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Legends of Signum: Battle for Vallor» Forums » News

Subject: Frozen Kickstarter rss

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Bryan Butler
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As some of you may know, the Kickstarter was frozen from claims of copyright infringement, until the matter gets settled. Signum posted a statement concerning the issue here, assuring us that they created and own all of the IP in this game: https://ibb.co/im1U38

My question is, does anyone know who either Stellar or SD Partners is? I'm curious to know what they do/make that is alleged infringed, but Stellar and SD Partners are too general of a name for me to find anything.
 
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I think this is the gist of it. Feel free to add further information.

Stellar owns the rights to Confrontation, and licensed them to Sans-Detour. However, Stellar and Sans-Detour have the same owner, and the director of Sans-Detour filed the IP infringement claim.

The creators of LoS are selling their miniatures through Cadwallon, which has made recasts of Confrontation miniatures without the license. They were issued a Cease and Desist, albeit after a long period of time of recasting.

Sans-Detour has just run a Confrontation KS that was badly managed, losing money pretty much every day after the first two days. On May 9th, they filed a KS IP dispute, before their own KS ended.

My opinion is that neither side is exactly innocent. But SD now has additional funds to take legal action against the LoS creators, thanks to their own backers who should have known better, given the other red flags with the Confrontation KS.

You can catch up with the issue on Dakka: https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/30/755853.p...

More about the Confrontation KS on Dakka:
https://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/540/717182....
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There is also some speculation that Signum Games is the same people as Cadwallon. Before the first round of C&D letters went out there were Legends of Signum miniatures with names like "Leper Militia of Cadwallon" which was advertised as part of the Legends of Cadwallon miniatures line and is now renamed to "Leper Militiamen" as part of the Legends of Signum miniatures line. In fact most of the older Legends of Signum minis are from the Legends of Cadwallon line. The legends of Cadwallon and the legends of Signum logos are even identical. I think a lot of the people defending Signum are looking at things with a bit of a rose tint.
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Thanks FP for the good summary and links! Aldo checked the Kicktraq for Confrontation - yikes!
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Hector Lopez
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Yeah I might be one of those LoS supporters wearing rose tinted glasses simply because I see a pretty original and well thought out game but I don’t know how similar it is to the Confrontation universe. To me it seemed distinctive enough, but I also don’t know the Confrontation universe that well so I may not be a good judge. I don’t care for the SD guys honestly because they had one of the laziest Kickstarter campaigns I have personally seen. I quickly dropped my pledge for Confrontation when I saw all the red flags but now I have to admit I’m not sure about this LoS project either if it’s going to be embroiled in an ongoing legal battle with SD for the near future. It would be nice if both sides could come up with an amicable solution and they both could move forward.
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hlopez wrote:
Yeah I might be one of those LoS supporters wearing rose tinted glasses simply because I see a pretty original and well thought out game but I don’t know how similar it is to the Confrontation universe. To me it seemed distinctive enough, but I also don’t know the Confrontation universe that well so I may not be a good judge. I don’t care for the SD guys honestly because they had one of the laziest Kickstarter campaigns I have personally seen. I quickly dropped my pledge for Confrontation when I saw all the red flags but now I have to admit I’m not sure about this LoS project either if it’s going to be embroiled in an ongoing legal battle with SD for the near future. It would be nice if both sides could come up with an amicable solution and they both could move forward.


Well, if SD is correct and Signum really is the same people as the Cadwallon website then they were actively producing direct copies of Confrontation miniatures until somewhat recently. I've also seen claims, though without images backing them up, that some of the Signum miniatures are from Confrontation concept art. At very least it shouldn't be assumed out of hand that Signum is in the right.

Of course even in SD is the one in the right it doesn't change that there own kickstarter was a mess. Dropping it was likely a very good plan.
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Hector Lopez
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cormor321 wrote:
hlopez wrote:
Yeah I might be one of those LoS supporters wearing rose tinted glasses simply because I see a pretty original and well thought out game but I don’t know how similar it is to the Confrontation universe. To me it seemed distinctive enough, but I also don’t know the Confrontation universe that well so I may not be a good judge. I don’t care for the SD guys honestly because they had one of the laziest Kickstarter campaigns I have personally seen. I quickly dropped my pledge for Confrontation when I saw all the red flags but now I have to admit I’m not sure about this LoS project either if it’s going to be embroiled in an ongoing legal battle with SD for the near future. It would be nice if both sides could come up with an amicable solution and they both could move forward.


