Edge Games

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Edge Games
Basic Information
Basic Information
Company Type
Private Company
Computer and video game industry
Key People
Tim Langdell (CEO and Founder)

Edge Games is a video game developer and publisher headquartered in Pasadena, California, known for the aggressive reputation of its chief executive and founder, Tim Langdell, in enforcing their trademark on the word "edge".[1]

History[edit | edit source]

Edge Games was founded in California in 1990 by Tim Langdell. At that time, it acquired the intellectual property assets of Langdell's former company, Softek Software, itself founded in 1980 in London, England.[2] Softek's catalog includes several well known games, including: Fairlight, released in 1985, and Garfield: Big Fat Hairy Deal, released in 1987.

Until the availability of "Racers" for the PC in 2010, Edge Games had not released a new title since 1994,[3][4][5] though the Edge website states that two other multi-platform titles: "Mirrors",[6] and "Mythora 2" are "coming soon", as are the PS3 and other platform versions of "Racers". The website also states that they are porting some of their Commodore 64 games to WiiWare.

Trademark disputes[edit | edit source]

Edge Games and Edge Interactive Media have been involved in a number of disputes over the "EDGE" trademark.

Electronic Arts petition for trademark cancellation[edit | edit source]

In September 2009, Electronic Arts petitioned the US Patent & Trademark Office to cancel a range of registrations associated with Edge Games.[7] EA's petition came after continued threats of legal action by Edge Games with respect to the title of EA's 2008 game Mirror's Edge, despite EA's ownership of common law trademark rights to the phrase. In a statement, EA announced that "While this seems like a small issue for EA, we think that filing the complaint is the right thing to do for the developer community."[1] Tim Langdell responded to these claims in an e-mail statement on September 30, claiming that Edge had in fact not threatened EA with litigation and that 2009 had been spent negotiating an amicable settlement on the use of the trademark. Langdell went on to accuse EA of using the settlement talks to "play for time", and claimed that EA had abandoned efforts to register "Mirror's Edge" as a trademark in September 2008.[8] According to a report by gaming blog Kotaku, the USPTO database lists the trademark "Mirror's Edge" as "abandoned" as of Sept. 8, 2009. An EA spokesman said the company had been unsuccessful in its attempt to resolve the dispute, which led to the filing of the petition.[9] In June 2010, Edge Games filed a lawsuit against Electronic Arts over Mirror's Edge, requesting damages and a court injunction against further infringement.[10]

Edge (iPhone game)[edit | edit source]

In May 2009, game developer Mobigame's iPhone title Edge[11] was removed from Apple's App Store in the US and the UK due to lawsuit threats by Tim Langdell. According to Mobigames, the dispute arose while they were trying to register a trademark for Edge in the US, while Langdell claims he owns the global trademark on "Edge."[12]

According to the email dialogue between Langdell and Mobigames head David Papazian, shared with Eurogamer, Langdell delivered an ultimatum to Mobigames in exchange for a promise not to litigate. If they changed the game's name, he demanded 25% of the game's revenue for the time the title was on sale under the name "edge", and if they licenced the Edge name, they would give him 10% of the game's revenue in perpetuity and subtitle it "An Homage To [Edge Games title] Bobby Bearing", with the Edge Games logo on the title screen. Papazian claims that he suggested the alternative title "Edgy", but that this was rejected by Langdell as too similar to "Edge". Edge Games subsequently registered this name as a trademark. An Edge Games spokesperson, writing from Tim Langdell's personal email address and signing off as "Tim Langdell", claims that their registration was the result of a misunderstanding "probably in part caused by David Papazian's less than perfect English".[13] However, many journalists who talked with David Papazian confirmed that Papazian's English is "absolutely flawless" [14]

On the 18th of June 2009, it was reported that the game had been restored to the App Store with its original name intact,[15] though later reports indicated that the game had once again been pulled in July 2009,[16] and Mobigames confirmed that they had voluntarily withdrawn the game while considering their options.[13] Mobigames' lawyer, speaking to Eurogamer, stated that "Mobigame's position is that the trademarks owned by Edge Games are not enforceable against Mobigames or any third party in respect of the distribution of the Edge game," because "there is unlikely to be any confusion or association between them and Mobigame's game" and those trademarks "are liable to be revoked".[13]

Soon after, Edge Games published an "open letter" on its website claiming that several of the statements in the Eurogamer article were false.[17] Mobigames' lawyers issued a response to the effect that the Eurogamer article is accurate and that Edge Games's rebuttal is false, and state that they are gathering evidence to demonstrate that communications Edge Games claims, in its rebuttal, to have made did not actually occur.[18]

