Pokémon GO developer Niantic wins a massive settlement against cheat creator Global++, with the former settling for an impressive $5 million.
Pokémon GO developer Niantic has settled a lawsuit with cheat creator Global++, earning the company $5 million in the process. Pokémon GO remains an immensely profitable endeavor for Niantic, as the alternate reality game saw an uptick in profits in 2020 despite the fact that its players were largely being confined inside for the better part of the year.
For those unfamiliar with the game’s concept, Pokémon GO is a mobile game that allows players to interact with the real-world environment around them through the lens of a Pokémon trainer, catching creatures roaming the streets or teaming up with other players to take down powerful Pokémon in raids. The game has evolved steadily over the years, but 2020 saw it dramatically change some of its approaches to make sure it wasn’t encouraging players to go outside when doing so would be dangerous. The result was a strong year and praise for Niantic for working so quickly to find solutions that would help preserve both its players’ safety and their ability to enjoy the game.
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Enjoyment of Pokémon GO is at the center of the Niantic settlement that earned the company $5 million recently. In a report compiled by TorrentFreak recently, the lawsuit was settled when Global++ and the other parties serving as the defendants agreed to pay Niantic the hefty sum, as well as agreeing to an injunction that will see them permanently prevented from developing, marketing, and receiving payment for the cheating programs outlined in the lawsuit.
The lawsuit was first filed in 2019, when Niantic alleged that Global++ benefitted from derivative versions of Niantic’s apps, profiting off them while simultaneously worsening the experience of legitimate players. Since then, the parties involved have discussed the lawsuit and evidently reached a settlement that is agreeable to all.
It will be interesting to see if the Pokémon GO lawsuit settlement has any further reaching impacts in the video game industry. There are no shortage of cheat programs currently available, and many of them benefit in some way, monetarily or otherwise, by piggybacking off popular games. Given how profitable the mobile gaming sector is for developers, it wouldn’t be surprising to see an even heavier crackdown on illegal cheating apps in the future. Keeping legitimate players happy and feeling like their progress couldn’t be earned through some easily accessed shortcuts is key to developing long-lasting communities, and protecting that feeling increasingly seems to be something that developers need to focus on as their games find success across the globe.
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