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Garriott awarded $32m in NCsoft contract dispute

Wed 26 Oct 2011 10:20am GMT / 6:20am EDT / 3:20am PDT
LegalPublishing

Korean publisher "schemed" to avoid financial obligations to Ultima creator

NCsoft

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The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the judgement that Korean publisher NCsoft should pay Ultima creator Richard Garriott $32 million for breach of contract.

The amount includes $28 million awarded by the jury in July 2010, as well as interest and attorney fees. It was the largest verdict of its kind in Texas that year.

Garriott left NCsoft in November 2008 following a pre-agreed leave of absence to visit the International Space Station. Garriott's stock options expired 90 days after leaving the company due to a clause in his contract relating to voluntary departure.

However, Garriott later claimed that NCsoft had "re-characterised" his departure as voluntary, and that the unlawful sale of his stock had cost him millions of dollars.

"NCsoft schemed to avoid its obligations to Richard at the trial court and on appeal, and neither the jury nor the 5th Circuit bought any of it," said Stephen E. Fox, an attorney at Fish & Richardson and Garriott's lead counsel.

"Contracts have consequences, and as the Court of Appeals explained, the trial court is not a trial run. This has been a long fight and we are very pleased with the Court's decision."

13 Comments

Rupert Loman
Founder & CEO

138 45 0.3
And his house is for sale! http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/vie...

Posted:2 years ago

#1

Luke Salvoni
Co-Founder & iOS Developer

65 4 0.1
A very unique interior! But only 3 bed...

Posted:2 years ago

#2

Jonah Falcon
Writer

26 16 0.6
I'm waiting for a comment from Lord Blackthorn and Chuckles.

Posted:2 years ago

#3

Greg Wilcox
Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,132 1,039 0.5
Now he can buy MORE pepper for his beef...

Posted:2 years ago

#4

Pablo Santos
Developer

23 18 0.8
It really sounded to me that the actual scheme was made the other way around but... well, when it comes to contracts and obligations, truth becomes a matter of who have the best strategy/interpretation.

Posted:2 years ago

#5

Arthur N

11 2 0.2
This guy has no shame... After his failed project costing NCsoft hundred of millions he still has the courage to steal millions from them lolll He would never have made more than 5 million USD if it wasn't for NCsoft. His games were outdated

Posted:2 years ago

#6

Rob Homewood
Game Designer, Unity Programmer & Producer

16 4 0.3
Go Lord British!

Posted:2 years ago

#7

Murray Lorden
Game Designer & Developer

199 72 0.4
Go Lord British! I don't care what the truth of the matter is, the man's a gem, and he deserves millions. He needs it for his next castle, and his next trip to space. Don't deny him! :)

Posted:2 years ago

#8

Murray Lorden
Game Designer & Developer

199 72 0.4
"Don't mess with a man who's been into space."

Posted:2 years ago

#9

Klaus Preisinger
Freelance Writing

1,034 912 0.9
One NCsoft stock is currently at 14 times the value of when Garriott was fired. Who wouldn't sue for his stock options in such a constellation.

Posted:2 years ago

#10

Danielle Masek
Graphic designer/Illustrator

4 1 0.3
Contracts only mean something if you have a lawyer to back it up. Being a freelance artist, contracts mean fucking nothing b/c I cannot afford a lawyer. Only the rich can. Kind of ass backwards in a big way.

Posted:2 years ago

#11
@ danielle - such is life such is life

Posted:2 years ago

#12

Nick McCrea
Gentleman

177 217 1.2
The man who made Ultima VII can do no wrong. I concur with Murray - the man requires funds for his space castle!

Posted:2 years ago

#13

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