Makers of Minecraft hit with patent lawsuit, Halfbrick and Gameloft also targeted


With all the smartphone hardware lawsuits currently clogging court systems around the world, it was only a matter of time before someone got the bright idea to sue applications and games makers over software patents. Now Luxembourg-based Uniloc has it out for a host of Android developers over claims to a patent for a “system and method for preventing unauthorized access to electronic data.” Most vocal about the threat of legal action is Mojang’s Markus “Notch” Persson, creator of Minecraft, but Uniloc is also going after Halfbrick Studios, Gameloft, EA, Square Enix, and Laminar Research.

The patent in question involves a system for pinging a server to check that a user holds an authorized license to use downloaded software before launching a game, a security method implemented by many more developers than the ones listed above. Persson took to his Twitter account in defense of his hard work, stating in so many words that Mojang would not go down without a fight, spending as much money as necessary to insure that Uniloc is not rewarded with a victory in this case.

To add insult to injury, in filing the suit Uniloc mistakenly refers to Minecraft as “Mindcraft,” which can be seen in the full text of the filing as posted online by Persson. It remains to be seen if Uniloc’s case has any real legs, but given the group they are going up against, we don’t expect any of the alleged infringers to simply roll over and pay a settlement.

[via Eurogamer]


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  1. Can you believe this got patented? I think it is pretty obvious checking a server to see if you are licensed.

  2. Wow looks like they are going to have to go after the big guys like Blizzard and Activision next as they use the same system the one that feels decades old and go after a ton of MMORPG devs as well.

  3. Sounds like these “Uniloc” people need to have a….

    mind crafted.

    1. *puts on sunglasses*


  4. Madfinger Games and EA are sued by Uniloc too, you could try to find all attacked companies…

    1. And you could try to read more than just the title…

  5. Hey petr how about you read the article

  6. So, and Microsoft next then as sounds like confirming use of authorised windows/office being used.
    Infact pretty much all modern software does this.

    Need to see the actual patent to see how vague.

  7. The makers of Minecraft should file a motion to have their case dismissed since they don’t make a product called Mindcraft.

    How stupid is this Uniloc company? I would think if you were going to sue someone that you would at least have the name of the product right?

  8. It would be hilarious if the judge threw out the case because they named the app incorrectly.

    Hopefully when Google goes before Congress to discuss patent problems, things like this will be looked at also.

  9. Welp, I guess I guess there’s actually a worse patent troll than Apple, who at least is only attacking manufacturers instead of the individual devs. Didn’t expect that! Or for such a ridiculously stupid and broad patent to be granted; doesn’t just about every game, operating system, and major business or artistic application do this nowadays?

  10. Thats gay

  11. Sounds like bogus to me, it’s just simple authentication…

  12. Going up against indie devleopers is the STUPIDEST thing Unilock (irony intended) could do. They’ll bite back with a vengeance, with such vehement attacks from the fan-base, that they’ll regret ever taking a pot-shot at companies like Mojang ;)

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