MMO makers are in a bit of hot water right now. A bunch of them are currently being sued by a New York company for alleged patent infringement.
The lawsuit revolves around a patent that covers technologies for sharing data among many connected computers so that all users see the same digital environment. Seriously, think about it. Doesn't that sound like it pretty much encompasses any online multiplayer game from MUDs to the latest MMOs and console games?
While patent lawsuits have become an almost everyday thing, this one is noteworthy in its scope and that the complainant is PalTalk. If you'll recall, they successfully forced Microsoft to settle a US 90 million lawsuit over the same patents earlier this year.
That could be seen as concession to the validity of the patents, which could spell some very bad news for those being sued now, namely Turbine Inc., Sony Corp., Activision Blizzard Inc., NCSoft Corp. and Jagex Ltd.