En Masse Settles TERA Lawsuit, Cuts Employees

En Masse Settles TERA Lawsuit, Cuts Employees

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The TERA publisher is happy the "distraction" is over but has been forced to lay off an undisclosed number of employees.

NCsoft filed suit over TERA back in January, alleging that developer Bluehole Studio, comprised of former NCsoft employees who went off to do their own thing, "made off with copious amounts of confidential and proprietary NCsoft information, computer software, hardware and artwork relating to Lineage 3," which were then used in the creation of the MMO. That suit has now been settled and while the terms of the agreement are confidential, En Masse Corporate Development Director Yong Taek Bae said the company is "happy to have this distraction behind us."

"We appreciate the support from all those who have believed in us. Our priority has been and always will be our fans and community," he said. "TERA will continue to thrive and provide a great player experience and value to existing and new gamers alike."

Unfortunately, the news of the settlement was preceded almost immediately by an announcement of layoffs at the publisher. "Today, we had to let go of some of the great talent at En Masse Entertainment. While a tough decision, it was necessary as we prepare for the next chapter of our business," said Publishing VP Chris Lee. "TERA has been a great launch for us, and we are committed to our loyal players. We're taking measures to align the needs of our business to continue supporting TERA and preparing for our future. We are working with those affected by this transition, including offering assistance on new prospects within the industry/area."

The publisher gave no indication of a connection between the lawsuit settlement, which may very well have cost the company a pile of money, and the layoffs, but it's not an unreasonable connection to make. Evan "Scapes" Berman, the former senior community manager at En Masse, certainly seemed to, linking to a report of the lawsuit settlement on Twitter "without comment."

Source: VG247

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Ah yes, I remember that suit. So they settled it, did they? That would imply the claims were most likely true (since otherwise I imagine they could have fought off the suit and then counter-sued for the court costs), which is a shame.

It means they basically stole from someone else and used the material to make their own MMO (which doesn't surprise me....have you ever compared the quest interfaces of WoW and TERA?), so they kind of deserve whatever their losses were. It's interesting that they can't release the number of employees, however. Is that a settlement condition, I wonder, or a decision by the company? Maybe there were a lot more people involved in this "theft" than we knew about, and they're trying to conceal this by hiding the size of the layoff?

Were they the ones who made off with all the female warriors' clothes and armor?

CriticKitten:
Ah yes, I remember that suit. So they settled it, did they? That would imply the claims were most likely true (since otherwise I imagine they could have fought off the suit and then counter-sued for the court costs), which is a shame.

It means they basically stole from someone else and used the material to make their own MMO (which doesn't surprise me....have you ever compared the quest interfaces of WoW and TERA?), so they kind of deserve whatever their losses were.

Settling may have been cheaper then drawing it out and NCSoft has much deeper pockets to try and force Bluehole into bankruptcy if they stuck to it. Depending on the exact laws they may have been able to recover court costs but they still can't recover attorney fees so it could end up as a Pyrrhic victory.

I'm glad NCsoft won the lawsuit but if innocent people have lost their jobs over it that's pretty sad, I'm sure the guilty ones are still making plenty of money.

Ickorus:
En Masse did steal confidential information and I'm pleased the court case turned out the way it did but if the two events are related I am very sad that innocent people lost their jobs over it.

En Masse stole the info? I think you are mistaken in your claim. It wasn't En Masse that got sued, it was Blue Hole Studios. Easy to mistake that since it is improperly suggested based on the way it is written in the article to. Who edits these news releases? En Masse has no impact in Korea where this supposedly took place. NCsoft has been kicking up bad publicity to soil En Masses name due to the connection to Blue Hole.

En Masse is basically just a shell publisher who released the game here in NA for the western crowd. They have no direct impact on Blue Hole other than sending them suggestions, bug fixes, and money. They have a lot of useless staff including community reps who are well liked by most of the community, but don't really seem to contribute anything at all to the game or the way it is run that is useful. It isn't a surprise they had lay offs.

So not only is TERA a terrible sexist game that shouldn't ever have been published. It's also a terrible sexist game that happily plagiarises and thought it could get away with it.

PS. NCsoft, if they happened to have stolen the female armour design, please give the women in Lineage 3 actual clothes and armour, thank you.

(captcha: ivory tower, is that aimed at me or at MMO devs/publishers?)

While sad that so many lost their job, I've no sympathy for the company as a group. They made a disgusting game that I dislike greatly and have done nothing but harm to gender treatment in video games.

koroem:

Ickorus:
En Masse did steal confidential information and I'm pleased the court case turned out the way it did but if the two events are related I am very sad that innocent people lost their jobs over it.

En Masse stole the info? I think you are mistaken in your claim. It wasn't En Masse that got sued, it was Blue Hole Studios. Easy to mistake that since it is improperly suggested based on the way it is written in the article to. Who edits these news releases? En Masse has no impact in Korea where this supposedly took place. NCsoft has been kicking up bad publicity to soil En Masses name due to the connection to Blue Hole.

En Masse is basically just a shell publisher who released the game here in NA for the western crowd. They have no direct impact on Blue Hole other than sending them suggestions, bug fixes, and money. They have a lot of useless staff including community reps who are well liked by most of the community, but don't really seem to contribute anything at all to the game or the way it is run that is useful. It isn't a surprise they had lay offs.

I thought there was something wrong in the article but I'd just gotten home from work and was very tired, I'll edit my post accordingly.

Also about community reps, the community reps for most developers don't have a huge contribution to the actual game they're representing, their job is PR and to be a face for the gigantic evil corporations they work for so being liked by the community means they're actually doing their job.

 

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