PUBG, the subsidiary of Korean developer BlueHole and creators behind the popular multiplayer game PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, has filed a lawsuit against Epic Games Korea.
The lawsuit, according to the Korea Times, is a copyright infringement injunction against Epic Games own multiplayer battle royale game, Fortnite. The lawsuit has been filed with the Seoul Central District Court.
It should be noted that the suit is not against the American company Epic Games, only their Korean branch. Reporter for the Korea Times, Jun Ji-Hye, noted that PUBG filed the suit back in January of this year, and has been waiting for the results since then. Korean law also works differently when compared to U.S law, so it may take some time before this lawsuit is resolved and many different principles are involved due to it being descended from civil law rather than common law.
PUBG Corp, which was formed as a wholly owned subsidiary by Korean developer BlueHole in September of last year, has been very protective of PUBG since the game officially launched. BlueHole was already skeptical of Fortnite when it first launched, accusing Epic Games of copying the battle royale format and using the game as a direct comparison to their own title.
PUBG is already in litigation over previous lawsuits. Most famously, the company filed a suit against Chinese tech company NetEase over copyright infringement, noting several social and mobile games that also closely mimic PUBG.
"Defendants have committed unlawful, unfair, and/or fraudulent business acts by copying PUBG's Battlegrounds game in each version of their ROS and KO games and introducing the ROS and KO games to the marketplace at or below cost," reads the filing.
We contacted Epic Games for a comment, but a spokesperson told us that the company will not comment on ongoing litigation. They have partnered with NeoWiz games to release Fortnite in PC rooms in Korea, assuming the lawsuit doesn't stop that.
PUBG is among the most popular titles on the PC market today, with a record-holding number of concurrent players on Steam at one point in 2017. Fortnite too has become incredibly popular, with over 10 million players reported to playing the game in October of last year, which proved to be only a prelude for this years explosion of popularity. Both titles have become the forerunners of the new battle royale-style online multiplayer game, where teams or individuals in large groups fight to the death in a last man standing game with survival elements.
What are your thoughts on this whole mess? Is PUBG right in suing Epic Games Korea? Leave your comments below.