Seems that someone at THQ — most likely someone in the legal department — thinks the box art for Activision's upcoming off-road racer SCORE International Baja 1000: The Official Game looks a teensy bit too much like the box art for Baja: Edge of Control. This may be due to that someone at THQ having properly functioning eyeballs. The two multi-platform racers are planned for release just a month apart — THQ's Baja effort shipped end of September — leading THQ to file suit. It claims the offending box art for Activision's SCORE International Baja 1000: The Official Game is "likely to confuse, cause mistake or deceive the public as to the existence of an affiliation, connection, or association between THQ and Activision, when in fact there is none."THQ also notes in the lawsuit that it has spent "in excess of $1 million on advertising, marketing, and promotion for the THQ game" and that it publicly released the cover art for Baja: Edge of Control "more than four months ago." The publisher says that it didn't blindside Activision with its lawsuit, having contacted Activision on October 8th — two days after it discovered the similarities — about its "concerns" about the packaging. The lawsuit specifies that THQ has attempted multiple times to "convince Activision to stop production of its packaging art voluntarily" something it says that Activision has refused to do. THQ doesn't put a price tag on the suit, instead seeking injunctive relief to prevent Activision from releasing the packaging as-is. Failing that, damages, profits from the sale of Activision's game and legal fees will do them just fine. A copy of the suit can be read at Patent Arcade. New Case: THQ v. Activision Blizzard [Patent Arcade]
yes, the box arts are amazingly similar.
seriously, though, who cares? how else are you going to advertise an off-road racing game?
1. dirt clouds
2. font textured vaguely like a dirt road
3. game title set diagonally so as to look "extreme"
4. at least two cars moving in subtly different directions because that's how off-roading works: you slide around a lot
5. one car must be red and the other car must be blue
6. rat-fur-colored sky because that's what racing is all about: driving fast in desolate places, trying to get the hell out
7. developer logo in the lower-right corner, because sony and microsoft demand that's where it be placed
8. "BAJA" is the name of the race
9. subtitle beneath the game title because games with subtitles, whether they're sequels or not, sell more than games without them.
what i'm saying is, it's highly possible that two graphic designers working independently designed these two covers without prior knowledge of one another's actions.