In spite of lighthearted suggestions by Minecraft creator Markus "Notch" Persson that their differences be settled as gamers, the battle between developer Mojang and The Elder Scrolls publisher Bethesda is headed to the courtroom.
Last month lawyers for Bethesda Softworks sent a lengthy letter to developer Mojang, claiming that the Minecraft studio's upcoming card-based strategy game, Scrolls, was too close for comfort to Bethesda's flagship franchise, The Elder Scrolls. With The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim right around the corner, Bethesda requested that Notch and company rename Scrolls to avoid any potential confusion.
We didn't take the request too seriously. Judging by Notch's suggestion the case be settled with a Quake match, neither did he.
Earlier this morning, however, Notch tweeted that the case was going to court. So yes, things are serious now. So serious that Notch briefly tweeted a Washington Post from 1992 involving Bethesda parent company ZeniMax Media CEO Robert Altman being indicted on felony charges in New York, before removing the angry tweet and apologizing.
I wish Notch and crew the best of luck. I believe there's room in the world for two Scrolls games. As Minecraft's daddy himself has pointed out, this is a world where Bethesda's Rage can coexist with the classic beat-em up Streets of Rage, so anything is possible.
Bethesda vs. Scrolls case going to court [Eurogamer]