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Author Topic: Stardock Litigation Discussion  (Read 37516 times)
lostsoul
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #435 on: October 22, 2018, 11:46:40 pm »

here brad says they've sold over 50,000 copies...i highly doubt that...
https://forums.starcontrol.com/491316/page/1/#replies
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futonrevolution
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #436 on: October 23, 2018, 12:02:09 am »

"It’s not just good for an indie. Outside a handful of truly major AAA games, you’d be hard pressed to find a PC game selling thst many in a week. It’s certainly our best launch. GalCiv III sold approximately 60,000 units in its first month through all channels.

Even during the old retail days when we had Walmart, Best Buy, etc. a good launch was about 75,000 during an entire month."

I don't think that anyone would be hard-pressed to find a PC game selling "nearly 50,000" in a week.
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Mormont
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #437 on: October 23, 2018, 12:15:11 am »

here brad says they've sold over 50,000 copies...i highly doubt that...
https://forums.starcontrol.com/491316/page/1/#replies
"Nearly" 50,000, not over (though it has been almost a month since). "Nearly" could mean a lot of different things - could be 48k, 40k, or even 35k.

One objective measure we do have is the simultaneous player count on Steamcharts, where it looks like the game is not picking up very many new players after the initial rush.
https://steamcharts.com/app/271260
« Last Edit: October 23, 2018, 12:20:35 am by Mormont » Logged
rosepatel
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #438 on: October 23, 2018, 12:56:02 am »

here brad says they've sold over 50,000 copies...i highly doubt that...
https://forums.starcontrol.com/491316/page/1/#replies

It's odd that in the same thread, he says GC3 sold 60k units in a month. Elemental sold 82k in two weeks. That's more sales than GC3, and yet Elemental led to layoffs.

It's hard to make sense of how well SC:O is doing. But I suspect, regardless of sales, Stardock has the money to cover any shortfall.
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #439 on: October 23, 2018, 01:46:27 am »

Maybe you're like me and try to see the best in people and give them the benefit of the doubt, but there's not really any question anymore about the merits of this suit, and that Stardock was well aware of what was in their hand when they came to the table. Their ill-advised attempt to use various Star Control-related materials in commerce, including their DMCA responses, are about as obvious of bad faith as you can get without catching them on video snickering about their schemes.

With everything that has happened at this point, I have no doubts he is a villain. My only remaining uncertainty is whether he is such a fool as to have planned out such a risky strategy for such a pointless aim from the outset, or rather is he so egomaniacal that each time he feels slighted or simply not praised, he cant keep himself from doubling down again, no matter the cost to even his own company.

My guess is the latter is the case. I believe within his company he has made sure to surround himself with yes men.  And when he encounters opinions from outside his sheltering environment he becomes obsessed with "correcting" them at any cost. Whether it be suing P&F for not agreeing to meet with him over dinner or sign a license agreement, arguing with us on this small forum or doxing Elestan for exposing where he buried the bodies. None of these actions are good moves from a purely-selfish financial or business standpoint it seems clear to me.

The maturity level of his decision making may indicate he is no longer the same person that built stardock in earlier decades.

It's hard to make sense of how well SC:O is doing. But I suspect, regardless of sales, Stardock has the money to cover any shortfall.

It needs to not just cover the cost of development but the cost of fighting the lawsuit as well as the potential costs of losing it. And if there are not good enough prospects for DLC and sequel sales based on these existing sales, it makes even less sense to keep on this aggressive path.  Of course I am assuming there is some rationality over at stardock.
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lostsoul
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #440 on: October 23, 2018, 05:29:29 am »

im rather intrigued that their talking dlc so soon after a release...dlc is usually released to either, boost faltering sales or retain interest in an already popular title at a much later time...correct me if I'm wrong
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #441 on: October 23, 2018, 11:03:28 am »

im rather intrigued that their talking dlc so soon after a release...dlc is usually released to either, boost faltering sales or retain interest in an already popular title at a much later time...correct me if I'm wrong

There's also the problem that SCO's main story is very short. It took me just under 20 hours of gameplay to complete it.
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #442 on: October 23, 2018, 03:33:51 pm »

Just want to chime in and say that Steam Spy is not accurate. It can't get information from profiles that hide their game list, and all new profiles do so by default nowadays, making it even less accurate than ever.

