMACE relied on outsourcing work unrelated to game development to help it survive another month. It was only through grueling meetings and countless, countless, countless rejections that IRONMACE was finally able to find brave VCs willing to fund the studio in 2022. The studio made it point to accept as little money as possible to stay hungry and motivated to get to the current point.

We also get the original response published a few days ago, but this time in Korean, a new response from the concept artist, also in Korean, to Nexon's allegation that the art of the characters is similar.

The document claims that the classes were inspired by Dungeons & Dragons and other classic fantasy tropes, refuting Nexon's allegations and showcasing how the characters match common tropes. The artist claims that the designs are actually different, besides the traditional silhouettes of these characters. 

Last, but not least, we get a list of assets purchased from the Unreal Marketplace which explains part of the identical file names mentioned by Nexon in its DMCA takedown letter that resulted in the game's removal from Steam. The rest, according to Ironmace, are due to the use of the same engine, while a vast minority (41 of 2,338) are explained by recommended file-naming conventions and general conceptual names associated with the typical First-Person Fantasy game. 

In case you missed the beginning of this legal battle between Nexon and Ironmace, the publisher accused the indie developer of having absconded with its trade secrets and copyrighted materials created for a canceled game code-named "Project P3." The offices of the developer have been searched by police with currently unknown results during the investigation, and Ironmace has challenged Nexon to make its own files available so that Korean police or a third party can compare the source code, custom assets, and design documents.

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Started as News Editor at TechRaptor in January 2023, following over 20 years of professional experience in gaming journalism both on print media and on the… More about Giuseppe

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