Riot Sues Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Maker For Reasons You Can Probably Guess

League of Legends Riot Games studio is suing Mobile Legends: Bang Bang developer Shanghai Moonton Technology Company, saying the studio is engaged in a “deliberate and sustained campaign to seize Riot’s highly valuable rights to the mobile video game League of Legends: Wild Rift.” “.

The process, available in full at Polygonis actually rooted in a five-year beef between Riot and Moonton over Mobile Legends: Bang Bang and another game called Mobile Legends: 5v5 MOBA. In that lawsuit, Riot said that Moonton “developed and distributed a succession of mobile games designed to trade in Riot’s well-known and valuable intellectual property” and that it took aggressive steps to camouflage its illegal activity: after Riot notified Google about the 5v5 MOBA, for example, Moonton removed it from the Google Play Store and immediately released a new game, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang.

“However, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang was not a new game, but was actually the exact same game as Mobile Legends: 5v5 MOBA, with some modest changes,” Riot stated in the 2017 skin, available at esports point. “This ‘hide the ball’ ploy was part of Moonton’s deliberate business strategy designed to undermine Riot’s ability to protect its intellectual property. its infringement.”

That case was dropped after a California court ruled that the matter would be more appropriately handled in China. Tencent, the parent company of Riot, got involved and won a $2.9 million judgment against Xu Zhenhua, the CEO of Moonton. Mobile Legends: Bang Bang has remained available, however, which brings us to the latest process.

It’s not just the game itself that Moonton steals, according to Riot. The lawsuit also alleges that the Chinese studio copied “promotional materials, trailers and even esports content”. After Riot transitioned to a new League of Legends logo in 2019, for example, Moonton made a similar change to the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang logo, adopting a more austere look in block letters in a gold font.

(Image credit: Riot Games)

The lawsuit also notes a number of similarities between the characters in League of Legends and Mobile Legends, some subtle and others less so.

“Riot has invested and continues to invest significant time, money, resources, and creativity in developing, designing, promoting, and updating LoL, Wild Rift, and related content. Meanwhile, Moonton freely capitalizes on Riot’s investment. And Moonton is not encouraged to innovate and create original material as long as you continue to be able to copy from Riot. Allowing Moonton to continue to freely and unfairly profit from Riot’s creativity directly violates the goals of the Copyright Act and will undoubtedly deter others from making an investment similar creative in the future.”

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League of Legends vs.  Mobile Legends: Bang Bang

(Image credit: Riot Games)
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League of Legends vs.  Mobile Legends: Bang Bang

(Image credit: Riot Games)
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League of Legends vs.  Mobile Legends: Bang Bang

(Image credit: Riot Games)
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League of Legends vs.  Mobile Legends: Bang Bang

(Image credit: Riot Games)
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League of Legends vs.  Mobile Legends: Bang Bang

(Image credit: Riot Games)

It’s unclear how Riot intends to avoid this lawsuit being filed on jurisdictional grounds like the previous one, but notes that “the audiovisual elements of Wild Rift and LoL” were primarily developed in California, where Riot is based, and that Moonton also has “significant connections” in the US, including an American division based in California. It also states that Moonton hired Akamai Technologies, a US-based company, to host servers and network services for the US Mobile Legends: Bang Bang website, “revealing Moonton’s intention to target MLBB in the US market.” United”.

Riot is seeking an injunction against Moonton, financial damages, including all proceeds from the infringement and legal costs. I’ve reached out to Riot for more information and will update if I get a response.

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