Steam Charts may be more accurate in some ways, but only shows people actually playing the game. The actual purchase count is likely full of people padding out their libraries but not playing. Oddly common on Steam.
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #443 on: October 24, 2018, 12:00:14 am »

The actual purchase count is likely full of people padding out their libraries but not playing. Oddly common on Steam.

The Steam achievement for starting the campaign is currently at 95.4%. If correct, the number of players are effectively the number of owners.
I don't know how to get a full of list of global achievements on GOG, but the "popular" ones are clocking in at ~51%, so GOG's player:owner could be anything over 50%.
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #444 on: October 24, 2018, 08:22:27 pm »

Is their any way to estimate the sales figures of SCO?  Now that it has been out for some time it would be interesting to know how much it is funding and incentivizing this whole circus.

I have difficulty making the logic of these actions work unless I infer that his top priority is the establishment of complete control over everything derived from Star Control.  The whole lawsuit doesn't make sense from a financial standpoint; the costs of litigation and loss of reputation to Stardock dwarf any hypothetical harm from P&F's allegedly infringing blog post.

I have to wonder if his strategy all along was not simply to try and break P&F's personal finances through the sheer cost of the lawsuit so that they have to trade in all of their rights to him out of desperation.  That is, he knew full well from the beginning his case was ultimately frivolous, but also just complex enough to be drawn out into an expensive battle before the court reached this conclusion.  Since P&F wouldn't license him their material he aims to underhandedly take it from them altogether using the american "justice" system to twist their arms.

Seems like that would be a dubious strategy for Stardock. Were I Fred and Paul, and placed in that position where I knew that I was essentially screwed, I'd just go sell to someone else out of spite. It isn't like they are lacking in industry contacts.

Pretty sure Activision would have plenty of financial clout to take on Stardock should it come to it.
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #445 on: October 25, 2018, 12:33:05 am »

Pretty sure Activision would have plenty of financial clout to take on Stardock should it come to it.

Activision is not at all involved.

Brad's personal finances are protected behind the corporate armor of Stardock and he is using its financial resources to wage this war. In contrast, Paul and Fred are being sued as individuals and having to fight with whatever cash they have saved up over their whole lifetimes. Brad knows this and it was very likely a factor in his decision to go down this road. He does not have to be right about anything, he only needs to drain them to the point they have to surrender.

If this really was Stardock vs Activision or Stardock vs Toys for Bob, the whole matter might have settled out of court many months ago. Or never begun.

Were I Fred and Paul, and placed in that position where I knew that I was essentially screwed, I'd just go sell to someone else out of spite.

That would not stop Stardock's suit against them. And there might not be any high bids for such a legally treacherous property as this all would seem to be at that point.

Note that this does not mean Stardock is practicing sound legal or business strategy here. Quite the opposite I believe. But there might have been enough of a perception of financial advantage that Brad could justify this strategy to himself.
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Talonious
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #446 on: October 25, 2018, 12:44:40 am »

Pretty sure Activision would have plenty of financial clout to take on Stardock should it come to it.

Activision is not at all involved.

Brad's personal finances are protected behind the corporate armor of Stardock and he is using its financial resources to wage this war. In contrast, Paul and Fred are being sued as individuals and having to fight with whatever cash they have saved up over their whole lifetimes. Brad knows this and it was very likely a factor in his decision to go down this road. He does not have to be right about anything, he only needs to drain them to the point they have to surrender.

If this really was Stardock vs Activision or Stardock vs Toys for Bob, the whole matter might have settled out of court many months ago. Or never begun.

Were I Fred and Paul, and placed in that position where I knew that I was essentially screwed, I'd just go sell to someone else out of spite.

