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 Sep 20, 2004 - 12:00 PM - by Michael
* Valve/Sierra fight brewing?

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PC Games/Hardware/Microsoft
Word on the web is that a fight is brewing between Sierra/VUG and Valve Software over Half-Life, Half-Life 2, and the intellectual property rights.
On August 14, 2002, Valve served its then-publisher Sierra On-Line (now Sierra Entertainment, a Vivendi Universal Games brand) with a lawsuit in US District Court, Western Division, Seattle alleging copyright infringement--the result of Sierra placing Valve games in Internet cafes in the US and abroad. "Sierra has in the past and continues to reproduce, use, distribute, and/or license one or more of the Valve Games with regard to 'cyber cafes,'" the complaint read. "Sierra's activities are outside the scope of Sierra's limited license...and therefore constitute copyright infringement in violation of the Copyright Act of 1976." And so it began. ... Perhaps not so coincidentally, Valve announced that it had delivered a Half-Life 2 release candidate to VUG the day after this motion was filed with the court. Whether that release candidate qualifies as the "source code" VUG attorneys sought is unclear, although Lombardi indicated to GameSpot the source code at issue and the release candidate are not the same. One especially significant subplot contained in Sierra's 54-page counterclaim to Valve's initial copyright infringement lawsuit revolves around the lengths Newell and others at Valve, according to Sierra/VUG filings, went to to downplay the capabilities of Steam, the Valve-developed digital distribution system now being tapped as a distribution mechanism for Half-Life 2.
Crazy... one wonders if this might possibly delay the Half-Life 2 release even longer than it's already been delayed, though word is that the first release-candidate for the game's been shipped for testing.

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