Well, if SD is correct and Signum really is the same people as the Cadwallon website then they were actively producing direct copies of Confrontation miniatures until somewhat recently. I've also seen claims, though without images backing them up, that some of the Signum miniatures are from Confrontation concept art. At very least it shouldn't be assumed out of hand that Signum is in the right.

Of course even in SD is the one in the right it doesn't change that there own kickstarter was a mess. Dropping it was likely a very good plan.


Yeah I agree with what you’re saying and I’m really not assuming anything at this point. Either SD is telling the truth or LoS is. I’m just saying that LoS has actually created a game that doesn’t really need to exist in the Confrontation universe (and in my opinion it doesn’t) and I would like to see where they could take that game in the future. But if they really did steal ideas, models, etc then I won’t be supporting.
One thing I’m questioning is the use of the race of characters called the Wolfen. Were they originally created by Rackhan and are they something that SD could claim as infringement of their IP? At minimum would LoS have to rename them something else if they were to use them in their game or are they something like orcs, trolls, elves, etc that that are fair game?
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LoS uses "Wulfen" rather than "Wolfen". If SD has a trademark on the name Wolfen, I would assume they do, they could definitely argue that LoS's intent is for consumers to confuse the product lines. It would have to actually go through the courts to decide one way or the other though. IP lawsuits are huge crap-shoots for everyone involved. It definitely wouldn't help LoS any that they originally advertised the line as Legends of Cadwallon since Cadwallon is part of the Confrontation universe and is likely also trademarked by SD. Using a lot of the same or similar faction names is probably also something that would be brought up. Having a Guild of Blades could probably sneak by, having a Guild of Blades that was based in Cadwallon (the same as the same guild in Confrontation) prior to the KS launch is going to get looked at more closely.
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cormor321 wrote:
LoS uses "Wulfen" rather than "Wolfen". If SD has a trademark on the name Wolfen, I would assume they do, they could definitely argue that LoS's intent is for consumers to confuse the product lines. It would have to actually go through the courts to decide one way or the other though. IP lawsuits are huge crap-shoots for everyone involved. It definitely wouldn't help LoS any that they originally advertised the line as Legends of Cadwallon since Cadwallon is part of the Confrontation universe and is likely also trademarked by SD. Using a lot of the same or similar faction names is probably also something that would be brought up. Having a Guild of Blades could probably sneak by, having a Guild of Blades that was based in Cadwallon (the same as the same guild in Confrontation) prior to the KS launch is going to get looked at more closely.


How true!

Mantic doesn't have "orcs" but does have "orx". Games Workshop's 40K doesn't have Ogres. But it does have "Ogryn". I think I've also read IP blogs that it's the whole of an IP case that's taken into account, rather than specifics. So if the only similarity was said Guild of Blades, that would be one thing, but if it's multiple similar faction names (as well as "Wulfen" et al.) that would be another.

Anyway, fwiw, the militiaman sculpt came up in the LoS FB. LoS replied, "Leper militiaman is our model, sculpted for us on a specially concept drawn for us. We have rights to it." https://www.facebook.com/groups/221471851740836/?fref=nf

So... Since the miniatures and other components haven't reached production, Signum could just file off the serial numbers even further and back up claims to their art, I figure. Both Signum / Cadwallon (Russia?) and Sans-Detour / Stellar (France) are outside of the United States, so dunno if a court case would be as unpredictable, costly, or enforceable internationally as it would were both companies be in the United States.

