Krafton, the creator of the popular mobile game PUBG (PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds Mobile), has filed a lawsuit in the United States against Apple, Google, and another game developer, Garena, for duplicating and selling its original battle royale game. South Korean video game maker Krafton accused Garena of duplicating its ‘PUBG: Battlegrounds’ game and generating copycats Garena Free Fire and Garena Free Fire Max in a complaint filed in the US District Court in California.
Apple and Google were also sued for providing Garena games on their respective app stores.
Garena Free Fire and Garena Free Fire Max are available for free on both the App Store and Google Play, with in-app purchases. Garena has allegedly gained “hundreds of millions of dollars” from app purchases, while Apple and Google have “similarly received a large amount of cash from their distribution of Free Fire,” according to Krafton.
Krafton claims it urged Garena to “immediately cease its exploitation of Free Fire and Free Fire Max,” which Garena allegedly rejected. Apple and Google were also requested to stop selling the games, although they are still available on both app stores.
On December 21st, Krafton claims it took the following steps: it asked Garena to “immediately stop its exploitation of Free Fire and Free Fire Max,” which Garena allegedly refused; it asked Apple and Google to stop distributing the games, which are still available on both app stores; and it asked YouTube to remove videos featuring Free Fire and Free Fire Max gameplay “that include elements that blatantly infringe Battlegrounds and, separately, the infringing feature,” which YouTube apparently refused In 2017, Garena marketed a game in Singapore that “copied” PUBG: Battlegrounds, according to Krafton.
Based the complaint, while disputes about that were addressed, no licensing agreement was made.