Valve Will Have To Fight To Trademark New Game Based On Warcraft III Mod

You might be happy that Valve seems to be releasing a commercial product based on an old Warcraft III mod, Defense of the Ancients Allstars. Valve are probably happy too. Some of the mod's original creators, though? Less happy.

Riot Games - at which one of the mod's creators, Steve Mescon, works - has filed a competing trademark application for the mod's name in an attempt to block the move (just the trademark, not the actual game). It's not just Mescon with an interest in the case, either; Riot Games operates League of Legends, a game that, to put it gently, is influenced by DotA.

"We have filed for the 'Defense of the Ancients' trademark to protect the work that dozens of authors have done to create the game and on behalf of the millions of DotA players all over the world," Mescon says.

"...The idea that one single company is taking control of the name of something that hundreds of people have contributed to is surprising," he adds. "I believe DotA should always remain a community-owned product that modders, independent developers and game fans can continue to modify and play as often as they'd like."

Riot Games' dev counter-files "DotA" trademark [PC Gamer]


Comments

    i agree with the underdogs

    I cannot see how Steam would win if it went legal? Community thought of name made a product advertises product updates product and is still a current product and Steam expect a judge to just hand over the rights unlikely.

      The name would be worth a large amount of money to Valve so I expect them to fight pretty hard for it. In a world where they have to compete with Heroes of Newerth, League of Legends and whatever else comes out, being able to boast the name of the source game where this fanbase comes from would be a huge marketing and image boon.

      Expect to see the people competing for the trademark to either swiftly lose or silently withdraw after a behind the scenes deal is made. Sadly, I don't the integrity of this battle will win out.

      @Travis, Steam is a product of Valve, not the other way around.

    I play Heroes of Newerth, can't see myself jumping ship to valves new game, it would have to be something REALLY amazing.

    On the dota trademark, seems like dota is now a genre, not really a name.

    Legue of ledgends, Heroes of Newerth, Demigod, and one more from Valve, and Dota itself.

    Can't really agree with Valve trademarking the "definitive version", it would be like id saying they make FPS and no one else.

    From what I understand those original creators handed the project over to IceFrog, who really turned it into the game it is today. So if he's at valve... and right now it's his project... I'd expect something amazing, DotA with the valve polish would be amazing, I'm still calling they'll use the Alien Swarm tech to deliver it on the source engine.

    The way dota and hon are supported is already like the way valve supports their games. Valve is rather suitable to develop a dota clone, although I am unsure how they will be able to significantly improve upon the level of support present for the pre existing games.

    The action to trademark "dota". If they have the current author onboard, it may be somewhat justified if it is a continuation of his work. However they could simply use another term. There is nothing stopping them from making another dota clone, the argument is against the usage of the name "dota"

    I am of the vague knowledge that other people authored dota before icefrog, and now work on other dota clones such as lol and maybe hon.
    The general consensus seems to be that "it's general domain, feel free to copy and market it, but don't try to take it over"

    I think it sounds like they have no idea what a trademark is, nothing stopping them from using another name.

    “I believe DotA should always remain a community-owned product that modders, independent developers and game fans can continue to modify and play as often as they’d like.”
    Good thing Valve's making it!
    Wait, what was he complaining about again?

      He's not complaining about Valve MAKING the game.

      He's complaining about Valve wanting to trademark it, which would essentially block any other creators out there from making a Dota clone.

        Why would taking a trademark out stop anyone? Just means they have to use a different name for their clone rather than DotA. Assuming that Valve even gets the trademark, one may be able to argue that it's sufficiently diluted.

        no they plan to trademark the name not the game

        so really hes just being pedantic about the whole situation

        trademarking the game so to speak, can't be done for the pure reason that there are prior works

        they can copyright there code and any addons to the game that haven't been seen before

        but due to prior work they cannot obtain the rights to dota as a game same a league of legends ans HoN haven't ( because if they could do you really think they would have allowed competition)

    Errrm, why not team up with valve?

    I for one don't like LoL compared to HoN or DotA. I say go mega corporation, I will support thee.

    Though they do say 3 is a crowd.....

    Lets make an open source one.

    “…The idea that one single company is taking control of the name of something that hundreds of people have contributed to is surprising,"

    but though its surprising im gonna take ownership of it so valve can't

    the way i see it theres been 2 DotA games that could have used the DotA name so if valve wanna use it let em go with it

    I think you would need proof of concept. Which is something that would be awfully hard to produce given that the map was created, and contributed to by so many people.

    Unless you can treat the 'community' as a single entity and award them the copyright then this might just go valves way.

    Valve having the copyright shouldn't prevent DotA being produced under new UMS environments though (SC2) because there's no profits in it.

    I don't know how running leagues would work though.

    Not a lawyer :P

    More than anything, this seems to be about differences between two people involved in the DotA community. IceFrog, current map creator, and Pendragon, the former creator of the dota-allstars website.
    A while back, IceFrog split off from dota-allstars.com giving the reason that Pendragon wanted to commercialise DotA. Pendragon at the time was also working closely with Riot on LoL.
    Pendragon closed www.dota-allstars.com, leaving a message that you can read there. Effectively he says exactly the opposite of what IceFrog did. But he doesn't mention his links to the game League of Legends.

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