The documents filed by Crytek allege that Cloud Imperium Games infringed its copyrights by using CryEngine to develop non-Star Citizen game assets.
In a way, Crytek is kind of shooting themselves in the foot by saying that Cloud Imperium Games is no longer using CryEngine exclusively for the development of Star Citizen due to it being a new engine, while also simultaneously saying that CryEngine is being used to make Star Citizen and Squadron 42.
"We are aware of the Crytek complaint having been filed in the US District Court", the spokesperson said.
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All of this reportedly happened before Cloud Imperium Games switched game engines, from CryEngine to Amazon's Lumberyard.
Cloud Imperium noted that the lawsuit was "meritless", and that it was prepared to fight "vigorously" to prove as such - though with the millions that it's garnered, it may just be easier to settle, rather than draw everything out and create additional damage. Although both teams claim to have moved away from their engine, onto Amazon's Lumberyard, Crytek disputes this, claiming that the studio continues to use their engine despite having removed all mention of it from their marketing materials, putting them in breach of the contract they originally signed. Star Citizen is still in development.
In December 2016, CIG and RSI said they were moving off of CryEngine 3 in favor of Amazon's Lumberyard product. The filling specifically refers to Squadron 42 project.
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Crytek is asking for direct damages, indirect damages and a permanent injunction to prevent CIG and RSI "from continuing to possess or use the Copyrighted Work".
Crytek's biggest issue is that there's been a breach of contract after they attempted to reach out to Roberts Space Industries about the breach. It's interesting because that would likely make the CryEngine the most sought after AAA game engine on the market if RSI/CIG handed over the current engine source code to Crytek.
Apparently, part of the Game License Agreement states that the developers "would keep the underlying technology for CryEngine (including computer source code) confidential and not share it with anyone else without first disclosing that third party and obtaining prior written approval", that they wouldn't "publish or distribute the CryEngine in any way, be it in source code or object code", or "use CryEngine in any manner which may disclose the CryEngine source code or other Crytek proprietary information to any third party not otherwise authorized herein".
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And Crytek is also suing for Roberts Space Industries entering into a partnership with Facewear Technologies, because they didn't get their permission from Crytek. "This was entirely in breach of the GLA".