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Oculus VR breach of contract suit dismissed

Total Recall Technologies' charges against Palmer Luckey thrown out by Californian court

Oculus VR has one less legal battle to worry about, after a Californian court dismissed Total Recall Technologies' lawsuit against the company.

In a statement issued to TechCrunch, an Oculus spokesperson expressed satisfaction with the decision to "dismiss TRT's entire case with prejudice. Our commitment to VR is the same. We are focused on expanding and pursuing our vision for this transformative technology."

This case bears some similarities to the situation with ZeniMax Media, as a result of which Oculus was ordered to pay $500 million. Palmer Luckey, the co-founder of Oculus, met with TRT while developing his own VR headset in December 2010. TRT created a prototype for Luckey, and insisted that it retain "exclusive rights to your design unless we decide not to use it."

Ultimately, Luckey decided not to work with TRT, but a suit alleging breach of contract was filed in May 2015. TRT was granted permission to proceed with the lawsuit in January 2016, though parts of its claim - including a charge of fraud - were dismissed at the time.

Luckey described TRT's claims as "a brazen attempt to secure for itself a stake in Oculus VR's recent multi-billion dollar acquisition by Facebook."

Oculus' legal problems with ZeniMax may not be over yet, however. Oculus itself has suggested it will appeal the verdict, while ZeniMax is seeking an injunction against Rift and Gear VR software using contested code.

In a tangentially related suit filed last week, Oculus CTO John Carmack started proceedings for $22.5 million owed to him by ZeniMax from the acquisition of id Software, which he claims is being withheld due to the findings of the Oculus case.

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Matthew Handrahan avatar
Matthew Handrahan: Matthew Handrahan joined GamesIndustry in 2011, bringing long-form feature-writing experience to the team as well as a deep understanding of the video game development business. He previously spent more than five years at award-winning magazine gamesTM.
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