That would not stop Stardock's suit against them. And there might not be any high bids for such a legally treacherous property as this all would seem to be at that point.

Note that this does not mean Stardock is practicing sound legal or business strategy here. Quite the opposite I believe. But there might have been enough of a perception of financial advantage that Brad could justify this strategy to himself.

I'm aware that Activision is not at all involved. It was a hypothetical that my post was addressing. IF Stardock's strategy was to basically create a financial hardship that would force P&F to sell, then they could just as easily sell to someone else who had deep pockets who might value the IP and be able to defend it and not necessarily someone that they have a grudge against (Stardock.) If they do get into financial hardship, they'd likely be highly motivated to find a different buyer, ANY buyer, other than the company and person who put them into that situation.

Hence, that if the strategy is to force the two into financial hardship it seems ill considered because there's nothing forcing them to sell to Stardock specifically.

Activision was one example of someone else that they have a relationship with that they could sell the assets to if necessary. But it was one among many other companies that they would likely choose to sell to rather than sell to Stardock at this point.
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #447 on: October 25, 2018, 01:17:32 am »

I would be surprised if P+F aren't independently wealthy from the skylanders franchise, though it is certainly possible that the lawsuit is a liquidity squeeze for them. I found their GoFundMe in very poor taste but it is more understandable if they are trying to avoid borrowing against their equity in the studio.

Cash flow issues could also explain why they are only now seeking indemnity from GoG. However from the very barebones pleading I have to imagine that the GoG agreement does not actually extend to the current dispute, or includes some condition that they omitted to plead (e.g. no indemnity until favourable final judgment obtained from court of competent jurisdiction). I undertake to review and report back.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2018, 01:25:53 am by Denning » Logged
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #448 on: October 25, 2018, 04:08:45 am »

I would be surprised if P+F aren't independently wealthy from the skylanders franchise, though it is certainly possible that the lawsuit is a liquidity squeeze for them. I found their GoFundMe in very poor taste but it is more understandable if they are trying to avoid borrowing against their equity in the studio.

Cash flow issues could also explain why they are only now seeking indemnity from GoG. However from the very barebones pleading I have to imagine that the GoG agreement does not actually extend to the current dispute, or includes some condition that they omitted to plead (e.g. no indemnity until favourable final judgment obtained from court of competent jurisdiction). I undertake to review and report back.
Not fluent in legalese but the indemnification part looks really broad to my layman's eyes,. (section 6.2) "GOG shall indemnify, hold harmless, and agree to defend developer...any and all claims, actions, suits, legal proceedings, demands, liabilities...including, without limitation, attorney fees, arising out of or in connection with any actual or alleged breach by GOG..."

I'm sure the lawyers and courts would need to parse out exactly how far it goes, but it doesn't have very many qualifiers. Even looks specifically phrased to cover as much as possible. With a clause like that adding GOG for breach of contract makes some sense IMO.

EDIT: 8.2 has a clause that limits the damages they can claim against GOG though. 8.3 sets the limit for legal action to 12 months after the alleged infringement, which would explain the timing of adding GOG as a party...
« Last Edit: October 25, 2018, 04:25:47 am by Mormont » Logged
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Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion
« Reply #449 on: October 25, 2018, 07:33:21 am »

Hence, that if the strategy is to force the two into financial hardship it seems ill considered because there's nothing forcing them to sell to Stardock specifically.

Activision was one example of someone else that they have a relationship with that they could sell the assets to if necessary. But it was one among many other companies that they would likely choose to sell to rather than sell to Stardock at this point.

It wouldn't so much be selling to Stardock as offering the copyrights up to Stardock in exchange for a settlement, to stop the financial bleeding. I do not think this would ever happen. But given the semi-delusional legal theorycrafting by Brad and his massive desire/need for these rights, I cannot place it outside the realm of possibility that this was his strategy from the outset. We need to keep in mind that reason is not necessarily the only factor here. He has demonstrated himself to be an emotional and unstable person that responds highly immaturely to perceived slights. Simply hurting Paul and Fred could be a key motivation for him here.
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