Microsoft-developed video games involved in patent infingement lawsuit

Kareem Anderson

Microsoft India

Microsoft’s dearth of Xbox One exclusives seems to be lacking in comparison to its competition late into this console generation and according to Gamerant, a patent infringement can be added to the list of theories as to why.

A lawsuit filed by Infernal Technologies and Terminal Reality against Microsoft may be one of the reasons first party exclusives have yet to make their way to the console in any meaningful way.

Terminal Reality happens to be the studio behind the Infernal Engine that had been licensed out to other developer studios, including Microsoft. Within the engine, itself lay two patents that the company believes Microsoft infringed upon in its use of the licensed software. Patents 6,362,822 and 7,061,488 encompass lighting and shadowing effects within games.

Specifically, Terminal Reality is stating games such as Microsoft’s latest hit Sea of Thieves, Halo 5 and a few Forza titles infringed on the dual patents in their development.

At this point in the suit, it’s hard to determine where either company stands in regards to an amicable decision. Indeed, Terminal Reality and Infernal Technologies claim that Microsoft has known about the infringement long enough to try and concoct an end-around that involved the company filing for similar patents back in 2007. Microsoft’s gambit to seemingly sidestep Terminal Reality’s claims did not pay off as patents 6,362,822 and 7,061,488 were already accounted for and thus resulted in a rejected patent filing for the company.

We don’t have a tally as to how many other titles Microsoft might have had in development or various stages of promotion before this lawsuit came to light and it still remains to be seen how the outcome will affect its current crop of released games. Either way, this could be another trip up for Xbox, coming at a time where the division can’t afford additional stumbling blocks.

Gamers have been quick to point out how lacking the Xbox has been in the exclusives department seemingly midway through this console generation. It now seems their observations have not only been founded but yet another wrinkle in the apparent reasoning for a drought of titles has made itself visible. We’ll just have to wait and see if the case is actually seen in front of a judge or settled out of court, but hopefully, Microsoft figures this out soon as their Play Anywhere proposition rests on a pile of “playable” titles from the company.