And, of course, Signum could cast miniatures for whatever they own the art for, with whatever name they want at the moment. Several of the miniatures in the LoS campaign were already on their website. So, at least, Signum/Cadwallon has some free publicity to the non-gaming modelers who are more interested in the sculpts than the game!
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Sam and Max wrote:
cormor321 wrote:
LoS uses "Wulfen" rather than "Wolfen". If SD has a trademark on the name Wolfen, I would assume they do, they could definitely argue that LoS's intent is for consumers to confuse the product lines. It would have to actually go through the courts to decide one way or the other though. IP lawsuits are huge crap-shoots for everyone involved. It definitely wouldn't help LoS any that they originally advertised the line as Legends of Cadwallon since Cadwallon is part of the Confrontation universe and is likely also trademarked by SD. Using a lot of the same or similar faction names is probably also something that would be brought up. Having a Guild of Blades could probably sneak by, having a Guild of Blades that was based in Cadwallon (the same as the same guild in Confrontation) prior to the KS launch is going to get looked at more closely.


QFT!

Mantic doesn't have "orcs" but does have "orx". Games Workshop's 40K doesn't have Ogres. But it does have "Ogryn". I think I've also read IP blogs that it's the whole of an IP case that's taken into account, rather than specifics. So if the only similarity was said Guild of Blades, that would be one thing, but if it's multiple similar faction names (as well as "Wulfen" et al.) that would be another.

Anyway, fwiw, the militiaman sculpt came up in the LoS FB. LoS replied, "Leper militiaman is our model, sculpted for us on a specially concept drawn for us. We have rights to it." https://www.facebook.com/groups/221471851740836/?fref=nf

So... Since the miniatures and other components haven't reached production, Signum could just file off the serial numbers even further and back up claims to their art, I figure. Both Signum / Cadwallon (Russia?) and Sans-Detour / Stellar (France) are outside of the United States, so dunno if a court case would be as unpredictable, costly, or enforceable internationally as it would were both companies be in the United States.

And, of course, Signum could cast miniatures for whatever they own the art for, with whatever name they want at the moment. Several of the miniatures in the LoS campaign were already on their website. So, at least, Signum/Cadwallon has some free publicity to the non-gaming modelers who are more interested in the sculpts than the game!


My international IP knowledge is a lot most sketchy than my US knowledge so I'm not quite sure how that would work. They'd probably both try to get it settled in their own country. That would likely give the advantage to SD since if they can win in France they'd be able to block imports into the EU and maybe the US.

Claiming the militia sculpt as 100% theirs pretty much confirms they are the same people as the Cadwallon website anyway. https://cadwallonminiatures.deviantart.com/art/LEPER-MILITIA...

At the moment though SD's goal will likely be keeping the KS from restarting which probably has a much lower burden of proof than any court. The visual similarities, the naming similarities, and the past actual infringement could easily be enough for KS's legal team to side with SD even if none of the current items are definitively infringing.
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Hector Lopez
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And I’m little late to the party as to the recent history of the Confrontation IP, but I’m to understand that LoS is saying that they had nothing to do with the previous selling of the Rackham recast minis right? And this was on a website called Cadwallon? And they are claiming that was a completely separate company doing that and LoS was only selling their own original figures on the same website but are denying any further connection?
And now the info above points to the possibility that they are actually the same company?
Sorry just hard to figure out what is actually the truth here.
 
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hlopez wrote:
And I’m little late to the party as to the recent history of the Confrontation IP, but I’m to understand that LoS is saying that they had nothing to do with the previous selling of the Rackham recast minis right? And this was on a website called Cadwallon? And they are claiming that was a completely separate company doing that and LoS was only selling their own original figures on the same website but are denying any further connection?
And now the info above points to the possibility that they are actually the same company?
Sorry just hard to figure out what is actually the truth here.


That pretty much sums it up. As far as the actual truth, I'd say there is a lot of supporting evidence that LoS and Cadwallon are the same people, but no absolute proof as of yet. SD has actually been accusing LoS of being Cadwallon from the beginning.

