More than a year after Marvel Entertainment first filed suit against NCsoft, publisher of superhero MMORPG City of Heroes, the two companies have reached an undisclosed settlement.
Marvel filed suit against the Korean publisher last November, claiming that CoH players were creating characters in the likeness of Marvel superheroes and thereby infringing copyright. It marked the first time a publisher had been sued by content created by players and, had Marvel won the case, could have set an important precedent.
But Marvel and NCsoft have now reached an agreement and, under the terms of the deal, there will not be any changes made to the character creation options in City of Heroes or its expansion, City of Villains.
"The parties' settlement allows them all to continue to develop and sell exciting and innovative products, but does not reduce the players' ability to express their creativity in making and playing original and exciting characters," NCsoft said in a statement.
"The parties have agreed that protecting intellectual property rights is critically important and each will continue aggressively to protect such rights in accordance with all applicable laws."
"All parties agree that this case was never about monetary issues and that the fans of their respective products and characters are the winners in this settlement."