Descent designer claims Interplay owes him 8 years worth of royalties
The guys behind the original Descent and Descent 2 may take legal action against Interplay, who they claim owe them “tens of thousands of dollars” in unpaid royalties.
Speaking with Kotaku, co-creator Matt Toschlog said that he and fellow developer, Mike Kulas, own the copyright to the first-person shooter games. Though their current company, Parallax Software, doesn’t own the rights to Descent, the two men claim that they should be getting paid royalties for the games they created.
“The deal that Parallax signed with Interplay in 1994 was pretty typical,” said Toschlog to Kotaku’s Jason Schreier. “We developed the game and we own the copyright to it (except for certain elements Interplay created, such as some music and sound effects). We granted Interplay the right to publish the game, and they paid us a royalty on each copy sold.”
He went on to say: “Since 2007, however, we have received no additional royalties from Interplay even though they’ve continued to sell the game. On two occasions they’ve given us statements showing that royalties were due but they didn’t actually pay the royalties. (They’re actually supposed to provide quarterly statements, but they haven’t.)”
The two men haven’t been paid royalties since 2007. However, this isn’t the first time that Interplay has neglected to play them. “Back in 2002 or so Interplay fell on hard times and stopped paying us,” said Toschlogg. “Subsequently we were involved in a lawsuit over that non-payment and some other issues. That lawsuit was settled in 2007 after Interplay sold the Fallout franchise and used the money to pay off their debts.”
Toschlog and Kulas actually want to develop a new Descent game. However, because the two men have failed to secure payment from Interplay, any deals to create another installment failed to gain momentum.
“We made some good progress negotiating a deal, but we also made it clear to Interplay that before we signed a new agreement with them they would have to pay us all the money they owed,” Toschlog said. “When Interplay failed to do so, we served them formal notification that they were in breach of our contract; this gave them 30 days to cure the breach. When they did not cure, we terminated the contract.”
Due to all of this, online retailer, GOG.com, has removed both Descent and Descent 2 from its marketplace. The developers are also looking to remove the games from Steam.
Source: News – Geek.com