Ikea's threat of legal action again the developer of The Store is Closed has had some unintended consequences, as its Kickstarter project raises €62,000 in donations. Dozens of pledges have come pouring in as Ikea's threat gives the game more publicity, with many citing this as the reason they've decided to financially support the project.
In a cease and desist issued by Ikea, the company states that the store used in the co-op horror game bears too much resemblance to a real Ikea storefront. It gives the solo developer just ten days to change the design of the game, removing "all indicia associated with the famous Ikea stores."
Despite the fact that developer Jacob Shaw is very much aware of the legal action, he's made no mention of it on the Kickstarter page. The most recent project update was made today, simply thanking backers for their support.
"We've blown past 50k, so I've added more stretch goals," writes Shaw, going by the username Ziggy. "Environmental hazards will now be added to the store. Hazmat suits will be required to survive radiated areas and winter clothing in for sections with malfunctioning air conditioning units."
In other words, it doesn't seem like Shaw has any plans to make any sweeping changes anytime soon. And looking at the comment section from donors, it's easy to see why. Pretty much all of the recent backers say they are "pledging to spite IKEA", willing to support the dev if there's a lawsuit.
"Please send [a] strongly worded email to Ikea, reminding them that blue and yellow are the national colors of Sweden and they are misusing those colors to sell poor quality furniture," says one backer.
"Also pledged because of IKEA," says another. "They have no rights to do so when the whole thing is inspired loosely by a Public Domain SCP they have no control over. This game won’t hurt them remotely."
In the cease and desist, Ikea uses the fact that many onlookers compared the game to an Ikea right after its reveal. Shaw's store, called Styr, is a furniture outlet that advertises "Swedish meat" in its cafe.
Funnily enough, Ikea's lawyers don't mention this in their message to Shaw, but they do highlight other issues they have found with the design. "Your game uses a blue and yellow sign with a Scandinavian name on the store, a blue box-like building, yellow vertical stiped [sic] shirts identical to those worn by IKEA personnel, a gray path on the floor, furniture that looks like IKEA furniture, and product signage that looks like IKEA signage," the cease and desist reads. "All the foregoing immediately suggest that the game takes place in an IKEA store."
In response, Shaw complained that the cease and desists demands were too vague. It remains to be seen if this can be resolved out of court.
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