As far as current infringement goes, without proof of basing their minis on Confrontation concept art the new minis themselves would probably be fine despite similarities with the Confrontation line. The naming of everything is muddier. With the similarities in the minis along with the naming and the past infringement, in the US, SD would certainly be able to argue that LoS was derivative of Confrontation even with name changes. Things like this https://web.archive.org/web/20170210154335/http://cadwallon.com/blog/cat/legends-of-cadwallon/ certainly don't help LoS.
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So I'm apparently bored right now... Here is a guess at one of the minis that they are claiming is from Confrontation artwork

Take a look at the fan ladies.

https://signumgame.com/en/guild-of-merchants-set.html
https://boardgamegeek.com/image/1004109/arcana
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cormor321 wrote:
So I'm apparently bored right now... Here is a guess at one of the minis that they are claiming is from Confrontation artwork

Take a look at the fan ladies.

https://signumgame.com/en/guild-of-merchants-set.html
https://boardgamegeek.com/image/1004109/arcana


Wow. That’s a good find. I think that model was an add on during the Kickstarter but I can’t remember and I don’t think I can check now. That's definitely more blatant than anything I suspected and I will be dropping my pledge with much regret. And really a shame because I think the gameplay looked great and I had finally found a skirmish game that meshed well with my board gaming background. And they had apparently created enough original material that I don’t think it was necessary for them to do that. Oh well.
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hlopez wrote:
cormor321 wrote:
So I'm apparently bored right now... Here is a guess at one of the minis that they are claiming is from Confrontation artwork

Take a look at the fan ladies.

https://signumgame.com/en/guild-of-merchants-set.html
https://boardgamegeek.com/image/1004109/arcana


Wow. That’s a good find. I think that model was an add on during the Kickstarter but I can’t remember and I don’t think I can check now. That's definitely more blatant than anything I suspected and I will be dropping my pledge with much regret. And really a shame because I think the gameplay looked great and I had finally found a skirmish game that meshed well with my board gaming background. And they had apparently created enough original material that I don’t think it was necessary for them to do that. Oh well.


I think the trouble is that they started with the knockoff material and then added the new material on top. If they had started with the new material they probably never would have moved into doing the knockoffs. As best I can tell the game itself doesn't have any IP issues beyond the remnants of the original Cadwallon theming and whichever minis are questionable.
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cormor321 wrote:
So I'm apparently bored right now... Here is a guess at one of the minis that they are claiming is from Confrontation artwork

Take a look at the fan ladies.

https://signumgame.com/en/guild-of-merchants-set.html
https://boardgamegeek.com/image/1004109/arcana
Lol they didn't even bother painting her clothes and horns different colors than the art.
 
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You could make the agrument that many of the models for the recent Zombicide Invader Kickstarter are fairly blatant rip-offs of Space Marine models. Legends of Signum are models of artwork (with no associated models).... (Not sure if this makes it better or worse mind you. )
 
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KGlee wrote:
You could make the agrument that many of the models for the recent Zombicide Invader Kickstarter are fairly blatant rip-offs of Space Marine models. Legends of Signum are models of artwork (with no associated models).... (Not sure if this makes it better or worse mind you. )


You certainly could argue that the recent Zombicide had some IP violations. That's probably why they got C&D letters and had to pull some of them.

It looks like the lady with the fan is gone from the Legends of Signum kickstarter. Though still for sale on their website.
 
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The Kickstarter is alive now...
Not a single change has been called for by kickstarter...
Sans détour manoever has something that makes me feel ill at ease...
 
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KGlee wrote:
You could make the agrument that many of the models for the recent Zombicide Invader Kickstarter are fairly blatant rip-offs of Space Marine models. Legends of Signum are models of artwork (with no associated models).... (Not sure if this makes it better or worse mind you. )


OT. but some of the celebrity "homage" Z:I KSE's were pulled during the Z:I campaign (not through GW, of course), and Miramax sent CMON some sort of legal letter in a previous Z KS, causing them to resculpt the Kill Bill and Pulp Fiction sculpts. As for GW (under new hopefully less litigious management!), GW did file a lawsuit (?) against Chapterhouse for its GW-compatible bits (miniature model parts so hobbyists can customize their GW space marine figures), and against an author for their use of Space Marine in their book. (Yeah, I'm citing a 4chan wiki, but it's the clearest summation of GW vs. Chapterhouse and you can find other articles if you want to look closer! The wiki also has more info about copyrights vs. trademarks.) LoS still has similarities to Confrontation and it's up to SD to take legal action if it wishes to, regardless if there's any point to litigation other than to drain LoS of its money...

https://1d4chan.org/wiki/ChapterHouse_Studios
https://www.wired.com/2013/02/space-marine-copyright/
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