Bethesda and Mojang's "Scrolls" lawsuit will go to court

UPDATE: Mojang responded to the lawsuit, check out their reply link.

That thing where Bethesda is suing Mojang over their upcoming game's name? Yeah, that's still going on. Not only that, but it's moving forward and going to court, according to developer Markus Persson (Notch). Earlier today the bowler-hat wearing Minecraft maker tweeted "The Scrolls case is going to court! Weee! :D," a fact later confirmed to Gamasutra by Daniel Kaplan, Mojang business developer. "Yeah, we got a notice from the Swedish court," he said. "We are going to do as much as we can, since I really hate it how the big boys always get their own way." He went on to call their lawsuit "silly," something we've not experienced in any of our games of Phoenix Wright.

Kaplan explained that the documents Mojang received include a sampling of Bethesda's evidence, which is mostly screenshot camparisons between the two games taken from trailers. Things like mountains are compared, he explained, elaborating that it would be difficult for him to see how anyone could actually confuse their game with Bethesda's realistic first-person RPG.

It seems strange to us that the lawsuit has gotten this far. Originally, some assumed that this was either the work of a rogue law firm or some sort of intimidation tactic, but the fact that it's continuing its pressure is genuinely surprising. From the sidelines it really looks like Bethesda is picking on Mojang just because it can, especially since the publisher is gearing up to release a game called Rage, which shares as much of a title with Streets of Rage as Scrolls does with The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim. They also released WET a few years ago, despite a game coming out years earlier called Wetrix. Just saying.

We've reached out to both Bethesda and Mojang for a comment and will be sure to keep you updated on this interesting case.

Sep 27, 2011

Hollander Cooper

Hollander Cooper was the Lead Features Editor of GamesRadar+ between 2011 and 2014. After that lengthy stint managing GR's editorial calendar he moved behind the curtain and into the video game industry itself, working as social media manager for EA and as a communications lead at Riot Games. Hollander is currently stationed at Apple as an organic social lead for the App Store and Apple Arcade.