The game was eventually put back on the App Store in UK and US markets on October 7, 2009, under the title Edge by Mobigame. Speaking with Kotaku, Papazian said, "on the legal side, (Langdell) cannot claim anything against "Edge by Mobigame" and Apple knows that, so we hope everything will be alright now."[19]

On November 26, 2009, Edge by Mobigame was again removed from the App Store.[20] An unnamed Edge Games representative stated "Adding 'by Mobigame' was determined not to get around infringement." [21] On December 1, 2009, the game returned to the App Store under the name Edgy,[22] but Mobigame soon removed it for fear that Langdell would use the legal precedent in his legal battle against EA.[23]

In May 2010, Edge by Mobigames had returned at a $0.99(USD) price point under the name Edge. MobiGame had the following to say regarding the ongoing legal battle:

Thanks to us the word "edge" is now free to exist on the App Store like on any other marketplace, and games like Mirror's Edge, Shadow Edge, Killer Edge Racing or Edge by Mobigame can live on our iDevices.


Other[edit | edit source]

In 2001, Edge sought revocation of Namco's United Kingdom trademark "SOULEDGE" (for the game, Soul Edge) for reasons including an alleged similarity between the EDGE and SOULEDGE marks. The opposition failed on all grounds. Nevertheless, Namco had already decided to use the name "Soul Blade" in the United States and Europe to avoid potential complications.[25]

In March 2009, Cybernet Systems Corporation filed a lawsuit in Federal court against Edge.[26] In the suit, Cybernet states that they were contacted by Tim Langdell beginning in January 2009 and that he asserted his ownership of the term "Edge." The suit also alleges that Langdell asserted his right to have the trademark for Cybernet's "Edge of Extinction" game assigned to Edge Games, and his further right to require Cybernet to enter into a paid license agreement with him due to their use of the name. Cybernet refused, and when Langdell threatened a lawsuit, Cybernet instead filed suit against Edge.[27] "Edge of Extinction" was released in 2001, and is no longer an active game.[28][29]

As of June 1, 2009, Edge Games applied for a US trademark for the phrase, "Edge of Twilight."[30] This is the name of an upcoming steampunk fantasy game that has been in development by Fuzzyeyes Studios for at least two years.[31][32]

In addition, Edge has been a plaintiff in lawsuits with New World Computing over their title Planet's Edge,[33] Marvel Entertainment over their titles Cutting Edge, Double Edge, and Over the Edge,[34][35] Sony Entertainment over their PlayStation Edge,[36] Edge Tech Corporation over their "The Edge" hardware,[37] and John Coates over his EdgeGamers online community.[38] Edge's website also claims that the aforementioned Marvel comics, the movie The Edge, the videogame Cross Edge and the UK magazine Edge were all released under license from Edge Games, though it isn't clear what, if any, involvement Edge or Langdell had in these products.[39]

Call for Removal from IGDA Board[edit | edit source]

