The PUBG Corporation has reportedly filed a lawsuit against Epic Games over Fortnite Battle Royale. Originally reported in The Korea Times, the lawsuit was filed through the Seoul Central District Court in Korea and primarily accuses Epic Games of copyright infringement.
The copyright issue has been ongoing between PUBG and Fortnite as far back as September, though other issues such as PR for Fortnite at the expense of PUBG were included as well.
“We’ve had an ongoing relationship with Epic Games throughout PUBG’s development as they are the creators of UE4 [Unreal Engine 4], the engine licensed for the game,” explained Bluehole vice president Chang Han Kim. “After listening to the growing feedback from our community and reviewing the gameplay for ourselves, we are concerned that Fortnite may be replicating the experience for which PUBG is known.”
Kim went on to explain how the lawsuit goes beyond the issue of imitation. “We have also noticed that Epic Games references PUBG in the promotion of Fortnite to their community and in communications with the press. This was never discussed with us and we don’t feel that it’s right.”
PUBG currently runs on Unreal Engine 4, so suing the creator of the engine your game runs on seems a bit risky. Additionally, Battle Royale was present in games like H1Z1 long before Playerunknown put his unique spin on the genre in PUBG.
With Fortnite surpassing PUBG in popularity, it’s hard to say whether or not the lawsuit comes from a genuine concern over information shared with Epic Games during PUBG’s development, or from a desire to push back and regain footing.
To put things in context, Fortnite released in July of 2017 and didn’t include a Battle Royale mode at first, just the “Save the World” mode which centers around tower defense. In September, Epic Games launched Fortnite Battle Royale which immediately sparked backlash from the PUBG team who alleged the mode had copied aspects from Battlegrounds. The fight has been ongoing ever since.
Whether or not the issue can be settled remains to be seen, though it’ll be interesting to follow what happens with the lawsuit. What do you think of PUBG suing Fortnite over Battle Royale? Let us know your thoughts down in the comments below!