Krafton Sues Apple, Google, and Garena over PUBG Clone Games

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PUBG, aka PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds creator Krafton, has sued Google, Apple and its rival Garena. Garena is being sued for his highly popular Free Fire Battle Royale game, which has allegedly copied PUBG: Battlegrounds, the PC version of the Battle Royale game. How are Google and Apple involved in this? It’s because they host Garena Free Fire game in their app stores. Here are the details.

Garena Free Fire Sued!

according to a lawsuit filed in California’s Central District Court, Garena’s Free Fire and Free Fire Max (which launched last September) have copied several elements of PUBG, including the “airdrop function, the game structure and play, the combination and selection of weapons, armor and unique objects, locations and the overall choice of color schemes, materials and textures.

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Aside from suing Google and Apple for offering the games in their app stores and distributing them to users, Krafton has also targeted YouTube for hosting the games gameplay videos and a long Chinese movie, which is a live-action dramatization of the game.

Krafton says Garena made “hundreds of millions of dollars” from selling both games, and Apple and Google have tasted similar fruits from the game by getting a fee for listing the games on the Play Store and the App Store, respectively.

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The lawsuit shows the similarity in both the games owned by Krafton and Garena. Thus, the maps and different locations are very similar. Here’s a look at some of them for your reference:

pubg and free fire agreements according to krafton lawsuit
pubg and free fire agreements according to krafton lawsuit

Krafton suggests that the took action against the infringement on 21 December 2021, by asking Garena to stop cloning PUBG and even Apple and Google to remove the Free Fire games. Since nothing has been resolved, the developer has now gone to court to reach a good settlement.

In addition, it is revealed that Garena started selling the game in Singapore in 2017, which resembled PUBG: Battlegrounds shortly after it was released. While those claims were being settled, no licensing agreement was concluded.

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Garena responded to the claims by saying that “Krafton’s claims are unfounded.” Google and Apple have not yet commented on this situation. However, one thing worth mentioning is that cloning things is common these days. We’ve seen some clones of popular apps like TikTok and even the currently popular Wordle word game. Since PUBG’s revenues could take a hit with the ever-growing popularity of the clones, this could be problematic for the company. It remains to be seen who will win this lawsuit.

In the meantime, let us know your thoughts on this matter in the comments section below!

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