In July 2009, members of the IGDA began circulation of a petition calling for a special meeting of the membership to vote on the removal of Langdell from that organization's board of directors citing, among other things, his use of his position on the IGDA to "work directly against the mission of the organization."[40][41] In late August, the IGDA announced that a special meeting of the membership would be held on October 3, the sole purpose of which was to vote on whether Langdell should be removed,[42] and on August 31, 2009, Langdell resigned from the IGDA board.[43] Langdell had served on the board since March 2009.[42]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Charny, Ben (September 29, 2009). EA Gets Aggressive In 'Edge' Trademark Spat With Game Maker. NASDAQ. Retrieved on 2009-09-30
  2. http://smtp1.patent.gov.uk/types/tm/t-os/t-find/t-challenge-decision-results/o37299.pdf
  3. Yu, Derek (July 18, 2009). Tim Langdell and Edge Games. The Independent Gaming Source. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  4. Game Browser: Edge, The. Moby Games. Retrieved on 2009-07-29
  5. Good, Owen (May 30, 2009). Trademark Troll Gets Mobigames' EDGE Taken Down. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2009-07-29
  6. http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/kotaku/2009/05/edge.jpg
  7. EA takes up Edge trademark fight. gameindustry.biz (September 30, 2009). Retrieved on 2009-09-30
  8. Chalk, Andy (September 30, 2009). Tim Langdell Responds to EA Trademark Petition. EscapistMagazine.com. Retrieved on 2009-09-30
  9. Good, Owen (September 29, 2009). Electronic Arts Sues to Cancel Langdell's Trademarks. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2009-09-30
  10. Chase, Ayinde (June 16, 2010). Edge Games suing EA over Mirror's Edge video game, trademark issues. All Headline News. Retrieved on 2010-06-16
  11. Mobigame.net. Mobigame.net. Retrieved on 2009-09-02
  12. Update: Edge Pulled Over Alleged Trademark Infringement - Gaming on the iPhone and iPod Touch. Finger Gaming (2009-05-28). Retrieved on 2009-06-01
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Parkin, Simon (August 3, 2009). The Edge of Reason?. Eurogamer. Retrieved on 2009-08-03
  14. Dunn, Matt (August 4, 2009). Edge Lawsuit: New Info!.
  15. Mobigames' EDGE returns to App Store. Touch Arcade (2009-06-18).
  16. Yu, Derek (July 15, 2009). Tim Langdell and Edge Games: Still at It. The Independent Gaming Source. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  17. Public Statement Regarding Mobigame and its iTunes Game, EDGE Games
  18. Mobigame: ‘Edge Games’s open letter is false’, Pocket Gamer
  19. http://kotaku.com/5376764/mobigames-edge-is-back-on-itunes
  20. Dredge, Stuart (November 26, 2009). "iPhone game Edge disappears from App Store (again)". Mobiel Entertainment. http://www.mobile-ent.biz/news/35191/iPhone-game-Edge-disappears-from-App-Store-again. Retrieved December 1, 2009. 
  21. Crossley, Rob (November 27, 2009). "Langdell: ‘Edge by Mobigame’ isn’t fair". develop-online.net. http://www.develop-online.net/news/33382/Langdell-Edge-by-Mobigame-isnt-fair. Retrieved December 1, 2009. 
  22. Crossley, Rob (December 1, 2009). "Edge arrives on App Store for third time". develop-online.net. http://www.develop-online.net/news/33406/Edge-arrives-on-App-Store-for-third-time. Retrieved December 1, 2009. 
  23. Crossley, Rob (December 4, 2009). "Mobigame to pull Edgy amid EA legal fears". develop-online.net. http://www.develop-online.net/news/33429/Mobigame-to-pull-Edgy-amid-EA-legal-fears. Retrieved January 8, 2010. 
  24. "'Edge' Back on the App Store Again And on Sale". http://toucharcade.com/2010/05/07/edge-back-on-the-app-store-again-and-on-sale/. 
  25. Trade mark decision. UK Intellectual Property Office (2002-08-14). Retrieved on 2009-06-01
  26. Cybernet Systems Corporation v. Edge Games Incorporated et al. Justia.com: Federal District Court Filings and Dockets. Retrieved on 2009-07-14
  27. Carless, Simon (June 10, 2009). A Brief Statement On The Mobigame/Edge Games Article. Gamasutra. Retrieved on 2009-07-14
  28. Edge News. Cybernet Systems Corporation. Retrieved on 2009-07-14
  29. Cybernet Copyright Notice. Cybernet.com. Retrieved on 2009-07-14
  30. United States Patent & Trademark Office (2009-06-01).
  31. Edge of Twilight (Multiple). Fuzzy Eyes. Retrieved on 2009-07-12
  32. Edge of Twilight News. Gamespot. Retrieved on 2009-07-12
  33. THE EDGE INTERACTIVE MEDIA, INC. v. NEW WORLD COMPUTING, INC. (number 92021684). Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Inquiry System. United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  34. THE EDGE INTERACTIVE MEDIA, INC. v. MARVEL ENTERTAINMENT GROUP INC. (number 91104138). Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Inquiry System. United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  35. THE EDGE INTERACTIVE MEDIA, INC. v. MARVEL ENTERTAINMENT GROUP, INC. (number 91104135). Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Inquiry System. United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  36. Edge Games, Inc. v. Kabushiki Kaisha Sony Computer Entertain ment (a/t/a Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.) (number 77126808). Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Inquiry System. United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  37. Edge Games, Inc. v. EDGE TECH CORPORATION (number 75321910). Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Inquiry System. United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  38. Edge Games, Inc. v. Coates, John (number 77352656). Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Inquiry System. United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  39. EDGE Games from EDGEGAMES.COM
  40. It’s Fun to Stay at the IGDA. Retrieved on 2009-07-18
  41. Good, Owen (July 17, 2009). Effort Begun to Remove Trademark Troll from IGDA Board. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2009-09-21
  42. 42.0 42.1 Good, Owen (August 31, 2009). Tim Langdell Resigns from IGDA Board (Updated). Kotaku. Retrieved on 2009-08-31
  43. IGDA Announces Dr. Tim Langdell has stepped down from IGDA Board. IGDA.org (August 31, 2009). Retrieved on 2009-08-31

External links[edit | edit source]