DEVELOPER'S BLOG

The Name Game: Codemasters’ Marketing of New “OFP” Creates Confusion, Provokes Protest

Is the upcoming Codemasters game really “the much anticipated return of the genre-defining military conflict simulator” Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Crisis? Is it really “the official sequel to the multi-award winning Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Crisis”? Bohemia Interactive says: “No! What matters is the game, not the name.”

Prague, Czech Republic, February 26, 2009 - In a letter from its attorneys to the English company The Codemasters Software Company Ltd, Bohemia Interactive Studio s.r.o., the leading Czech-based independent games developer, is protesting Codemasters’ marketing tactics which tout Codemasters’ upcoming game Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising as the “return of” or “official sequel to” the genre-defining game Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Crisis.

The award-winning Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Crisis was created by Bohemia Interactive in 1997-2001. Bohemia Interactive licensed its creation to Codemasters to publish and distribute. Although Codemasters owns the “Operation Flashpoint” trade mark and plans to release its new game under that title, Bohemia Interactive has always owned 100% of the original OFP game. Bohemia also provided gaming community complete set of editing tools and on-going support that turned the original OFP into one of the most modded PC games ever. Codemasters owns only the name – and Bohemia Interactive wants fans to understand that Codemasters’ new game is not from the same development team that brought them the classic original.

“In the license agreement, Bohemia Interactive expressly reserved the exclusive right to develop sequels to the original OFP game,” says Leora Herrmann of Kluger, Peretz, Kaplan & Berlin, PL in Miami, attorneys for Bohemia Interactive. Codemasters also acknowledged that Bohemia owns all the intellectual property in the game – except the words ‘Operation Flashpoint’,” adds Herrmann.

“Since Codemasters has no right to use the Bohemia Interactive game engine or any other component of the Bohemia-developed game, how can it rightfully claim to produce a ‘sequel’?” asks Bohemia Interactive CEO Marek Spanel.

Because Codemasters owns the trade mark “Operation Flashpoint,” Bohemia Interactive cannot use the name for its own sequels. Instead, ArmA, released in 2007 and already adopted by the modding community, is powered by the second generation of the Bohemia game engine. Bohemia Interactive is currently working on its latest revolutionary re-creation of modern military conflict – ArmA II, due out later this year– which will be powered by the third generation of its engine and is based on the same original designconcepts and artistic style of Bohemia Interactive’s legendary releases OFP: Cold War Crisis and OFP: Resistance.

In fact, the ground-breaking game engine that Bohemia Interactive launched initially in OFP: Cold War Crisis has spawned not only ArmA and the upcoming state-of-the-art ArmA II, but in its most sophisticated incarnation to date also powers Bohemia Interactive’s VBS combat training simulators used by armed forces around the world, including the recently announced Game After Ambush training program for the US Army.

“We can’t stop Codemasters from releasing a game using the words ‘Operation Flashpoint,’” acknowledged Spanel. “But it is not right to promote this game as the ‘official sequel to the multi-award winning Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Crisis’ or the ‘return’ of Bohemia Interactive’s ‘genre-defining military conflict simulator.’ The awards were given for the game created by Bohemia Interactive - not to a name.”


Media Contacts:
IDEA Games
Michal Harangozo
Email: michal@idea-games.com
Tel: +420 257 189 564

Bohemia Interactive
Jan Prazak
Email: jan.prazak@bistudio.com
Tel: +420 318 581 368 

About ARMA2

ARMA 2 is set in a near future, year 2009, in a fictional state of Chernarus, a post-Soviet country where civil war raged for over 2 painful years. As a leader of USMC Force Recon team, you are sent with your squad to prevent further civilian casualties and ensure ongoing stability in Chernarus. ARMA 2 is based on the latest generation technology, offering a large-scale game world, authentic and extremely detailed modern units, weapons, vehicles and environments, challenging single player and a vast array of multiplayer options. 
http://arma2.com I YouTube profile : ARMA2offical
ARMA 2, developed by Bohemia Interactive, will be available across Europe in 2009

About IDEA Games

IDEA Games is an Independent Developers Association, founded by three computer game development studios: ALTAR games, Black Element Software and Bohemia Interactive Studio. Along with their own developement it supports other gifted teams to make their projects real.
http://www.idea-games.com I YouTube profile: ideagames I MySpace profile: IdeaGames
Support your developer by Sprocketing a developer! Visit http://www.sprocketidea.com.

About Bohemia Interactive

Established in 1999 in Prague, Czech Republic, Bohemia Interactive is an independent game development studio that focuses on developing original state of the art computer entertainment and simulation software, including the research of proprietary advanced real-time 3D graphics, artificial intelligence and physical simulation technologies for real-time interactive environments.
Operation Flashpoint, Bohemia Interactive's debut game published by Codemasters in 2001, became the No. 1 bestselling PC game around the world and has won many international awards, including “Game of The Year” and “Best Action Game.” Over 2 million copies of Operation Flashpoint have been sold since its release. Bohemia Interactive’s second major release, ArmA: Armed Assault, followed in 2007 and sold over 400,000 copies on PC through various local publishing partners.
The research and development team of Bohemia Interactive has more than 50 experienced developers at studios in the Czech Republic and Australia. Bohemia Interactive won the Best PC Game Developer award for 2001 at London’s ECTS exhibition and Rookie Studio of the Year award at GDC 2002.
http://www.bistudio.com
"Operation Flashpoint"™ is a trademark of Codemasters.

 

 

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