The Intellivision Amico has yet again landed its creator Tommy Tallarico in trouble. This time, it's all about Tank Battle (or Battle Tanks, seemingly depending on what day of the week it is), which is alleged to contain assets stolen from other sources.
What's this Intellivision Amico controversy about?
The Intellivision Amico just can't seem to get it right. After numerous delays, including one pushing the console's release to next year, a new controversy has erupted. As reported by Geek Getaway, it looks like Intellivision Tank Battle (name not final) contains assets taken from other games and non-commercial stock image sources. In an Intellivision Deep Dive video on the game, Tommy Tallarico and Intellivision CTO John Alvarado show off some of the gameplay in Tank Battle. Viewers quickly spotted assets seemingly appropriated from World of Tanks and non-commercial stock image websites, among others. First, take a look at this image showing suspiciously similar artwork in Gaijin Entertainment's War Thunder and Intellivision's Tank Battle.
You can also see clear similarities between models in Tank Battle and an image taken from a non-commercial stock source, as well as a World of Tanks model created for a collaboration with the Brad Pitt movie Fury. Take a look below.
Finally, there's a comparison image showing the similarities between models in Tallarico's Intellivision Amico game and those in World of Tanks, as well as other non-commercial sources. You can see that image here.
The original Intellivision Amico Tank Battle video was swiftly taken down, followed by a second upload which was also subsequently taken down. In a third upload, a disclaimer was added (one that wasn't part of the original video) claiming the game is a "work in progress" and that "placeholder graphics were identified" in the current version of Tank Battle. Supposedly, Intellivision is talking to its developer about "both final assets and placeholder assets", suggesting that the assets identified here won't be in the finished version of the game. Still, this rather raises the question of why Intellivision feels it's appropriate to use stolen assets for its marketing material.
Does this spell disaster for the Intellivision Amico?
All things considered, Tommy Tallarico's new console hasn't exactly been a roaring success. It's been delayed several times from its original launch date of October 2020, and Intellivision has been criticized for a perceived lack of transparency around why the console's launch has been moved. There's also the fact that Intellivision appears to be selling games for the Amico before the console has even arrived, which isn't a great look given the poor optics surrounding the Amico.
When the Amico does eventually arrive, we know what the specs will look like, thanks to a developer leak. The specs look pretty modest on paper; with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage, many budget smartphones would blow the Amico out of the water. However, this is a dedicated gaming console, and the games' small size should mean its hardware won't struggle. We also know that the team behind Ecco the Dolphin is working on a new game for the Amico, so it does have some clout behind it.
We've reached out to Intellivision for comment on this story, and we've also asked World of Tanks developer Wargaming and War Thunder studio Gaijin Entertainment for their takes on the matter. We'll bring you more on this as soon as we get it. In the meantime, the first pre-ordered Amico units are set to arrive in the first quarter of 2022, according to the console's official FAQ. Given past form, however, we wouldn't be surprised if another Intellivision Amico delay was announced. We'll have to wait and see.
How do you feel about Intellivision apparently stealing assets for Tank Battle? Let us know in the comments below!