- Federal Court of Australia documents have revealed that The Pokémon Company International is suing Pokémon Pty Ltd over charges of advertising an unlicensed NFT-based Pokémon mobile game.
- Pokémon Pty Ltd, an Australian company, reportedly advertised on a website. It claimed to be launching an NFT-based game called PokéWorld under the name Kotiota Studios.
The fraudulent game studio claims to have worked on other Pokémon games, including Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, Pokémon Home, and the unreleased Pokémon Sleep. The Pokémon Company International has denied all claims, asserting the defendants were not a contractor for them in the documents.
According to court documents, Pokémon Pty Ltd registered in Australia in December 2016. Xiaoyan Liu, the sole director and secretary of the company, reportedly registered the purported Pokémon website on 16 August 2022.
The PokéWorld website and Kotiota Studios supposedly tricked its users into thinking that the game was affiliated with The Pokémon Company International. The purport advertised in its roadmap, whitepaper, and NFT products that they were affiliated with the plaintiffs.
Kotiota Studios allegedly reached out to media websites to ramp up interest in their game, which is how the plaintiff found out.
The Pokémon Company International has asked the Federal Court to seek a resolution to stop the defendant from using the plaintiff’s trademarks on its website and social media. The Pokémon Company International first applied to court on December 19th, with the first hearing on December 20th. However, Kotiota Studios were a no-show at the hearing, while the legal counsel from the Pokémon Company International was present.
The titanic game studio has demanded the court bar the defendant from selling any NFTs or using their IP. PokéWorld’s website, social media channels, and discord groups are suspended at the time of writing, and the team has gone off the grid since the trial.
On the Flipside
- There’s an abundance of Pokémon-inspired games in the Web3 gaming sphere. The most successful is Chainmonster, a Pokémon Arceus lookalike.
- The recent trial may put some other Pokémon replicas at risk.
- Pokéworld’s current website features a Shopify template with an ‘opening soon’ prompt.
Why You Should Care
Pokémon has established itself as one of the most successful franchises in the world. The games have amassed unparalleled success over the years, which is why the Web3 gaming space is saturated with knockoffs. Web3 games and players should pay heed to this case. The current situation highlights the importance of due diligence and why everyone should do it.
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