Frogwares, the company that developed The Sinking City, has accused their publisher Nacon of cracking and pirating the PC version of the game.
We reported yesterday that Frogwares was advising people not to buy The Sinking City, their Lovecraftian horror adventure, from Steam. At the time, all they stated was that they hadn’t created it but they’ve issued a full statement explaining their reasoning and it’s absolutely wild.
According to Frogwares, publishers Nacon (or former publishers, depending who you listen to) cracked the PC version of the game that was published through GamePlanet, modified it, then uploaded it to Steam. Furthermore, Frogwares claims:
“This is now Nacon’s 3rd public attempt to publish a pirated PC version of our game with a previous attempt being made via Utomik in February 2020 and the attempted upload in December 2020.”
The page goes into great detail as to how Nacon allegedly removed Frogware’s logo from The Sinking City’s PC version. Why is there all this division the first place? Because, as reported by GamesIndustry.biz, Frogwares have accused Nacon (formerly Big Ben Interactive) of withholding €1 million in royalties and claiming intellectual property rights over the game. Currently, the two companies are locked in a legal battle in the French courts.
So what do Nacon have to say about this? The company has posted on the game’s Steam listing, stating:
“Frogwares would like to revise the terms of the contract to their sole advantage. It’s easy to play the victim, but all we seek is that Frogwares respect its commitments both in the contract and as demanded by the courts.”
The company goes on to claim that the version on Steam is a full release, only lacking features such as cloud saving and achievements because of Frogwares’ lack of co-operation.
“Despite this, we have organized the release so that fans on Steam can enjoy the game,” they add.
So what’s going on right now? While it’s the Steam version of The Sinking City that Frogwares is focusing on, there are issues attached to other versions. The Playstation 4 version of The Sinking City, for example, has a different publisher to the Playstation 5 version which is why, right now, there’s no upgrade path between the two.
The legal battle between Nacon and Frogwares is ongoing; The Sinking City was originally removed from digital storefronts until, as reported by MCV, the French courts decided Frogwares had to stick to their contract until the action was concluded. It was returned to sale, though the French courts have yet to make a final decision on the matter.
We’ll keep you updated on further developments but for now this is proving to be quite a spectacle.