Mojang Studios co-founder Markus “Notch” Persson has declared an end to the developer's legal row with ZeniMax over the right to use “Scrolls” as the name for its upcoming card-based RPG. This weekend, the Minecraft creator told Twitter followers his studio won permission to continue using the “Scrolls” name, provided it doesn't pose a direct threat to Bethesda's Elder Scrolls franchise, explaining, “The settlement is that we give them the trademark, get to keep the name, and won't make an elder scrolls competitor using the name.”
Carl Manneh, Mojang's managing director, issued a more official statement on the studio's website, stating Mojang and Bethesda (owned by ZeniMax) had settled their lawsuit and were “friends again”, adding, “To answer the big question – yes Scrolls is still going to be called Scrolls. To answer the second question – we aren’t going to keep the trade mark. For us this was never about a trade mark but being able to use Scrolls as the name of our game which we can – Yey.”
Persson later clarified that Mojang does not owe ZeniMax any damages as a result of the court case, but he was confident both legal teams would also walk away victorious, joking, “The actual document I signed was like a billion pages, so at least we know a bunch of lawyers got rich. Good, wouldn't want them to starve.”
The legal fisticuffs over “Scrolls” started last August when ZeniMax's lawyers served Mojang with papers stating the use of the name “Scrolls” for its next project infringed upon the Bethesda's Elder Scrolls trademark. The dispute went before a judge one month later, and in October, Mojang won an interim junction allowing it to retain the contentious title until a final verdict was reached.
Update: ZeniMax released a statement confirming it received all rights to the “Scrolls” trademark, but has licensed it to Mojang for use on the upcoming card game, as well as any sequels or DLC.
"We are pleased to have settled this matter with Mojang amicably,” said Robert Altman, Chairman and CEO of ZeniMax. “The Elder Scrolls is an important brand to us, and with this settlement we were able to protect our valuable property rights while allowing Mojang to release their digital card game under the name they preferred.”
Now that it's all settled, it'll be interesting to see what Mojang does with the name, and if the fight was worth it.