Hasbro sues Atari over D&D licensing rights

Hasbro is suing Atari over its license to make computer games based on the Dungeons & Dragons brand, which it owns through its subsidiary Wizards of the Coast.

The toymaker claims Atari violated its licensing agreement when it sold its European arm to Japanese game maker Namco Bandai, a competitor in that region. Wizards also says Atari is guilty of fraud, and Hasbro wants their union dissolved.

Atari is the publisher of the massively multiplayer online roleplaying game Dungeons & Dragons Online, which has just moved to an unlimited free-play model. It also recently acquired Cryptic Studios, which publishes the upcoming MMORPG Star Trek Online.

It’s been a rather litigious year for Hasbro and Wizards, who have had to pull their authorized PDF downloads off the market to the consternation of many fans because they couldn’t prevent piracy. The drastic action came as the company sued eight people accused of distributing pirated copies of its new D&D rulebook Player’s Handbook 2.

(Via The Associated Press and CNN Money)

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